Book 1 in the BLOOD Brothers
This series must be read in chronological order, to avoid spoilers
My name is Grace Degas Black.
Years ago, I made a splash during a charity fashion show where an agent “discovered” me. My work led to the glitzy world of haute couture, perfume ads, and more. I was living my best life, traveled the world, and the only thing that would have made it better was if my twin would have come along for the ride.
My other half. My best friend. Then one day, she disappeared.
No one believed me, but I couldn’t escape that sinking feeling of something being terribly wrong. Then the nightmare came for me. I woke up in the back of a truck.
Moved from one location to another, I could only struggle to survive amidst the suffocating fear. Then just as abruptly, salvation came from the most unexpected place. Salvation and retribution.
I wanted my sister back.
But my saviors had no intention of letting me go—not when someone continued to hunt me.
Was it me they were hunting? Or my sister?
I didn’t care what I had to do, but to find her, I would make the world burn. These men were going to help me, they just didn’t know it yet.
Book 1 in the BLOOD Brothers
The hand wrapped around my throat tightened, threatening to squeeze off what little air I could inhale through my nose thanks to the meaty hand plastered against my mouth. The only thing I could smell was the stench of sweat, feces, and urine. The room reeked. My eyes watered as I fought to keep my breathing shallow. An impossible task with my heart desperately sprinting as if it would get us to freedom.
“Gracie!” Alphabet’s voice rang out of the darkness. “Come on, Gracie. I know you’re pissed. I’d be pissed too. But this isn’t the time to play these games.”
A whimper of sound scrabbled in my throat and the hand fastened over my mouth went even tighter. The pressure dug his fingers into my cheeks, as if burning their imprint into my face. I jerked my gaze up to the dark eyes of the man holding me.
He was a giant. Bigger than Voodoo and Bones. I twisted, trying to kick him again. The fact he held me off the ground with only his hand on my throat gave me desperate little in the way of purchase. Twice I connected with his leg, but he barely even flinched.
“Gracie,” Alphabet called again, the coaxing note in his voice almost sweet. “C’mon, I promise, I’ll pin the dickhead down for you and you can pummel him.”
The tears spilling out of my eyes redoubled at the kindness in that offer.
Spots danced in front of my eyes as the amount of oxygen I was even able to suck in through my nose seemed to be too thin. I’d gone scuba diving once. The mix had been a little off. I’d gotten lightheaded and sick. Thankfully, the diver with me had recognized it almost immediately. It could have gone so much worse.
My captor shoved even closer to me, like he wanted to cover me with his whole body. With his stench. The smell alone was nauseating. Combined with the smothering effect of his grip, I fought to maintain my awareness. His face was so close to me, all I could see were his dark eyes and the scar that bisected his eyebrow.
I wasn’t going down like this. I wasn’t going to die, in the dark, covered by the smell of someone who had spent too much time with corpses. I wasn’t dying here…
Raising my hands, I dug my fingers into his wrist. I needed something to hold. Something to tear into with everything I had I worked my way up to his thumb. With both of his hands on me, he couldn’t go for a gun or another weapon.
“Gracie…” Alphabet’s voice was drawing mercifully closer. I managed to get a grip around my captor’s thumb. The shift in his grip freed up my jaw for a split second and I bit down into the meat of the man’s palm.
He jerked and slammed my head back against the wood. The spots dancing in front of my eyes threatened to black me out as I slid down the wood. I needed to yell. His hand was off my mouth but the grip on my throat had tightened completely, shutting off my air.
Then he had a gun in his hand. The barest flicker of light gleamed off the weapon. A footstep with a familiar drag just outside the barn door. That was right, I was in a barn. The world spiraled as my lungs caught fire. I couldn’t breathe. I needed air.
Fighting harder, I clawed at his arm, at his hand and flailed with my feet but he only knocked me against the wood again and as everything went black, the gun went off.
A crack of fire in the darkness that swallowed me whole.