Trust will either destroy them…or save them both.
Kira Farseaker led a sheltered, privileged life—until her discovery of a cruel secret plunged her into an underworld of danger. Now she vows to use her money and position to save an alien species, the Shifters, from government-sanctioned extermination.
A secret planet, a Farseaker legacy known as Kierna’Rhoan, could offer at least some of the evolving Shifters the sanctuary they need to survive. To get them there safely will be the most dangerous mission Kira has ever attempted—a task that isn’t made any easier by her attraction to the dark, hungry eyes of a suspected spy.
Officer David Cario’s assignment to a Shifter extermination squadron is just the break he needs to learn why his sister was executed. Earning the trust of his commander’s ex-wife, suspected terrorist Kira Farseaker, is easier said than done, especially when crossing into her world brings him face to face with truths he isn’t prepared to discover.
Swept up in a growing whirlpool of corruption and treachery, Kira and David find themselves locked in a struggle between duty and a growing passion that could destroy everything they’ve worked for. Or save both their lives.
This book has been previously published and has been revised from its original release.
This book contains graphic language, sensual love scenes, a hero who smokes, shape-shifting aliens, an evil ex-husband, cocky space smugglers and the occasional blaster fight.
Copyright © 2008 Isabo Kelly
All rights reserved — a Samhain Publishing, Ltd. publication
They reached the forward Guard, and Kira prepared for the inevitable questions. She didn’t bother to smile or flirt. The Guard, a man in his late fifties, wore the familiar signet on his uniform. He already knew who she was.
“Farseaker,” he greeted without inflection. His gaze traveled over her face, then into the back of the van, taking in the four other women.
“Officer Herot,” Kira returned. She didn’t know the man, not well, but she’d seen him before, dealt with him before.
“You know the drill, Farseaker. Contraband? Illegals?”
She couldn’t help the cynical smile that answered his questions. He already knew her answers. “What do you think, Officer?”
“I think you’ve been skirting the law for too long now, Farseaker. He knows you’re involved with them.”
“If he had any proof that I was involved in something illegal,” she said evenly, “he’d have had me locked away in a hole a very long time ago, Herot. And he would relish putting me there.”
The Guard’s thick dark brows drew together over a prominent nose. His thin lips pursed for an instant, then flattened. “Pull the van over to the side,” he said, gesturing to the second set of Guards. “They’ll have to be questioned further.” He nodded to the four in the back. “And the van will be inspected.”
“Of course.” Kira didn’t argue. She pulled the van to the side, hissing another silencing order as a nervous chatter started behind her. “Remember,” she said under her breath, “they don’t know anything. Can’t know anything. Just keep your heads and we’ll be all right.”
She looked over her shoulder at the sound of the timid voice. Vettine was only nineteen years old. Her cropped blonde hair and heart-shaped face gave her an ethereal beauty, but her deep jade eyes were wide with fear, making her appear every year of her youth. “You’ll be okay,” Kira assured her with a firm voice. “Don’t panic on me now.”
The girl took a long, shaky breath, straightened her shoulders and nodded.
“Good girl,” Kira murmured as a Guard walked up to the passenger side of the van. This Guard was a man she’d never seen before. He was young, but not too young. Mid-thirties, she guessed at a glance. Handsome, but far from pretty. A faint scar along his right jaw and the first few wrinkles of his age saw to that. His short, brown hair held just a touch of wave. His black-coffee eyes were hard and efficient. But there was something…
Something in his eyes. Something familiar, that she couldn’t name. Maybe it was an underlying quality of pain, or the hint of humanity she so rarely found in the Guard. Whatever it was, it was absent from the firm line of his mouth, the set of his jaw, the sharp movement of his arm as he gestured the four women behind her out of the van’s side door. Whatever it was, he hid it well.
When Kira turned to open her door, he stopped her. “You’re to wait in the car, ma’am.”
And she almost smiled. He had a beautiful, husky voice. A voice she wouldn’t mind hearing more. Her stomach twisted just a little, pleasantly reminding her that she was still a woman. Her gaze dropped to his chest, a rather nice, broad one she thought before noticing the signet above his left breast.
Her self-control snapped back into place.
She faced forward, watching through the front windshield of the van as a half-dozen fully armed soldiers led her four friends a short distance away. She tried to relax against the seat, tried to ignore the inconvenient tear in the imitation leather that poked her in the back. This could take hours if Ennoren saw fit to detain them.
The sound of the passenger door opening startled her. She turned to see the Guard settle himself onto the floorboard, shifting so that he wasn’t visible above the dash. Kira cocked her head to one side, raising her eyebrows, and the man flashed the most charming smile she’d ever seen. The grin was just a touch guilty and would have made him seem like a mischievous boy if it hadn’t stretched the scar and deepened the wrinkles around his eyes.
He plucked a pack of cigarettes from a pocket inside his uniform jacket and showed them to her.
“Not allowed to smoke on duty.” He tapped one cigarette free, stuck it in his mouth, then returned the rest to his pocket and pulled out a small lighter. Before he lit up, he extended a hand. “David.”
“Kira.” She shook his hand, quick and firm, and pulled back before she had time to notice how nice his grip felt.
He lit the cigarette, took a long drag, then offered the end to her. She stared at the thing for a moment before helping herself to a puff. Through the cloud of tobacco-scented smoke she exhaled, she studied him. “You been with the Guard long?” she asked, handing the cigarette back.
“Twelve years now.” He took another drag, never taking his gaze from her face.
“You’re one of Ennoren’s.” She wasn’t asking. She knew the signet on his uniform too well.
He nodded, his dark eyes still locked to hers. “For about three years.”
She half-smiled, chuckled and shook her head. “Too bad, really.” She turned to see how her friends were doing.
All four seemed to be holding up under the scrutiny of the men questioning them. Vettine’s shoulders were straight, her posture unwavering. Grainne’s stance was relaxed and cocky as she tossed her waist-length red hair over one shoulder. Breeanne had her arms crossed over her chest, her legs braced slightly apart. Her pale skin was flushed, but her expression controlled. And Jo, with her stylishly braided black hair brushing her shoulders in the breeze, had her hands on her hips, a slight smile on her full mouth and a sexy glint in her violet eyes. Kira couldn’t help smiling. Her second would flirt with the Devil himself if she were standing at the gates of Hell.
“Why too bad?”
The husky voice brought her attention back to the man sitting on the floorboard of her van. He offered her the cigarette again, and she took a long drag before answering. “I would have liked to get to know you. Under better circumstances. I think I could have liked you,” she answered without guile, a slight, sad smile tugging at her mouth.
She shrugged. “You’re one of Ennoren’s men.” She faced forward again because there was really no need for further explanation.
“You’re jumping to conclusions. Judging me based on the commander I work under. You don’t know me.”
Kira snorted and met his gaze. “It doesn’t matter whether I know you or not. You work for Ennoren.”
A movement to her left caught her attention, and she turned away from David’s narrowed eyes. She reached down for the cigarette without taking her eyes off the man walking toward the van. When she’d taken another drag, she said, “Your boss is on his way over. Better let me finish this.”
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