Publication Date: May 6, 2019
Genres: Adult, Romantic Suspense, Organized Crime. Erotic Romance, Standalone
To get what he wants, he’ll have to play a game of dirty pool.
Michel Marcello never wanted to be a mafioso like every other man in his family—he wanted to be more. That doesn’t mean he’s unfamiliar with the life, or that he can’t hold his own against other made men.
They forgot where he came from …
His chance encounter with the fiery and beautiful daughter of Detroit’s most notorious Irish mob boss stokes flames beyond the ones that ignite between Michel and Gabbie Casey. Rivals shouldn’t mix, but these opposites have never been more attracted, either.
The lines between family loyalty, their duties, and responsibility begin to blur.
Love ruins all.
But these two aren’t the only ones playing this game, and it just became far more dangerous to get out alive.
Dirty Pool is a standalone romantic suspense.
Michel never understood a man’s desire, but especially not a man in this life, to allow someone to put them in a chair, tilt them back, and give them the power to kill them with one slice. Because that’s literally all it would take. His father once explained to him that it was all about the trust with one’s barber.
It was an experience.
He’d shave his own fucking face.
He found Sal first, sure, but the other men in the barber shop were obvious, too. The two men sitting in the waiting area, their backs against the wall—never a window—while they watched the Capo getting shaved in the chair. Michel recognized them, too.
Low fucks, really.
Cole Toscano—one of Sal’s few enforcers that he kept close enough for the guy to make a regular appearance whenever Michel was around. And Brock Tocci, who was nothing more than a foot soldier for the Vannozzos.
The two didn’t even pass Michel a look when he entered. Not that it offended or surprised him any because it didn’t. They didn’t have any control over him being that he worked for Sal directly at the moment, and he didn’t have shit to say to them, either.
“Merda,” Sal cussed, finally noticing Michel in the doorway. The Capo’s dark gaze turned on him for a brief second as the razor hovered just below his right ear. Michel thought it was probably the coldest the man had ever looked. He realized then that the friendship he gained with Sal and others really only went as far as Michel’s ability not to cause trouble for them. “Took you long enough to get here, didn’t it?”
“I came straight over,” Michel returned.
Sal scowled, not looking as though he believed that for a second. “Sure, sure. Take a seat, Michel, and we can chat.”
The only available chair was next to the fools in the corner, and Michel was not going to sit beside them like they were familiar in any sort of way. Maybe it was his raising, but he’d never known it to be okay for someone like him, with his last name and standing, to lower himself for the comfort of others.
“I’d rather stand.”
Sal’s gaze narrowed briefly before he muttered, “Your choice.”
Then, the man in the chair waved a hand at the man holding the razor to his cheek, his mouth barely moving at all while he spoke. “Meet my father—Senior. Or, that’s what we call him to distinguish as we own the same name.”
Michel nodded at the older man. “Ciao. Nice to meet you.”
Senior arched one, white brow high as he looked Michel over. “I cannot say the same at the moment, Michel Marcello. Hasn’t that father of yours taught you anything yet about the world outside of New York, or did he just plan for you to learn it as you fucked up?”
“Easy, Papa,” Sal said, chuckling. “He’s a young one, isn’t he?”
Michel tried not to be annoyed.
“I didn’t realize I was on Irish territory until it was too late last night,” he quickly explained. “And I was only doing what you told me to, Sal. Answer the calls, go to the buyer, and do the drop. That was it.”
Sal grunted under his breath. “Never place blame on someone else when it’s far easier to simply accept what you can change about your own errors.”
Were they having a whole thing here?
A moment together?
Michel had a man in his life who liked to spout Yoda shit at him like he was supposed to give a damn. His own father. He was far more likely to listen to Dante than Sal, anyway, not that he figured that would be very good to say out loud at the moment.
“I know I fucked up,” Michel said simply.
Senior let the razor glide down the side of Sal’s face, and was the next to speak, saying, “Detroit is not like New York, Michel. There, I doubt you have to consider your actions, or how they will affect other men around you like you will here. I understand that you come from a family and a man where your last name is enough to allow you to sit at the table with the rest of them, but it will not work that way here. Your father, nor your last name, will keep someone from killing you because you’ve caused us an issue.”
Sal’s finger pointed upward at his father. “What he said.”
“I don’t expect where I come from to do anything for me here,” Michel replied.
Because he really didn’t.
“And I’ll be more careful,” he added.
Sal sighed, and waved a hand, stopping his father from continuing the shave. Senior stepped back from his son, allowing Sal to sit up in the chair. He tugged the towel away from his lower throat, although his face was still only half shaved. He didn’t seem like he gave a damn about it when his gaze landed on Michel again.
“We have had problems with the Casey family for years,” Sal explained, “because those Irish bastards are the stronghold here. We have only recently managed to get to a peaceful place with them, and do understand that we cannot afford to go back to war with them. And we won’t.”
“Not for you, anyway,” the enforcer in the corner muttered.
Sal jerked a thumb in the idiot’s direction. “What he said.”
Bethany-Kris is a Canadian author, lover of much, and mother to four 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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