Hey guys! As you may already know, I’ve been hard at work on the third installment in my popular M/m BDSM series, Bound by the Enemy
. For this hop, I’ve decided to whet my readers’ appetites further for the upcoming Bound by the Enemy: Under His Thumb
with another exclusive excerpt - plus, a giveaway for those who might not have discovered the first two stories yet.
The ride to Morales’ was short and hectic. They managed to cram ten of Sarceda’s most trusted men into one helicopter, such that there was barely room to breathe. Blake spent most of his time crouched on the floor beside Sarceda. He often did this during the lulls - he’d never been told to, but occasionally Sarceda would let his fingers scratch lightly at Blake’s scalp and that seemed like permission enough.
They disembarked with guns drawn, nearly sixty miles away from Morales’ fields. He was relatively new to the growing business, but he had managed to avoid any major trouble so far. He was too small to be targeted by the DEA’s crop-dusting planes or other growers in the area, isolated as he was out in the middle of the jungle in makeshift tents where there was no electricity, no running water, and more importantly - no government.
Sarceda traded a pile of wrinkled cash to a very shifty-eyed man for a few barely-seaworthy boats, which they rode up the river for what felt like hours. They hiked for another few hours after that, using machetes to cut their way through the undergrowth. It was stiflingly hot, in a different way from the dry, dusty climates that Blake had grown used to. Every drop of sweat felt like it was sticking to his skin indefinitely, because the air was so wet that there was nowhere else for it to go. He kept looking at Sarceda for some sign of discomfort, but he looked every bit as composed as he ever did. Didn’t the man sweat? Ever?
After what felt like an eternity, Blake squinted into the distance and thought he saw something that looked like a blue tarp.
Sarceda came to an abrupt stop. He lifted his hand, and the rest of the men froze.
There was a slight rustling noise coming from the trees - Blake’s ears pricked, a cold feeling settling at the base of his spine. Like an animal with a sixth sense of a coming earthquake, he knew something was wrong well before he actually knew it.
Shots were fired. Blake felt an intense burning sensation in his arm before he realized he’d been hit, and suddenly he was spraying bullets into the underbrush without having the slightest idea what he was aiming for. He heard shouts, screaming, more gunfire. Men were falling around him. Sarceda stood his ground. Everyone was wearing bullet-proof vests, but they were nothing against the hail of automatic gunfire, and the men fell, one by one, until Blake and Sarceda were the only ones standing.
It could not have been a coincidence.
Someone stepped out of the trees, hands above his hand. Blake’s trigger finger twitched, but he didn’t fire. It was an imposing figure - a tall man, covered in dark clothes that looked thick enough to have armor underneath.
"Don’t shoot," he said, in English. "I have many men still hiding. They will fire on you if I’m hit."
Blake stood very still. Beside him, Sarceda did not move either.
"Put down your guns," said the man. "Please."
No one moved.
The man whistled. There was more rustling in the brush, and ten or twelve armored men in camouflage slowly crept forward, their guns trained on Blake and Sarceda.
Sarceda dropped his gun to the ground and kicked it forward. At his nod, Blake did the same.
The man gestured, and two of his soldiers crept forward and cautiously picked up the weapons. He himself remained completely still and silent. Finally, after a long period of nothing but the sounds of the birds, the man reached up and grabbed his riot helmet, pulling it off of his head and tossing it aside. He closed his eyes for a moment, blinking the sweat out of them. He had that sort of chiseled, handsome-yet-bland look that was so common among American soldiers. His accent would have betrayed him even if his face did not. His sandy blond hair was soaked with perspiration.
"Gentlemen," he said. "Sorry it had to be like this. But I’ve got a job to do. Just like you."
"And how does that job pay?" Sarceda responded, quietly. In spite of the heat, Blake felt goose bumps rise all over his skin.
The man smirked. “We can swap stories later on,” he said. “Once I’ve got you cuffed and, uh…well, looks like you got at least one of the collars taken care of already.”
"Very good," said Blake. "How long did you spend coming up with that one?"
"Everyone’s a critic." The man stepped forward, grabbing Blake by his upper arms and shaking him just a little. Sarceda twitched, almost imperceptibly.
"I know your story," said the man, his eyes locked on Blake’s. "There’s not a lot of people in my line of work who don’t. You’re kind of a….cautionary tale."
"That’s right," said Blake, mirroring his smile. "Got to watch out for that Stockholm syndrome."
"Well, this is fun," said the man. "But if it’s okay with you, I’d like to get a move on. We’ve got a long way to go on foot. But I guess you know all about that already."
Blake’s heart was beating like it wanted to burst out of his chest. Of course, because of his training, because of his life, he always walked into every situation with the expectation that it might be a trap. But he never really thought it would happen. Not with Sarceda. Lapses in judgment simply weren’t a luxury that the drug lord afforded himself.
They began their march back there they came from, stepping over the bodies of Sarceda’s best men. Blake kept glancing at him, trying to read him, but Sarceda kept his gaze fixed straight ahead and betrayed nothing. When Blake tripped over a tree root because he couldn’t bring himself to keep his eyes on his own path, the man laughed at him and jabbed him in the back with the butt of his rifle.
"Eyes on your own paper," he said. "Quit flirting with your boyfriend."
Oooh. Now it’s time for the really good part - the giveaway! I’m giving away a free two-pack of Bound by the Enemy and Bound by the Enemy: His Willing Slave in any eBook format of your choice. Enter here!