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When the A-team discovers another body close to home, Chris does the unthinkable to protect the love of his life. He won’t have her caught in the crossfire of decade-old revenge. But when she figures out all that’s at stake, the damn woman retaliates in kind.
Following Christopher’s betrayal, Patricia disappears, but with the team under attack, her fight-or-flight reflex turns from a yoga retreat to a full-frontal confrontation. Christopher can keep his guns; words, hackers, theft, sex, cell app, she gathers her unique arsenal to protect her friends, the infuriating man included, from further harm.
For once, will Christopher and Patricia trust each other to handle the murders’ investigation together?

“Who is he?”
“I do not know, M’aingeal.” Nor do I care. My thoughts stay focused on her, on keeping her safe. “Come now.” I try stirring her gently towards the back entrance of the stables. She remains stubbornly still.
“The tomahawk contradicts any accident hypothesis.”
“Indians use tomahawks; Scots wield Lochaber axes.”
“The handle is too short for it to be an axe, Kester.”
“The handle is broken, Patrea. Notice its splintered tip?” Her stare doesn’t stray from the soles of the stiff’s shoes. Is she pretending the corpse merely sleeps?
“Any idea who might have out him here? And don’t you dare declare that he tripped on his weapon!”
“I’ll not tell you anything, lass. Go back to the keep with Tam.” I glance at Tam who has just joined us out, “Make sure the men return to the dormitory, then bring her to our quarters. She’s to remain inside. The air is turning chilly this night. Inform Filib I’ve need of him. Do not tell the others anything. That goes for you too, ma loove.”
“Yes, Kester Sir!” She salutes before stomping away. For once, I’m thankful she’s not fully recovered for she would have argued and insisted on staying.

If only for once, the real Patricia was as docile as her alter-ego character, Patrea, Chris reflects. “Welcome home, Love of mine.”
“How dare you!”
“This isn’t our first fight, Pussycat. And I intend to make sure it’s not our last.”
“You’re so… so… so damn…”
At a lost for words, Angel of mine? I could suggest a few. Crazy. Protective. Scared. She lowers her head and inhales deeply. Looks up at the garden. I watch the play of emotions on her face. She gulps in another audible breath before closing her eyes. When she opens them and turns her glare back to me, the ice queen returns.
“Ingrid. Thomas. Taskill. Abigail. Elizabeth. How lovely to see you all. I take it you’re all well, oui? And what brought you happy campers to the war zone on this rainy day?”
“Sit,” I cut before my family starts vying for her attention. “All of you.”
My cousins settle on the couch side by side. Ingrid hugs Patricia before dropping her ass onto one of the armchairs. The queen remains standing, arms crossed and an arched brow to provoke me. For added effect, she taps her foot impatiently without uttering a word. The guys fan out, Des and Ham at the dining table, Lonz in the other armchair, MacCarmick against the mezzanine stairs’ guardrail.
“We have a situation,” I declare.

**The sequel to Kester and Patrea’s story, as well as Chris and Patricia’s, started in Ennead!**

Romantische fictie
26 november
V. P. Trick

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