Mystery and love, murder and desire… It’s going to be a rough week for the agents of the Birds of Prey shifter division.
Cody Johnson has returned to his hometown as the division leader of the Birds of Prey for the Shifter Coalition. After the local cast leader is killed, Cody finds himself deeply involved in an investigation he can’t find any reason for. To make things worse, he runs into Aubrey Reynolds, the woman he left behind once before…and never got over. The longer the investigation continues, the more Cody struggles to separate his professional and private life. But Aubrey refuses to stay out of his case and his thoughts.
Aubrey has lost her Cast leader—her uncle—and has just seen the man who broke her heart. Feeling her world shattering around her, she tries to gain control of anything she can. As a security expert, she is determined to find out who is responsible for Gregory’s death and make them pay. If her inquiries put her directly in Cody’s path and piss him off, well, that’s something he’ll have to deal with. She’s shocked by how he handles it and unsure how she ends up back in his arms.
With a murderer running around taking out bird shifters, Cody must solve his case fast, especially once he realizes that Aubrey may be next on the killer’s list. Now that he finds he is still in love with her, he won’t let her go again.
Reader Advisory: This book is best read in sequence as part of a series.
General Release Date: 18th April 2014
Six months later
The call came at five in the morning.
Cody fumbled on the nightstand beside his bed and knocked something onto the ground as he reached for his cell phone. “Hello?”
“Agent Johnson,” Commander Jacob Green’s brisk voice came through loudly.
“Yes, sir?” Cody replied with a wince. It was Sunday and his day off. He’d gone out the night before with Zak and Jamie and had only climbed into bed three hours ago. Sadly, he’d crawled into bed alone but with too much alcohol in his system. If he was being called in, a hangover was not going to help.
“I need you and your team to report to a scene,” his boss told him.
Cody sat up and rubbed his hand roughly over his face. “Okay.” It wasn’t normal procedure to call in one of the teams that wasn’t on the schedule. His superior had also never phoned him personally before.
“I’ll text you the address,” Commander Green said, lowering his voice. “It’s going to be a long day.”
“Understood, sir,” Cody replied, before his boss disconnected the call. Even if he didn’t understand yet, he wasn’t going to argue with his employer.
He only had to wait a few seconds for the address to be sent to his phone. And that was all he got.
1125 Lake Shore Drive.
No names or information on what he and his team would be walking into. Not normal at all.
He forwarded the text with the addition to report ASAP to his unit.
Swinging his legs over the edge of the bed, he couldn’t hold back a groan. He should have known better than try to match shots with Jamie, but the bear shifter had kept pushing.
Zak had just laughed at them as they threw back round after round.
It wasn’t the first time he’d made the mistake of trying to take his buddy on and it probably wouldn’t be the last.
Cody needed coffee. Strong and black, and a lot of it.
He walked to his closet and pulled out a clean pair of jeans and a black T-shirt. He tossed them on the bed as he crossed to his dresser. He yanked out a pair of boxers and socks. His boots were still right next to the bed where he’d kicked them off earlier.
Dressing quickly in what he considered his daily uniform—jeans, shirt and boots—he was once again glad that he was part of a field team and rarely had to put on a suit. He preferred to be comfortable when he worked.
Picking up his cell again, he noted that all three members of his crew had replied affirmatively, just as he had expected.
He strolled out of the bedroom and down the hall of his two-bedroom, one-bath apartment. He didn’t bother turning on any lights until he reached the kitchen.
There, he flipped on the switch above the sink to light up the room then pulled his travel cup from the cabinet above his single-serve coffeemaker.
He put in the strongest blend and started up the machine. Sixty seconds later, the aroma of the strong brew almost caused him to weep in relief.
Once his coffee was finished, he placed the lid on tightly and headed out. He grabbed his badge, wallet and keys from the side table by the front entrance just before he unlocked and opened the door.
Outside, it was already reaching the high eighties and he knew it would only get hotter as the day wore on. It wasn’t even light yet, and the dry air was already stifling.
Didn’t matter, he mused. Something had happened and he suspected that it wouldn’t be just a long day, but a long few days.
He climbed into his old Jeep and started it up. The air conditioner blasted on, sending warm air into his face. He cursed and wrenched the knob to low.
Before he backed out of his parking place, he typed the address into his phone’s GPS and waited. Once the GPS announced the route he should take, he shifted into reverse and drove to work.
It took him twenty minutes to reach Lake Shore Drive. The street was located in the classy part of town. Old money. Big money. No wonder Commander Green had called him in personally.
This was going to be high profile.
Damn, that meant media and gawkers.
He hated that.
And since it was his unit that had been assigned, a bird shifter would be involved in some way.
He turned onto the quiet street, admiring the large houses. This neighborhood was made up of two and three-story structures that spread onto perfectly manicured plots. Even though he’d grown up in Lake Worth, he had never spent a lot of time in this area of the city.
Two blocks down the street, he finally saw the lights from police cars. His GPS announced that he was coming up on his destination. He reached over and turned the program off.
Roadblocks had already been placed limiting access, so Cody had to pull off to the side. He exited his vehicle and made sure that his badge hung in view from around his neck.
City cops roamed about or stood in small groups as Cody stepped around the barricades. He narrowed his gaze as he took in the scene.
Tall, wide iron gates stood open with a ruined vehicle still smoking just inside.
Plainclothes detectives were speaking with his boss. He headed over there first.
Yellow crime tape roped off the smoldering SUV, preventing anyone from gaining access.
“Here he is now.” Commander Green waved him forward.
Cody joined the three men.
“Detectives Lawrence and Sanchez, this is Agent Johnson,” Commander Green introduced.
Cody shook each of the detectives’ hands. Their grips were firm but not aggressive.
“Agent Johnson, it seems this scene will be turned over to you,” Detective Sanchez said. He was obviously unhappy with that decision, if his scowl was anything to go by.
Crissy Smith lives in Texas with her husband, daughter, and three Labrador retrievers. The three dogs love to curl up under her computer desk and nap while she writes. It doesn't leave a lot of room for her but what's a woman to do?
When not writing or reading, she enjoys hunting, camping and shooting. But she has a girly side too and is addicted to pedicures and coffee.
She has been writing since she was a teenager and still loves everything to do with the paranormal. Her stories and characters all have a place in her heart. She loves the alpha male, the dominant werewolf, or the Master vampire which find their way in most of her books.
Learn more about the characters she has created at her website where they have their very own page. It will be updated from time to time to let you know what's going on with them. You can also find out who will be in the next book.