It’s hard being a spy.
Katya Dostoevsky is a “little” and the young, submissive mistress of a Russian mobster. Posing as a mercenary, Simon Tolliver is a forty-five-year-old British operative who’s been ordered to kill her.
Neither of them is what they seem.
Sold by human traffickers at the age of 14, Katya has endured eleven years of forced consent, serving the needs of Alexei Papanov, head of the Bratva in upstate New York. She thinks that Simon is taking her toy shopping ahead of Christmas, but he’s been instructed to kill her en route. After what she has suffered, he plans to be her Secret Santa and give her the quick, clean death that she deserves.
It was supposed to be his last night on his last mission before retiring. Instead, this British spy with a gun and a girl on the run embark on a dark, thrilling ride that can only end one way.
Nia Farrell’s way. Yippee ki-yay.
Simon followed Papanov upstairs, past three armed guards and a half-dozen rooms. Stopping short of his private office, the Bratva kingpin opened a door and stepped inside, motioning for Simon to follow.
The room was decorated like a little girl’s dream with a fairytale four-poster bed, an ice cream parlor table and chairs, and an antique baby carriage full of dolls and stuffed toys. An ornate desk sat in front of a bank of curtained windows. Light from the crystal chandelier added to the soft glow from the computer screen of the laptop perched on the thighs of Papanov’s much-younger mistress.
Simon’s cock twitched at the sight of the pretty brunette. Dressed only in a black bra and panties and red fuck-me heels, she sat on an office chair with her face lit and her gaze locked on the screen, oblivious to their presence.
Simon felt like a dirty old man for wishing he could stand there and watch her. He was a spy. He should be focused on Alexei. Instead, he looked at the exquisite turn of Katya’s ankles and imagined them around his neck.
Katya Dostoevsky was twenty-five years old, five feet, three inches, a former gymnast, and an obedient servant to the whims of her master. Sold by her father to Papanov when she was fourteen, she’d grown into a stunning young woman.
Too bad Alexei didn’t share.
Or did he?
“You remember Katya.” His inflection made it a statement rather than a question.
Two sets of eyes darted to Alexei—hers alarmed and his wary. What was Papanov’s game?
Simon schooled his features. “Yes.”
“Myshka, you remember Mr. McCartney?”
She jerked her head in a stiff little nod. “Da.”
She was careful to not look at Simon when she answered. She knew Peter McCartney’s reputation, but she hadn’t really seen what he was capable of. She’d only witnessed a clean kill.
Alexei had backhanded her, busting her lip when she wouldn’t stop crying.
Papanov nodded. “Khorosho. Good. Myshka, I want you to pack a suitcase. Take enough to last you a week. Christmas is coming, and my mouseling wants her favorite bear fixed. I say, it is time for new ones if the old ones fall apart when you ride them. Mr. McCartney will drive you to the apartment in Manhattan. I will finish things here and meet you there. Then we shop, da?”
Interesting. Katya masturbated with teddy bears. Knowing Alexei, he jacked off to the show and made her play the virgin to deflower as an encore.
Simon didn’t miss the look of dismay or the slight tremor that shook her shapely frame. She swallowed the objection on the tip of her tongue and answered meekly, “Da, Papi.”
Alexei’s smile didn’t quite reach his eyes. “That’s my good girl. Set your luggage by the hallway door when you have it packed. I want you downstairs and ready to leave in twenty minutes. Come, Peter.”
Katya flew into action, kicking off her heels and sprinting to her closet. Simon followed Papanov to his office one door over. Katya’s room had been chosen for the Pakhan’s convenience. When Alexei got an itch, he wanted it scratched immediately. His personal sex slave was on call around the clock, anytime, day or night, in public or in private.
Alexei thought nothing of ordering Katya to please him while he entertained guests. Humiliating her only added to his pleasure.
“Close the door.”
Simon did as ordered, questions writhing like Medusa’s snakes in his head. He was pissed. Alexei should have asked him first. Instead, he’d told him in front of Katya. Now Simon was stuck driving her down to the city. He’d spend hours on the road and in traffic, closed in a car with a woman he wanted and could never have—
Unless he wanted to spend the rest of his life as a eunuch.
The last man who’d touched her without permission had his balls cut off and shoved up his arse. Simon hadn’t seen it, but he’d heard the story, now shared as a cautionary tale.
“Sit.” Alexei pointed to the closest chair. Simon took it. Papanov did the same, settling into place behind a heavy wooden desk.
They stared at each other, a pissing contest that lasted all of fifteen seconds.
“What the fuck?” Simon growled. This was supposed to be his last night as a spy. The final time he’d risk life and limb for his Queen and country. His goal in recent years was to be the exception to the rule. He knew when he left the SAS and joined the Secret Intelligence Service that spies didn’t live long and prosper. Retirement from MI6 was a three-by-eight piece of land and a bed six feet under, not a secret, off-the-grid cabin in the Great North Woods with a prepper’s pantry, a growing library of first editions, and an arsenal that had taken half of his life to amass.
His trip to Canada would have to wait.
Alexei let his mask drop for a moment so brief, Simon almost missed it. Whatever this was, it wasn’t good.
The head of the Bratva in upstate New York looked out the bank of bullet-proof windows. The clouds obscuring tonight’s full moon did nothing to dilute its effects. Driving Katya to Manhattan was lunacy.
He told Alexei so.
Papanov sighed heavily. “You are right,” he said, sounding weary and oddly torn. “You will not go there. When you leave here, you take her somewhere… and kill her.” He huffed a breath and tapped his fingers on his desk. “I do not need to know details. Send word when it is done.”
It was a bloody miracle that Simon managed to look like he didn’t care, that this was just another assignment, no different than the other jobs that he’d done for Papanov. But the men and women he’d killed before had earned it. They were criminals. Rivals. Chechen Mafia. Albanian Mafia. Hell, he’d even killed someone from the Visconti crime family who had somehow given offense.
Alexei narrowed his eyes. “You will do this, da?”
“Of course, I will. I just—”
“You wish to know.” Papanov pursed his lips, considering the wisdom in telling him. He rarely bot-hered with explanations unless his blood pressure was up and he needed to vent.
“She is… too soft for this,” he said, waving an imperious hand. “It was… mistake to bring her here.”
Papanov had had her since she was fourteen. He’d gotten bored or annoyed or both. Clearly, he didn’t like her asking to fix her broken bears. After nine years of statutory rape and forced consent, he was dismissing Katya as casually as a toy that he’d outgrown. The trouble was, he couldn’t pass his plaything down, and he didn’t dare discard her. His mouseling was a liability. She knew too much. She’d seen too much for him to ever let her go.
Learn more about Nia Farrell
Nia Farrell is the author of one of The 50 Best Indie Books of 2016, a four-times Golden Flogger Finalist, and a founding member of the Wicked Pens. A multi-genre writer published in nonfiction, poetry, music, articles, and children’s books, with one documentary screenplay under her literary belt, she’s an old soul and a period reenactor who’s been into corsets for centuries. She started writing romance at her husband’s suggestion and has been published in erotic romance since 2015.
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Molly and Connor in this dark continuation.