You Only Love Twice (Masters and Mercenaries #8) by Lexi Blake
A woman on a mission
Phoebe Graham is a specialist in deep cover espionage, infiltrating the enemy, observing their practices, and when necessary eliminating the threat. Her latest assignment is McKay-Taggart Security Services, staffed with former military and intelligence operatives. They routinely perform clandestine operations all over the world but it isn’t until Jesse Murdoch joins the team that her radar starts spinning. Unfortunately so does her head. He’s gorgeous and sweet and her instincts tell her to trust him but she’s been burned before, so he’ll stay where he belongs—squarely in her sights.
A man on the run
Since the moment his Army unit was captured by jihadists, Jesse’s life has been a nightmare. Forced to watch as those monsters tortured and killed his friends and the woman he loved, something inside him snapped. When he’s finally rescued, everyone has the same question—why did he alone survive? Clouded in accusations and haunted by the faces of those he failed, Jesse struggles in civilian life until McKay-Taggart takes him in. Spending time with Phoebe, the shy and beautiful accountant, makes him feel human for the first time in forever. If someone so innocent and sweet could accept him, maybe he could truly be redeemed.
A love they never expected
When Phoebe receives the order to eliminate Jesse, she must choose between the job she’s dedicated her life to and the man who’s stolen her heart. Choosing Jesse would mean abandoning everything she believes in, and it might mean sharing his fate because a shadowy killer is dedicated to finishing the job started in Iraq.
A Masters and Mercenaries Novel by Lexi Blake
Jesse pushed through the double doors, his whole being surprisingly calm. This was what he needed. He’d been sitting in his office waiting for her to wake up, thinking about how he would handle this interrogation with some modicum of civility.
It was so good to know civility wasn’t going to be required.
It wasn’t so good to realize that the minute she’d opened that bratty mouth, he’d gotten hard as hell and he wanted to fuck her more than he wanted to figure her out. There was a little voice playing in his head that told him to just get inside her and all those secrets would open for him. All he had to do was thrust inside her tight body and the mysteries of the universe would reveal themselves.
Yeah, he wasn’t going to do that. He was going to do his job and find out who she worked for and then he would walk away from her. He wasn’t going to hold her tenderly or hope she could love him. No. It was time to grow the fuck up. How was it being through what he’d been through in Iraq hadn’t managed to teach him what this one woman had? He needed to shut down and do his job.
But that didn’t mean parts of his job couldn’t be very pleasurable.
“Uhm, Jesse, don’t you think you should handle this in the conference room? It’s where Ian planned on keeping her.” Adam Miles’s voice was an unwelcome intrusion.
“No.” He knew the old Jesse would have stopped, but this was between him and Phoebe.
“Adam, I can really explain. This is all one huge misunderstanding.” Phoebe tried to bring her head up.
That was an easy move to counter. He brought his hand down on that sweet, sweet ass. Phoebe had the damn prettiest ass he’d ever watched for hours and drooled over, and now he had zero reason to not spank that gorgeous flesh. He heard that sound, that smack as his hand hit her, and he felt her shiver. She didn’t scream. Nope. He’d thought if he smacked her good, she would call him a fucking pervert, but he’d been a dumbass idiot and this Phoebe just moaned a little as the slap went through her.
It wasn’t the type of moan that would cause him to stop spanking a sub at Sanctum.
Motherfucker. He knew he hadn’t been wrong about her. He’d thought there was a submissive streak buried under her “I’m a good girl so don’t fuck my sweet little asshole” exterior.
“The only explanation is I’m a dirty little spy and I need to tell my captor everything in order to keep him from slapping my ass silly.” He couldn’t be professional with her. It wouldn’t work. It would only serve to put distance between them, and now he could see that distance was what she’d worked for the whole time. She hadn’t let him do more than hold her hand and give her an awkward peck. She’d had him convinced he just wasn’t her type, but he could smell her now. Yeah, that wasn’t sweet or gentlemanly, but then that obviously didn’t work for her. “She likes me slapping her ass. Take a deep whiff, Adam, and you’ll be able to tell she’s aroused.”
She gasped and her whole torso came up off his. “Jesse!”
Yeah, she sounded like a pissed off girlfriend, but she wasn’t his girlfriend. She was the woman who had played him and then nearly painted her initials on his chest. And he was the idiot who had stood there and almost begged her to do it.
He cringed at the thought of how stupid he’d been about her. He knew he was ping-ponging, caught between wanting to understand her and wanting to throttle her, but most of all, he wanted to get his hands on her.
He wanted to see just how much she’d lied about.
“You might want to think this thing through, Jesse,” Adam began.
He was just about to tell Adam where he could shove his thought process when Big Tag strode out of his office. A thunderous look clouded his boss’s face, but Jesse was ready to throw down with whoever he needed to. This was his op and his…fuck, he didn’t even know what to call her, but Phoebe was his.
Ian stopped in front of them. “Take her to your office. Do what you need to do but keep it down. Apparently we’re still having a baby shower and I have to attend or risk having my balls ripped off my body. I like my balls, Murdoch. Keep her quiet. Charlie’s serious about this party thing. When did I fucking lose control? She’s not even an employee here.”
“No. I’m part owner,” Charlotte said, her voice a sharp instrument. She was a beautiful woman with strawberry blonde hair. She rested her hand on the bump on her belly that seemed to get bigger every day. “Eve and I own half this company, you know. And we have all the boobs so try getting around us. Phoebe, I swear to god if I find out you’ve done one thing to put this company and our people in danger I will take you apart myself. Is that understood? You better hope you can prove you weren’t going to hurt Jesse. He’s one of my men and I will deal with you.”
Phoebe’s head came up again. “Your men? That’s a little presumptuous, isn’t it? You treat him like a puppy you can pat on his head and send away. He isn’t yours and if you think you can take me, you’re wrong.”
Charlotte’s lips curled up and Jesse realized Phoebe had just fallen into a trap. “She doesn’t like the fact that I said you’re mine, Jesse.”
Big Tag was frowning at her. “I didn’t either.”
She waved him off. “I meant as a friend and employee, but Phoebe’s brain goes straight for the sexual. I wonder why. Li’s right. You’re going to owe him a hundred bucks at the end of this thing. She’s all Stockholmed out. Who wants cake?”
NY Times and USA Today bestselling author Lexi Blake lives in North Texas with her husband, three kids, and the laziest rescue dog in the world. She began writing at a young age, concentrating on plays and journalism. It wasn’t until she started writing romance and urban fantasy that she found the stories of her heart. She likes to find humor in the strangest places and believes in happy endings no matter how odd the couple, threesome, or foursome may seem.
Her first novel, Their Virgin Captive: Masters of Ménage, Book 1, was a collaboration with New York Times bestselling author Shayla Black. There are five more books available in the series: Their Virgin’s Secret, Their Virgin Concubine, Their Virgin Princess, Their Virgin Hostage, and Their Virgin Secretary. The next book in the series, Their Virgin Mistress, is releasing this April.
In addition to the Masters of Ménage series, she is the author of the Masters and Mercenaries series. There are eight full-length novels and four novellas available now, with more coming in 2015.
In 2013, Lexi also began releasing her urban fantasy series, Thieves. The first five are available now, with Ripper, a spin-off to the series, coming in 2015.
Other Books in The Masters & Mercenaries Series
Print Book: Amazon
Print Book: Amazon
1001 Dark Nights (Masters & Mercenaries Book 6.5)