Table of Contents
PRAISE FOR MAYA BANKS
“A must-read author . . . her [stories] are always full of emotional situations, lovable characters, and kick-butt story lines.”
“Heated . . . romantic suspense ... Intense, transfixing.”
Midwest Book Review
“Grabbed me from page one and refused to let go until I read the last word.”
“Searingly sexy and highly believable.”
PRAISE FOR KARIN TABKE
“Tabke masterfully creates sexual tension.”
“Exhilarating . . . Ms. Tabke heats up the era.”
Midwest Book Review
“[A] guilty pleasure.”
The Romance Reader
“Karin Tabke has left me craving for more!”
Romance Novel TV
PRAISE FOR SYLVIA DAY
“Her books are a luxury every woman deserves.”
“An incredible author.”
The Romance Studio
“Sylvia Day’s storytelling dazzles.”
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This book is an original publication of The Berkley Publishing Group.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents either are the product of the authors’ imaginations or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental. The publisher does not have any control over and does not assume any responsibility for author or third-party websites or their content.
Copyright © 2011 by Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
“Soul Possession” by Maya Banks copyright © 2011 by Sharon Long.
“Wanted” copyright © 2011 by Karin Tabke.
“Taking the Heat” copyright © 2011 by Sylvia Day.
All rights reserved.
No part of this book may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission. Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the authors’ rights. Purchase only authorized editions. HEAT and the HEAT design are trademarks of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.
Heat trade paperback edition / October 2011
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Men out of uniform : three novellas of erotic surrender / Maya Banks, Karin Tabke, Sylvia Day.—Heat trade pbk. ed. p. cm.
ISBN : 978-1-101-54504-1
1. Erotic stories, American. 2. Criminal justice personnel—Fiction. I. Tabke, Karin. II. Day, Sylvia. III. Title.
To my twisted but awesome agent, Kim Whalen, who wanted
so badly to be a serial killer in one of my books.
To Kirsten, a fabulous reader who plays a terrific part in this story.
To Vicki Lane and Laurie Kap, two wonderful friends that
I count myself so fortunate to know.
Thank you for just being you and real.
his case is pissing me off,” Rick said to his partner as he picked up his beer bottle and drained half the contents.
Truitt grimaced and sipped at his beer, his gaze tracking across the room. Rick knew who he was watching. It was a ritual he and Tru had fallen into for weeks now.
Jessie Callahan. A gorgeous brown-eyed doll with the sweetest smile he’d ever seen on a woman. Honey blond curls so thick he itched to plunge his fingers into the thick mass.
They’d flirted with her and propositioned her every time they came in, and she always flirted right back and then turned them down flat.
She didn’t seem overly shocked that the proposition included both men. In fact, her face turned the prettiest shade of pink every time they promised her a night she wouldn’t forget. The thing was, she looked downright interested, which is why they persisted. She was going to cave. Rick and Truitt knew it. And it was fun as hell in the meantime to up the ante every time they came in.
“This bastard has to make a mistake sooner or later,” Truitt said, turning his gaze from Jessie to eye his partner. “What kind of a sick fuck gets off on torturing women and then turning them loose in the woods to hunt them? I want this son of a bitch. I want him bad.”
Rick nodded. The images of the victims still burned brightly in his mind. Cuts, bruises, blood. Lots of blood. Caked-on mud and dirt, scratches from head to toe. They’d all run blindly through the dense woods until the bastard tracking them ended his sick hunt with a bullet from a high-power rifle.
They didn’t stand a chance, and yet he gave them hope by turning them loose after terrorizing and torturing them for God knew how long. Stripped of clothing and bleeding, they ran for their lives.
The police hadn’t been able to determine a link between the women. No common factors. It was all frighteningly random, which frustrated Rick and Truitt and their department to no end.
The media had labeled the asshole the Big Thicket Killer. Not terribly original, but fitting all the same. No leads had turned up. Forensics had been a bust so far. The bastard was either meticulous or damn lucky.
The only way the police even knew to look for a body was because after every kill, the arrogant son of a bitch called it in. Complete with GPS coordinates.
Who knew how many women this psychopath had murdered before he decided to go public? How many test subjects had he experimented on before taking the game to the next level and all but daring the police to come after him?
Rick drained the last of his beer and set the bottle back on the table with a thud. This was their first night off in days. They had a backlog of cases and they were still spinning their wheels on the serial killer. He hated sitting around waiting for the bastard to make his next move. How many more innocent women were going to lose their lives before they took him down?