There is one name that can inspire fear all along the East Coast.
A lord of the Underworld. A Napoleon of crime… Mr Larry.
And his daughter is on the run from him.
Sophie has lived all her life in her father’s shadow. She’s an underworld princess. Her future has already been set up and laid before her and she knows there can be no escape.
Then she met Luke.
He’s everything she ever wanted in a man. Tough, strong, and absolutely devoted to her. There’s just one problem. He’s her bodyguard, and there’s no place for an affair with a scrapper from the hard streets in her future.
So when they’re caught, they have no choice but to flee. Now they’re on the run, hunted by all sides. Can their love survive? Can they survive?
Valentine Misadventures is part of the Deliciously Sinful Liaisons Collection.
They should have been laying low, keeping a low profile, but there was little chance of anyone noticing them here. It was the sort of place that no one asked questions. The club was as underground as it was possible to get.
With the bright LED beams bouncing off the reflective disco ball, the walls seemed to shake as the rock music screamed out from the concealed sound system in a maelstrom of sound that had the patrons dancing with renewed life.
Encircled by Luke’s strong arms, Sophie felt like she was floating on air and her body seemed to be moving of its own accord as she revelled in the sensation of being so close to this man.
It was stupid and reckless. He was her guard, her protector, the man her father had charged to keep her safe. If they were discovered, they could both be killed, but she couldn’t help herself. She’d seduced him.
She’d seduced him because when she was with him, she wasn’t just Mr Larry’s daughter. She wasn’t just an underworld princess or the daughter of the East Coast’s most notorious gangster. With him, she was just Sophie.
With Luke, she felt alive. Alive and free of her gilded cage-
“Sophie.” The warning in Luke’s voice shattered the moment like the fall of a sledgehammer. Looking up, she realised that the music had stopped and none of the other people on the floor were dancing anymore.
“Luke… What’s happening?” she asked, but Luke wasn’t listening. Instead, a stern look had come over his face as he looked past her. Not accustomed to her lover ignoring her, Sophie followed his eyes to the club’s main entrance. There, flanked by a pair of goons, a man in his early forties, with neatly cropped salt and pepper hair, dressed in a tailored and very immaculate, Armani suit and leather coat, was talking with the doorman.
Sophie recognised him immediately as her father’s consigliere. The right hand of God.
“We’ve got company.”
“Victor,” she whispered, her deep cerulean eyes widening as panic flared inside her breast like cold fingers coiling around her heart. “What are we going to do?”
Luke didn’t answer. One of the goons, a large man dressed in a navy blazer and matching chinos with a squashed face stepped forward.
“All right, people!” he yelled, his deep voice sounding more like a growl than speech. “We’re looking for two people. A man and a woman. We know who they are and that they’re here so stay out of our way. Don’t try to play the hero and you won’t get hurt.”
“They are looking for us!” Sophie whispered, grabbing his hand and clinging to his arm with a death grip. “Luke, what are we going to do?”
Time and again, they’d discussed what she should do if they were discovered, but now the moment was here, she was lost.
Watching for a moment as both goons began to push through the dancers, Luke waited, a calculating look playing across his handsome features as his eyes poured over the scene. There were too many innocents for him to shoot a way out, but if they did not move then it would just be a matter of time until they were caught. They had only one choice and subtly looking from side to side, a small smile graced his thin lips when he spotted a back door.
“Over there,” he whispered, nodding to the door. “Move slowly and don’t look back. Go now and I’ll meet you outside.”
Sophie didn’t hesitate. Keeping her head down, she walked through and around the throng, taking care not to draw anyone’s attention. Blessedly, her movement attracted little notice and she couldn’t help breathing a sigh of relief as she felt the cold steel of the backway’s handle beneath her fingertips. Pressing her palm gently against the leaver so it wouldn’t make a sound, she pushed it open a crack and slipped silently through into the cold night air before pulling it closed.
The door opened out into an alcove for a flight of concrete steps up to the alley behind the club. Taking the flight at a run, a quick glance confirmed it to be empty, however, she didn’t have time to get her bearings. No sooner had she emerged out next to the fire escape ladder then the door beside it suddenly burst open.