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Synopsis: Play dirty. It’s the only way to win in a war.
Alessa Trentini follows the rules, or so it seems on the outside. A certain Conti has always been able to sway her inner rebel and keep her out of trouble, but even Adriano won’t be able to get her out of her brother’s mess. In a war, no woman is safe if her hand in marriage can advance her family in the world of the mafia. But mistakes of the past have a way of slipping into the present and Alessa will soon learn that even the most shameful of secrets can get her everything she wants.
Adriano Conti’s loyalties are torn as he’s forced to stand at his father’s side while Riley uses his wife’s murder as a way to get higher. Blood comes first and then the Outfit. The one thing he doesn’t question in the war between the families is Alessa Trentini and even that doesn’t seem possible when he’s forced to watch Alessa be used as another man’s pawn. Adriano has his own role to play to get what he wants.
The families in the Outfit have never been more divided than they are now. Blood continues to spill as revenge takes center stage and more lives are lost. But every man in the family is fighting for something different and no one’s intentions can be trusted. Playing a dirty game might be the only way to stay alive.
Even if that means ruining it all.
Alessa was lost in the feeling of Adriano’s hands gliding over all the curves of her body as they moved together on the dance floor. Dancing with Adriano was a lot like fucking Adriano, Alessa knew. He was controlled, demanding, and always got her sweating for more. With her ass tucked into his groin as their hips moved to the beat, Alessa was happy.
They were just another couple on the floor.
For a few minutes, they were normal.
Under Adriano’s urging, Alessa turned to face him.
“Hey,” she said, smiling.
Adriano laughed. “Hey.”
“No! Not in my club!”
The shouts from Tommas Rossi chilled Alessa to the bone. Adriano’s grip on her hips tightened momentarily before she was grabbed around the waist roughly and pulled backward. Alessa shouted her shock, her gaze flying up to meet Adriano’s as he too was pulled away from her. Alessa’s arms were jerked behind her back to pin her in place as she was dragged even further from Adriano.
Adriano’s shouts cut her straight to her heart. He struggled with men Alessa didn’t know. A fist landed on Adriano’s midsection with enough force to send him to his knees. Another landed on the side of his jaw, sending his head flying to the side.
“Stop!” Alessa screamed. “Don’t hurt him, please!”
Adriano could take care of himself, as far as that went. But when he had four men holding him down and beating on him, it certainly wasn’t fair. Alessa’s heart was in her throat as blood began to fly. Panic took the air straight from her lungs as she screamed at the men to stop again.
No one listened. A girl didn’t fucking matter.
“Lissa, go,” she heard her sister yell from somewhere in the crowd. “Just go!”
Alessa looked for Abriella but couldn’t find her. In the fast movements of the people surrounding them, Alessa barely recognized anyone. The sickening voice of Dean Artino in her ear sent Alessa’s anger spiraling out of control.
“You just don’t know how to behave, do you?” Dean asked.
Alessa tried to fight against Dean’s hold, but it was pointless. She couldn’t see Adriano through the swarm of people anymore, either.
“Not in my club!” Tommas shouted again.
A single, loud pop echoed in the space. Three more quickly followed, answering the first. Alessa knew that sound better than anyone. The gunshot sent people screaming and scattering. Glasses shattered across the floor and Alessa’s heels crunched on the shards as Dean forced her closer to the club’s side exit. The gunfire worried her to no end. The screaming was so loud that Alessa’s ears rang. A sickness rolled in her stomach.
Where was Adriano?
Who had shot the gun?
“Stop fighting or I will beat your ass black and blue,” Dean threatened.
Alessa stilled. “You wouldn’t dare.”
“You think? Move, right now.”
Despite every single inch of Alessa that screamed for her to fight against Dean’s order, she let him drag her out of the club. The very moment after the cool air of the outside soaked into Alessa’s lungs, she found herself shoved into the closest wall roughly. The side of her cheek scraped against the bricks as Dean forced her head into the wall.
She reacted by striking Dean in the side of the face with her closed fist.
“Let me fucking go,” Alessa hissed.
His haughty laughter pissed her off further, but she didn’t get the chance to smack him again. Dean caught her flying fist and slammed it into the wall, too.
Dean leaned in close, teeth bared and sneering. “Did you think I wouldn’t find out that you were out tonight, Alessa?”
Alessa forced back her rising panic. She wouldn’t give Dean her fear or tears. He didn’t deserve them and it was all he wanted, anyway.
“I didn’t do anything wrong,” Alessa spat.
ALSO IN THE CHICAGO WAR SERIES…
Synopsis: Lies and love. This is how a war starts.
A life for a life. That’s the mafia way. Damian Rossi owes his life to a man who is ready to collect. That payment comes in the form of an arranged marriage to the daughter of another leading family in the Chicago Outfit. He’s ready to follow through, even if that means making sure Lily knows she’s his.
Lily DeLuca isn’t being given a choice. Forced home to marry a man she doesn’t know and back into a life she’d rather forget, her world is full of half-truths, buried pain, and uncertainty. But Damian is nothing like she expects. His motives aren’t clear. Her beliefs are being tested.
When it comes to this world, no man can be trusted. Someone is ready to flip the Chicago Outfit on its side all for the promise of something better. But no one runs a clean game and these men play for keeps. When blood begins to paint Chicago red, four families will be divided by loyalty, hatred, and revenge. There is no hiding. There is no safety.
No one is deathless.
Bethany-Kris is a Canadian author, lover of much, and mother to three young sons, one cat, and two dogs. A small town in Eastern Canada where she was born and raised is where she has always called home. With her boys under her feet, snuggling cat, barking dogs, and a hubby calling over his shoulder, she is nearly always writing something … when she can find the time.
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