Protective Vows – Valverde Mafia Read Online B.B. Hamel

Categories Genre: Alpha Male, Crime, Dark, Mafia, Romance Tags Authors:
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Total pages in book: 80
Estimated words: 76501 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 383(@200wpm)___ 306(@250wpm)___ 255(@300wpm)
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I crave freedom and his marriage bed.
But I can’t have both.
I’m all that’s left of the powerful Greek Florakis mafia. My father and my older brothers were murdered in a yacht explosion off the coast of Crete, and now my family is in tatters.

That’s when Luca Valverde comes for me. He’s six-foot-four, covered in scars and muscles, a hardened killer, and my sworn enemy.
But instead of finishing the job, he takes me home and gives me a choice: a bullet or his wedding ring.

I accept marriage and decide to bide my time until I can put a knife in his back.
When we return to New York, things get complicated. He needs to prove himself to his family after taking a Greek bride, and I’m stuck trying to help my hated husband while also waiting to escape.

Every second I spend in his marriage bed is another second I spend forgetting about my freedom.
His touch is a poison flower and his lips are like honey.
But I’m playing the long game, and in the end, I’m going to win.

*************FULL BOOK START HERE*************

Chapter 1

Kacia

“Get away from the window, Kacia. You know the rules.”

Outside, red rocks and sharp, scrubby, dark-green grass rolls toward the crystal blue ocean, the waves lapping at the beach like a lover’s soft tongue. I can almost feel the sand between my toes, almost smell the salt on the air and hear the laughter of people lying in the sunlight, swimming in the water, children running across the wet surf chasing birds and crabs and digging deep holes, and my body thrums with a longing I can barely control as Perico steps up and puts a hand on my shoulder.

“I know, I know, I just want to go outside, is all. All I want in the whole world right now is a half hour to go for a run.” I chew on my lip, not looking at the older man. Crete is beautiful, the island is idyllic, it’s like heaven on the southern tip of Greece, and it might as well be a million miles away instead of out the back door.

“Kacia, we’ve gone over this.” Perico’s voice is low and calm and gentle. And he’s right: we’ve gone over this a dozen times, we’ve argued about it, fought about it, yelled about it—though I did all the yelling, Perico is much too patient and doting to ever raise his voice at me—but here I am, still indoors, still stuck. “It’s too dangerous to go outside right now. With the families and the crime lords still arguing—”

“I don’t give a damn about the crime lords,” I say but I let him gently move me back to the interior of my bedroom. He fusses with the curtains, putting them back in place, as I stalk toward the couches and the sitting area and back again.

My cage. My lovely, gold-infused cage. My father’s house on Crete has everything, all the comforts imaginable, from a staff that gives me whatever I want and spoils me, to grounds with intricately manicured flowers. And still, for all that, the only thing I want is to taste the fresh air and feel the ground beneath my feet, at least for a little while.

“You feel like that now, but imagine what might happen if you went out there and the wrong person was watching. All it takes is one sniper, loulou.”

“You’re always talking about one sniper, and yet it’s been three months since papa and my brothers died, and all we’ve done is sit in this house, doing nothing. How long, Perico? How long do you expect me to hide in here, when all I want to do is go out for a damn run? I want to feel the wind in my hair. I want to sweat. Please, Perico—”

“I can’t, loulou. I’m so sorry.”

“Stop calling me that.” I turn and glare at the old man. He’s dark-skinned with gray hair and a deep frown. I’ve known him since I was a little girl—he’s been the head of my family’s household since forever, and one of my father’s closest confidantes—and now the nickname sounds wrong. It’s short for louloudi, Greek for blossom, like my last name Florakis means flower, and my first name Kacia means thorn. Blossom, flower, thorn.

This hurts him. It’s written all over his face. It’s in the way he fusses over me, always checks up on me, constantly seeing what he can do for me, if I’ve eaten enough, if there’s enough to read in English, if I want to practice my Greek. The loss of my family broke him as much as it broke me, and yet I’m still the center of his world, like I have been for years. Perico has no wife, no family, no children of his own, only the Florakis family and its association of crime lords spread out all over Greece and the United States.

Staying inside and hiding out has kept me alive. The association is breaking apart as the various warring factions and families led by their vicious crime lords within the organization my father bled to build begins to splinter and crack. Without Papa, the magnificent Spiros Florakis, the entire association is at risk.

And here I am, nothing more than the great man’s youngest daughter and only living relative. A girl that was mainly raised in America, that’s more American than Greek, and a mere woman on top of it all. How am I supposed to hold the association together, when the crime lords will never respect me? All because I don’t have a dick between my legs.

Perico insists it can be done.

I’m not so sure.

“If you want to leave this house, then it’s time we revisited our discussion from yesterday.” Perico steps toward me, hands spread. “The Panagos family graciously offered their oldest son—”

“How kind of them,” I say, rolling my eyes. “Does he even speak English?”


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