Not everything dangerous is bad.
From the moment Angelina laid eyes on him, she fell into a fantasy. Mysterious, foreign, gorgeous, Haithem offered her what she needed most—a chance to feel again.
But Haithem is much more than he appears to be. He lives in a world of danger where everything comes at a price.
For Angelina, that price is her future.
He's made sure the life she's left behind is in tatters. Made her family believe she's dead. Still, he talks about protecting her, about keeping her safe, but she can't distinguish his truth from his lies. She can't separate her pleasure from his betrayal.
Haithem warned her. He told her he'd make her heart race, her body come alive and her most primal needs rush to the surface. His for the taking.
He didn't say she'd come to love the devil who's destroying her, even as he keeps her prisoner.
After spending years imagining fictional adventures, Amber Bardan finally found a way to turn daydreaming into a productive habit. She now spends her time in a coffee-fueled adrenaline haze, writing romance with a thriller edge.
She lives with her husband and children in semi-rural Australia, where if she peers outside at the right moment she might just see a kangaroo bounce by.
Amber is an award winning writer, Amazon Bestselling Author, and member of Romance Writers of Australia, Melbourne Romance Writers Guild, and Writers Victoria.
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Long fingers close around my throat. Not squeezing, not hurting, but commanding. I look at him. This man I love. This devil I adore. He’s gorgeous—dark hair, darker eyes, olive skin, body and features all chiseled hardness. But that’s not what makes my veins jump under his hand. That’s not what makes my skin slick with sweat.
There’s more to this man than meets the eye.
His thumb strokes my pulse, gleaning secrets right out of my blood. His mouth curls to the side, forming a smile that reveals he knows exactly what I’m thinking.
“Didn’t I warn you, Angel,” he says, and his thumb moves up to my chin, “that it’s not a good idea to love me?”
My pulse leaps from erratic to chaotic. I can’t answer, only listen in horrified fascination to what I know will come next.
He traces the groove below my bottom lip. “Didn’t I warn you my love would be bad?”
Shivers run hot then cold over my skin.
“Didn’t I tell you, you’d pay for my heart?” He touches my mouth, dragging my bottom lip down.
My body sings, my blood hums right down to my womb. I can’t resist him. He did warn me. He truly did. But I was greedy. I wanted him anyway.
I didn’t understand how bad he could be.
He’s the devil. Tempting me with what I desire most. Luring me to an irresistible destruction. A destruction I’m so close to I can smell it—taste it—touch it. Pain grips me, my insides bruise with it. My family believes I’m dead. The life I’ve left behind lies in tatters because of him. Because he keeps me.
He won’t let me go.
He tilts my face, brushing his cheek against my ear. “I promise it will be worth it.” His stubble chafes my earlobe, stinging and electrifying. I’ve felt those bristles scrape against my neck, my breasts, my thighs. There’s not an inch of me that hasn’t felt the sweet torture of their abrasion. “Can’t you see it?” he asks. “The future where you’re mine?”
My eyelids drift shut. I know it’s only the hand cradling my face that’s holding me up. I can see that future. I see it with fluorescent intensity. Life with the lights turned on. Life where living means more than existing. For everything he’s taken from me, he’s given me back more. He breathed a soul back into me. Without it, without him, I’d be a walking corpse.
I see our future. I ache for it, yearn for it, despise myself for it.
“Say it, Angel. Say, Haithem, I’m yours.”
For all intents and purposes, I’m a prisoner—captive—perhaps even a slave. Because I have no choices but the ones he gives me. Yet, he gives me this choice—or at least the illusion of a choice—to choose him.
To love him.
As if making a choice had ever been an option. The moment I met him, I may as well have been branded.
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