DX by Carolyn Jewel
(A Crimson City Demon Novel)

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Synopsis

Helen "Hell" Marshall just wants her old job back as an agent with Crimson City's Internal-Operations. When her mentor brings her in for some contract work, she jumps at the chance. Her assignment? Track down and neutralize a demon on the loose in Los Angeles. Too bad she has to work with covert agent Jaden Lightfeather, and it's; really too bad when her ex-boyfriend and vampire head of a criminal enterprise wants her back.

In Crimson City, nothing is what it seems, not anyone or anything.

This novella was originally published as part of the Crimson City anthology Shards of Crimson. It is about 30,000 words long.

EXCERPT:
The way the briefing room went silent Hell Marshall knew she was on the outside of an inside joke. Jim West, Chief Division Agent for U.S. Internal-Operations in the City of Los Angeles, gripped the projector remote in one hand and a red penlight in the other. I-Ops was the law enforcement and surveillance arm of the government. Battlefield Operations was military, the muscle on the streets. I-Ops was pencil-pushers, spooks and cops and a few other things nobody admitted. West signaled one of the field agents to hit the lights. The room went dark. He clicked the remote and two seconds later Hell understood the silence. Shit.
“This is from a surveillance camera installed at the Golden Wing Spa and Health Center,” West said. The camera had been placed behind the reception desk, so the back of a perky blonde head occasionally blocked a portion of the screen. Tuan Ng was clearly visible in the right corner of the shot.
Hell didn’t move. Didn’t change her expression. West was looking at her. Everyone was looking at her. She could feel it, but she kept her eyes glued to the screen. She didn’t work for I-Ops anymore. They’d fired her ass nine months ago, and that meant her personal life was nobody’s fucking business. She was here because Milos Sanders, Director of I-Ops in Crimson City, was the only friend she had left. Well, that and the promises he’d made to get her back for this assignment.
She wished she had the nerve to give up L.A. and move to her aunt Lucy’s beach house in Bodega Bay. Her aunt wanted someone she trusted in the house. She could open a little coffee shop and serve killer espresso and sandwiches. At night she could sit on the porch, eat salt water taffy, breathe fresh air and watch the stars. It was a stupid fantasy, but it was all hers.
In the video, the perky receptionist kept looking in Tuan’s direction. Tuan Ng was movie-star handsome and, now that Hell wasn’t seeing him, notoriously available. If these jackass agents expected a scene, they were destined for disappointment. Her relationship with the vampire had been doomed from the start because he was a fang, and she wasn’t.
On screen, the lobby door opened and one of the most beautiful men Hell had ever seen in her life walked in. He wore loose trousers and no shirt, and he had the pecs, abs and everything else to pull off the look plus more. His black hair was held back by two narrow braids that started at his temples and secured his long hair in a pony tail. Silver threads gleamed in the braids. His skin bordered on bronze, and he was ripped. Seriously, beautifully, ripped without looking like he spent hours in the gym. What was a guy like that doing in a place like the Golden Wing?
If you had the money, the Golden Wing accommodated any and all consenting adult interactions, regardless of species. Tuan’s open-minded attitude cleared him a million and a half a week. A guy who looked like this one could have any woman he wanted with one flex of a pectoral. Flex the other and his beauty of choice would do any kinky thing he wanted. Mr. Gorgeous walked toward the reception desk camera. His eyes were a freakish pale amber. She’d never seen eyes quite that color.
 

About Carolyn Jewel

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COURTNEY MILANCourtney Milan's debut novel was published in 2010. Since then, she's been a New York Times and a USA Today bestseller, and her books have received starred reviews in Publishers Weekly and Booklist. She's been a RITA finalist and an RT Reviewer's Choice nominee for Best First Historical Romance. Her second book was chosen as a Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2010.Courtney lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband, a medium-sized dog, and an attack cat. Before she started writing historical romance, she experimented with various occupations: computer programming, dog-training, scientificating... Having given up on being able to do any of those things, she's taken to heart the axiom that those who can't do, teach. When she's not reading (lots), writing (lots), or sleeping (not enough), she can be found in the vicinity of a classroom. CAROLYN JEWELCarolyn Jewel was born on a moonless night. That darkness was seared into her soul and she became an award winning author of historical and paranormal romance. She has a very dusty car and a Master's degree in English that proves useful at the oddest times. An avid fan of fine chocolate, finer heroines, Bollywood films, and heroism in all forms, she has three cats and a dog. Also a son. One of the cats is his.SHERRY THOMASSherry Thomas burst onto the scene with PRIVATE ARRANGEMENTS, a Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2008. Her sophomore book, DELICIOUS, is a Library Journal Best Romance of 2008. Her next two books, NOT QUITE A HUSBAND and HIS AT NIGHT, are back-to-back winners of Romance Writers of America's prestigious RITA Award for Best Historical Romance in 2010 and 2011. Lisa Kleypas calls her "the most powerfully original historical romance author working today."Her story is all the more interesting given that English is Sherry's second language--she has come a long way from the days when she made her laborious way through Rosemary Roger's SWEET SAVAGE LOVE with an English-Chinese dictionary. She enjoys digging down to the emotional core of stories. And when she is not writing, she thinks about the zen and zaniness of her profession. Carolyn Jewel lives in Santa Rosa, CA. Sherry Thomas arrived on American soil at age thirteen. Within a year, with whatever English she scraped together and her trusty English-Chinese dictionary by her side, she was already plowing through the 600-page behemoth historical romances of the day. The vocabulary she gleaned from those stories of unquenchable ardor propelled her to great success on the SAT and the GRE and came in very handy when she turned to writing romances herself. Sherry has a B.S. in economics from Louisiana State University and a master's degree in accounting from the University of Texas at Austin. She lives in central Texas with her husband and two sons. When she's not writing, she enjoys reading, playing computer games with her boys, and reading some more. "From the Paperback edition.
 
Published December 15, 2011 by Carolyn Jewel, Author. 75 pages
Genres: Romance, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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