Something green, p.1

Something Green, page 1

 

Something Green
 


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Something Green


  Something Green

  London Miller

  LM Books, LLC

  Copyright © 2019 by London Miller

  All rights reserved.

  No part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means, including information storage and retrieval systems, without written permission from the author, except for the use of brief quotations in a book review.

  Cover by: London Miller

  Edited by: Editing4Indies

  LM Books, LLC

  PO Box 1202

  Lilburn, GA 30048

  Praise for London Miller

  “London Miller writes with both complex emotion, high paced intensity and a diverse cast of misfits that you can't help falling in love with.”

  Bestselling Author, Mary Catherine Gebhard

  “This series continues to play out much like a chess game with all the players being moved around but with no known end …”

  Amazon Reviewer, Sandy

  “The way the Den of Mercenaries and Wild Bunch series are intricately woven into each other is impressive.”

  Edgy Reviews, Lily

  Also by London Miller

  The Kingmaker Saga

  White Rabbit: The Rise

  White Rabbit: The Fall

  Volkov Bratva

  In the Beginning

  Until the End

  The Final Hour

  The City

  Hidden Monsters

  The Morning

  Down the Line

  Den of Mercenaries

  Red.

  Celt.

  Nix.

  Calavera.

  Skorpion.

  Syn.

  Iris.

  The Wild Bunch

  Crooks & Kings

  Shadows & Silence

  Seasons of Betrayal

  Where the Sun Hides

  Where the Snow Falls

  Where the Wind Whispers

  Standalones

  Acquainted

  Newsletter

  Keep up with all things London Miller, including exclusive cover reveals, giveaways, and more!

  http://eepurl.com/dADuKn

  For the Irishman

  Contents

  Foreword

  Chapter 1

  Chapter 2

  Chapter 3

  Chapter 4

  Chapter 5

  Chapter 6

  Chapter 7

  Chapter 8

  Chapter 9

  Prodigal

  Newsletter

  White Rabbit: The Rise Sneak Peek

  Afterword

  About the Author

  Foreword

  Thanks so much for picking up Something Green, I hope you enjoy! Please note that if you haven’t read the Den of Mercenaries series, you might be confused by a few names and details, so I would suggest you start there for the best reading experience.

  Also, stay tuned for a special sneak peek of what’s coming next year at the end!

  xx LM

  1

  Spring fever?

  Amber Lacey studied the canvas in front of her critically, not caring at all that she was smudging paint along her chin with the way she held the brush still covered in green paint.

  Well … it was as good of a name as any. Even if it didn’t fit exactly what she was going for.

  Which was why she hated this part the most—naming a new piece she was working on.

  It didn’t matter that she could always see the image so clearly when she was working or that she could envision every stroke long before her brush hit the canvas.

  The actual art of it all was easy, fun even.

  But trying to brand it and contain it in a box—label it as something in as few words as possible—wasn’t nearly as simple as it sounded. Trying to encompass everything she felt and the image she was trying to depict—these feelings—into words was an impossible task.

  Dreams of Saturday?

  Eh.

  Deciding she had all the time in the world to come up with a working title, Amber dropped her brush into a mason jar filled with murky water and began to clean up her work space.

  Paint-infused water was poured down the drain and freshly washed brushes shaped and set out on a towel to dry.

  Once everything was set to rights, she headed down from the makeshift greenhouse that had become something of a studio over the past couple of years to the kitchen to scrub the paint from her hands.

  The espresso machine Kyrnon had bought after watching a commercial for it at two in the morning taunted her from where it sat on the counter. Despite numerous attempts and Kyrnon’s failed tutorial, she still couldn’t manage to work the thing.

  Which was why she was more than happy to use the same old coffeemaker she’d had since she was a freshman in college.

  She’d only managed to pour in the water and was currently measuring out her favorite blonde roast when her phone started ringing in the other room.

  She didn’t think twice before dropping everything she was doing to go answer it—especially when she knew who was calling from the ringtone.

  Having a mercenary for a boyfriend had its perks, sure, but sometimes, it felt as if the downsides outweighed them.

  Like the fact he had to leave at a moment’s notice, and she didn’t often get to hear from him while he was on an assignment.

  So when he did call, she always answered.

  Grabbing her phone off the side table where she’d left it before venturing up to the greenhouse to paint, she swiped her finger across the screen to connect the call.

  “Good to hear your voice, darling,” he said, that Irish accent still managing to make her smile even after all this time.

  It didn’t matter that it had only been a day since he’d left on a job. It wouldn’t have mattered if he’d only been gone for a few hours, she always missed him when he wasn’t home.

  And she was never shy about telling him as much.

  At first, she wasn’t sure what she was seeing. She turned the phone this way and that, trying to make sense of what was happening, but the only thing she could say for sure was that she wasn’t looking at Kyrnon but rather his surroundings.

  “Where are you?” she asked, bringing the phone closer to her face though that did little to help her identify anything.

  “The less you know about this one, the better,” he said, his voice sounding amused.

  It amazed her sometimes how quickly her day could change when she talked to him. It was the little things she enjoyed the most about him.

  “Would it really be so bad if you told me where you are?”

  As a slash of light reflected across the screen, she thought she saw ... metal?

  “Ventilation shaft,” he returned easily as if he was telling her he was back in his hotel room ordering room service.

  Nothing was ever simple when it came to him. “You’re not serious ...”

  But even as she narrowed her eyes and found that he was, in fact, in a ventilation shaft, she also wished that was the strangest place she’d found him in.

  There had been the time when he’d been physically assaulting her boss to extract information out of him—the day she learned he was a mercenary, actually.

  Then, of course, there were the repeated thefts at least twice a year in various art galleries around the world.

  And now, apparently, he was in a ventilation shaft God knew where doing what he did best.

  Kyrnon had always bragged that he could steal anything given enough time. And given that the loft they shared together bore the fruits of his labor, she was inclined to believe him.

  Never had she ever thought she would be in love with someone like him—a mercenary who was good with his hands.


  Especially considering her upbringing.

  Her father had always taught her to obey the rules, and even her mother encouraged her to stay on the straight and narrow. She did all the right things—graduated from high school and even managed to get a scholarship to the university she attended here in New York after her move from California.

  Amber had never even thought to step a foot out of line ... until her roommate, who had become her closest and most cherished friend, had moved in with her, and she’d inevitably fallen in love with a Russian mafia prince.

  Who was now, apparently, the boss of said organization.

  Had it not been for them—shaping what she thought she knew about people who broke the law for a living—she didn’t know if she and Kyrnon would be here now.

  Which would have been a shame because she didn’t think anyone in the world could make her as happy as he did.

  Life was weird like that.

  “Jobs to do, lovie,” he said, his voice low and amused.

  “You’re on a job now?”

  He might have gotten better at keeping her in the loop when he was out of the country and doing things she really didn’t want to think about, but now she was starting to think he was taking that a little too seriously.

  “This couldn’t wait.”

  “What couldn’t?”

  “What time’s that thing tonight? Eight, right?”

  She fought a smile he couldn’t see. “It’s at six o’clock, not eight.”

  It still amazed her that she remembered more details about the event he was taking her to tonight

  Better light filtered in through his camera, offering her an unobstructed view of him crawling forward. Though he could see her, she couldn’t see him with the way the camera was facing.

  Rather she saw what he was seeing.

  “Aye, six then. Won’t be late.”

  “We could always stay in,” she reminded him, already thinking of what they could order and watch on Netflix. “You promised we’d start The—”

  “We’re not breaking these plans,” he said quickly. “I’ve been waiting all week for this.”

  She wasn’t even sure what these plans were, only that he’d seemed very excited when he’d told her about them earlier in the week and asked her to close the gallery early. She had already considered the possibility he would have to cancel whatever this was, considering he wasn’t home yet.

  There were rules to this world of his—rules that said when it came to his life, his handler came first and only once his contract was over would he be able to dictate an order.

  So if the Kingmaker called and said he needed to be in a ventilation shaft for whatever reason, Kyrnon had to do it.

  “Then you better hope you make it back on time,” she answered, making sure he understood by her tone of voice that she wouldn’t be upset with him if the plans did have to change.

  “Wouldn’t miss it for the world.”

  Her gaze was glued to the screen now as she watched black-gloved hands reach down and pull up the covering in the vent, giving her, her first view of where he was. But it wasn’t until he carefully moved through the opening that she finally understood where he was.

  “Prague?! You’re in Prague?”

  It might have been years since she’d traveled there during her tour of Europe after graduating from art school, but she’d recognize those floors anywhere—tiles that were nearly as old as the building itself, intricately crisscrossing colors that were stunning from above.

  “Tell me you’re not—”

  But she knew he very much was.

  She was actively watching him do it.

  While Kyrnon didn’t seem to mind showing her the fruits of his labors—paintings and sculptures and other art pieces that were selectively placed around their home—he never involved her in what he did. No matter how curious she was.

  Beyond the time he’d bought her the painting of her dreams even as he’d snuck off to steal a painting she’d forged …

  But it was hard to ignore the glass case he was steadily inching toward.

  “You could’ve called me after you finished,” she whispered pointedly, her fingers tightening around her phone once he finally stopped his descent to the floor.

  Because it would be impossible not to recognize the sculpture he hung over.

  Not when it was worth more than ten million dollars.

  And he’d called her in the middle of it as if any of this was normal.

  “What are you whispering about, lovie? I’m the only one who can hear you.”

  “You do realize that I’m watching you,” she reminded him, absently pacing back and forth.

  “Still doesn’t explain the hushed tones.”

  Too arrogant for his own good.

  While she knew he loved to make a mockery of complex security systems—cracking them like a sport in his mind—this was just taking it to a whole other level.

  Yet he didn’t seem bothered at all by that fact.

  “Don’t worry yourself,” he tacked on as he unzipped a pocket along the front of the vest he wore with far too much ease. “Winter’s good at what she does. This call can’t be traced.”

  At least there was that.

  She watched as he removed a small, circular piece of glass and very carefully placed it right on the edge of the glass case he hung over.

  It didn’t look particularly important and was no bigger than a quarter. Yet as soon as he moved it into place, beams of light reflected off its surface in bright red.

  “What are you going to wear tonight?” he asked, unaware of how she was holding her breath as he worked.

  Or maybe he did, considering he could see her.

  “Shouldn’t you be focused on …” She couldn’t even say it. “That?”

  “You’ve no need to worry about this. It’s getting sorted, and I’m making good time.”

  She could almost hear the smile he wore. “Even if you weren’t, would you tell me otherwise?”

  Despite his profession—or maybe because of it—Kyrnon didn’t rattle easily. He could find his way out of the trickiest of situations and usually did so with a smile.

  How he managed that, she still didn’t know other than the fact he was really good at what he did.

  “‘Course not. No need for you to fall to pieces about this.”

  And right on the heels of that remark came a screeching alarm a second before the room flooded with red.

  “Kyrnon, are you—”

  “Stop your worrying,” he said again, removing the top of the inches-thick glass and set it aside before carefully removing the sculpture from within. “All’s well.”

  He couldn’t be believed.

  She was seconds from chewing her nails off, and he was unbothered as if the alarm wasn’t going off all around him. He carefully tucked the sculpture into a black bag before it disappeared out of range of the camera.

  Placed over his shoulder, if she had to guess.

  And only once he had the case set back to rights did he reach to pull himself up using the rope he hung from.

  At least he always made it abundantly clear how he stayed in such great shape ...

  “I’ll see you at five,” he said once he was back up top, setting the vent gate back into place, but not before she saw multiple beams from flashlights in the room below.

  Good time, her ass.

  “You—”

  “Wear the green dress.”

  He didn’t give her a chance to respond again before the phone clicked and the call dropped.

  Of course, the last thing she was thinking about now was trying to prepare for something she wasn’t even sure he would be able to make it to if he didn’t get out of that museum in time.

  Kyrnon was going to be the death of her.

  “Tell me again why we needed to come to fucking Prague?” Red asked from behind the wheel of the Porsche, his handgun resting across his lap with the silencer firmly attached.

  The man
loved his guns.

  Kyrnon Murphy didn’t care much for them one way or the other—a tool was a tool as far as he was concerned. It only ever mattered which he could get his hands on the quickest if he couldn’t use his fists.

  “And what the hell was this all about?” he asked as he drove them away from the museum, heading down the opposite street of where multiple police sirens were barreling down the road.

  If he could count on one thing when it came to the Russian—who’d break his neck if he ever called him that his face—he readily agreed to whatever he asked of him, no questions asked.

  Or at least he didn’t ask any until after the task was done.

  “You remember Neil?” Kyrnon asked as he unzipped the bag and pulled out the thing he’d traveled more than a thousand miles to acquire.

  Worth a little more than ten million—more on the black market—it was over three-hundred years old and one of the ugliest fucking things he had ever seen in his life.

  Kyrnon wasn’t sure why anyone was willing to go to such great length to possess it, but in his profession of supply and demand, he didn’t give a shite why people did what they did.

  As long as his payment cleared.

  It seemed to take a mere second before Red recognized the name, his expression twisting. “Orwald’s smuggler?” he asked, not bothering to hide his contempt at all. “He’d screw over his own mother if the money was worth it. What the hell are you doing with him?”

  “Just a cog in the wheel,” Kyrnon muttered as he shot off a text to confirm he had what the client was after.

  It didn’t always matter how much money a person possessed when it came to making a trade—some people had different tastes.

 
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