Beautiful Sacrifice is Book 2 in the Pride and Honor Series!
I didn’t need a new partner, and I sure as hell didn’t need to fall for him.
My dark past is catching up to me. Family secrets make me question if everything I’ve ever known has been a lie. Twitch is the only solace I have in this madness. He sees me. Through all the lies and secrets; he sees me. I’m terrified. He holds the power to either save me or break me.
Rescue kidnapped kids. Check.
Take down their asshole kidnapper. Easier said than done.
Fight my attraction for the sexy redhead detective who’s my new partner. Impossible.
Being so close to Tasha tests my resolve. Giving in means handing her the power to ruin me. But with the demons from her past closing in, I’ll do whatever it takes to keep her safe. Even if that means making her mine.
The Las Vegas police department surrounded the sleazy motel where Brendan was keeping the kids. I looked around and saw Justin talking to a detective. I couldn’t believe how lucky we were that he had followed that asshole Brendan here. We would have no idea where they were if it weren’t for him.
“Great job, man,” I said as I walked closer to him.
“Thanks,” our new young recruit replied, preening.
I knew that he idolized Griffin, our boss and owner of the security firm GTT, and would do anything to get Griffin’s approval. He even followed the idiot Brendan for five hours out of town on a hunch. It paid off for us though. Griffin’s step kids were being held by their sometimes-drug-addicted father in this crap hotel outside the Vegas strip.
“Twitch!” I heard my name being shouted out from across the parking lot.
“What’s up, Trixy?” I loved teasing her.
“Call me that one more time and you will be sorry!” Tasha, aka Trixy, bellowed at me in frustration, while her fellow police officers snickered.
The police were keeping everyone back away from the line. Numerous attempts to get Brendan to come out with his kids had already failed; it was now being treated like a hostage situation.
I walked back to my car toward Griffin and Kaylee. “What’s the update?”
“They are thinking about busting down the door.” Griffin replied, looking haggard. He and Kaylee had been at wits end after Brendan took off the day before, basically kidnapping her kids.
“What about the safety of the kids inside? Have they tried calling the room before they attempt to bust the door?”
“I would think they would have done that already,” Kaylee sighed.
I walked over and put an arm around her and squeezed. “It will be okay, baby girl,” I said soothingly. “No one saw the kids leave. I’m sure they are in that room. We will get them back.”
“Lee-Lee!” We heard Griffin’s brother Trey shout. Everyone perked up at the sound of Kaylee’s daughter’s nickname. “Thank God you answered the phone. Honey, where is your dad? Is he in that room with you?” Trey was trying to remain calm talking to the eleven year old.
There was a commotion up by the police line. I saw Justin running over. “You can’t break the door down! Trey is trying to confirm if the kids are inside.”
Next thing I knew the police had Justin on the ground in handcuffs. I shook my head in defeat, not sure why the cops weren’t listening.
“Speaker, speaker,” I shouted at Trey, pointing to the cellphone. “Lee, its Twitch. You’re in the hotel room, right?”
“Twitch! Yes!” she said excitedly.
“Open the door, pumpkin. We are outside,” I said soothing. “Tasha,” I yelled over the line. “Tell them, do not shoot! The kids are coming out. They are alone!”
“Got it!” She gave me the thumbs up before turning to the other detectives.
“Twitch? Is my mom here?” I heard Lee-Lee ask softly through the phone.
“I’m right here, baby! Don’t worry okay? You’re safe now!” Kaylee yelled into the phone.
“Mommy! I knew you would come for us! He took the phone, and I couldn’t tell you where we were. I was so scared,” Lee cried.
“Hey, it’s okay. We’ve got you now. Open the door, Lee,” Griffin instructed his step-daughter.
Kaylee bolted for the police line before anyone could stop her. For someone who was still recovering from being brutally beaten by her ex, she was moving fast.
“Griffin, get your girl before they taze her!” I shouted.
“You get her, my arm is still messed up!” he replied back to all of us, laughing on his way over to the police line.
“I’m not getting hit in the head again because I tried picking her up and moving her.” Trey answered back.
“Don’t be a sissy,” I taunted.
“I don’t see you chasing after her,” Griffin shot back.
“Hell no! She may be small but she has a mean kick!” I laughed as I walked up to where Tasha, clearly the bravest of all of us, was holding Kaylee back. “You’re all worse than a bunch of girls.”
“Can you help me here, Twitch? She’s feisty.” Tasha was amused trying to rein in Kaylee from mowing through the police line on her way to get her kids.
“Baby girl, if you cross that line before they are ready for you to, you’re gonna get tazed. Do you want your kids to see you floppin’ around on the ground like a fish out of water?”
“I just want my babies back,” she said weakly.
God this has been so hard on her, fighting her ex and not knowing what he did with her kids. “I know, but look, Lee just opened the door. Here they come. They’re safe.”
The kids looked horrified by all of the police lights and barrier lines. Lee looked tired, and Lance’s little face was swollen and red from crying. He was clutching Lee-Lee’s hand like she was his lifeline.
“Lee!” Lee!” Kaylee shrieked. “Lance! Baby, thank God.”
Lance let go of Lee and ran as fast as his little legs could take him. Kaylee crouched on the ground with arms open wide and waited for him to barrel into her. He slowed just before he got there and hugged her tight. It was such a beautiful moment with people that I truly cared about, I nearly teared up myself…Almost.
“Twitch!” Lee cried and then barreled into me.
I hugged the tiny little eleven year old like she was my own. Over the last month we had been spending a lot of time together, and all of the guys at GTT had grown attached Kaylee and her kids. We were all hit hard when Brendan kidnapped them.
“Hey pumpkin, how are you holding up?” I asked into her hair.
“I’m okay, I just want to go home,” she whimpered.
“It is gonna be a little while before that happens, kiddo.”
“Hey? Do I get a hug?” Trey said coming up from behind me.
“Trey!” she turned and cried, “I’m so glad to see you!”
He tucked her under his shoulder. “Hey sweetie, you okay?”
“I am now,” she replied looking up at him. “What’s going to happen to my dad?”
I wasn’t about to lie to her, but damn, I did not want to discuss this. “Honey, what he did was a federal crime. When they find him, he will be in some serious trouble,” I told her as gently as I could.
Any mention of that douche, and what he did, had my hackles up, and I didn’t want him anywhere near them ever again. I never had a protective instinct towards anyone like I did for Kaylee and her kids.
“Twitch!” Lance rushed me.
I looked over and saw the little man wiggling to get down from Kaylee’s protective hold. “Hey Lance, how are you?” I leaned down and scooped him up. “Were you strong and protect your sister?”
“Lee-Lee protect me. I’m not a big boy. I a smaller boy,” he said sadly.
“You know,” I whispered in his ear, “one day you will be even bigger than Lee, right?”
With the attention span of a typical three-year-old, he was looking around wildly, presumably for Griffin. I nodded my head off to the side and he squealed.
A brilliant smile spread across Griffin’s face when Lee screeched and rushed him. I was holding Lance, but he was reaching out and trying to get down, so I set him on his feet and he sprinted over as well. By the look on Griffin’s face you would think he won the lottery. Knowing how my friend felt about his newfound family, I think he probably did.
The last thing I saw as I walked over to convince the police to take the cuffs off Justin was Kaylee and Griffin holding the kids in a tight hug. I got a pang in my chest. They were the perfect little family—something I hadn’t had in a long time.
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