Home > Kissing Steel (Cyborg Seduction #2)

Kissing Steel (Cyborg Seduction #2)
Author: Laurann Dohner



Cyborg Seduction series
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Chapter One


“Sir? We are close to the Star.”

Standing up, Rena walked toward the man at the helm. The Bridden was a small, fast jumper shuttle. The five-man crew and Rena had spent two weeks chasing down the intermittent distress signal from a life pod from the spaceship Star. They were farther out in space than Rena ever wanted to go.

Rena’s heart pounded. The Star had been heavily insured so, when pirates had stolen it years before, her company had taken a tremendous loss when they paid the claim.

Recovering it meant recouping most of the money they’d lost. If they pulled it off it meant a huge bonus that would pay for early retirement, no more shit from her boss, and she’d have enough money to finally buy her freedom from the hell she lived with every day. She was so close to obtaining her dreams, she could almost taste it.

“The last signal we got was six hours ago but it should be repeating at any time. She couldn’t have gotten far since we’re faster.” Dell Harver was the captain of the Bridden.

He was good-looking, a businessman, and he was as determined as she to recover the stolen ship. He tapped the screen. “Here it is.”

She studied the screen, seeing a blinking light as he pulled up charts of the solar system they were in. “This is so exciting,” she said.

Dell turned his head, his soft brown eyes lighting up with excitement. “You bet your ass, sir.” He flushed a little. “Sorry.”

“Don’t worry about it and I told you that you can cut the ‘sir’ shit. Just because I work in the corporate office shouldn’t mean I outrank you, and this is your ship where you should never apologize to me for cursing. I could meet you word for word since I was a military brat.” She chewed on her bottom lip. “So do you think we’ll really be able to recover her?”

“We’re heavily armed and we’re fast. The emergency signal from the pod computer said pirates had control of the Star and the pod relayed that it had been picked up again by the ship. Pirates usually travel in groups of ten or less. They are meaner than shit but not the brightest people you’ll ever meet.”

“But they have the Star and I read her listing. She’s a damn fine ship and she’s heavily armored and heavily armed.” That’s what made Rena nervous. “That ship can easily accommodate a hundred people, if not more.”

Dell chuckled. “I know what I’m doing, sir…uh, Ms. Gates. This isn’t the first recovery I’ve ever done and that’s why your company hired me. We’re a five-man crew but don’t let that fool you because we are the best. We’ll be docked to that ship before they realize what hit them, board her and take those assholes out. All you need to do is stay aboard the Bridden until the fighting is over.” She felt nervous. “All I’m saying is the Star can hold a hell of a lot of people. What if you’re wrong and going against more than just ten or less?” 6

 

Kissing Steel – Laurann Dohner

The man watched her for a long moment. “May I be blunt?”

“Please.”

“Ninety percent of space pirates are insane. They are that way because their families chose to leave Earth and live in space on older ships that leak radiation, have poor recirculation of their air, and a long list of other hazardous living conditions that mutate them, mess up their brains or just make them nuts. They are vicious killers, totally brutal, but basically animals. We deal with them often and we know what we’re doing so please trust me. I was hired because this is a job I’m more than qualified to do. My men and I can handle a bunch of mutated freaks easily. All right? We enjoy killing them.” Rena looked at him and realized how chilling he could be as she saw the cold gleam in his eyes when he said that about killing living beings. She was suddenly wary of him and his team, seeing them as a bit bloodthirsty for the first time. “I know Demco just hires the best.”

He grinned at her. “So what are you the best at since you’re high up in Demco Insurance?”

“I was an investigator for ten years.” She hesitated. “One of the investigations turned deadly and I almost died so they promoted me. Nothing says devotion to Demco more than almost giving your life to recover a claim for them.” He studied her. “And you’re risking your life again.”

“Not if you’re as good as you say you are.” She forced a smile. “Recovering the Star is very important to my company.”

“I figured that out with the money they offered me to take this job and the huge bonus they are paying me when we bring her in.” He looked away from her. “Stay onboard.” He reached for his com. “We’re close. Why don’t you strap in? We’re going at them fast and hard.” He turned on the communication system to his crew. “We’re boarding soon so strap down and gear up. We’re about to earn our paycheck, men.” Feeling nervous, Rena walked to her seat to buckle in tightly. She was nuts to take this assignment when she hated leaving Earth and hated spending nearly two weeks aboard a small jumper shuttle with five men. She’d been hit on but the men had backed off immediately when she’d showed them no interest in return. She nervously rubbed the bare skin where her wedding band had recently been. If all went well she’d never have to wear it again.

The shuttle engines roared to life as the pilot gave them full throttle. She swallowed and closed her eyes, hating the feel of the pull of the shuttle as it shot forward through space.

Dell was talking loudly as he communicated with his team. “In ten minutes we’re going to hit hard and fast. Mark, you’re the lead. Don’t damage the docking door this time.” He chuckled. “These bastards are in for a surprise.”

“Sure, Dell.” It was Paul’s voice that came through the speaker. “And you get to come in last to take all the glory.”

Dell snorted. “That’s why I’m the captain. Try not to leave any of them alive this time. I don’t want any more scars.”

7

 

Kissing Steel – Laurann Dohner

Rena opened her mouth but then closed it, deciding that she didn’t want to know.

The thought that people were about to die made her feel queasy. It wouldn’t be the first time she’d been somewhere that people had lost their lives but she still didn’t feel comfortable with it. Of course it is better the criminals die than the recovery team, she thought. Or me.

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