Mafia Hitman's Daring Lover (The Karzhov Crime Family Series Book 2)

BOOK: Mafia Hitman's Daring Lover (The Karzhov Crime Family Series Book 2)
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Mafia Hitman’s Daring Lover

By Leslie North

The Karzhov Crime Family Series Book 2

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Dedications

I dedicate this book to you, my loyal readers. Thank you for all the lovely e-mails, reviews, and support. Without you, this wouldn't be possible.

I’d also like to say a special thank you to
Leslie’s Lovelies
who have had a huge role in making this book – you’re the best! THANK YOU for all your support:

  • Irina Temer
  • Kerry Deller
  • Jessy
  • JJ
  • Lynda Coker
  • Kim Schlack
  • MDHarrison
  • Robin Otoole
  • Tammi
  • Melody Campbell Goeken
  • Gwen Osborn
  • Betty Pehlman
  • Lorraine Guidotti
  • Joanne Wright
  • Janet Paul
  • Carolyn Redden
  • Tonni Brown
  • Patty Wells
  • Raenn
  • Kelly Johnson
  • Wanda Ross

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Chapter 1

 

Grigori Tokarev stepped off the plane, tossing his black leather duffel bag over his shoulder as he followed the other passengers along the concourse of the Tampa International Airport. The airport was in the middle of a massive remodel, based upon the plastic draped walls, open ceilings, and sheetrock dust covering what was once a patterned carpet.

As he turned the corner, he was forced to duck his head to avoid hitting it on the low ceiling. At 6’6” tall, Grigori was used to adjusting based upon his height, but tonight he was tired, irritable, and just wanted to reach his destination.

The flight across the continent had taken far longer than it should have. First, the plane had experienced an electrical problem before even leaving Las Vegas. Then it had experienced a cooling issue before it could leave the Nashville airport. Instead of arriving in the early evening, it was now close to midnight, and he was beyond tired of his fellow passengers.

Several young families had been among those flying from Las Vegas to Tampa, and their small children had lost any ability to be cooperative hours ago. The last hour of the flight had been spent listening to the infants crying their outrage and the toddlers complaining loudly.

Grigori sighed in frustration as he waited for those in front of him to file through the small hallway amid the construction. He just wanted to sleep!

He glanced at his phone, pleased to see that Stefan had gotten his text message about the late arrival. He hoped to see the man waiting for him once they reached baggage claim, and was not disappointed.

Stefan was lounging against one of the columns nearest the doors, and Grigori headed in that direction after grabbing his checked duffel from the slowly moving carousel. His preference would have been to take both bags as carry-ons; however, his collection of carefully concealed and dismantled weapons and other accoutrements of his trade had made that too risky given the current security situation in place for commercial travel.

No words were spoken between the two men, simply a slight nod of greeting, and then Grigori followed Stefan from the building at a discreet distance, giving anyone who might have cared to watch the impression that he was still travelling alone.

Stefan led the way to the parking garage and over to the car, popping the trunk and waiting until Grigori had stowed his bags before starting the engine.

Grigori silently got into the car, and the two men travelled without speaking until they were out of the airport terminal and headed towards the Gandy Bridge. 

Once they were on the freeway, Grigori relaxed and sighed. “God, it’s good to be off that plane!”

“Bad flight?” Stefan asked.

“Screaming babies and cranky parents. I hate commercial flights! At least coming trans-Atlantic I fly first class.”

Stefan chuckled. “You could have used Nikolai’s jet.”

Grigori shook his head. “No. Until I have a chance to figure out what’s going on here, the fewer people who know I’m here, the better.”

Stefan nodded. “I appreciate that. Your presence could easily be seen as a threat, and the last thing we need right now is an all-out bloody war.”

“Precisely. So, tell me about the intel you picked up.”

Stefan glanced at him before asking, “Sure you wouldn’t rather discuss this in the morning after you’ve had a good night’s sleep?”

Grigori shook his head. “No, I want to go hunting in the morning. I need to know what I’m looking for before that can happen. Tell me what you’ve found out.”

“Very well. Danil has been talking with Leonid.”

Grigori let that information sink in as he cursed softly under his breath. Leonid Sobolevsky was the current leader of the Ogalla organization, currently operating out of Miami, Florida—the same organization Konstantin Osin had once been a part of. The man had taken his wife and small daughter and fled into anonymity when the violence had threatened his family’s safety.

Leonid’s greed had caused him to align himself closely with the Colombian drug cartels, angering the other
Bratva
when they had to work directly through the Ogalla group for their merchandise.

A hit had been put out on Konstantin’s entire family, and only recently had it been deemed partially successful. He and his beloved wife, Karina, had been killed, but their daughter had lived. She was now safely ensconced in Las Vegas with Nikolai Tsarkso, the reigning leader of the Las Vegas/Southern California San Moreno
Bratva
, and a man with little patience for treachery within the American-Russian crime organizations.

Her uncle, Danil Yakimov, had been identified in Karina’s journals as a threat, and it was Grigori’s job to ferret out where that threat was coming from before taking the man out.

“So Leonid thinks to go up against Nikolai?”

Stefan nodded. “I can’t see any other reason he would jeopardize everything he has going here, unless Danil has him convinced he could become the
Pakhan
of both groups.”

“He has a death wish! No one takes on Nikolai without paying a severe price.”
And I am just the man to arrange his imminent death.
Grigori had been looking for an opportunity to rid the world of the man for over a year, and it seemed he was now being given the chance.

Stefan nodded again. “Rumor has it he has been bringing Colombian fighters stateside, preparing for a full-scale war in the near future.”

That’s not all he’s been moving between the States and South America.
Grigori cursed once more. “Why haven’t the other East Coast groups taken him out?”

“No one can find him. Believe me, many have tried, but they never even get close to him.”

“I will find him. Now, tell me about the new group in St. Petersburg who thought to endear themselves to Leonid by eliminating Konstantin.”

“They have been trying to establish themselves as the strongest
Bratva
on the gulf side of Florida for years now. The rogue group is headed up by two brothers, Misha and Karl Ryndin—”

“Ryndin?!” Grigori questioned, shocked, as that information hadn’t reached him in Europe. The Ryndin brothers had operated inside East Germany for many years prior to the decline of communism and the destruction of the Berlin Wall. They had both been assumed dead after the wall came down, having stopped all communication and their interests having been dismantled by law enforcement.

“Yes. They’ve been in the States for a little over ten years now, but they are going by the names of Michael and Karl Ryker. Only a few people outside the organization know their true identity.”

“Well, if they are trying to align themselves with Leonid, it doesn’t surprise me that no one knows of their true identities. Leonid’s not exactly on speaking terms with the rest of our brothers.”

“That is definitely true. Not a week goes by that a new hit is not put out on the man and his organization. At this point in time, most want his entire organization taken out.”

Grigori let that thought sink in and then made a decision. “How do I find the Ryndin brothers?”

“You going to go after them in hopes of finding a link to Leonid?”

“Yes! They were not known for being men who thought too far ahead. They will naturally assume any retaliation for Konstantin’s death is taken out against the Ogalla group. It may take me some time, but they will become overconfident in their safety and then I will strike.”

“Well, my friend, I wish you well. I kind of figured you would want to take that approach, and I have secured you a room in Pinellas Park. That will put you about ten miles from the center of St. Petersburg—far enough away to remain anonymous, yet close enough to be right in the middle of their operation.

“They’re using a middleman in the area who has ties to a number of businesses that are being used as covers. All the information is in there,” Stefan commented, gesturing towards a manila envelope at Grigori’s feet. “If you need help or reinforcements, you know how to get a hold of me. I’ll only be another ten miles north.”

Stefan pulled the vehicle over in front of an upscale hotel, handing Grigori a keycard to a room on the fourth floor and an envelope containing maps of the area, contacts, and suppliers that were friendly to the organization, as well as the names and addresses of known leaders in the area. He then pulled a set of car keys from the console between the vehicles seats, handing them to Grigori and saying, “Black Humvee, back parking lot, next to the trash dumpster. It’s registered to a Greg Walker and matches the picture ID in that envelope.”

“You’ve been busy.”

“Of course. This situation needs to be taken care of.”

“It will be,” Grigori told him, putting the keys in the pocket of his leather jacket.

“Be safe, my friend.”

“Always. I’ll let you know when this is over. There may be an opportunity for a strong leader to step in and reorganize what’s left in the St. Petersburg organization once this over. Nikolai is a strong voice and will have no problem lending his support to such a suggestion.”

Stefan inclined his head. “Let’s see what’s left, and then we’ll talk. My father’s legacy is the only reason I was made
Pakhan
in this area to begin with. Many of the other northern leaders believe me too young to assume so much responsibility.”

“Too young? You may only be twenty-eight, but in this world, that is three lifetimes compared to those living outside the organization. No—you, my friend, have already proven you are a good leader.”

“Well, we’ll tackle that problem when it arises. Good luck hunting.”

Grigori nodded and exited the vehicle. He took his bags from the trunk after Stefan opened it, closing the lid and then rapping on it three times before heading towards the entrance to the hotel. He needed a good night’s sleep, and then he would be ready to start his mission—locating the Ryndin brothers and using their connection to the Ogalla organization to take out Leonid. Once and for all.

BOOK: Mafia Hitman's Daring Lover (The Karzhov Crime Family Series Book 2)
11.5Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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