- Shopping Bag ( 0 items )
Ships from: Toledo, OH
Usually ships in 1-2 business days
"I was afraid you wouldn't come." Her voice sounded shaky and too hopeful.
Mitch didn't seem to be breathing either. He stared at the in-need-of-a-proper-bath little girl in her arms, her bare stomach unselfconsciously pooched out after her generous lunch. But then he looked at Brenda like he couldn't cope, like he required her help to deal with the emotional overload. He obviously needed this, wanted this, but she understood it scared him to death.
"Come inside," she said softly. "I should get her dressed."
She didn't glance back after she went into the house, leaving the door open for him. Ludicrous that his needs created corresponding one inside of her--instinctive, inherent needs. She knew he felt lost, and she wanted to guide him. She wasn't sure how to remain uninvolved.
When she heard his footsteps behind her, she turned from fighting to put Haylee in the outfit she'd laid out earlier. "Come sit in the living room," she invited, seeing him lingering at the front door, still open a crack.
Her words seemed to remove his paralysis. After closing the door, Mitch strode into the living room and sat next to her on the mocha saddleback sofa.
Haylee sat up with Brenda's hand protectively wrapped around her sides. "Do you want to hold her?"
He glanced at her and a look of torture crossed his face. Then he gazed once more at their daughter, who watched him with interest.
"I don't think I can do this, Brenda," he said in a pained whisper. With that, he shot to his feet, heading back for the front door at bullet speed.
Brenda's instincts where this man was concerned hadn't dulled, stunning her as, with Haylee in her arms, she flew after him.He'd reached the door before she put her free hand on his shoulder the way she'd wanted to last night. "Mitch, don't go. Give yourself time. This happened so fast for you..."
"Wouldn't have made any difference if I had known."
She recognized his posture and the tone of his voice, the way he closed his eyes when she pivoted around to stand in front of him. A million times, he'd told her he wasn't worthy of her, but she'd refused to believe it. He'd never understood that the beauty of unconditional love was that it had nothing to do with who deserved it.
His face was so dark and tormented it could have been made of granite, if not for the tear that slipped down his cheek.
All day she'd thought of herself--how she'd handle her own feelings for him, how she'd present their daughter, how much joy Haylee gave in her sweetness. Not once had she considered how overwhelmed he'd be by this meeting. She'd had nine months to get used to the idea of having a child. He'd had a few short hours.
"Mitch," she whispered, reaching up to caress the rough plane of his jaw. The only thing that stopped her from more were the warnings she'd gotten from her closest friends today. Was it wise to trust him? "Are you involved in something dangerous, Mitch?"
He moved his cheek deeper into her palm before opening his eyes. "Yeah," he admitted without hesitation.
Deep down, she hadn't expected, more like, hadn't wanted, that answer. "Yes?" Her throat closed up, but she painfully forced out the question that needed to be answered. "Which side are you on?"
He shook his head. "I don't know anymore."
Posted September 7, 2009
DEA undercover agent Mitch Taylor spent twenty years working his way up the ladder of the Ortega drug cartel until he became the right hand man to Carson Ortega, cousin of the untouchable top gun Mareno Ortega. To destroy the entire leadership, Mitch was arrested and convicted of drug trafficking; he was sentenced to thirty months, but served only nineteen. Los Angeles DEA Filed Office Assistant Special Agent in Charge Eric Bradshaw gets him released early so he can return as Carson's number one man.
However, he is tired of being a puppet pulled by two puppeteers and wants out as he also believes his only friend Snake should be able to vanish too. Mitch distrusts Bradshaw even more than Ortega. Now Brenda Bennett is at his house; the one person who could actually destroy him although she is out of his league. She shakes him to the core when she informs him he is the daddy of a ten month old daughter, Haylee Julia; a by-product of getting his beloved to hate him. Mitch now has two female reasons for wanting out, but neither the DEA nor the Ortega mob will let him just walks away.
This may be the best of the Wounded Warrior saga so far, which is saying a lot as that is a super series. Mitch is a terrific protagonist who has harmed innocent people as part of his realistic cover, but even before Brenda's pronouncement he had doubts about right vs. wrong as he reconsiders his side's values as they assume the end justifies any mean. Brenda has issues also, but this is clearly Mitch's tribulation with no hope for redemption. Fans will relish this powerful gritty entry.