Sweet Agony (Sweet Series Book 1)

By: Jessie Lane


Prologue

Lucas

Letting the love of my life go was not the hardest thing I had ever done. No, there was something much worse—pushing her away when every fiber of my being told me she should be mine yet couldn’t be.

See, when you let someone go, there was that whole cliché phrase everyone heard at least once that, if the person loved you, they would come back to you, and then they were yours forever. When you pushed the person you loved away, however … Well, that was a whole different story.

My parents had raised me to cherish and protect the ones I loved. The bonds formed in my lifetime had always run strong. The very core of who I was came down to the ideals of loyalty and responsibility. Some might say it was the first born child mentality. I didn’t give a shit what anyone called it. When it all came down to the bare bones of reality, those strong bonds were eventually what led to me ending up as I was now: alone.

Ginny DuBois was the girl who had lived across the street during my childhood. She was my baby sister’s best friend, the scared girl with big blue eyes and the face of an angel. She had worked her way into my heart, and once she’d had it, I had never wanted it back. Too bad she didn’t know what she had been carrying with her for all this time.

I had resigned myself years ago to not having her the way I wanted. To be brutally honest, it was more than mere want with Ginny. She was the only craving I couldn’t fulfill, an addiction I couldn’t ease. Eventually, I realized she was the oxygen I needed to breathe. And now, it felt like I had been slowly suffocating for years.

You see, my strategy to keep her at a distance was to protect her from the dangers and heartbreaks of the life I lived. It didn’t mean I ever planned on letting her go, at least not entirely.

Not having her the way I wanted her was never supposed to mean not having her in my life at all, only keep her at a safe distance. Never once had I planned on living a life where I didn’t see her sweet face every once in a while. I had planned on enough contact to make sure she was breathing easy, living life, and simply happy. Now I saw why “they” said the path to hell was paved with good intentions.

The sweet agony of my plan to give her up had blown up in my face when she had disappeared without a single trace.

The sooner I found her, the sooner she would know just how deep my feelings ran. The time had come for her to know what she’d had all along.





Chapter

1

Lucas

Thirty Years Old

~Present Day~

Why couldn’t I be in Miami on vacation? Instead, I sat in my commander’s hotel room with almost all of my team members, waiting for the two Sullivan brothers to show up so we could begin our meeting on the status of our mission here.

Leaning back in the hotel’s shabby green arm chair, my hands folded over my stomach, I gave the impression that I was relaxed and nonchalant. It was a façade I had perfected years ago during my time in the Special Forces as a Green Beret. On the inside, I was ready to strike at any perceived threat, responding to any call to action from my commander or fellow team members.

I might not be in the Army anymore, but my life as a deep undercover operative in the black ops unit was not so different. There were only a handful of people who even knew of our existence, including the president of the United States and our CIA handler who had formed the Ex Ops team. My missions were always top secret, dangerous, and sometimes paramount to national security, but they were also off the government’s books. When they couldn’t send in the SEALs, Green Berets, Rangers, or the Marines, they sent us.

There was always the chance that we might be caught by our enemies, and if that ever happened, the president himself would deny any knowledge or approval of our actions. That was something we all had known when we signed on for this unit.

For some, such as my teammate Arturo Chavez, there was no family or anyone who would miss them if they disappeared. For others, like me, there was too much that had been seen, so you distanced yourself from everyone as much as they would allow, including immediate family, to keep them from the inevitable loss.

I’d let my parents, two brothers, and one very annoying little sister think I worked in private security and investigations. They didn’t need to know any differently. After all, the reality of my job would only cause them undue worry. It wasn’t that they wouldn’t understand; it was that I didn’t want to explain my decisions.

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