Being the only man in the world that is able to become invisible, and teleport, has its disadvantages, as D.I.R.E agent, Tristan, finds out when his best friend, Aidan, asks him to help stop his sister's wedding. Rachel is all set to marry Cody, but not for love, rather in order to get her family's debt paid off after the death of her father. Whisked away from her wedding to a tropical island by Tristan, Rachel trys not to fall for the mysterious and seemingly aloof Tristan. But when he whisks her off to see the sights of Europe for the night to cheer her up, she begins to find it harder and harder to resist him...
The concept behind this book was what attracted me to it. Super heroes but with powers granted to them by science (placing the D.I.R.E Agency series firmly in the science fiction genre as opposed to paranormal or urban fantasy) and I wasn't disappointed! It was pulled off in such a way that it made the science seem possible, but yet didn't quite lose the magic that would be associated with such powers. And on top of that, there was the promise of even more interesting things to come from the Agency!
I'm now going to do something slightly unusual and I'm going to speculate! More specifically these are my thoughts on Cassandra, a character who seemed very much side lined and was made to seem unimportant. But I have this feeling that she is going to become important, and I think she has the potential to become the main antagonist. I could of course be completely wrong about that!
Something quite noticeable about this book, on reflection anyway, was the small size of the cast, particularly for a book this length. There were very few central characters, and not many more secondary ones. This is something that I have come to expect from novellas as opposed to longer works, but in this case I think tat it worked, particularly as the characters were clearly well thought out.
I enjoyed this book and am looking forward to reading the next one!
AGENT I1: TRISTAN (Book 1)
Credentials: • Second generation Former Navy SEAL • DIRE’s top agent Enhancements: • Teleportation • InvisibilityRaised in the art of warfare, Former Navy SEAL, Tristan Jacobs, has always been a force to reckon with. Now that D.I.R.E. has successfully implemented his scientific enhancements, he’s a walking weapon. Unstoppable, as long as he stays focused. No relationships. When ex-BUD/S teammate, Aidan Monroe, interrupts his long-awaited sabbatical to call in a favor, Tristan reluctantly fills the simple request: take out his sister’s fiancé. One problem: Rachel Monroe - smokin’ hot, kind-hearted, and in desperate need of a protector. After the best sex of his life, Tristan’s afraid unstoppable is just a memory. Knowing Aidan’s temper, Tristan could be, too. Rachel Monroe had a plan to help her mother. Her brother ruined everything when his gorgeous, super-agent friend teleported her to some forsaken island - and his bed. She’s drawn to him despite the fact he’s a professional agent, much like the people suspected of killing her father. Now, his enemies have come to her small town, looking for vengeance. Have they found more than they bargained for? Or, does the past have its own retribution in mind?
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Being invisible had definite advantages - slipping in and out of rebel compounds, stealing enemy technology and weapons, and listening in on private conversations, to name a few. But none, not one, was more beneficial, more gratifying, more freaking hot, than watching Rachel Monroe dress in this church, undetected. Tristan Jacobs ducked around the full-length mirror to get a better angle. His conscience told him he should be shot for standing there ogling Aidan’s sister. His former BUD/S teammate and swim buddy, Aidan Monroe, had saved his life once upon a time, and Tristan owed him. Or, had owed him - until last night. Living with the ability to see himself but not be seen by others had made Tristan’s job so much easier. He could honestly say this was the first time he had used his ability for personal, unscrupulous gain. The ability to teleport from one place to another with the scan of a thumbprint on his armband, had given him a whole new spin on time management. His lower body hummed as he stared at the bare flesh highlighted in the sunrays shining through the skylight. Rachel was a goddess. Not in the supermodel, movie starlet sense. Those women did nothing for him. She came off more as the small town, girl next door, they-know-how-to-grow-‘em-down-on-the-farm-type goddess. And damn, was she blessed. The push-up bra she wore urged him to text his broker and buy stock in women’s lingerie. If Rachel walked into the Stock Exchange wearing that thing, she could single-handedly revive Wall Street and the nation’s economy. Tristan stifled a groan as she slowly rolled up an ivory silk stocking and hooked it to her garter. The woman’s legs were all kinds of long, her stomach flat and smooth. Her skin held the hint of a tan – even the cheeks peeking out of her ivory lace panties were tanned. He took a steadying breath. Don’t go there, Jacobs. Aidan had known calling in that favor was the only way Tristan would have left his long-awaited staycation in Trunk Bay. The hothead all but ordered Tristan to help save his older sister, the saint. Tristan whistled mentally as Rachel shimmied into her fitted wedding gown. He had never seen a saint with curves like that. Aidan could only blame himself for Tristan standing in the bride’s room of an old, Victorian church in Podunk, Texas, watching his sister don a wedding dress she wouldn’t use. He’d told Tristan to meet him there. Aidan was late. “You’re doing the right thing,” Rachel told her reflection as she smoothed the lace skirt over her hips. “This will fix everything for Mom.” Tristan frowned. No, you’re not doing the right thing. I did the right thing for you. He’d crashed Cody Brewster’s bachelor party last night. Of course, no one had seen him there but Aidan. Tristan had seen first-hand what an arrogant ass Rachel’s fiancé could be. According to Aidan, Brewster and his father, Jock, owned nearly the entire town. Tristan had seen evidence of that in the way the men sucked up to them at the party. Gifts and drinks were expected from everyone and, other than Aidan, they had delivered. “Hi, Mom.” Rachel’s deep sigh and soft voice brought Tristan out of his reverie. Damn, he hadn’t heard Kate Monroe enter the room. Ogling his only friend’s sister while her mother stood by, well… even a corrupt mercenary like Tristan had his limits. He needed to get out of there. “Rachel, you’re absolutely beautiful.” Kate rushed forward to give her daughter a hug. The woman was the splitting image of Aidan, with her copper hair and green eyes. Rachel must’ve gotten her chocolate waves from her deceased father. The heavy, oak door swung open. Aidan stuck in his head and looked around. “Anyone come by searching for me?” “No.” Kate pinned Rachel’s veil to the crown of her head. She looked over at her son. “Who would be looking for you?” Dismissing them without an answer, Aidan pulled the door halfway shut and left. Good boy. With sincere regret, Tristan left behind Rachel and the hottest fifteen minutes he’d experienced in a long time. He tiptoed around the faded, olive-colored sofa, steering clear of the glass lamp on the end table. Invisibility didn’t mean he could move through objects.
AGENT E2: AIDAN (Book 2)
Credentials: • Second generation Former Navy SEAL • DIRE’s latest SEAL acquisition Enhancements: • Electrical ConductorFormer Navy SEAL, Aidan Monroe, embraces risk. Show him a hint of danger – or a beautiful woman - and he’s all over it. The only commitments in his life: his new D.I.R.E. enhancements and finding his father’s killers. Cassandra Naylor, daughter of D.I.R.E.’s greatest foe, has one goal in mind: save her father and twin brother. However, she didn’t bank on D.I.R.E.’s superpowers, or Aidan Monroe’s irresistible appeal. Cassandra can’t ignore the scorching electricity between her and Aidan. When their passion is unleashed after a night of dangerous, life-changing events, Cassandra knows there’s no going back. Yet, giving in to her feelings guarantees her father’s vengeful wrath. While they fight their attraction for one another, traitors from the past, and death-defying circumstances force shocking revelations to the surface. Can their love overcome history and betrayal? Or, will the past rob them of any future they have together?
In order to be a true super-agent, a man needed a pair of breasts and a push up bra. Cassandra Naylor zipped up her black jacket as she stepped over the unconscious D.I.R.E. agent lying in the hospital’s fourth floor corridor. Men were such predictable animals. Flash them some perky cleavage and they were distracted like an ADD child at an amusement park. Slipping off her high heel pumps, Cassandra shoved them into her tote and jogged down the hall barefoot. It hadn’t taken much to hack into the hospital’s computer network and find her father’s name on the patient roster. What had scared the manure out of her was his location: Fourth Floor ICU. According to the hospital’s map, ICU was on the second floor. Finding a door marked ICU, Cassandra pushed it open and peeked around the corner. She gasped. Big, rugged Robert Naylor lay pale and unconscious, a myriad of tubes and wires connecting him to an intimidating group of machines. An oxygen mask covered his face, a ventilator at his bedside. Letting the door swish shut behind her, Cassandra stepped over to the bed. Taking his limp hand in hers, she squeezed it, hoping to elicit some type of response. Her tears increased with her grip until she held his hand in a white-knuckled hold. “What happened, Father? Who did this?” You know who did it. Mitchell Jacobs and his D.I.R.E. Agency. The hospital records showed a gunshot wound to the chest. Thank God, he’d survived. She couldn’t imagine life without him. He, Dar and Naylor Interests were her life. If he died, her entire world died with him. Leaning over, Cassandra gave him a feather-light kiss on the forehead. His skin felt cool against her lips, her body heated from the post-midnight excursion into the hospital. She’d never attempted anything like this alone. That had always been Dar’s specialty. “Where’s Dar, Father?” She stroked back the hair from his forehead. “What have they done with him?” Her twin could be free, in a local jail, or well on his way to D.I.R.E. Headquarters. Mitchell Jacobs would like nothing more than to interrogate Robert Naylor’s son – then kill him. The elevator dinged down the hall. She heard male voices, then running footsteps. Guess they found her unconscious agent. She had to get out of there. Pulling up her blonde waves into a ponytail, Cass shoved her feet into a pair of ballet slippers and donned her glasses. Her father wasn’t going anywhere, anytime soon. She had to find Dar so they could decide what to do. How would they get her father out of D.I.R.E. custody like this? What should she do about the gun deal that was supposed to take place tomorrow night? She had never been involved in that side of the business. Her father and Dar had purposely kept her away from the danger. Yet, now she found herself in charge and in doubt of what to do. Inadequacy weighed on her shoulders like concrete. Opening the door a slit, she peeked down the hall. Empty. Opening the door further, she stuck out her head and looked to her right. The body had disappeared. An agent ran toward her. Blast. Bolting out the door, Cassandra ran in the opposite direction. Taking a right at the first crossroad, she ran toward the stairwell, heavy male footsteps closing in on her. She hit the exit door and flew down the stairs, her slippers floating over the hard concrete steps. The door slammed opened behind her. Blast, blast. Strong footsteps followed, gaining more ground than she could ever cover with her size eight feet. He jumped over the handrail and landed behind her. Cassandra’s heart leapt to her throat. She couldn’t afford to get caught. She had to save her family. “Stop. I just want to talk to you.” Sure, you do. With a little water and a towel over my face. The first floor door came into sight. If she could make it to the ground floor, she could lose him in the bustle of emergency room activity. He grabbed Cassandra’s arm from behind. A shock of electricity shot through her. She convulsed violently, her body shaking and quivering with abandon. He dropped her arm. Cassandra collapsed on the landing, her head bouncing off the plaster wall. Pain exploded at the back of her skull. Her body hummed, every nerve ending charged and sizzling. Dizziness shrouded her head, her brain groggy. He dropped down beside her. She gazed up at him through lazy eyes. Her heart stopped, any hope for breath lodging in her lungs. She must have died and gone to the hot angel floor of heaven. Bright, emerald green eyes stared down at her beneath furrowed brows, a lock of dark copper hair falling over his forehead. “Are you okay?” He bent over her. Yep. He was an angel all right, with a soft, deep voice that made her body sizzle and her head spin all the more. His full, gorgeous lips were by far his most appealing feature, although his chiseled, smooth jaw came in a strong second. He even wore intricately carved copper and gold armbands like archangels in paintings of old. The stories of heaven she’d always heard were way underrated. “You’re beautiful.” He grinned with a dimpled smile that would render an auctioneer speechless. “I think you hit your head. Can you stand?” Cassandra frowned. As a matter of fact, her head did hurt. Reaching behind her, she felt around in her hair and found a knot the size of a Ping-Pong ball. She wasn’t dead? Damn. That must mean this guy worked for D.I.R.E. That just wouldn’t do. Shutting her eyes, Cass took a mental inventory of her body. Other than limbs like noodles and a nagging headache, she felt okay. She had to lose him. What a pity.
AGENT T3: D'ARTAGNAN
Credentials: • Rebel son of Former Navy SEAL • Trained under his father Enhancements: • Time Traveld’Artagnan (Dar) Naylor: trained by the best, disciplined by the toughest, and raised by the vilest - his father. He bought into Robert Naylor’s life of crime, until he learned the reasons behind it. Now, he possesses enhancements installed by The D.I.R.E. Agency – an organization he once called enemy. He has to stop the traitors from the past before they destroy the future. And, despite what they say, his decision has nothing whatsoever to do with retro beauty, Jocelyn Chalmers. Jocelyn wakes up in the future without a memory. All she’s certain of is the fear in her gut and her blinding attraction to gorgeous, protective D.I.R.E. agent, d’Artagnan Naylor. When close quarters prove too much for their passionate hunger, Dar knows his future is destined for hard decisions. Once Jocelyn’s memory returns, she begs Dar to return to the year nineteen forty-four and save the world. Yet, to change the past, changed the future. How can they be certain of the consequences of his actions? How can he return her to the past where she belongs after all they’ve shared? Turbulent times come to a head when the past sends its own version of destruction to the future in the midst of long-awaited retribution. Can Dar escape his past to save the future? Or, does fate have its own reckoning in mind?
“I thought I’d seen the last of this damned hospital.” Dar walked beside Tristan in the third floor corridor of Creekmore General. Mitchell had stopped at the nurse’s station to ask of Brentwood’s whereabouts while they went to find Jocelyn Chalmers. “If Rachel and I have kids down the road, we’ll expect you to be here for the deliveries. Get used to the place.” “Kids? You mean we’ll have mini-teleporters running around? Babysitting could get interesting if the kids turn invisible at will.” Laughing, they came up on Jocelyn’s room. Kids. Damn. He couldn’t imagine having children. He’d never met a woman- Someone blindsided him in the doorway, knocking him into Tristan. “Help me, please. They’re coming.” A tiny, petite woman shook him. Her dark, nearly black eyes were wide with fright, her hands shaking where they clutched his biceps. Dark bruises covered the left side of her face and circled her eye, with a mishmash of scratches marring her forehead and nose. She had a split upper lip and a chin scraped and dotted with blood. The injuries disgusted Dar, anger pumping through his veins like a hydrant. Yet, even disfigured, her beauty stunned him. The woman was freaking hot. Shoving her behind him, he looked inside the room. Empty. Holding his arm in a vice grip, she peeked around him, her breath coming in short spurts. “Are they here?” Looking over his shoulder, he met her fearful gaze. “No, you’re safe.” She shook her head vigorously. “No. I’m not. They’re coming.” “Who? Who’s after you?” Stilling, her eyes searched his face with frantic movements – before she passed out. “Shit.” Catching her, Dar lifted her into his arms. The woman weighed no more than a pillow. He carried her to the hospital bed. “Jocelyn Chalmers, I assume?” Tristan followed him inside. “Yes. Damn, that car really did some damage.” He went to the opposite side of the bed. Dar pulled up the covers to her chin. “She’s terrified of someone, isn’t she?” “Hell Naylor, we saw them hold a gun to her head that night in the electronics store. When Monroe time traveled to the past, she asked him to bring her back.” “She rode in that time machine with those bastards?” Tristan nodded with a cocked brow. “Yeah. Ballsy, huh?” A fierce, protective streak filled Dar. He wanted Tristan to teleport him back to D.I.R.E. so he could help Mitchell interrogate the spy they’d captured last night. He’d show the guy some freaking fear. Mitchell strode into the room and motioned for them to step away from the bed. He lowered his voice. “Brentwood said she has hysterical amnesia. She has no memories before the hospital. She doesn’t even know her own name.” “Her subconscious remembers,” Dar said. “A minute ago, she tore out of the room, terrified.” Mitchell stared at her still form. “Other than her concussion, she’s got a boatload of cuts and bruises, and a sprained elbow. She’s a tough cookie.” Jocelyn didn’t look so tough to him. Right now, she looked completely vulnerable, like a little girl lying in a bed too big for her. “So, are you transferring her to D.I.R.E?” Dar really didn’t want her near that spy. “No, I’ll leave her here for now and send down a couple of agents to guard the room.” Dar crossed his arms in front of him. “I’ll stay.” Tristan’s gaze shot to him. “You just said you hated this place.” He frowned at his brother. “I’m not leaving her alone.” “She wouldn’t be alone, Naylor,” Mitchell said. “Did you miss the part about the two agents?” “No. I’m not leaving her alone.” Tristan smothered a grin. Mitchell shook his head. “Don’t even go there, Naylor.” He flipped out a hand, palm up. “Where?” Mitchell pointed at Jocelyn. “There. Way too many complications.” Jocelyn sat bolt upright, gasping for breath. Her dark, wild gaze searched the room before zeroing in on Dar. Twin tears trailed down her flush cheeks. “Help me.” Dar rushed to the bed, his gut clenched in a tight knot. Dammit, the woman was petrified. He helped her lay back. “I’m here. You’re safe. Go back to sleep.” He pulled up the covers again and sat beside her. Teardrops hung on her long lashes. “You won’t leave?” His heart constricted like a stress ball. “No. Now sleep. I’ll be here when you wake up.” “Promise?” “I promise.” She fell fast asleep, snoring lightly. Why had she fixated on him? Why, in her nightmarish state, had she turned to him, the only criminal in the room, for safety? Did it matter? If he could help this beautiful, confused woman from the past, he’d do it. The idea that she needed him appealed to Dar on a level he’d never traversed before. He looked back at Mitchell. “I’m already there, Mitchell, and have nowhere else to go.
By day, Joni Hahn keeps her secret decoder ring hidden while she works as a mild-mannered HR manager and accounting generalist. She believes the world can never have too many superheroes, and anxiously waits for the call when one will need help saving the world… or getting into his costume. Joni was born with a hopelessly tender heart and believes there is nothing more exhilarating than falling in love (Other than the rear shot of Chris Evans in The Avengers - that was pretty darn exhilarating). A native Texan, she thinks cowboys are the epitome of masculinity, and that country music is the other soul music.