Mission: Betrayal Bear's Brigade Book 2
by Emily Mims Genre: Contemporary Military Romance
IGNORANCE IS NOT BLISS
Preston Ramos knows most families are dysfunctional, but his has so many layers of messed up even he can't believe what his father's asking him to do. Yet, guilt and brotherly love have Preston going to South America with a woman he can't stand who he wants to bed with a desire he's never felt before.
Sergeant Sabina Kaslov is proud to be a part of Bear's Brigade. The Special Ops team members are shadows who accomplish the impossible in the face of absolute danger.
But she fears this mission will surely see civilian casualties, especially since they have an idiot cop attached to their team. She's never met a more infuriating, ignorant, biased man who has the face of a vengeful angel and the body of a warrior.
Neither can afford to be distracted, but combustible chemistry cannot be denied, and what awaits them at home cannot be ignored.
“We need to talk.”
“I really need to make a phone call,” she said. “Please. Then I’ll answer any questions you
“You can make the call after we talk.” He nailed her with a stare. “You said your tools were
part of your job. You’re stationed at Fort Sam, right?”
“What is a soldier in the United States Army doing with a satchel of tools and weapons?”
“Those are all military issue.”
“You need to be more specific.”
“Call the manager. Please. She’ll tell you it was my apartment I was trying to get into. Or let
me make a phone call. You don’t understand what’s at stake.”
“Oh, I think I do. See, I’m not only interested in what I saw you up to this evening. Tell me,
does the name Jeremy Ramos or Ramos Incorporated ring a bell?”
She looked baffled. “No, it doesn’t. Should it?”
“It should. It’s the company your brother swindled ten million dollars from.”
Her gaze zeroed in on his name tag. “And you think I have something to do with it?” Anger
flared in her eyes. “You know damned well I wasn’t breaking into someone else’s apartment.
You’ve got me down here, trying to squeeze information out of me about my brother.”
“Ms. Kaslov, you’ve hit the nail on the head. I want to know exactly what you know about
your brother’s latest scam.”
“Okay.” She leaned forward. “I know exactly nothing. Zero. Zip. Goose egg. The last I heard,
the little idiot was washing a lot of dirty buildings in downtown Houston. We’re not exactly
“Surely, you don’t expect me to believe you. Gypsy families—”
“Romani,” she said.
“Romani families,” he hissed as if it burned his tongue, “besides being as dishonest as the day
is long, are known for sticking together.” She stared at him but remained silent. “Don’t look so
insulted. You’re not the first Romani I’ve come across, and you won’t be the last. Let’s try again.
What do you know about your brother’s most recent criminal activities?”
He didn’t believe her, but she stuck to her story. She crossed her arms. “I’m not answering
another question until you let me make a phone call,” she said. “We can sit here all night if you
like. Or I can ask for an attorney, and you’ll be SOL until a public defender shows up sometime
tomorrow. But you’ll have to charge me first, and we both know you have nothing to charge me
with. So, officially, this is an unlawful custodial detention. By law, I can, and will, get up and
leave right about now.”
Well, fuck him.
He handed her the phone.
She turned away and spoke quietly and urgently to a “colonel.”
Probably the nickname of a fellow criminal.
She hung up and dropped the phone into her handbag, and he wiggled his fingers for her to
hand it back, which she did.
“Now, where were we?”
“You were asking me questions I don’t have the answers to.”
“See, that’s where we differ. You’ve made your phone call. Start telling me what you know.”
She shook her head tiredly. “I’m doing you a solid by not walking out and jamming you up.
Believe it or not, officer, we’re on the same side.
“Now, I’ve told you I don’t know more times than is necessary. I’m not going to sit here and
tell you my brother’s lily white, because I know he’s not. But it has nothing to do with me.
“What about the rest of your family? Are they into the same crap your brother’s into?”
“Come on. I don’t believe you for a minute.”
“I don’t expect you to. We’re used to prejudice.”
“You know what? I can think of maybe ten million reasons that might be true.” He was about
to press further when night sergeant Bud Shipley snapped the door open and strode inside.
“Ms. Kaslov, you’re free to go. I apologize for the inconvenience, ma’am.”
Preston reared back. “What? I don’t think so.”
“I said she was free to go,” Bud reiterated, pissed and not looking like he was trying to hide it.
He handed her the satchel and turned to Preston. “Give her the phone.”
She held out her hand, and he slapped the phone into her palm. She turned to Bud. “Thank
you. I’ll need a ride to my car.”
“Officer Ramos can take you.”
She looked at him and shook her head. “Can someone else take me? At this point I don’t trust
Officer Ramos to get me there. He seems to have some issues concerning Romani in general, and
me and my family in particular.”
Preston felt the flush creep up his neck from anger and embarrassment.
“Of course,” Bud said. “I’ll have one of the other officers drive you.”
She turned to go.
“This isn’t over, Ms. Kaslov,” Preston said quietly. “I’ll be keeping an eye on you.”
She shrugged and walked out.
He opened his mouth, but Bud beat him to it. “What the hell was that all about? I had three
calls in ten minutes, including one from some big-shot colonel and one from a pissed-off general.
The one who’s in command of Fort Sam Houston, and he was raising all kinds of hell because
you detained her without cause.
“They both said you could’ve verified her story within five minutes, and she could’ve been on
her way. Instead, you hauled her down here and badgered her for the better part of an hour. She
was part of something important, and you messed it up royally. Care to tell me what that was all
“Her brother swindled ten million from my dad’s company. I wanted to find out what she
knows. And she knows something. I guarantee it. I think it was worth a couple of hours to find
“Maybe she does, maybe she doesn’t. Damn it, boy. You’re too close to the matter to be
questioning anyone about it. And, because of your stupidity, you brought down the wrath of the
fucking U.S. Army on us tonight.
“Got news for you, asshole. You may’ve thought it was worth the time, but they didn’t, and
they’re as pissed as all get-out. You understand what that means for you? For the SAPD?”
Preston understood completely.
He just didn’t give a fuck.
Bear's Brigade Book 1
TREACHERY ON THE BATTLEFIELD OF LOVE
Colonel Angus "Bear" Bustamante lives in the danger zone, never knowing which mission may be his last. Being the leader of an elite task force is his passion, and his son owns his heart.
Until Wildcat, a former one-night-stand, arrives at Fort Sam. Bear's heart inflates, and he finds he wants more than a roll in the sheets with the sultry, sexy Dr. Felicia Castillo.
Felicia loves her work and is dedicated to doing her best all the time. With a sworn determination to stay away from complicated men, she finds herself paired up with a rugged, tough-spoken, hard-assed soldier on a sensitive operation that could make or break her career.
No, she hasn't forgotten their night together. She doesn't think she'd forget that night even after she's dead.
But Bear is determined, and more than sex is on the table.
When treachery strikes and accusations fly, the breach between them seems irreparable. It takes a near tragedy, and an incredible sacrifice to mend the chasm between them.
No one said the battlefield of love would be easy.
Emily Mims knows a thing or two about romance. “My husband and I met in 1970 on a college field trip to Mexico when he asked me to smuggle some film across the border for him. The next day he retrieved the film and took me out for the first time. He proposed five days later. I promptly said ‘yes’ and we’ve been a couple ever since. There’s a little bit of Charles, the strong, loving man I married, in every one of my heroes.”
Emily spent many years as a public-school teacher before leaving the classroom to write full time. The author of over fifty romances, she wrote her first book on a dare. “I threw a romance across the floor and swore I could do better. Charles dared me to-fighting words!” She sold her second attempt and has been writing ever since. When she’s not at the keyboard, she sings and plays the ukulele with two musical groups. The mother of two sons and grandmother of six, she makes her home in Texas but loves to travel and especially loves to visit with her grandchildren in Tennessee and Germany.
I became an author on a dare. I’d pitched a romance novel across the floor and swore I could have done a better job. My husband looked through the book and said I probably could, why didn’t I do it? Dare accepted. Second attempt sold. The rest is history.
Part of the reason I can write romance is because I believe in it. As a young college student, I crashed a birthday party and met the guest of honor. Didn’t see him for a couple of months until we ended up on the same field trip to Mexico. He asked me to smuggle in 12 rolls of film and he’d retrieve it when we got down there. He got the film and took me out on Friday. Five days later on Tuesday he proposed. I immediately said yes. That was fifty-three years ago and we’re still together…
Interesting question here about literary pilgrimages. Our leaf-peeping tour to New England a few years ago turned into one. We visited the House of Seven Gables, the homes of Emily Dickinson, Louisa May Alcott, Ralph Waldo Emerson and Thoreau’s cabin, Robert Frost’s house and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s place, as well as purchasing three volumes of my 9th great grandfather’s writings in the Pilgrim Hall Museum library. We bought books at each stop and had to ship them home.
About this book. It’s part of the Bear’s Brigade series. Sabina is part of a secret Black Ops detachment out of Fort Sam Houston and Preston Ramos is an SAPD cop-and her absolute nemesis. I dealt with the sticky topic of prejudice and preconceived notions, and I also used a visit to Cartagena and what I learned there about the emerald trade to concoct a story about international corruption and emerald smuggling. My characters are completely fictitious and straight out of my imagination, although I have used family and friends as models in the past. Between my imagination, the visit to Cartagena, bias training I’ve had and good old Google, I put together the story. It was fun to write and hopefully will be equally fun to read.
As is true of most authors, I’m also an avid reader. I don’t know that I have a ‘favorite’ author, but some of my I-never-miss-their-latest authors would be Nora Roberts/JD Robb, Jayne Ann Krentz/Amanda Quick, Heather Graham, Carolyn Brown, TM Cromer, Victoria Thompson, John Sandford, Jonathan Kellerman, Anne Hillerman, Anna Lee Huber, and for nonfiction Lucy Worsley. I read almost a book a day since I’d rather read than watch television. I’m not actively reading to get ideas for my own work, but I probably have done exactly that more often than I want to admit.
As far as my writing process goes, I’m a plotter. I write out a plot in detail on my Big Chief and type it up. I park that synopsis in front of my computer and go from there. Interestingly, once I make a printout of the synopsis, my book doesn’t see paper again unless a reader orders a print copy from one of our outlets. I write three to four books a year and am on my fourth series for Boroughs Publishing. I love to write and can’t imagine not having a story bouncing around in my head.
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