FATAL INVASION by Marie Force
The 13th romantic thriller title in the Fatal Series.
First the fire, then the heat…A brutal home invasion. Two small traumatized survivors who may have witnessed the horror. Lieutenant Sam Holland has never worked a case quite like this one, in which her eye-witnesses are five-year-old twins. But when Sam steps up in a big way for them, she risks her heart as much as her career.
While Sam and her husband, Vice President Nick Cappuano, go to battle in more ways than one for her tiny witnesses, her colleague Sergeant Tommy “Gonzo” Gonzales battles his own demons. Months of unbearable grief and despair come to a head in an unimaginable way that threatens Gonzo’s status with the department and his relationship with his fiancée, Christina.
With trouble both at the precinct and on the case, Sam struggles to keep her priorities straight at home and at work while trying not to lose her heart to her latest crime victims.
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EXCERPT: Chapter 1
“This is a classic case of be careful what you wish for.” Nick placed a stack of folded dress shirts in a suitcase that already held socks, underwear, workout clothes and several pairs of jeans. Only Nick would start packing seven days before his scheduled departure for Europe next Sunday, the day after Freddie and Elin’s wedding. “That’s the lesson learned here.”
“Only anal-retentive freakazoids pack a week before a trip.” Sam sat at the foot of the bed and watched him pack with a growing sense of dread. “Three freaking weeks. The last time you were gone that long, I nearly lost my mind, and I don’t have much of a mind left to lose.”
“Come with me,” he said for the hundredth time since the president asked him to make the diplomatic trip, representing the administration on a visit with some of the country’s closest allies. Since President Nelson was still recovering—in more ways than one—from his son’s criminal activities, several of the allies had requested he send his popular vice president in his stead.
Sam flopped on the bed. “I can’t. I have work and Scotty, and Freddie is going on his honeymoon for two weeks and… I can’t.” No Nick at home to entertain her. No Freddie at work to entertain her. The next few weeks were going to totally suck monkey balls.
“Actually, you can.” Nick hovered above her, propped on arms ripped with muscles, his splendid chest on full display. “You have more vacation time saved up than you can use in a lifetime, and you have the right to actually use it. Scotty will be fine with Shelby, your dad and Celia, your sisters and the Secret Service here to entertain him. We could even ask Mrs. Littlefield to come up for the weekends.”
Their son’s former guardian would love the chance to spend time with him, but Sam didn’t feel right about leaving him for so long. However, the thought of being without Nick for three endless weeks made her sick. His trip to Iran earlier in the year had been pure torture, especially since it kept getting extended.
“Why’d you have to tell Nelson you wanted to be more than a figurehead vice president?” She play-punched his chest. “Everything was fine when he was ignoring you.”
He kissed her lips and then her neck. “You’re so, so cute when you pout.”
“Badass cops do not pout.”
“Mine does when she doesn’t get her own way, and it’s truly adorable.”
She scowled at him. “Badass cops are not adorable.”
“Mine is.” Leaving a trail of hot kisses on her neck, he said, “Come with me, Samantha. London, Paris, Rome, the Vatican, Amsterdam, Brussels, The Hague. Come see the world with me.”
Sam had never been to Europe and had always wanted to go, so she was sorely tempted to say to hell with her responsibilities.
“Come on.” He rolled her earlobe between his teeth and pressed against her suggestively. “Three whole weeks together away from the madness of DC. You know you want to go. Gonzo could cover for you at work, and things have been slow anyway.”
There hadn’t been a homicide in more than a week, which meant they were due, and that was another reason to stay home. “Don’t say that and put a jinx on us.”
“Come away with me. Scotty will be fine. We’ll FaceTime with him every day and bring him presents. He’ll be well cared for by everyone else who loves him.” He kissed her neck as he unbuttoned her shirt and pushed it aside. “You’d get to meet the Queen of England.”
Sam moaned. She loved the queen—speaking of a badass female.
“And the Pope. Plus, you’ll need some clothes—and shoes. Lots of shoes.”
“Stop it.” She turned her face to avoid his kiss. “You’re fighting dirty.”
“Because I want my wife to come with me on the trip of a lifetime? I need you Samantha.”
As he well knew, she could deny him nothing when he said he needed her. “Fine, I’ll go! But only if it’s okay with Scotty and if I can swing it at work.”
“Yes,” her husband said on a long exhale. “We’ll have so much fun.”
“Will we actually get to see anything?”
He pushed himself up to continue packing. “I’ll make sure of it.”
CHECK OUT THE REST OF THE FATAL SERIES
Marie Force is the New York Times bestselling author of contemporary romance, including the indie-published Gansett Island Series and the Fatal Series from Harlequin Books. In addition, she is the author of the Butler, Vermont Series, the Green Mountain Series and the erotic romance Quantum Series. In 2019, her new historical Gilded series from Kensington Books will debut with Duchess By Deception.
All together, her books have sold 6.5 million copies worldwide, have been translated into more than a dozen languages and have appeared on the New York Times bestseller list many times. She is also a USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestseller, a Speigel bestseller in Germany, a frequent speaker and publishing workshop presenter as well as a publisher through her Jack’s House Publishing romance imprint. She is a two-time nominee for the Romance Writers of America’s RITA® award for romance fiction.
Her goals in life are simple—to finish raising two happy, healthy, productive young adults, to keep writing books for as long as she possibly can and to never be on a flight that makes the news.
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