Kicking the Habit

Kicking the Habit by Kari Lee Townsend Read Free Book Online

Book: Kicking the Habit by Kari Lee Townsend Read Free Book Online
Authors: Kari Lee Townsend
her crazy ramblings and looked away. Damn
woman gave him the creeps. “You ready, Sister?” He hefted the box.
    She kissed her granny’s cheek, patted Kitty on his
sleeping head, then grabbed her coat and led the way outside.
    Ace stored her box in the back of his pickup, because the
rain had let up, and jogged around to open her door. He might not be a
church-going man, but that didn’t mean he wasn’t a gentleman. His mother did
teach him a few things before he’d gotten the hell out of there and joined the
service.
    “I really do appreciate the help, but after this you
don’t need to stick around, okay?” Cece said.
    He could feel her eyes boring into him, but he wasn’t
about to leave her alone. Rocco had told him the ballistics report had come back
this morning, and the bullet used to kill the senator had come from an M16A2 assault
rifle. That weapon was a military-issued gun, not something a simple hunter
could buy. She had information; therefore, she wasn’t safe.
    “You’re
welcome, and I don’t mind,” he said. “My partner is handling the rest of our
caseload, and my sole job is to focus on you. If I leave, I won’t have anything
to do, Sister. Have mercy on me, would ya? Besides,
what if you get into trouble and need me to save you?”
    “You don’t need mercy; you need to cleanse your soul. In
fact, I think you should go to confession. You are the one in need of saving. It will probably take a week to confess all your
sins, but you’ll feel much better when you’re done.”
    Confession? Not in this lifetime , he thought. “I
don’t need saving, and even if I did, your clinic is more my speed.”
    She gave him the same look Sister Mary Ethel used on him,
like she could see right through him. “Trust me; you look like you need a full priest.
Someone much more experienced, like Father Flannigan. He’ll steer you down the
right path.” She patted Ace’s arm, again making him feel like a child.
    How the hell had the conversation turned from him saving
her life to her saving his soul?
    Before he
could utter a single protest, she glanced out the window and said, “Oh, look—here
we are. You can drop me off at the curb, and I’ll be on my way.”
    He stared up at the rundown excuse for a building. You’ve got to be kidding me. Whoever
donated this building to her wasn’t looking out for her best interest,—that was
for damn sure. He made a mental note to check out that lead. “Drop you off? Not
a chance. I’m not leaving you alone until I see for myself that it’s safe. You
need all new locks, among other things, in this dive if I’m ever going to be
able to protect you.”
    “I’ll be fine, and I keep telling you I don’t need
protection. It’s not that bad, really. I would never dream of complaining after
the mayor so generously donated this building to me, with the town’s help of
course.”
    The mayor, huh? “Whatever. I’m still not leaving you alone,
whether you like it or not.” Ace grunted as he pulled up to the curb, threw the
truck into park, and hopped out. Walking around to her side, he opened her door
and reached inside.
    She grabbed his wrists to still the forward-reaching path
of his hands. “Honestly, Detective, I think I can manage. I’m not a child.”
    “No, but you are extremely short, and this truck is very high.” He nudged
her fingers off and placed his hands on both sides of her waist, then helped
her down, his hands lingering longer than they should have.
    “Oh …” She stared at his hands for a moment, looking
dazed. “Well, thank you.” She jerked out of her stupor and stepped away from
his touch. “Just because you’re a giant, doesn’t mean you can boss people
around. Good-bye, Detective.” She marched toward the front of the building,
with her key in hand.
    “Wait! You forgot your box.” Ace snagged her belongings
and chased after her, his long strides bringing him right behind her in no
time. Just before they reached the front door,

Similar Books

Found Wanting

Joyce Lamb

The Train to Paris

Sebastian Hampson

The Cut (Spero Lucas)

George P. Pelecanos

The Butterfly Effect

Julie McLaren