Deadly Seduction

By: Jen Talty


Book 6 in the NY State Trooper Series





Dedication



A special thank you to Casey Hagen. Just say no to squirt!



To Jennifer Probst, Ray Craypo, and Jake and Josh Craypo, along with Kim Mervis Roach and Delaney Roach for letting me use the family names…Thank you!



And to my awesome husband Mike. Thanks for giving me the beach to walk every morning so I can watch the sunrise and listen to the waves roll against the shore, giving me the inspiration for this book. I love you!





Chapter 1



Delaney Mervis couldn’t believe her bad luck when the man she’d been following decided to sit outside. Normally, sitting under the stars as they twinkled across the ripples of scenic lake during a warm summer evening would be a treat, but not tonight.

Her phone vibrated, sending her stomach on a roll, twisting and churning. She didn’t check the text. She knew exactly who it was from, and what he wanted her to do.

She ordered a glass of house white wine and a salad while pretending to be deep into a book on her Kindle. Not the best cover, but it kept people away so she could focus on figuring out how to turn herself into a seductress.

A crowd gathered on the outdoor patio, which she thought odd for a Tuesday evening, but it was summer, and the village of Lake George, New York was known as a party place. She swallowed, tasting a mixture of fried, spicy foods, and beer. The party scene had never been her thing. An exciting night for her would be dinner and drinks with her best girlfriend…making it home by nine in the evening so she could read.

Taking a sip of wine, enjoying the crisp pear taste, she looked across the deck at the seven men sitting at a table against the railing overlooking the water. She recognized one of them as the owner of the hotel where she’d reserved a room. A tall pitcher of beer, foaming at the top while beads of condensation rolled down the sides, stood in the center of the table with a plate of chicken wings, what looked like mozzarella sticks, and huge stack of cheesy chili nachos.

Josh Burdett sat directly across from her, nursing his beer. Digging into her purse, she pulled out his picture, hiding it behind her Kindle. She’d thought him attractive, but his blond hair, square, dimpled jaw, sharp-high cheekbones, and plump, kissable lips went beyond the two-dimensional image between her fingertips. His piercing green eyes made it difficult for her to keep from staring, which could have been a good thing since she was trying to get his attention.

She felt confident enough that men found her attractive since, on the rare occasion she went out to a bar, she would get hit on, but she had a rule about dating men she’d met in bars: she didn’t date them. Lately, she hadn’t dated at all.

Setting her glass down, she poked at her salad, doing her best to keep the hot sexy trooper in her peripheral vision, hoping he had noticed the woman sitting alone, occasionally glancing in his direction. Her heart pounded, rattling her ribcage. If she did what the man with the Gray Eyes asked and seduced Josh, then maybe Gray Eyes wouldn’t kill her brother. Simple enough, right?

Not.

“How’s everything?” the waitress asked as she appeared beside the table.

“Great,” Delaney said, studying the waitress. She looked familiar, but Delaney couldn’t figure out why. She probably just had that kind of face. “Can you bring me the check?”

“More wine before I do that?”

“One more glass, with the check,” Delaney said. Might as well have something to sip slowly, since she figured Josh and his friends might be awhile by the amount of beer and food one their table. Besides, she’d look silly at a table, reading a book, without at least a beverage. Plus, she could use it to spill on him. One way of getting a man’s attention. She shook her head. The art of seduction wasn’t her strong suit.

Right after the waitress left, she snuck a glance in Josh’s direction, connecting with his sea-green eyes. She swallowed, unable to break eye contact.

He tipped his glass, nodding.

She flashed him her best smile, raising her glass, bringing it to her lips before lowering her head, focusing on the Kindle screen, breathing slowly while her pulse raced out of control. The information she’d been given indicated Josh was nearing his thirtieth birthday. Same age as her. He’d been a Trooper since graduating from the Academy at the age of twenty-two and had spent most of his career as a detective in the special crimes unit.

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