3 MORE SLEEPS!!!! And then Merciless, Book One of the Severinov Bratva Series, will be HERE!!!!! I’m sure you’ve already read Defiance, the prequel to this amazing new mafia series (WINK, WINK), so how about the Prologue??? Here’s a little taste of what’s to come!
I clutch the sides of my head and squeeze my eyes closed. It takes me a few minutes to remember where I even was last night before the sordid sex fest in my hotel suite started. But even in my drunken stupor, I somehow still remembered to charge my damn cell phone.
And when it started blaring with incoming texts from my father this morning, right next to my head, the urge to hurl it against a wall was strong.
Stronger even when one of my overnight guests started to taunt me with her devious lips. They clamped tight around my cock—sucking, tugging, licking until she decided it was time to hop on top of me for one last ride.
I let that damn phone ring and ping for about an hour until my guests left and I was alone again.
By that time, I was definitely in serious need of coffee and a bottle of Advil.
After a quick shower and a handful of pills, I’m still suffering and there’s no relief in sight.
“You were given specific instructions, Kazimir,” my father growls, pacing his office at the Le MéridienHoteland Casino in Monaco. The place is luxury personified, with its polished marble floors, gold accents as far as the eye can see, and lush foliage lining every corner.
And this is just one of my father’s many holdings here. Monaco is dripping with wealth, power, and prestige, and for the patriarch of the Severinov family, it is the perfect place to expand our interests.
It’s been a long and hard few years.
Leaving Russia meant losing a lot of our government protection, and then after losing Mom…
I take a deep breath and fist my hair.
My stomach rolls. I don’t want to think about that right now, but it’s the reason I’m sitting here in Dad’s office. He stomps around, slamming things and yelling, but it’s not until he spews the next words that I actually sit up and focus.
“I can’t trust you! I never could!”
I slowly raise my eyes at him, his face pinched and red. My jaw damn near drops to the floor. A flash of realization takes the place of his otherwise irate expression. He just heard what he said to me. Christ only knows, he’s been thinking it for the last five years. I guess it was bound to come out at some point.
I grip the arms of the chair and pull myself out of it. I need to stand up for this next part. I’ve beaten myself into the ground over it for long enough.
“I tried to make it right,” I say through gritted teeth. “Do you know how hard it was…and still is…for me to live with myself after what happened? That’s why I went to find Yazov!” I inch closer to my father, ignoring his look of shock. “Not a day goes by that I don’t wish it had been me instead of her. I wish they’d have put a bullet in my fucking brain, Dad! I wish it had been me in that car, not Mom and Tali! I will never forgive myself for letting it happen. And I don’t need you to constantly remind me of how insignificant my role in this family is.”
It takes Dad a minute or two to recover, and rightly so. The pounding between my temples shudders my brain and all I want to do is dive back into my bed, bury my head under the fluffy pillows, and pray for an end to this nightmare.
“You went against my orders,” he says in a quiet voice, staring at me.
“I tried to do the right thing.”
“Just because it would have helpedyousleep better at night doesn’t mean it would have been the right thing.” He shakes his head. “Typical Kazimir. Always thinking of yourself. Never the consequences of your actions.”
“I haven’t slept in years, Dad,” I mutter, raking a hand through my hair. “I was doing it for you.”
“Well, I never asked for your help, did I?” he hisses, circling his desk and sinking into the chair behind it. He flips open a folder and scans the paper on top. When he looks up at me again, he narrows his eyes. “You need to get away from here as soon as possible.”
“That’s the beautiful thing about being an assassin. I’m everywhere and nowhere. I can be invisible.”
“Well, you’re going to be invisible in America. I want you far away from here. I will handle things in here in Monaco with your brother Alek. You will leave for Las Vegas tonight. I’ve already made the arrangements.”
“What the hell am I supposed to do in Vegas? I’m an enforcer for this family. Christ, I don’t even gamble!”
“You don’t have to gamble. I don’t give a damn if you know a straight flush from a royal. But you need to lay low until the shit storm you caused blows over.”
“Great,” I grumble, stretching my arms overhead. “I can’t wait.”
Dad narrows his dark eyes at me. “You caused this, Kaz. Just remember that. It may not seem like it now, but I’m saving your ass.”
“Why bother?” I shoot back. “According to you, I keep screwing things up for the family. I don’t take instructions, I can’t be counted on, I’m always following my own agenda. Why not let them kill me? It’d save you some headaches,” I seethe, my fists clenched.
Dad lifts an eyebrow but says nothing. “You’ll be taking on the role of Head of Security at the Montepremi Hotel and Casino. It’s under the ownership of a shell corporation I had set up, so you should be able to preserve your anonymity.”
Interesting. Dad never makes a purchase like that without letting the whole world know about it. Maybe he really does want to keep me alive.
“And what exactly will I be doing at the Montepremi?”
“The casino will be used as a front for our money laundering and trafficking activities in America, which you, Leo, and Tali will manage. Each of you will have your own roles, but I need people I can trust managing the operations. You will work beside your brother and sister and keep a low profile.”
And there it is. The angle. Dad always has one, and he’s always figuring out how to expand his empire. My role is helping him do that. Period. That’s why he’s sending me to Vegas.
Because he needs me. Not because he gives a shit about me.
“So why are you sending me?” I can’t help but take the dig. I know I’m here because I screwed up, but it doesn’t mean I’m going down easy. “Leo and Tali are pretty good order takers. They don’t need me out there to mess things up.”
Dad scrubs a hand down the front of his face. “Kaz,” he says in a low voice. “You will do what I ask and not question my reasons. I think you know better than anyone that I never make a move without a good one.” He points a finger at me. “You will go to Las Vegas and you will do what I ask of you without another question.” His lips stretch into a thin line. “Consider this your final directive.”