Merciless Love: A Dark Romance

By: Nicole Snow



The name's Evan Cole, and I deserve to burn for what I've done.

The girl with the rocking body I saved yesterday believes I'm some kinda hero. You'd think she'd recognize evil after staring it in the face all her life, but with me, Cassie's completely blind.

She doesn't know this house is a prison. She doesn't know the cartel's got my son. She doesn't know I'm a selfish, desperate, pissed off imposter, and I'll do anything to get my boy home.

Dealing in flesh is nothing new. Remorse is a word I never learned. Turning her into a new toy for the savage blackmailing me should be a cakewalk.

Except it isn't.

There's a deeper, crazier part of me that starts to blaze whenever I see her. I just can't shake these insane fantasies about hauling Cassie to bed and working out the pain, the rage, the insatiable lust, claiming her as mine and nobody else's...

No! I need to forget all that and get on with this sideshow. I can't go soft. If I do, the whole damn world's gonna crash down and bury everything I've ever cared about.

Note: this is a very dark and gritty romance novel about heartache, redemption, and really hot loving. Bad boys and desperate girls do the kinds of things you'd expect. Merciless love holds back nothing!

I: Deeper Sins (Cassie)

All your avarice will lead you back to the same place. Heaven and hell are hungry worlds, my children. Don't be surprised if they swallow you whole, 'til you find they're just one great yawning pit.

Pain devours, but so does pleasure.

The Prophet's latest sermon echoed in my head. Thinking about his sluggish, rambling speech was all I could do to keep my eyes off my father while we drove.

He spun the wheel sharply, a small twist away from throwing us off the narrow forest road and head-on into a large tree. I slipped up when the truck jerked.

The little murmur of surprise and fear on my lips was all it took him to turn to me.

“Stupid, sinful girl. Why can't you be more like your sister?” I watched his wrinkled hands flex as he gripped the steering wheel, a grip so tight his bony knuckles bulged at his skin. “She trusts in her Lord, the Prophet, and her father. You don't.”

“Heather isn't perfect either, Daddy, and you know it.”

“Stop!” he hissed. “Swallow your fucking lies. I have only myself to blame. I was a fool for thinking I could take you to prayer without causing a damned scandal. Every day I'm reminded God took Charlene, and left me an unruly daughter in her place. I'm cursed.”

His speech was slow, erratic. He must've had at least a whole bottle of wine to himself at the sermon, as usual.

Whatever. I just kept watching the road through the cloudy windshield, trying not to spit fear every time he rocked the truck outside the faded line down the road. In good weather, our settlement was only twenty minutes away.

Today, it was absolutely pouring, spitting whole rivers on us, even through the towering trees reaching to the heavens. In this remote pocket of northern California, the vegetation shared its rule with the rain. It was a cold rain too. I longed for warmth.

Big mistake. Thinking about being warm reminded me of Ryan. He was so big, so hard, so amazingly warm when I grabbed him during the heavenly embrace.

It was just like any other sermon. The Prophet had whipped himself up, and he was yelling gibberish. Then he hitched and fell, shaking and rolling off the pulpit. It was the congregation's signal to hug our neighbor and dance with him, basking in the Lord's all cleansing light.

Forgiveness. Purity.

They were supposed to come naturally. I was supposed to be the good girl, lost in heavenly thoughts rather than earthly desires.

Well, the heavens had given me bad luck today. We'd sat next to the most eligible young man in the commune, and Daddy turned to embrace Miss Crampton instead of me, cradling her waist like a drunken fool.

He wasn't watching when I brushed against Ryan and felt his hot breath on my neck. I knew it was wrong, but I continued, bathing in heat and light I could understand.

Was it worth the beating I had coming now?

Yes, a small part of my mind whispered. You're a grown woman, Cassie. Twenty years old. Plenty ready to be a wife to a man like Ryan, a man whose very touch makes you tingle like nothing else.

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