3.6 3
by Lisa Lawrence

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There's a voyeur in each of us—
and Teresa Knight is no exception

Somebody’s shadowing Teresa Knight, watching the part-time investigator’s every move. And she’s about to find out why: tapped for an undercover assignment that takes her into the steamy world of erotic films, Teresa lands a job at Silky

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There's a voyeur in each of us—
and Teresa Knight is no exception

Somebody’s shadowing Teresa Knight, watching the part-time investigator’s every move. And she’s about to find out why: tapped for an undercover assignment that takes her into the steamy world of erotic films, Teresa lands a job at Silky Pictures—and within weeks she’s directing the action, conjuring her own wildest fantasies onto film. But her employer is dabbling in something far beyond hard-core porn. And when the case culminates in murder, Teresa is at the center of the storm.

Framed for a crime she didn’t commit, Teresa’s on the run from Paris to Rio…and soon she’s playing hardball with the boys from Brazil while tangling with crime lords, terrorists, and one sexually adventurous clandestine agent. As she moves closer to the truth—and deeper into the erotic throes of her own unbridled sensuality—she’s following a trail that leads to the highest reaches of international government. Unable to trust anyone, caught in a tangled web of obsession and eroticism, suddenly she’s both hunter and prey in a deadly conspiracy that’s taking sex and power to a whole new level.…

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“A top-rate writer.” —
Publishers Weekly

In Lawrence's overwrought if well-plotted third erotic thriller to feature Teresa Knight (after Beg Me), the part-time investigator and children's book author goes undercover as a film director at London's soft-core Silky Pictures, whose owner, Luis Antunes, is suspected of forcing women into prostitution and having sex on screen. After some intense X-rated scenes during filming at Silky Pictures, Teresa gets on the trail of a sex-slave business that takes her to Brazil. When someone tosses Antunes off the balcony of a posh hotel, Teresa becomes the top suspect in his murder and is accused of being a Muslim terrorist. Readers should be prepared for plenty of overheated sex that interrupts the narrative flow. (Jan.)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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Random House Publishing Group
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5.20(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.90(d)

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Chapter One

I briefed Helena on how it was, indeed, me who was the target of all the snooping. A week passed in which nothing happened—well, almost nothing. Helena did get me a quick job, the ultimate private detective cliche, really: surveillance on a cheating spouse for a friend of hers. Sitting in a rented car, taking snaps with my digital camera and writing down descriptions of where the husband ate, who he met, I was excruciatingly bored to tears, and I realized how lucky I'd been up to now—few mundane gigs like this one.

When the job was done and I'd caught a guy having sex with someone other than his wife, I was a little frustrated myself—intellectually. And I enlisted a couple of Helena's escorts to look for the kind of porn Desmond Hodd had shown me on the computer notebook. Guys should know where to find that stuff, right? Not as easy as it sounds, not when there's an avalanche of porn out there in every shape and form and debased degree. I was trying to locate that rich sunshine backdrop. I was trying to find those girls of color who appeared less than thrilled on-screen—conscripted into sex instead of volunteering.

My male contacts all grimaced at me and rolled their eyes at the idea of this search. It was because of a dirty little secret—that men are cleaner than we like to believe. What I mean is this: There's obviously a demand for the product out there, but I happen to think there's a silent majority of males who are really, no lie, turned off by hard-core porn.

I've had guys confess to me that in all sincerity they just don't get it. And they don't want it. They don't see the need for the juvenile coarseness in the Web site titles, the close-ups of genitalia that depersonalize everything, and they wonder why cum shots are obligatory, since if anything, they smack of homoeroticism. The males I know, at least, like real eroticism. Feathers, not the whole chicken. Or, all right, they like seeing the chicken, but...Okay, the metaphor's breaking down, and maybe I just know a better class of guy. After all, several of them are Helena's escorts, guys who by definition like women and enjoy pleasing them.

Which brought me back to the puzzle of Luis Antunes. Hodd said that Antunes's operation in the UK was legit, and so far, I confirmed that this seemed to be true. You could walk into Blockbuster and find his movies. Past the whole shelves given over to Spider-Man 3 and the latest Harry Potter, down on a lower rack almost hidden away, would be two rental copies of an "erotica" feature by his company, Silky Pictures. Hodd had summed it up well: "pretensions to plot." But Antunes scored high marks for at least trying to make the sex interesting, not quite Zalman King of Red Shoe Diaries fame but in his league.

I rented Detective Desire, an older Silky Pictures release and one that had actually been directed by Antunes himself. I thought I might gain insight into the man. And because it struck me as depressing to watch porn alone, I called up my friend Fitz, and we screened it at his place near Finsbury Park. The bonus was I got to watch the film horizontally.

Fitz was a gifted massage therapist, and now that he'd just opened his new center offering Swedish, shiatsu, and aromatherapy, he spent less time as one of Helena Willoughby's most sought-after escorts. His bookings for her are few and far between these days, and his price has shot way up. Lucky me, I'm a friend. I not only got to lie nude on his table with his magic fingers turning my muscles into mousse, I had this gorgeous man of nut-brown complexion with funky dreads naked and working his biceps as he worked me. Facing my head, he put his palm heels into the small of my back as I inspected his abs. My, that's a nice body, I thought. It had been a while. For years, Fitz and I had carried on this special relationship, drifting back to each other briefly when we were both single and needing attention, friends but something else, something more.

I raised myself on one elbow and took the crimson head of his long dick into my mouth. He was thick and firm and warm, like a chocolate about to melt in my mouth, only I certainly hoped he wouldn't. Mmmm... Firming up. Good. Then I felt a playful slap on my ass.

"Hey, I'm not done here!"

I let him go and said in my defense, "It's the movie. Making me horny."

"No, it's not. You're barely paying attention."

"Sure, I am. The famous international detective thinks he'll find clues in that girl's bra."

"Is that how they solve cases?" laughed Fitz. "Why are you watching this drivel? What can you learn?"

"I don't know. See how this guy thinks."

I rolled onto my side, and Fitz perched himself close to me on the massage table. We watched for a bit, idly petting each other. The silliness of the plot didn't matter anymore. We watched these ambitious shots of Lisbon or... somewhere, I forgot, didn't matter. Down a stone stairwell and through the bars of an iron gate, the clever detective lay back, his hands reaching up to feel the girl's breasts as she rode him, her hands in lacy gloves. In the movie, it started to rain, droplets running down her cheeks and torso, the girl licking her lips. Okay, this looks pretty hot. My fingers slid down to cup Fitz's balls, circling to grip his cock. He started to get hard.

In the movie, the couple changed positions, the girl gripping the iron bars as the guy took her from behind. They got soaked by the movie rain, which, of course, made them more beautiful, and two gentle fingers slid along the glaze of massage oil on my back. Fitz leaned in to kiss me. Light from the TV screen flashed in the darkened room as our tongues coiled, played, danced. His strong left hand slid down my slippery polished belly, rounding my thigh to grip a cheek of my ass, his thumb pressing in as his right hand covered my mound, fingers finding my clit. He did... something... to a muscle... when he was... strumming my clitoris and oh oh oh. Long minutes of gasping, my hands gripping the sides of the table, movie forgotten, as I suddenly, explosively came. Come here. Barely spoken but my mouth forming the words.

Feeling like we were suspended in space on the narrow massage table I slid off, leaving him there, making him lift one of his strong, beautifully shaped legs up. Then I was flicking my tongue underneath his balls, his musk thick in my nostrils as I lapped the delicate skin of his perineum. His cock was a steel bar, and his glazed fingers started to jerk himself. He had to. Had to touch himself. A tortured moan as he stopped, didn't want to come yet.

I got back on the table and pulled him on top of me, lifting my knees, and then the head of his cock teased the gates of my pussy, pushing gently, slipping in. Then all of him in one confident surge, his taut stomach against mine, my palms gripping his ass. A delicious oozing of the leftover massage oil, a silky feel. Silky Pictures. Mind wandering for just a second, and then we were kissing each other hard, nine _steel-_girder inches of him filling me, and he pumped only a little, a sweet and subtle momentum to keep me wet, keep himself hard, to build things. But we reveled more in the embrace, tightly holding each other, in a cocoon of oil and heat. I knew tonight I wanted it dirty, really dirty, wanted to let myself go and unravel him as well.

There was no more movie—we were the movie. Fitz braced himself on his straight arms, and my fingers slid down his chest, enjoying the view. He came out of me and climbed down, knowing I'd bleat a complaint but urging me to change positions, to slide down the table so that I was poised at its end, my legs open, knees up, and he stood and pushed into me, so deep I let out a grateful whimper. His palms on my kneecaps, he started ramming hard, my pussy making a rude slurp with the sudden intrusion of that long dark cock, and I felt him boring into me, until the sensation made my vaginal muscles contract and hold him fast, longing to keep him inside, a trip-hammer pulse. He shook violently, his dick impossibly lengthening as he shot and shot. Come here, an echo. Pulling me up so that I could clumsily wrap my arms around him, Fitz still in the shiver of orgasm. And then I felt my own sympathetic quakes. "Oh, fuck," I whispered. "Oh, fuck, that was good..."

He made this little-boy moan and looked into my eyes, apologizing for not taking his time. I wanted to ask: Are you kidding? That was amazing. He'd told me he'd been working like a dog, taking most of the bookings at his new center even though he had two other therapists. That meant he needed to be there for the City executives who wanted a treatment before the grind of the business day and the teachers desperate for relief after school was out. He had been there for me so many times, and I felt the stress in his body. "Burning both ends of the candle," he said wearily.

I kissed him and gently nibbled his bottom lip. "Hey, you want to see a real porn movie?"

Fitz laughed. "What are you talking about, babe?"

I reached for the massage oil on the little side table and gave myself a generous splash in both hands. Before he could say it wasn't necessary, I had him on the massage table the way he'd had me, one hand cupping his balls, the other slick and sliding up his dick, making him hard again. "Want to... want to kiss you." And he sat up, our tongues coming together even as my middle finger strayed under his balls exploring. His cock grew in my small fist, and if I do this right..._
I was inside him.

Massaging his prostate, I never saw a cock snap to attention so fast, fill with blood and engorge, enormous. My fingers jerked his shaft, and I thought he'd come instantly, but no, his focus divided, and it was all the sweeter with the suspense, building, building as he gripped the sides of the table. His hand was suddenly on my ass, pulling me a little off balance as he cried out in pleasure and shock, ribbons of white cum slapping my breast and belly. But I wasn't done.

Just a little pressure, the slightest caress, and there was another twitch of his cock, another stream flying onto my tits. He kissed me hungrily and half-embraced me in this obscene clinch, the thick smell of oil and spunk and musk in the room, my fingers still inside him. His eyes went wide as he experienced another orgasm, a dribble of semen down the red cherry dome. I felt drunk on my sensual power, like Kim the last time we made love, relentlessly making him come. He did one last time, a very weak stream but all the rush of pleasure.

"Oh, shit, I think I needed that," said Fitz.

"We both needed tonight."

"Yeah... I wanted to say I'm sorry about Kim."

I shrugged, giving him a couple of quick kisses on the mouth and cheek. "It's all right. She wasn't the one, that's all."

He shrugged back. "Well, we're not the ones for each other. Think we'll ever find these people?"

"I don't know. But we have a blast together when we're not looking, don't we?"

A soft chuckle and a nod. By the time we thought to dive into the shower to clean up, the end credits rolled across the screen.

So I can't say that I got much insight from one of Luis Antunes's movies. I was still trying to figure out his association with the hard-core stuff, the ones sold as pirate DVDs in the high street. No references to them on his Web site, no shared production company name. The hard-core ones had amateurish credit titles at the end: Ladrao Films; must be someone's idea of an inside joke, since a few taps at Google told me ladrao means thief.

And how did Hodd know that Antunes was hooked up with the nastier porn merchants, wherever they were, whether in Lisbon or here?

I still had the rental car for a few days, so I took to parking outside the office/studio of Silky Pictures near Canary Wharf. I soon learned Luis Antunes was forty-two, but could pass for his mid-thirties. I expected a Hugh Hefner-Larry Flynt clone with gold chains and a Seventies open shirt, but he was nothing of the kind. He was gangly with spectacles and a halo of black curls, most days in casual dress, wearing an open-necked shirt and Marks & Spencer trousers to the studio. You'd think he was the tech support guy who got your Outlook Mail to work. I imagined his unassuming, gentle manner probably worked wonders with him playing surrogate "older brother" to his porn stars—no creepy casting couch, no leering boss. Again, it made me wonder why Hodd wanted him investigated.

Helena would be amused to learn she was almost his neighbor. When the day ended and he pulled up in front of his mansion in nearby Twickenham, a lovely girl waited at the doorstep to throw her arms around him. She was mixed race, with light brown skin and big brown eyes, her dyed blond tresses in a Shakira style. She looked and sounded Portuguese from a distance. In his choice of partner, at least, Luis Antunes liked them young. The girl looked at best twenty-three years old.

On day three, I nearly jumped out of my skin with the knock on the passenger-side glass. "Shit!"
As I hit the button to slide down the window, I recognized one of the trench coat entourage from days earlier. Square face, small eyes, pasty white complexion. "Mr. Hodd is around the corner and would appreciate a word," he told me. "Let me get in so it looks like you've picked me up."

I grumbled but hit the lock. Yeah, that was credible. Guy was dreaming if he thought I'd ever pick him up, but there was always the chance Antunes or his girlfriend might notice my car staying too long. I drove around the corner and started to chuckle. Again with the limousine. I hope this wasn't their standard surveillance vehicle. The messenger boy opened the door for me, and I slid into the seat across from Hodd.

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