Fool Me Once

Fool Me Once

by Jessica Joy


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Fool Me Once by Jessica Joy

A tender romance and a superb suspense. Toni and Blair were friends once, or at least Blair had thought they were friends until Toni's betrayal caused a botched sting operation that had nearly cost him his life and had cost the lives of two of his friends. Toni arrives back in Blair's life under mysterious circumstances. When she wakes after an accident she has no memory of her past except for the strange disconnected images of a murder scene that haunt her dreams. Blair wants to take down Toni's lover Farrell Hagen, the man responsible for the deaths of his friends. To do this Blair needs information he believes Toni can give him once she regains her memory. Desperate to keep her safe until she can give him the information he needs, Blair tells Toni they were long time friends and had planned to spend the Christmas holidays together. However, the fraud he perpetrates takes on a life of its own and reality begins to pattern itself after his lie when this Toni is nothing like the Toni he knew before the accident and he finds himself emotionally and sexually attracted to her. As they work together to try to piece together the meaning behind the disjointed scenes of a murder that haunt Toni's dreams the attraction between them flares. When they make love for the first time they learn that things can't possibly be as they thought. This knowledge puts them on a collision course with death as they race to unlock the secrets of Toni's mind before the killer comes for Toni.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780977468225
Publisher: Black Velvet Seductions
Publication date: 12/03/2005
Pages: 224
Product dimensions: 5.00(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.51(d)

Read an Excerpt

Toni pointed toward a small stand of trees. She called to Jason, and they conferred for a few minutes before he nodded obviously adding his blessing to the choice.

"Well, it looks like they've found your tree."

Blair groaned. The monstrous evergreen must have been at least seven feet tall. Now, he knew exactly how his father had felt when his mother had consistently chosen a super-sized tree for their living room. His father had always protested, but Blair knew he would never have refused her anything. She had loved Christmas and celebrated it with gusto, just like she had every other part of her life. Not a nook or cranny of their home had escaped being decorated. He remembered coming home from school and knowing how close they were to the holidays just by the smells drifting out of the kitchen.

He coughed to clear the lump in his throat and tried to shut the floodgates on a rush of memories bursting into his mind. As if he didn't have enough to deal with, he didn't want to add nostalgia to the mix.

When his parents had been alive, the bulk of every holiday was spent at their home or his aunt and uncle's. Any excuse, no matter how trivial could spark a celebration.

Will pulled the chainsaw from under the seat of the sleigh and then headed toward the tree. Even the whine of the saw and the exchange of raised eyebrows between the men reminded him of past Christmases with his family.

He and Will had just secured the tree to the sleigh when the thwack of a snowball hitting him between the shoulder blades drove his sober thoughts aside. A second ricocheted off the top of Will's head as they swung around to face their attackers. Toni, Emma, and Jason tookcover behind a trio of trees, their laughter trailing behind them.

Will scooped up a handful of snow and pressed it into a ball as he ducked behind the sleigh. "You aren't going to let them get away with that are you?"

"Are you kidding?" Another icy projectile lanced his shoulder. "This is war."

It wasn't the first time a tree hunt had ended in a snowball fight. No doubt, while he and Will had been preoccupied with the tree, Emma had been coaching Toni and together stockpiling ammunition. He grabbed a handful of snow, packed it into a snowball, and let it fly, ducking behind the sleigh as one went whizzing by his ear. Toni had a wicked aim.

With a simple hand gesture, Will transmitted the plan, one they'd used so often that Emma should have been anticipating it, unless she was hoping that they would be defeated. Will set off an admirable volley to cover Blair as he darted from tree to tree, working his way behind the women. As soon as he'd taken his position, he gave a whistle and then caught Toni in the back of her leg with a snowball.

Both women swung around, giving Will a chance to advance on Emma and catch her in his arms. He silenced his wife's mock protests with a long kiss. Blair launched himself at Toni, ducking and swerving to miss the snowballs flying toward him. With a final leap, he tackled her to the ground.

The weight of his body pressed Toni's into the snow--their faces only inches apart. Blair froze as white-hot heat flared from the inside out. She wanted him to kiss her. He could see the invitation in her eyes and her half-parted lips. He dropped his head closer to hers. Her breath fanned over his face, and he was lost.

His nephew dropped to his knees beside them. "I wanna kiss her, too."

Jason's innocent demand stopped Blair from kissing her but not from the bite of frustration. His head said this was all wrong, but his body simply wasn't convinced.

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