A Shameless Little Bet (The Shameless Series, Book 3)
Author: Meli Raine
Release date: June 5, 2018
Genre: Romantic Suspense
How do I prove a negative?
I need to prove Jane is innocent, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary.
Mirrors, smoke, and lies can conjure a truth that isn’t real. Money, bribes, and power can twist reality. What we call proof is all an elaborate magic act.
So is love.
How do you prove you’re in love? How can you know with unrelenting certainty that the person you can’t live without really loves you?
It’s all about what you believe. Who you believe. And I believe Jane. I love her. But it might be too late.
Or, worse-it might all be an illusion. If proof is just a magician’s sleight of hand, then we’re caught in a sick trick.
A deadly one.
One that doesn’t end with applause.
But with a bang.
Read the stunning conclusion to the Shameless series as Jane and Silas fight against forces that conspire to keep them apart — maybe forever.
Buy Links for A Shameless Little Bet
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Meli Raine writes romantic suspense with hot bikers, intense undercover DEA agents, bad boys turned good, and Special Ops heroes — and the women who love them.
Meli rode her first motorcycle when she was five years old, but she played in the ocean long before that. She lives in New England with her family.
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Half my mind is spinning with the relief of knowing she didn’t shoot Drew after he shot me. A cold-blooded operative would have. Well-trained people in the field stick to the mission, no matter what. If Jane had really, truly been part of some deep state plan, she would have taken her chance when Drew shot me and killed him on the spot.
She dropped the gun, fell to her knees, and worried about me. Worried. The true test wasn’t one of love and caring.
It was one of violence. Of death. Of treason.
The love was extra.
But the love is all I care about now.
“I am so screwed,” I say, running my hand through my hair, pieces of loose asphalt sprinkling on my shoulders, my earpiece coming out.
“We knew the test was faulty.”
“The important part is that she’s cleared now.”
I bite back a contrary reply.
“Go,” Drew orders Duff. “Do whatever she says. Unless she cuts surveillance. Keep a team on her at all times. She’s more important now than ever.”
More important now than ever.
Drew’s got that right.
Not quite in the same way I feel it, though.
“That hurt more than you said it would, Foster,” I inform him. “Your test of Jane sucks.” It’s an accusation. He knows it. I’m talking about more than my chest.
He knows that, too.
We watch the cop car pull up, followed by a second police SUV, and then the long line of predictable law enforcement people, all responding to reports of gunshots.
“It always hurts more than we say it will. You’ll be bruised, but fine. The heart’s resilient,” he says as he walks over to deal with his mess.
He’d better be right.
Lindsay’s already there at the Lilac Inn when Duff escorts me in. The place is tastefully decorated in a retro style, with floral prints and fresh flowers everywhere, an emphasis on lilacs, of course.
A silent hug greets me, her tight embrace saying more than any words. Duff stays back, tasteful like the decor but ever-present. He’s a theme we can’t shake.
“I am so sorry, Jane. I knew Drew was paranoid, but this takes the cake.” She leads me to a small semi-circular table with tea service already set up. Little cakes and sandwiches dot a three-tiered serving tray, and it turns out coffee is in what I thought was a teapot.
My stomach doesn’t just growl. It roars.
“You would think I’d have no appetite, but I guess I do,” I confess as we sit down. She pours me a cup of java while I shove a tiny, really yummy triangular sandwich in my mouth and sigh. Something with hummus and roasted red peppers does my mouth – and heart – good.
“You’re human. Unlike some people,” she says pointedly.
“They tested me, Lindsay. Your husband pretended to shoot Silas in the heart in front of me, to see if I would kill Drew instead of drop the gun and take care of Silas.”
The teaspoon in her hand falls, banging on one of the sandwich tiers, clang clang clang.
I won’t let her go again.
My body has to prove what words cannot.
Her hands slide up under my suit jacket and pull my cotton shirt out of the waistband, riding up under the conservative clothes with a hot passion that makes me need her, naked and writhing under me, filling her. If she hesitated, I would stop in a split second, but from the way her tongue moves in my mouth, lips eager and telling me how much she’s missed me, I don’t sense one hint of question.
Her hand moves to my erection and rouses me to the point of pain, her fingers on my belt buckle an act of mercy as she unleashes me, undresses me, our hands now as frantic as our mouths. Power comes in many forms, and as we shed our clothes we shed the conventions of society, standing naked before each other, Jane’s beauty turning me breathless for one throbbing, long series of seconds.
Until I pick her up in my arms and carry her to the bed.
Soft breasts press against my chest as her arm wraps around my shoulders, her mouth planting kisses along my collarbone. The gesture is maddening, her other hand on my ass, squeezing until I almost drop her and take her on the floor, plunging in with a ruthless impulse that would serve us both in seconds.
I barely control myself. But I do.
Because this is one homecoming that needs to have every layer of ceremony properly addressed. You do not make frantic love after a schism like ours. You do not fuck her against a wall or on the floor, pumping until a few strokes go by and you’re left with an exploded heart and a tired engine. You do not turn a new connection into a quickie.
That would be a tragedy.