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The Skull Crusher (Skull 2) Penelope Sky 2022/8/5 16:51:57

“My nails dig in pretty deep.”

“Ooh.” He waggled his eyebrows. “That’s more my style.”

I held the lamp at the ready, prepared to smack him upside the head if he came too close. “Who are you?”

“You don’t recognize me, sweetheart?”

“Don’t make me ask you again.” He had the same baritone voice, dripping with masculinity, and he had the exact same features. His size was similar, his frame packed with muscle. But I knew this wasn’t the man I was sleeping with. Balto mentioned he had a brother—but not a twin. “I know you aren’t Balto, so stop pretending.”

He dropped his smile then raised both hands in surrender. “Sweetheart, calm down. I’m not gonna hurt you.”

“No, it seems like you want to do something else to me.” Even when he lowered his hands, I kept the lamp at the ready.

He rolled his eyes. “I didn’t expect you to be dressed like that when I walked in. Caught me off guard, alright? I’ve got a weak spot for a woman in a thin camisole with no bra. Sexy as hell. Can’t blame me for that.”

“You shouldn’t have barged in.”

“It’s not like there’s a doorbell. So calm down. That lamp is worthless, so put it down.”

“I’ll put it down when you leave.”

He rolled his eyes then pulled a gun from the back of his jeans. “Look, if I wanted to hurt you—”

Instinctively, I struck the gun with the lamp and sent it flying across the room.

His head snapped in the direction of the flying gun, shocked that I’d smacked it out of his hands so quickly.

Before he could run and snatch it, I hit him upside the head with the lamp, shattering the glass on impact.

“Jesus!” He fell to the floor, the shards surrounding him.

I picked up the gun from the ground and clicked off the safety button. With both hands, I pointed the barrel right at the intruder, prepared to kill him if I had to. “Now who the hell are you?”

He wiped the blood from his forehead with his hand and admired the red substance. “Shit, you got me good.”

“And I can get you good again.” I cocked the gun.

He rose to his feet but didn’t seem the least bit scared of the weapon in my hand. “Who do you think I am, sweetheart? I’m Balto’s brother.”

“Stop calling me sweetheart.”

“Why? It’s cute—as are you.”

I stepped forward. “I will shoot you.”

“Fine. Just not the face. I need that to get laid.”

I lowered the gun and pointed it between his legs. “Then maybe I should shoot here.”

“Balto wasn’t kidding. You’re definitely a handful.”

I nodded to the elevator. “Get out. I don’t know how you got in here in the first place, but I’ll make sure you don’t come back.”

He cocked an eyebrow. “You don’t know how I got in here? Seriously, Balto didn’t tell you?”

“Balto didn’t tell me what?”

“Man, he really is ashamed of me, huh?” He shook his head. “That asshole.”

I held the gun steady and tried not to be distracted by his words. It could all be a ploy for me to lose my concentration.

“I only came up here to introduce myself. You’ve been alone for like four days, so I thought you could use the company.”

My finger remained on the trigger. “You call that an introduction? You complimented my legs then dragged your fingers down my arm.”

“Again, you’re a beautiful woman. I had a momentarily lapse in judgment. You should take it as a compliment. Besides, I’ve been in prison for the last six months. All I can think about is women.”

Good thing I had the gun. “I wonder why Balto didn’t mention you…when you’re so delightful.”

“I am delightful. We just got off on the wrong foot.”

“I’m about to shoot you in the foot.” I changed my aim to his shoe.

“Sweetheart, I can tell you’ve never fired a gun in your life. So just put it down—”

“Just because I’ve never fired one of these things doesn’t mean I won’t do it now. So get the hell out and—”

The elevator beeped, and the doors began to open.

The man sighed. “Great…just great.”

That could only be one person, so I was relieved.

The doors opened fully, and Balto stepped inside. Dressed in all black, he looked like he’d spent the evening executing people. A bag was over his shoulder as he stopped in the entryway and stared at the scene in front of him.

I still had the gun pointed at his twin, and the broken lamp was still in pieces on the floor.

His brother tried to brush off the situation. “It’s not as bad as it looks.”

“It’s exactly as bad as it looks,” I snapped. “He just barged in here and ran his fingers down my arm. He told me I had beautiful legs then touched my hair.”

Balto turned his expression on his brother, his features not changing, but his mood darkening. Without blinking, he stared him down, his body so still he seemed to be made of stone.