Current Romantic Suspense WIP. This is a submission to Harlequin. The comments are from fellow writers, the last one is from an editor. Enjoy!
Kate Malone clicked the lock button, adjusted the strap on her leather crossbody, and trotted toward the south elevator of Tower Luxury Apartments, her home of the last three years. Temperatures had finally begun to dip below 80 degrees, casting a breeze on the balmy Tampa night.
Kate hurried her steps. Parking in the deserted, cavernous parking garage gave her the creeps.
She bounced up and down as she waited for the elevator. Glancing at her cell phone, she noticed two missed calls from her estranged ex-boyfriend, Brady, and Seth’s text. Plans for your birthday? A V formed between her brows as a smile played at her lips.
Spending her twenty-first birthday with her childhood friend turned FBI special agent did sound appealing.
A warm wind blew through the tunnel stirring up the smell of rain. Gooseflesh rose on bare arms.
Maybe she should take the stairs. The idea of trekking up five more flights was not appealing, but neither was looking over her shoulder for an interminable amount of time.
Finally, the heavy metal doors opened as her thumbs began to tap out a reply to Seth’s question.
Lights flashed and sparked. With a jerking halt, she gasped as everything went dark. Heavy breathing startled her into the terrifying awareness that she wasn’t alone.
Before she could call for help, a firm grip constricted her breathing and held her against a wall. Self-defense training kicked in, prompting her to knee the assailant in the groin. But whoever it was had anticipated the move, angled his hips, pinning her in place.
“Tell your boyfriend to pay up, and you won’t get hurt.”
The pressure on her airway lifted as the lights flickered back on, and the elevator began to move again. Kate slid down the smooth metal wall onto the cold tile floor, drawing wobbly knees to her chest. Trembling, she hugged herself as she confirmed she was alone.
A ding. The doors opened again.
Her head snapped from a stupor and stared into the troubled, amber eyes of Seth Grant.
As soon as she heard his voice, her mind began to calm. Strong, familiar arms lifted and wrapped her in a tight embrace as he planted a kiss on the tender spot between hairline and temple. “Shhh, Katie Kat, you’re safe,” he whispered.
Kate sighed, sinking into the protection of his broad chest. All would be well.