The Samms Agenda by Alison Kent

THE SAMMS AGENDA
digital reissue edition
May 2016

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Julian Samms is all-business and no bull. He expects a lot from the members of his team; keeping things close to the vest and chaos-free is how he saves lives. And that’s why he’s none too happy about hitting a snag in his latest mission.

Extracting Katrina Flurry, the ex-girlfriend of deposed Spectra IT boss Peter Deacon, from her Miami condo before a hit man finishes her should’ve been a piece of cake. But now Julian’s on the run with a woman who defines high maintenance.

The fact that Katrina seems determined to get them killed has Julian ready to call the gig quits. She’s infuriating, unpredictable, and unfortunately, sexy as hell. Even worse, she makes him want to break his own rules and enjoy the wild ride, which means they’re both in big trouble…of more than one kind.

   

THE SAMMS AGENDA
Kensington Brava
SG-5 #3
ISBN 0758206720
December 2004

IN DANGER
Brava Mass Market
The Shaughnessey Accord
The Samms Agenda
Wal-Mart exclusive reissue
July 2008

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BOOKLIST

The Comfort of Favorite Things - Bliss and the Art of Forever - The Sweetness of Honey - Beneath the Patchwork Moon - Boots Under Her Bed - A Blue Christmas/Jingle Bell Rock(Digital Edition) - Unforgettable - The Second Chance Café - Unbreakable - Undeniable - Holiday Kisses/This Time Next Year - Twenty-One Hours/SEAL of My Dreams - At His Mercy - Playing Love's Odds (Digital Edition) - Love Me Tender (Digital Edition) - Love In Bloom - (Digital Edition) - The Icing On The Cake - With Extreme Pleasure - One Good Man - No Limits - A Long, Hard Ride - Maximum Exposure - Kiss & Tell - Deep Trouble - In Danger - At Risk - Tex Appeal - The Perfect Stranger - Beyond A Shadow - Infatuation - The Complete Idiot's Guide To Writing Erotic Romance - Deep Breath - Goes Down Easy - Red Letter Nights - Totally Charmed - Kiss & Makeup - Undressed - Larger Than Life - Sara Smiles/Beach Blanket Bad Boys - The McKenzie Artifact - The Beach Alibi - The Samms Agenda - The Shaughnessey Accord - The Bane Affair - Mother, Please! - Indiscreet - Wicked Games - A Blue Christmas/Jingle Bell Rock - Striptease - The Sweetest Taboo - Bound To Happen - No Strings Attached - Roped Into Romance - All Tied Up - Love In Bloom - Four Men & A Lady - Love Me Tender - The Badge And The Baby - The Grinch Makes Good - The Heartbreak Kid - Call Me - Playing Love's Odds

“Tzao gao,” swore Julian Samms under his breath, the fluid burst of Mandarin as natural as picking the lock on the front door of Katrina Flurry’s condo.

He wasn’t worried about being caught on tape by the high-tech security system. Even a zoom shot would show him opening the door with what looked like a key.

Besides, though she didn’t yet know it, Katrina Flurry didn’t live here anymore.

And if he didn’t get her out of Miami now, she wouldn’t be living at all.

Spectra IT, the international crime syndicate tailor-made to employ scum like Peter Deacon, had put out a hit on the man’s former girlfriend, using the assassin most suited to a job involving a sexy woman and a gun: Benny Rivers.

Julian knew way too much about Benny’s penchant for abhorrent sexual torture. The other man was an equal opportunity sadist, meaning no man, woman or sheep was safe from the abuse and humiliation he doled out before death.

Hank Smithson, the founder and principal of the Smithson Group, had sent Julian to make sure Katrina avoided that scenario while Mick Savin, Hank’s newest SG-5 recruit, put his bloodhound nose to Benny’s foul trail.

If the game went according to plan and she didn’t put up an uncooperative stink in the process, Julian would have Katrina tucked safely away thirty minutes from now.

He knew from his surveillance that she was home; he’d hoped a simple knock would’ve been enough to gain him entrance. But no. Either she wasn’t opening up because she hadn’t recognized him, or because she was busy in her closet alphabetizing her shoes by designer.

He had absolutely no problem with quality footwear; he had a problem with any obsession resulting in waste of any kind—physical, mental, emotional, or spiritual.

The fact that she could afford a real life Sex and the City wardrobe had no impact on his opinion. But then, nothing ever did. Nothing ever would.

Not after what he’d witnessed during the two years he’d spent stationed in Africa.

And on that last deadly assignment in Kenya.

He’d read several installments of her syndicated column during his mission prep. Cosmopolitan Arm Candy. What a load of high maintenance gou shi. The fact that she had the readership she did left him speechlessly shaking his head at the state of female affairs.

If women thought men gave a rat’s ass about external trappings, they were out of their air-headed minds.
Men who were real men cared about two things. A woman able to carry on an intelligent conversation filled with innuendo and mind games who then delivered an equally fulfilling challenge once she joined him in bed.

The make-up and jewelry and shoes and nails? Uh-uh. His experience told him those were tools used to impress other women and for gaining an edge in the self-esteem war games females played.

Why they felt the strangely competitive need to best one another with the superficial trappings of class . . . he gave another shake of his head as the door came open in his hand.

He didn’t want to walk in and find himself facing the wrong end of the handgun registered in her name, so he knocked again as he cracked open the door. “Miss Flurry?”

He peered into the foyer. Whoa. Nice digs, he mused, stepping onto white-and-black marbled Italian tile. He knew from his background research that Katrina came from money, that her father had died while she was in high school, leaving wife and daughter financially set for the rest of their lives.

His bitching about her wardrobe budget aside, he had to admire her taste. Talk about quality. He’d even give her elegance. Her place deserved a spread in Architectural Digest. He figured her square footage at two thousand at least—not a bad bit of acreage for one person to move around in.

She went for what he supposed was classical, or traditional, the sort of décor that didn’t exactly invite anyone to sit, to ditch their shoes, to kick back with a beer and spend Sunday afternoon watching football—a non issue since the room didn’t have a television and he wouldn’t fit on her red and gold brocade camel-back sofa anyway.

You’re a moron, Samms. You’re not a fixture in her condo or in her life. And it would never be so with any woman, a fact his subconscious was still warring over with his logic all these years later.

A cursory walk-through of her kitchen yielded no Katrina, no dirty dishes, and nothing on the stove. A perverse part of him wanted to check her refrigerator, see if it was stocked with fruits, vegetables, yogurt and designer label water, but the unsealed package of Chunky Chips Ahoy on the countertop changed his mind.

Not to mention intrigued him.

He liked the idea of this gourmet woman having a few pedestrian tastes. It made him wonder how she’d feel about eating those cookies in bed—yet another mental detour he had no business taking.

He made his way over the plush ivory carpet toward the private rooms of the condo. “Miss Flurry?”

Still nothing and, yeah. He’d been right on the mark with his earlier assessment of the money she spent on shoes. Standing at the door to her monstrous closet, he estimated she owned a hundred pair.

A regular mini-Imelda.

And he really shouldn’t be checking out her wardrobe, but it was either that or the bed. The bed which made him think about those cookies and how he could really go for a night of down and dirty sex.

He headed back to the living room and the balcony that opened over the courtyard pool. The fitness center and tennis courts would be his next destination since he knew she employed a housekeeper and wouldn’t be doing her own laundry in the center’s facilities . . .

There she was, down at the pool, her back to him as she got to her feet and tugged at a pair of bikini bottoms that sent his libido back to the idea of leaving cookie crumbs in her bed.

She’d coiled her shoulder-length caramel-colored hair into a knot on top of her head. He liked the length of her neck almost as much as he liked the length of her legs.

What he wasn’t crazy over was the way she was covering up without first turning around so he could get a full frontal view of that body. Then again, her body was merely a perk of this job, not the reason he was here.

She looked like she was on her way back upstairs, meaning he’d do better to intercept her on the other side of her front door. Save himself a buttload of explaining—who he was, how he’d gotten in, what he wanted, as well as the hassle of having to restrain her when she refused to listen.

Cookies or not, she struck him as the type to act first and ask questions a mile or so down the damn road.
In the next second, however, the insect she’d been dodging shot his carefully laid plans to shit when the cement planter it hit exploded. Julian whipped his gaze to the rooftop across from where he stood.

Sunlight cast Benny Rivers’s block-like head in silhouette, glinted off the barrel of the rifle aimed her way.

Katrina’s only saving grace for the moment was the Rivers never gave his prey an easy time, toying with his victims, making them sweat out the wait for their death.

Heart pounding in the base of his throat, Julian gauged the distance from the balcony to the manicured lawn edging the poolside walk, gauged the distance to the deep end of the crystal blue water shimmering in the sun, chose the lesser of two evils and jumped.