Cerise Deland
The Lion

The Lion

SEALed Securities, Inc., Book 1
Kindle Worlds • February 16, 2016
EBOOK: • Kindle

ScorpioFocused, driven, SEAL Mike Lyons put duty first…until an IED changed all that. Rebecca Tierney was the woman he always left behind…until he had to protect her from creeps who threatened to kill her.

THE LION, OMEGA TEAM, Crossover to Scorpian, SEALed Securities, Inc.

Former SEAL Mike Lyons goes to work locking down bad dudes, State-side, for the Omega Team. His PTSD is his biggest enemy but he’s doing an A1 job….

Until Grey Holden of Omega assigns him to protect the woman Mike has always left behind. Mike’s on point for the mission but questions if Rebecca Tierney will give him a crack at a happily-ever-after.

Becka nixed hope for any long-term relationship with Mike long ago. Too bad she’s never been able to nix her love for him. When he shows up and carries her away Tarzan-style, she’s determined to chill.

But old habits die hard.

Even though mixing business with pleasure would be the worst thing they could do.

The Lion by Cerise DeLand Omega Team series, Available exclusively at:
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Read an Excerpt

The shop door snapped open. The bells above the frame rang in an awful clatter.

And in walked Mikael Lyons.

Becka laughed. Am I dreaming?

But she wasn’t.

Mike stood, surveying the art gallery like a man with a mission. Focused, pointed, his gaze swept the large display floor jammed with furniture and paintings, sculpture and china, ancient, modern, all of it fit only for the upper one-percent’s purchase.

She shot from her chair. What was he doing here?

She hadn’t seen him since they’d argued and parted last summer after that summary meeting in the State Department. Days after the end of their Paris job. The end of our two-month affair.

She sucked in a breath, wrestling with her memories of how scrumptious The Lion had been as her lover. Instead, she zeroed in on what had happened to him after he’d left her on the sidewalk last summer holding pieces of her heart in her hands. His grandmother had notified her the day she’d gotten word of his injuries in Afghanistan. The elderly lady had faithfully kept her up-to-date about his wounds, his hospitalizations, his PTSD. Oh, but he looked so good now. The shock of sun-kissed hair, streaked with bronze and gold. The enormous shoulders tucked into a steel gray suit that fit his broad chest and powerful arms like a well-tailored glove. The height, six-four or more. Comforting to stand next to. Maddening beautiful. A little thinner than when they’d rolled around in bed together last July before they returned Stateside and he’d left for the mission that changed his life.

His neon blue gaze locked on hers. A ghost of a smile crossed his chiseled lips. And then he moved. Like quicksilver, he wove through the maze of furniture. His stride was long. His goal clear. He’d come for her.

Why?

Why now

Today?

Panicked, she remembered the flash drive. The green bar on the screen moved an iota more. Almost done.

Mike rounded the doorway to her office. Up close he looked pained. But furious. At her? Really? What had she done?

“Come with me,” he said in that bass voice that reverberated inside her like the roar of the huge male lion at the Washington zoo. He could say her name and her insides got all mushy. With that voice torrid in her ear, he could tell her fairy tales and she’d believe in Hansel and Gretel and reindeer that flew because stars always exploded when he was near.

“What are you doing here?” she asked him, confused. He’d stormed away from her last summer, warning her yet again that he might not return. And he’d been prophetic, coming home from the mission to Kandahar badly wounded.

“I’ll tell you. But you have to come with me now.”

“Where? Why?” She shot a glance at her drive. Done! She grasped it and yanked it from the computer. Then she dropped it in her skirt pocket.

“Can’t explain. Need you to walk out with me.”

“No.” If she did that, if she stayed with him for more than five minutes, she’d hop into bed for a damn luscious lay—and then he’d be gone again. Messing up her life. Always. “Never.”

He winced, bared his teeth and shook his head. “Either you come quietly or I take you.”

She seethed. “Who the hell do you think you are?”

“Right now? I’m the guy who’s saving your pretty ass. So come quietly or you won’t like what happens.”

“No?” She folded her arms and glared at him. “Well, now hear this—”

“No time.” He stepped forward, hauled her into his massive arms and anchored her head with one meaty hand. “Kiss me, baby. Like there’s no tomorrow.”

There never has been. “You’re crazy if—”

“Crazy is my forte,” he crooned, turning her so her back was to the shop floor. And then he crushed his mouth to hers.

She was gone to heaven. His lips were hot as August, his demand heavy and urgent. She loved him rough and ready. She loved him tender and teasing. She loved him and part of her wanted to linger here, kiss him back, forget why he came and destroyed her. Again.

She pushed at his chest.

Why bother? With a man this freaking size, what woman had a chance? Not me. Never me with this man.

He pressed his thumb over her swollen lips. “Look like you want me. Hate me, but want me.”

Like that wasn’t the truth.

“Listen to me, Becka. Fast. You have documents?”

“Huh. What?”

“Documents? Sensitive?”

“Y-yes. How do you know?

“Tell you later. I’m assigned to help you.”

“Like we did in Paris?”

“Exactly like.”

“I have them.” She sidled closer to him, whispering, “On me. But I’m not going with you, Mike. Every time I do, I get myself in a helluva bind. I won’t do it again.”

He took her by her upper arms and gave her a little shake. “I have no time to argue with you. There’s a gunman out there. Maybe headed this way.”

Her jaw dropped. But her old Langley training kicked in. “What’s going on?”

“Dunno.”

“But—”

“Okay then.” He picked her right up off her feet and hauled her over his shoulder. “We’ll do this my way.”

One hand to her ass, he pivoted and threaded his graceful way double-time through the tables and chaises, the mirrors and marbles.

As he passed Vince, her boss, and the senator, he said, “Thanks, got what I came for.”

“Rebecca?” Vince followed behind Mike.

She glimpsed his feet tracking her. She tried to raise her head, but all she could do was watch the beautiful muscular play of Mikael Lyons’ fabulous glutes. She suppressed the urge to laugh and indulged the need to bitch. “I’m fine, Vince. I know Superman, here. He’s harmless as a pussy cat.”

“For that,” Mike growled when they were on the sidewalk and he ran up Wisconsin Avenue with her ingloriously over his shoulder, “you will pay.”