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Man of Mystery: A BBW Romantic Suspense, page 1

 

Man of Mystery: A BBW Romantic Suspense
 


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Man of Mystery: A BBW Romantic Suspense


  Man of Mystery

  A Sexy BBW Romantic Suspense by Lorelei Moone.

  To be kept up-to-date with new releases, sales and giveaways, why not sign up to Lorelei’s mailing list?

  What would you do if on your way home from your boring work, all of a sudden a handsome stranger leaps into the back of your car and asks you to drive him to the airport?

  Be terrified? Threaten him and hope he gets out and leaves you alone? Those were my first instincts as well.

  There was something in his eyes, something in the words he said that made me pause though. What if this beautiful man really did need my help? What if my refusal meant not only that his safety hung in the balance, but that of the entire country? So I drove him to Heathrow, and my adventure began…

  This story is intended for adult audiences only.

  Did you know that Lorelei Moone mostly writes Paranormal Romance? Check out her Scottish Werebears series for hot Scottish alpha male bear shifters and their true, curvy mates. Books out (to be read in this order) include: An Unexpected Affair, A Dangerous Business, A Forbidden Love, Sugar & Spice: A Scottish Werebear Xmas, A New Beginning, and A Painful Dilemma.

  © 2016 Lorelei Moone

  Published by eXplicitTales

  Cover Design by WriteHit.com

  This ebook is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This ebook may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each recipient. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then please purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the hard work of this author.

  Table of Contents

  Man of Mystery

  Story

  About the Author

  Man of Mystery - Part 1

  Chapter One

  What a day. I sigh and rest my forehead against the steering wheel. After getting called in for my semi-annual performance review and having all my achievements from the past six months swept under the rug because Karen took credit for them, I can’t imagine how today could get any worse.

  Of course, traffic can always worsen any day. It’s warm, too warm to be driving a twenty-year-old rust-bucket without air conditioning. And opening the window does nothing except let in more hot air and fumes from the thousands of cars surrounding me in what has got to be a record for west London. The traffic is spectacularly horrible for a Thursday.

  Can’t I catch a fucking break?

  I pick up my cellphone and after scanning the surrounding vehicles, I figure it’s safe enough to make a call. No cops around at the moment. The last thing I need is another ticket.

  “Hey, Maggie?” I say, greeting the groggy voice on the other end of the line.

  “Yeah, Tess, what’s up?”

  “Nothing. Same old, life’s a bitch. Should we go out tonight? I could use the distraction.” The car ahead of me moves, but I decide it’s not worth the effort to put mine in first gear, just to creep ahead four feet.

  “Sounds great, but I have a date, and then straight to work. Another day perhaps?” Maggie yawns on the other end. Typical, ever since she’s started working the midnight shift at the airport, her routine has been all over the place.

  “A date, huh? I’m jealous. Who’s the lucky guy?” I ask, even though I already suspect it’s that guy she works with, Alec, who she’s been talking about nonstop lately.

  “I finally decided enough is enough and asked Alec out. You know nowadays you can’t sit back and wait for men to make the first move. That’s all in the past. The dating scene is all about equal opportunities.”

  “Mhm, if you say so. I guess I’m a bit old-fashioned that way.” Which is probably why I haven’t had a date in months.

  “Say, you wanna talk about what’s going on? I have a little while before I need to start getting ready.”

  “Thanks. Well, as I said. Same old.” I sigh and squeeze the bridge of my nose to get rid of the beginnings of a tension headache.

  “Your boss, Frank-something still bothering you?”

  “No, I mean yes. Sort of. I had my review today. Can you believe it? Of all my suggestions which were actually implemented these past six months, none of that was mentioned. That bitch I told you about, Karen, presented everything like it was her idea, after making me do the groundwork. And now it looks like I’ve done nothing at all, and I’m not pulling my weight,” I rant.

  “I see. Same old indeed. What can you do? People like her will do anything to get ahead, even if it means trampling those in her way. Keep calm, bide your time and return the favor or find another job. No other option.”

  “Another job where? I ought to be grateful I have one at all with the way things have been going.” I take a deep breath and grip the steering wheel tighter until my knuckles turn white. I wonder if things ever get easier.

  “True. If you ever change your mind on shift work, I could ask around at work?”

  “Thanks, Maggie. That’s very sweet. I’ll let you know.” I’m getting desperate, but I’m not ready to work nights. Yet.

  “Sure thing, Tess. OK, I’d better grab a shower and all. I want to look my best for tonight.”

  “Break a leg. And if he turns out to be a dick, I’ll break both of his.”

  “Cheers. I’ll let you know how it goes.”

  I put down the phone again, feeling slightly better after venting to Maggie. What are friends for, eh? The space in front of my car has opened up even further, and I finally pull ahead.

  Metal boxes in all shapes and sizes as far as the eye can see. Perhaps there’s an accident up ahead. It’s going to take at least an hour to get to the motorway from here in this mess. That means I won’t make it home until God knows when.

  Urgh . I rest my head back on the steering wheel, wondering if anyone would notice if I had a short nap.

  The click of my rear door followed by a gust of air causes a cold shiver to creep down my spine. Someone’s behind me!

  “What the hell?” I instinctively snatch up my handbag and phone from the passenger seat while turning around as best I can to face the intruder.

  “Shh…” The man cowering half on the back seat makes a calming motion with his hand but doesn’t look directly at me. My heart is hammering in my throat, threatening to make me freeze up, but I react almost on autopilot anyway.

  “Get out! Get the hell out of my car!” I shout, while rummaging furiously in my purse. “I have pepper spray.” My fingers grasp a small deodorant bottle. “And I’m not afraid to use it!”

  “Be careful with that, if you blind yourself, we’re both done for.” His gentle and calm tone surprises me. If he’s trying to mug me, he’s got a strange technique.

  “I… what do you mean, we’re both done for?” I’m still pointing the deodorant bottle in his general direction but am suddenly not so sure I want to spray him with it.

  “I need you to drive. I swear I have a good reason to get into your car. Also, you’ve got that the wrong way around.”

  My fingers shake even more intensely as he reaches out for the can and twists the nozzle in his direction.

  “There.”

  “Shit. I’m sorry. Thanks. I mean…” Why the hell am I apologizing to this criminal? Still, I feel like a total idiot for threatening to spray him with what is essentially perfume. I suppose it would hurt if it ends up in his eye, but it’s not quite mace, is it? I lower my hand and take a good look at him.

  The stranger is still sort of hiding half on the floorboard and half on the seat, skittishly looking out the window, while sneaking glances in my direction. He doesn’t look like a
mugger. But then, I’ve never been mugged; how would I know what a mugger looks like?

  Still, his suit and shirt make him look more like a businessman than a criminal. Or a waiter perhaps.

  “Good thing you’re no longer intent on making me smell like… Lush Lavender, is it? Yeah. Not really my style,” he says with a subtle smile on his face.

  A joke, really? Now?

  “There’s no accounting for taste,” I respond, while keeping my gaze fixed on his eyes. Green, bright, focused. “Now, if you don’t mind explaining yourself.”

  “Of course. What would you say if I told you that there are some very bad people heading to Heathrow right now with cargo that could destroy the world as we know it?” he says.

  “I would ask if you’ve been drinking.” I continue to stare at him, but he’s unfazed by my reaction and smiles again. How is he so calm? This whole thing has got to be a joke.

  “Fair enough.”

  “And anyway, if it’s Heathrow you’re headed for, you’d probably be faster walking at this rate.” I point forward at the traffic to emphasize my point.

  “I’m sure you could find a faster route if you put your mind to it,” he responds while pointing at the left turn just ahead.

  If I hurry, I can get out of the line heading to the motorway and make my way through the housing development until I get to the A30, and then… Wait, why should I help this clown?

  “Why should I take you to Heathrow? You could be a lunatic. Or you could, in fact, be the person taking said terrible cargo to Heathrow yourself. I don’t know you!”

  He looks up at me again, his eyes boring into me. There’s something about him that makes me want to trust him, but at the same time, the sensible voice in my head insists I’m being an idiot.

  “Look, I would show you my badge, but I don’t have it on me. This whole mess unfolded while I was off duty; my unit’s been compromised, and time is of the essence.” His face is dead serious now, and I hesitate to argue with him any further, but still, it’s all so surreal I can’t just accept it.

  “What unit? You can’t expect to just invade a stranger’s car and commandeer it to take you to the airport. I’ve had a long day and am just trying to get home, OK? I can’t get involved in some crazy plot…”

  “Shh… look straight ahead. We’re probably being watched, and I don’t want you drawing attention to me in the back here. If I had another option, I wouldn’t have gotten in, but I didn’t.”

  I give him one more glance and then look forward while scanning the surroundings from the corner of my eye. I don’t see anyone watching… There’s a guy waiting at the bus stop, but he seems to be fiddling with his phone.

  “There’s nobody there; just the guy at the bus stop.”

  “Is he wearing black commando boots?”

  “I don’t know. I can’t see properly from here. Yes. Maybe.” I squint to get a better look, even though he’s still focused on his phone and as such totally harmless.

  “There you go. If he’s wearing boots, he’s one of them.” The stranger shuffles around behind me, bumping into my seat.

  Although I do my best to stay straight, I can’t see what he’s doing from the mirror, and my nerves get the better of me, so I turn around quick anyway. “What the fuck? Is that a real gun?” I turn fully now, shocked at what I’m seeing. “Now what, you’re going to threaten me, so I take you to the airport? Hell no, I can’t deal with this today, I just can’t.”

  “Shush!” he hisses. “Yes, it’s a gun. No, I’m not threatening you. It’s for protection in case the guy spots us. Now if you don’t mind taking that turn and getting the hell out of here, I’d appreciate it.”

  “I… He’s just on the phone… I think you’re overreacting.” I look up again, but the man in the boots is no longer waiting at the bus stop. Panic washes over me at once. Shit, what if this guy is right? I slam the car into first, release the clutch way too quickly, making the car jump and squeal ahead and take the left turn into the residential area. I think I can see that man running after the car in my rear view mirror but perhaps that’s just my mind playing tricks on me.

  Chapter Two

  “Happy now?” I complain, while steering the car through the tight zig-zagging roads, heading for the other side of the housing estate. “Heathrow it is. What terminal?”

  “Uhh…”

  “Don’t tell me you don’t know? Do you have any idea how huge Heathrow is?” I exclaim.

  “Give me a moment.”

  I turn to find the stranger looking at a phone-type device, just fatter, like a handheld satnav thing for hikers. My ex had something similar he took on hikes.

  “Four. Terminal 4.”

  “Great.” I put my foot down as I join the A30, all the while keeping an eye on my speed which is close to touching fifty miles an hour. “How much time do we have?”

  “Not much. Do your best,” he says, while giving me a quick pat on the shoulder. I don’t know whether it’s the adrenaline coursing through my body or the fact that actually he’s pretty hot for a crazy person, but his touch has an instant effect on me. I must be losing my mind to let this guy affect me at all.

  “Fine. But if I get a ticket, I’m telling them you drove. I’ve got two speeding tickets in the last year already, and the insurance company will have me over a barrel if I get more,” I ramble, my voice trembling slightly.

  He lets out a chuckle and pats my shoulder again. “Deal. Now go.”

  He was right, once I put my mind to it, our progress towards Heathrow has greatly improved. I know the way like the back of my hand, even if I still compulsively slow down at the speed camera leading up to the Terminal 4 ramp. I’m in this now, whether I want to be or not, but still I’m not willing to blatantly speed through a speed trap.

  “We’ll reach it soon, then what? Do I park up or what?”

  I check my mirror, seeing that he’s sitting upright now, staring out the rear window.

  “Actually, let me out just there.” He points at the mini roundabout ahead of us. “The cargo is headed for flight SV118 departing for Riyadh at eighteen-fifty. I’m going to try and intercept it. Pull over.”

  I slam on the brakes and turn to face him properly. His face is tense yet determined, as he gazes ahead through the metal fence surrounding the cargo area ahead of us.

  “What’s your name?” he asks, leaning forward and making eye contact again.

  “Tess…” I mumble, severely distracted by the green depths in front of me again. Shit, why do I have a knack for attracting crazies? He’s handsome, though, the strong jawline, dark brown hair, and symmetrical features are practically perfect. He could be a model or an actor. Could all this just be an act?

  “Tess. I know I’m asking a lot of you, but your country needs you.” He pauses, his eyes lingering on my lips for a moment. “We can’t let the plane leave. Give me your phone.”

  I hand it to him without protest. How is it that his eyes can hypnotize me like this? Shit, I must be desperate to be so easily distracted by a handsome guy in a suit. Once all this is over, I’m going to get Maggie to set me up with someone. She’s been offering for weeks.

  The stranger types a number into my phone and hits ‘dial’, then gives it back to me.

  “I need you to go into the terminal and keep an eye on the departures board. If I’m successful, it will show up as delayed. If not, then you’ll see its status change to ‘boarding’ at around eighteen-twenty. If that’s the case, I need you to call in a bomb threat to shut down the terminal. Do you understand?” He reaches out for my cheek, caressing it with the back of his finger and causing even more upheaval inside my stomach. This has got to be a dream, even if it feels totally real.

  I nod, though. If the plane boards, I call the airport with a bomb threat. Sounds easy.

  “Wait, why don’t you just report a bomb threat anyway? Why go through all this nonsense?” I ask.

  He smiles briefly, pulling his hand back. “If I go in by m
yself, I may be able to detain some of the people involved. They may have intel. If I call it in now, and the airport gets shut down, they’ll run, and we may never know who was behind it.”

  That makes sense, I guess.

  I nod. “Fine. I’ll go in.”

  “I’ll be in touch if it went well.”

  “And if not?” I ask.

  “Chances are, then I’ll be dead.”

  He pushes his gun back into a holster on his calf, then opens the door and jumps out of the car, runs towards the fence and swiftly climbs over the top of it as if it’s nothing. He must really keep fit to be able to do that. I wouldn’t even make it halfway up, I’m sure.

  I have to force myself to stop looking at him sprinting over the concrete beyond the fence, towards the hangars in the distance, and re-join the road. Following the instructions to the terminal parking, I leave my car in the first space I can find.

  Once inside, I’m overwhelmed by the amount of people, shops, bright lights, boards. The earlier events in my car seem weirder and more unlikely than ever. After taking a moment to find my bearings, I make my way towards the first departures board I can find. It’s only seventeen-twenty, plenty of time for him—whatever his name is—to stop the flight, right?

  I was quick to agree to call in about a bomb when he pressed me in the car, but now that I’m on my own again, I’m not so sure. If I use my phone, they’ll trace it and know it was me; perhaps I should use a pay phone. But then I’m sure they’d have me on security cameras, so if I don’t want to get in trouble afterward, I’ll need a disguise.

  I’m still undecided regarding what to do when my phone buzzes once. A message. Just as I’m about to open it, I see a familiar figure near the terminal entrance. The guy from the bus stop.

  Damn, the stranger was right. All the buses stopping at the spot where this guy waited are going toward the city, not the airport, yet here he is. He was after us. Luckily the bad guy hasn’t spotted me yet, so I casually slip away behind a pillar and quickly check the message.

  Maggie: Alec cancelled on me, he’s got the flu. Still want to meet up?

 
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