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My life is a secret.
His life is dangerous.
We’re both stubborn, calculating, and controlling.
Mark Dixon doesn’t know what he’s getting into. He doesn’t know his games could cost us our lives. I have to do what is necessary to keep us alive, and that means guarding my heart.
But I know I’m defenseless against him, and in the end, he’ll force me to surrender.
Copyright © 2016 Corinne Michaels
All rights reserved.
No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means including electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise without the prior written consent of the author.
This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental and beyond the intent of the author or publisher.
“I made you a promise, Charlie.” Mark’s already deep voice is layered with desire.
Once again, my control begins to slip. “What’s that?”
His hands drop a little lower beside my head. His lower body shifts so his knee is between my legs. I feel his arousal against my thigh.
My traitorous body shows its own awakening. My nipples hardening through the silk material don’t go unnoticed. Heat pools in my core and my breath hitches. I want him. There’s no use denying it.
“I told you I’d kiss you again. If you don’t stop me now, there’s no getting away.”
I should stop him. I need to stop him. There’s no way in hell it’s going to happen, though. I’m craving his lips again.
He gives me one second before he crushes his mouth against mine. His entire body shifts forward, and now I’m trapped. There’s nowhere to go. Nowhere to move that’s not Mark. He takes every part of my mind and body. Our hands roam each other as his tongue slides against mine. Passion ignites between us; it sets the room on fire. His fingers cup my neck and then glide down the front of my dress. His hand brands my skin as he takes his time exploring the open skin between us.
My fingers grip the lapels of his tux, holding him, molding him to me. I can’t get close enough. Our mouths stay fused as we both lose control.
Then my mind snaps.
I push back and my hands fly to my lips. They’re swollen, bruised from the force of the kiss. His hands brace against the wall. I keep my eyes downcast. I can’t believe I just did that, against the damn wall, at a ball commemorating my father.
I shift my dress, rake my fingers through my hair, and pull myself together.
“Charlie . . .” Mark finally speaks. It sounds like shouting even though it’s only loud enough for us to hear.
“That was the last time that will ever happen,” I say with no tremor to my voice. “Tonight we become partners. It’s not about whatever this is.” I shift my hands between us. “It’s about finding the information we’re both searching for.”
“And what if we find something else?”
“We shut it down. There’s no room for feelings in this world.”
Mark pushes back, giving me space. I instantly feel cold. “Okay, then. Have it your way.”
This is what I wanted, what we both need, but suddenly I wish it wasn’t. I wish I could pull him close, kiss him, fuck him, and just feel.
But wishes are for little girls.
I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect going into Defenseless but one thing I knew for sure, Corinne Michaels was going to do what she is good at doing, taking me on one hell of a ride. And that is exactly what she did. Thankfully she didn’t leave us hanging with a major cliff hanger like she has done in the past but she has left me with a serious book hangover.
I went into this book with the attitude of “there is no way she will make me fall more in love with Mark than Liam”. I have to be honest, she once again WOW’d me with her phenomenal story and amazing characters . I also must add, I am left torn over who I love more, Liam or Mark. Mark isabsolutely amazing, you can’t help but falling head over heels in love with him. Mark is such an Alpha Male but you expect it with him being ex-Navy SEAL. I love how hard headed and stubborn he was, he made me laugh so many times with his sarcastic ways but when he was with Charlie, I was totally swooning over him. And he was such a loyal and selfless person, willing to risk his own life to save the lives of the ones he loved. How can you not fall madly in love with a man like that. Add in the fact that he was hot and sexy and truly knew how to take care of lady, in and out of the bedroom. HELL YES, please give me some more of that hottie!
I loved Charlie, she was such a perfect mix. She could be all business, career driven, hard nose, a stubborn pain in the ass. But behind all that was a very girly girl who was caring and loving, someone afraid to let her walls down for fear of being hurt. She was sarcastic and sassy, and I loved that she could take it just as much as she could give it, especially when it came to going head to head with a man.
Charlie and Mark was a perfect pair that I instantly fell in love with that very first moment they met. I absolutely loved the banter and back and forth and the love/hate relationship these two had for the entire story. It left me smiling and laughing so many times at these two, even when they were in some of the worst times in the story. I felt their connection instantly and these two were totally off the charts hot together, you could feel the level of attraction these two shared and when they finally and truly gave into the chemistry and feelings they had, WOW, that was definitely a scene I needed to cool down after.
Overall this books was a fantastic, action packed, angst filled emotional rollercoaster that took me for one hell of a ride. We got to see our favourites, Jackson and Catherine along with Liam and Natalie and catch up with their lives and what was going on but we got to finally see all the things happening in the first two duets finally get wrapped up and bring some closure to it all. This book had my stomach in knots and laughing at the same time. It was so different from the emotional roller coaster of the Consolation duet, this one wasn’t a sob fest but did have it’s emotional moments for me, but I loved how so very different this one was but was still as great as the others.
About the Author
Corinne Michaels is the USA Today and Wall Street Journal Bestselling author of The Salvation Series (Beloved, Beholden, Consolation and Conviction). She’s an emotional, witty, sarcastic, and fun loving mom of two beautiful children. Corinne is happily married to the man of her dreams and is a former Navy wife. After spending months away from her husband while he was deployed, reading and writing was her escape from the loneliness.
Both her maternal and paternal grandmothers were librarians, which only intensified her love of reading. After years of writing short stories, she couldn’t ignore the call to finish her debut novel, Beloved. Her alpha Navy SEALs are broken, beautiful, and will steal your heart.