Live Wire - By Lora Leigh

PROLOGUE

Elite Operations Base

Alpine, Texas

She was a vision of beauty.

Too fucking young, but her eyes weren’t those of a twenty-four-year-old. They were the eyes of a woman who had seen too much, who had known too much danger, too much pain.

Jordan watched as she went through the strenuous training maneuvers the Elite Operations backup team was putting her through and wondered how the hell he was going to say no to her.

She wasn’t strong enough to match the Elite Operations agents in physical strength or endurance, but she was more than a match for them in speed and ingenuity.

“She has no place to go, Jordan. She’s spent her life running from her father and her brother. She doesn’t have the education or the job skills to step out of this life. This is all she has.” Kira Richards stood beside him, the former CIA asset somber, persuasive, as she attempted to smooth over the anger Jordan knew he wasn’t hiding.

He’d arrived at the training facility to check the status of his nephew, now known as Noah Blake, as well as the other operatives that were part of his Elite Operations command. He hadn’t expected to find this tiny sprite of a woman with masses of red hair, haunted green eyes, and a too sad face sparring with the nephew in question.

“Elite Operations isn’t an orphanage, Kira,” he reminded her, careful to keep his tone cold, emotionless.

He couldn’t show the chink he knew this young woman had put in his defenses the first time he had met her two years before in Aruba during the Diego Fuentes operation. The operation involving Kira’s now husband, Ian, and his father, Diego Fuentes, had been rife with danger. And there the girl had been, desperate to end the life of death and misery her father had been waging to find her for nearly twenty years.

Her eyes had been shattered then, filled with desperation and fear that the plot to bring down the terrorist Sorrel wouldn’t succeed.

But she had been game. She’d thrown everything she had into revealing the identity of the man who had destroyed her mother and who had tried to destroy her.

“Elite Operations isn’t an orphanage, but we owe her,” Kira reminded him forcefully. “You know we do. Besides, she would be perfect in base operations. She knows communications, she knows how to organize things. Give her a chance.”

He glanced at the woman at his side. It wasn’t a request, it was an order. Make it happen. That was what she was saying. Just make it happen.

“You’re a contract asset for the Ops, Kira,” he reminded her. “This isn’t your decision to make. Nor is it up to those men out there.” He waved his hand at the training room viewed through the two-way mirror he stood behind.

“The whole team has more or less adopted her, Jordan,” she informed him. “You can’t get out of this. If you don’t take her, then the backup team will.”

He grimaced.

Hell, he had very little control over the Elite backup team. He couldn’t order Reno or Clint to do shit and he knew it. But he owed them, and he knew that as well. Just as he knew that if she were working with them, it would be a damned sight more dangerous than being confined to the Elite Operations base would be.

“She would fit in perfectly as your personal assistant, as well as mine, in communications,” Kira went on to say. “We’ve been in operation long enough that you know we need someone to fill that spot. Give her a chance, that’s all she needs.”

She would be perfect to make him crazy, that was what he knew. The few times he had been in contact with her, his blood pressure had nearly gone through the damned roof, and his cock had nearly burst from his jeans.

The need to fuck her had been so damned overwhelming that for the first time in years Jordan had considered breaking his own rule. Never fuck or become close to his female operatives. He knew better, just as he knew the outcome if the past remained true.

Losing one of them posed the risk of too much distraction. It was a distraction he could ill afford when the lives of the entire team depended on his ability to think straight.

She was eight years younger than he was, she was looking for a life, for a battle to replace the one she had fought for so many years. The battle to bring her terrorist