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Protected By Shadows


Series: In Aeternum ~ Book 3

Publisher: Totally Bound

December 2013

ISBN #: 9781781848470

Genre: Contemporary



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She’s everything he wants and all he knows he shouldn’t have. When danger strikes, will he give it all up or is he doomed to live the rest of his life without her?

Valentino Cassano is a man who lives in shadows, lies and secrets. He works for a group that he can’t tell anyone about. When the ugliness from that world affects the woman he’s had a thing with for a few years, he refuses to let her face it alone.

Lexy Camden loves her life as a veterinarian. However, when everything gets turned upside down and Valentino inserts himself into her routine for more than a few days, things get complicated…fast. The feelings she’s been ignoring for so long won’t give her a moment’s peace.

As the danger escalates, and part of Valentino’s past comes out, will they have a chance to be a real couple or will it all be shattered with the simple pull of a trigger? Valentino has lost a lot and has no plans to do so again. Now if he can just convince Lexy to give him another shot…

Content below is not suitable if under 18.




“No. I’m only here to see Alexsa.”

Shit, my full name? What’s he up to?

Both men glanced at her and she knew why—almost no one called her that.

Hector rubbed his nose. “About what?”

Valentino neither blinked nor hesitated as he gave his answer. “Didn’t know I needed a reason to come see my wife.”

She had to be hearing things. There was no way he—the great, show-no-emotion, engage-in-no-long-term commitments, Valentino Cassano—would say those words, especially not in front of her brother. From the thunderous expression on Hector’s face, it appeared she wasn’t in a worm hole or anything like that. The daft man had actually said those words.

“You’re married?” Hector glared between the two of them. “To him?”

Valentino gave her a ‘checkmate’ grin as he moved closer. “Didn’t you tell your brothers? I thought we decided we would tell our families in Zurich.”

“You were with him in Zurich?”

She wanted to cower from her brother’s roar. “Yes, we met up in Zurich.”

“And marrying him?”

“Hugely impulsive decision,” she said with a forced smile. I am going to kill him. What the fuck is he thinking?

“Dr Camden. Adam. Need you!”

The men dashed off, Hector with a warning they would deal with this later.

The second they were alone she advanced on him. “Are you fuckin’ insane? Why the hell would you claim such a thing?” She was so angry she was shaking.

“You weren’t exactly being cooperative, darlin’.”

“Don’t you fuckin’ call me, darlin’. I’m not your darlin’. I’ll never be your darlin’.” She bit her lip and strove for patience. “Fix this. Now!”

He stared past her through the window for a brief moment then stared at her. His hazel eyes slowly ran over her body. Up and down, making her crave his touch.


“Fix it, or they won’t know where to find the body.”

“We have an audience, sweetheart. Make me feel welcome.”

Her smile was more a baring of teeth. “A knee to the balls?”

He pulled her close, putting his hands upon her back. Against her belly, she could feel his substantial erection. She placed her hands on his upper arms and held his gaze.

Valentino didn’t give her any more time to protest. He just kissed her. As usual when this man touched her, Lexy melted. I’m weak. So weak. She closed her eyes and sank into him, acknowledging even her anger was no match for her desire for this man. It’s unhealthy. I know.

Did she care? Nope.

She twined her arms around his neck and arched into his hard body. His palms against her back and ass kept her close. He swept his tongue deep, engaging hers, drawing her into the age-old dance.

Moisture gathered between her legs and she struggled not to straddle one muscled thigh and rock herself to orgasm. Or take his cock. Long. Thick. Hard. Oh yeah…

Her clit throbbed and a whimper escaped.

Although the kiss had started quick, he took his time ending it. He drew it out and captured her lower lip before releasing her.

“That’s one hell of a welcome,” he drawled.

There were times when she wished she still carried her sidearm. His words were like a bucket of ice being tossed in her face. Briefly closing her eyes, she admonished herself for falling victim again to Valentino Cassano.

No, I can’t say victim. He’s my weakness.

“Better you consider it a goodbye.”

She glanced through the viewing window only to avoid her brother’s glare. Crossing her arms, she put her back to the window to stare at the immense pain in her ass—who also could and did, rouse her to unimaginable heights of arousal—who stood before her, appearing arrogant.

He peered at her briefly before gazing back out of the window for a few seconds. Then his attention was back to her. She lifted an eyebrow and waited. Eventually his expression smoothed out.

“Something on your mind, Alexsa?”

“Thinking of all the ways I want to castrate you and fix your little bitch. I don’t like being cornered. Much less being pushed,” Lexy hissed. She dropped her arms and placed a hand on his chest. “I am going to assume you have a damn good reason for what shit you just pulled. I can’t wait to hear it.”

She moved her hand down his chest until her fingers rested against his hard shaft. Holding his gaze, she tightened her grip, her nails digging in. “Don’t try to play me, or lie to me. Believe me, Valentino Cassano, you try anything so foolish again and you’ll learn why you don’t fuck with a Southerner. Especially a Southern woman.”

Lexy released him and with a forced smile, she patted his cheek then left the large animal facility for her own building. A figure in the doorway had her slowing and glancing up.

Great. Little Miss Scarlett.

“Problem?” Lexy wasn’t in a good mood and had no desire to deal with her shit.

“Where’s Valentino?”

“West barn.” Lexy pointed and raked her gaze over the redhead. “Don’t worry, he was breathing when I left him.”

Anabelle’s blue eyes narrowed. “Don’t hurt him, or you and I will have to come to an understanding.”

Lexy understood the threat but barely blinked. “Reckon you’d best tell him that pissin’ off a Southern woman is nonsensical.” Statement made, she brushed by the red-haired woman and went inside, cranky and horny.



Copyright ©  Aliyah Burke, 2013.

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