Patricia Rosemoor: Skin

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Patricia Rosemoor Skin
  • Название:
    Skin
  • Автор:
  • Издательство:
    Amazon Digital Services
  • Жанр:
    Триллер / Эротические любовные романы / на английском языке
  • Год:
    2012
  • Язык:
    Английский
  • ISBN:
    1470193272
  • Рейтинг книги:
    3 / 5
  • Ваша оценка:
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Skin: краткое содержание, описание и аннотация

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WHAT READERS ARE SAYING: SKIN was scary, fast paced, had grit, romance and an element of “who done it”. It’s one of those novels that you’re afraid to turn the next page, but you just have to! loved it! Rosemoor has packed this thriller with danger, emotional punch and some sizzling scenes as well! IS HE THE MAN SHE THINKS HE IS, OR IS HE THE KILLER?.. Lilith Mitchell finds her runaway sister dancing at a gentleman’s club. They barely reconnect when a killer kidnaps Hannah. Keeping his victims prisoner for days, he then hunts them in a forest preserve. Determined to save Hannah before it’s too late, Lilith takes Hannah’s place at the club to lure the killer into coming after her. There she meets Michael Wyndham, documentary filmmaker whose current project SKIN is a psychological study of the dancers. Lilith connects with him and falls under his spell… but is Michael the man he seems to be, or is he the one terrorizing her? In a world of deception, where everyone seems guilty, who can Lilith trust?

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Skin — читать онлайн бесплатно полную книгу (весь текст) целиком

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Patricia Rosemoor

SKIN

Thanks to the family of writers who have encouraged me along the way: members of my critique group, who helped me resolve character questions; my fellow Intrigue and indie authors who helped me narrow down covers until I found the right one; Rosemary Paulas, who read through the first draft and gave me great notes that improved the story. Also thanks to Norman Glick for the professional copyedit.

oOo

Prologue

HER SCREAMS gave him a hard-on that ached so badly he could hardly move. But if he didn’t run, the hunt would be over. His prey would get away.

Rotten leaves and pine needles still damp with that afternoon’s spring rain muffled footfalls made by her bare feet as she scurried away from him between the canopy of trees. Too bad for her she couldn’t keep her mouth shut, couldn’t stifle the obliging squeaks and squeals shooting through the dark that not only told him where she was, but shot a thrill of anticipation through him.

Running faster now, he shifted the rifle to his right hand, fighting disappointment that she would be so easy. The last one had been more of a challenge. He could hear her jagged breath coming faster than his own, didn’t have to see her to know how she would look, all panicked, fleshy ass and full tits jiggling in the breeze. Her panic was the turn-on. He’d been holding her prisoner, terrorizing her for the past ten days, and this was the payoff. He tore through the trees to his right. Circled. Kept vigilant as he pulled alongside her. Not that he thought she would try to fool him.

She wasn’t that smart. None of them were.

Coming alongside a clearing, he realized he’d beaten her out of the forest. He stopped and juggled the rifle until she pounded out from between the trees, then calmly announced, “You lose.”

An anguished cry tore from her throat as she stumbled to a dead stop and faced him. Moonlight silvered her pale skin and cast a blue glow over her. Her dark eyes were wide. Unblinking. When he stood there silently for a minute, letting his own anticipation build, furtively unsnapping the leather holster at his belt, allowing his fingers to caress the knife hilt as he watched her breasts heave, her expression slowly changed from terrified to furious.

“A game?” A hopeful note crept through the outrage. She swept her long, dark hair out of her eyes. “This is a game? Why didn’t you say so? You scared the shit out of me, you bastard!”

“That’s the best part.”

Her features relaxed some, then took on that know-it-all expression he particularly hated. The one that reminded him of her. She drew close enough so he could see her tongue dart out to wet her full lips, and he could practically smell the rivulets of sweat licking her flesh as thoroughly as he’d done a few times himself. His raising the rifle slightly stopped her in her tracks.

“C’mon, honey,” she coaxed in that low, throaty voice that had gotten to him for a while. “I could make it good for you. Real good.”

He knew she could. It was her profession. But he would make it better and without sex. What he was going to do to her would get him off like nothing else could.

“What’ve you got in mind?” he asked.

“Anything. You know I’m good for it.” She gave him one of those burning looks that was supposed to melt him. “Right now.”

Unmoved, he asked, “You want it now?”

“Now, baby, yeah.”

Tossing that mane of lush dark hair, she held her arms out to him.

Lifting the rifle to his shoulder, he aimed at her and squeezed the trigger.

oOo

Chapter 1

KICKING, SLUGGING, BATTERING a padded man while an audience cheered her on, Lilith Mitchell did her best to down him. She backed off for a moment and took a deep breath. Took a quick look around at the other women at the health club who were part of the Street Survival class. Her expression as ferocious as she could manage, she ground out a war cry — “NO!” — and was on the attack once more, her long dark ponytail flying along her T-shirted shoulder.

A few seconds later, the padded man was on his butt on the floor.

Several women gathered around to congratulate her.

The teenager who Lilith mentored, muttered, “I could never do that.”

Carmen Vargas was a pretty seventeen-year-old, slender with long dark hair and big dark eyes. Lilith had convinced her to take the six week self-defense class that met three nights a week and had paid the girl’s fee herself.

“Sure you could do it,” Lilith said with a grin. “It’s all in the body language.”

“Any man that tries to get next to Lilith should be a really good reader,” said her friend and coworker, Elena Gutierrez, another paralegal at Hamilton, Smith and Willis.

They all laughed together, the camaraderie being one of the reasons Lilith repeated the class every year. The other reason being she didn’t want to forget how to protect herself. Even though she wasn’t a small woman and an “I’m in control” attitude now came naturally to her after years of hard work, Lilith knew anyone could be victimized. Staying on guard, prepared, was her best defense.

The women strayed off, some to change, others to pump iron. Lilith noticed her opponent had finished removing his padding and was now gathering his gear to leave. Jack was great-looking, but what she admired about him most was his volunteering to be a human punching bag.

“Tough job,” she told him, holding her hand out for a shake.

“Tough lady.” His grin lent a boyish cast to his face. “Say, do you take bribes?”

“As in, you bribe me with something I want, and I might not have the heart to hit you so hard next week?”

He flicked his eyebrows at her. “That’s the idea.”

Lilith laughed. “I’ll think about it.”

Flirting with an attractive man made her think of hot sex. No strings. No future. Just the now. Simply not in the mood, she forgot about Jack by the time she arrived in the locker room.

There on a bench, a blazing newspaper headline caught her attention: HUNTER-MURDERER FLIPS OFF CPD. Lilith picked up the front section of The Chicago Record and quickly scanned the article about The Hunter Case. The article accused the Chicago Police Department of doing a slipshod investigation of a possible serial killer because the victims had been deemed worthless to society. A waitress and a prostitute might not be high profile, but they were human beings, Lilith thought, feeling badly for the victims. And the families they left behind. Both women had been connected to Club Paradise, a “gentlemen’s club,” both murdered in a county forest preserve less than six months apart.

Wishing the women had been smart enough to take a self-defense course, she signaled to Carmen who was talking to one of the younger women. The teenager smiled, made her excuses and came running.

“Man, you’re good at this,” Carmen said, opening her locker. “No guy should mess with you.”

“Attitude helps.” Lilith asked, “Has someone been messing with you?”

Carmen shrugged. “Not really.” But her mouth tightened, and she didn’t look directly at Lilith.

“Anything you want to talk about, you know I’m here for you. Call me anytime.”

“Yeah, I know.”

Being in the mentor program meant that the girl was at risk, with little hope of getting through high school. Carmen’s grades were good enough to get her into college on a scholarship, just as Lilith had done. Lilith’s job as a mentor was to set an example, give Carmen someone she could relate to outside her tight-knit community.

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