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Erotic Romance, Menage (MMF), Romance on the Go, Romantic Suspense
Word Count: 13,600
Heat Level: 3
Published By: Evernight Publishing
Blue thinks her life is pretty awesome—after all, she has two sexy boyfriends and an exciting career scaling walls and breaking open safes. What more could a woman ask for? So what if her boys are cops and she’s a thief? They haven’t arrested her yet, right?
Matt and Liam love Blue to distraction, but when one of her throwing blades turns up sticking out of a dead thug’s body, their acceptance of her lifestyle faces its biggest threat. They think she’s been framed, and saving her life is more important than arresting her for murder, but old habits die hard. And unfortunately, Blue isn’t the kind of girl to let someone else take the heat for her problems.
Can their love survive murder, an unexpected surprise, and a dirty cop bent on silencing the thief who can expose all of his despicable plans?
BELOVED Chapter One
Blue stared down at the plastic stick in her hands. Two little lines proclaimed that her life was about to change. A lot. Anxiety slid icy fingers around her spine.
“Pregnant,” she whispered, swallowing hard. She didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. She’d always wanted to have children, but she’d long since given up on it ever becoming a reality. She was a thief—not exactly the most stable profession in the world. What kind of mom cracked safes for a living? She could just imagine the excuses she’d have to come up with: Oh, hey, sorry about missing your recital, honey. I had to break into an office building to steal a necklace. Here, have a tiara. Blue snorted and glanced into the mirror above the sink. Scared green eyes stared back at her.
“Crap.” She turned around. Watching herself freak out wasn’t going to do a damn bit of good. She took a deep breath, fighting back tears. She had no idea how Matt and Liam were going to take this news. She didn’t even know which one of them was the father! She set the stick down on the counter and ran water to wash her hands, avoiding her reflection. When she finished, she took another deep breath and grabbed the pregnancy test as she headed for her bedroom. She’d put it in her emergency bag.
Because getting pregnant is definitely an emergency, she decided, shoving it into the front pocket of the duffel she kept in her closet. As a thief, she always knew there was a slim chance she’d have to leave in a hurry someday, so she was always prepared. She kept a change of clothes, a wig, a wad of cash, and some false documentation in the canvas tote. She even charged her laptop in the bag. That way, all she had to do was grab it and run. She’d just finished zipping up the pocket when her front door slammed open.
“Blue!” Matt yelled. “Are you home?”
She froze. “Matt?” What was he doing here in the middle of the day? They weren’t supposed to meet for dinner until after seven. She stood up and kicked her closet door shut with her foot just as he rushed in with Liam on his heels.
“Oh, thank God. We’ve got to get you out of here,” Liam said, hurrying to the window and pulling down the blinds.
“Liam? What the hell are you doing?” Blue frowned at him. He looked stressed. The crows’ feet around his hazel eyes seemed somehow more prominent. “What’s going on?”
“Here,” Matt said, shoving clothes into her arms. “Put these in a bag.” He had her top dresser drawer open.
Blue dropped the shirts on her bed. Matt and Liam were acting crazy. They’d only been dating a few months, but she’d never seen them so worked up before, not even in the middle of a gunfight. “I didn’t give you the key to my place so you could barge in here and start throwing my stuff around,” she told them, crossing her arms. To her disgust, even their bizarre behavior couldn’t detract from their sexiness. She tried her best not to ogle them, but as usual, she failed. They could start singing show tunes at the top of the Empire State Building and they’d still look hot, she thought, distracted by Liam’s perfectly shaped ass.
Matt ran his hands through his hair. “Blue, please. You’ve got to listen to us.”
“I would, if you were actually saying something useful. You’re not making any sense, Matt,” she said, glancing from him to Liam and back again.
Liam was still at the window, peeking out through the slats of her blind. “We just got word at the precinct,” he said, turning away from her non-existent view of the brick building next door. “You’ve been accused of murder.”
“What?” Blue heart gave a hard thump. “That’s nuts.”
Matt grimaced. “Yeah, well, Detective Oscar I’m-Hotshit Galanis was throwing your name around like a ping-pong ball half an hour ago. His partner, Bill, was off getting a warrant for your arrest. We didn’t stick around to find out the details.”
Blue rubbed her eyes. “Well, shit. That’s not good,” she said, massively understating the situation. Worst. Day. Ever, she thought, more confused than worried. First, she’d nearly broken her ankle coming home from a job early this morning when her high heel had suddenly snapped off. Then, she’d discovered that the throwing knife she’d dropped off for repair was missing. She’d thought the pregnancy test coming up positive had been the worst of it, but now this? “I don’t kill people. This doesn’t make any sense.”
“Doesn’t matter. We’ve got to get you somewhere safe.” Liam strode over and tugged on her arm. “We don’t have time to argue about this.”
She pulled away, chewing on the inside of her cheek. “All right. Don’t get your panties in a twist,” she said, flashing him a tense smile. Better to bail now and figure out what the hell is going on later. She headed to her closet to get her bag. When she slung it over her shoulder, the hard plastic test stick jabbed out of the fabric like a bony finger, poking her in the hip. She adjusted the duffel so that the pocket was hidden against her body. She couldn’t deal with the pregnancy test now. She wasn’t sure if she’d ever be ready to deal with it. “Okay, let’s go.” She walked out of her bedroom and across her living room. “I hope you guys have a plan,” she told them, looking back at them standing in her tiny apartment.
Matt and Liam exchanged looks, then followed her to her the front door without another word.
Thirty minutes later, Blue sat in their car with her emergency duffel clutched to her chest while Matt drove through the city streets like a madman. “A police safe house? Are you crazy?” She asked him after he finally explained where they were going.
“It’s what we’ve got on short notice,” Matt replied, taking a left on the next street.
Blue glared at the back of his head. “It’s a dumb idea.” His shoulders tensed up beneath his leather jacket. She hated to argue, but this was her life they were talking about. She’d much rather be running her fingers over the soft leather clothing his torso, but this was no ordinary day.
“We’ll figure out what to do after we get more intel,” Liam told her, turning around to look at her. His motion twisted his dark green sweater under the seatbelt, stretching it across his muscles.
Blue pressed her lips against another angry retort. Flying off the handle wouldn’t help. Her boys were obviously doing the best they could. Except they’re cops, and their ‘best’ doesn’t take into account my professional experience.
“Where are you going to get more information?” she asked as Matt pulled up in front of a small house in Queens. It looked like all the other houses on the block. If she didn’t know better, she’d never peg it for a cop house.
“We’ll leave you here and go back to the precinct.” Liam got out of the car and opened her door. “Come on. It’ll be okay.”
Blue reluctantly got out of the car and slung her duffel over her head so that the heavy bag rested on her butt. “This is not the best plan.”
Matt slid an arm around her waist. “It’s what we’ve got for now.”
She sighed and let him tow her up the sidewalk. The grass on either side of the worn cement needed mowing and leaves from the maple in the front yard had begun falling. Summer was definitely over. She watched Liam fumble with the keys to the front door. His sweater hugged his chest and arms. He wore his gun in a concealed waist holster today. She could just make out the leather of the belt at the top of his black cargo pants. She remembered running her hands over his amazing ass. She remembered laughing in bed with them both, just yesterday. When had everything gone to such shit?
Finally, he got the door open and Matt pulled her inside. As soon at the door shut behind them, she turned in his arms and tucked her face in his neck. Matt smelled like home. She shuddered, hanging onto him tightly.
“Hey. It’s going to be okay,” he said, hugging her. “I promise.”
She swallowed against the lump in her throat and pulled away, trying to fix the sight of him in her memory. His jacket was open, showing her his shoulder holster and weapon. He wore a black t-shirt and tight blue jeans. With his leather jacket and boots, he looked more like a biker than a cop. His blue eyes were worried.
Blue shook her head and went to Liam, pulling him into a hug, too. She squeezed him hard, then let go. Her duffel banged against her hip. “Okay, I’m good.” She glanced around. The front door opened directly into a living room. A worn-out sofa slumped against the far wall. Two battered chairs were arranged near it, in front of a rickety coffee table. “What a palace.”
Liam made a face. “There should be some canned soup or something in the kitchen.” He strode over to the windows and pulled the drapes shut. “Sit tight. We’ll call you.”
She nodded, biting the inside of her cheek again. At this rate, she’d chew through her face in no time. “Okay, fine.”
“We’ll be back as soon as we can,” Matt said, kissing her quickly.
Liam cupped her cheek and kissed her a little more slowly. It nearly broke her heart.
“See you soon,” he said, stepping back.
She nodded, not trusting herself to speak. When they’d gone, she sighed and dug out her cell phone. She popped out her SIM card and tucked it in her pocket. Next, she dug out the brand new burner phone she kept in her duffel, turned it on, and called for a taxi. Liam and Matt meant well, but they were cops. She was a thief. She knew how to disappear more completely than they could imagine.