Home > The Agent (An Enemy's Little Si)

The Agent (An Enemy's Little Si)
Author: Kimberly Kincaid





Kai Roman didn’t belong here. Granted, he’d felt that way about nearly every place he’d found himself over the past five years, and the busy bar and grill where he currently stood wasn’t as bad as most. But as he took in the crowd of Intelligence detectives, firefighters, first responders, and their various significant others, one thing became startlingly clear.

These people didn’t just work together. They knew each other, in a way that only those with careers that put their lives on the line could. They were a family—in some cases, like firefighter Kellan Walker, Detective Isabella Walker, and the infant they’d been handing back and forth all night like a football—literally. But in so many others, this was a great, big family that had been forged by trust and locked into place by all the emotions that went with it.

So, yeah. As an FBI agent, Roman might’ve just closed the books on a case he’d worked jointly with the Intelligence Unit, and more yeah, his life had been on the line right alongside theirs. For fuck’s sake, he’d taken a nine millimeter bullet to the chest plate two months ago when all the shit had hit the fan. But he didn’t belong like the rest of them. Hell, Detective Matteo Garza still hated his guts (feeling: mutual) even though the Remington Police Department’s many debriefs had proven that Roman had not only done his job on the case they’d worked together, but had saved Garza’s girlfriend Delia’s life in the process.

To be fair, the tension between them was well-deserved. Any time the FBI fought a police unit for jurisdiction of a case, the detectives in question got uppity with the agent doing the fighting. Garza might’ve been a dick even after they’d joined forces, but Delia had been in mortal danger, and Roman hadn’t done anything to endear himself to the guy, either. It had been on purpose, yeah, but it wasn’t personal. Freezing people out made things easier, in the end. He’d done it with everyone over the past five years. His father, his now former friends—hell, even the other agents in his own unit, to the point that they called him The Iceman. No camaraderie. No closeness. No fucking feelings getting in the way.

As it turned out, that whole “it was better to have loved and lost” adage was a load of shit. Roman had barely survived losing the one person who had been closest to him five years ago. There was no chance he was ever going to risk that kind of devastation again.

No matter how lonely stiff-arming the whole world made him.

“Agent Roman! There you are. Are you ready to kick some trivia ass?”

The question brought him back to the bar in an instant. He couldn’t help but give up a rare semi-smile at the sight of the pink-cheeked blonde in front of him. Delia Sutton was a forensic accountant, absolutely brilliant, and genuinely nice, although not necessarily in that order. Roman liked her enough to overlook the fact that she was in a serious relationship with Detective Garza. When she’d called him to ask if he’d come celebrate closing the case against the man who’d tried to murder her to cover up a massive money laundering scheme, he’d figured it couldn’t hurt. When she’d tacked on an invite to be on her Trivia Night team at said celebration, he’d found it too hard to say no. Yeah, he always stuck to the perimeter, never getting too close to the center of any group. But she’d caught him at a weak moment. They’d just wrapped the paperwork on their case, which meant his job had been done, and done well. Sentences had been agreed upon and jail time issued. They wouldn’t have to deal with a trial. The person who had committed a half dozen crimes and fired a bullet into Roman’s body armor without knowing he was wearing any was going to jail for the rest of his natural born life. Roman had been in the mood to celebrate.

Plus, his competitive streak was about six miles wide, and, although it was a little known fact, he kicked ass at trivia. It was just this once. His urge to be social would be over by morning—hell, he’d be shocked if it didn’t pull a Cinderella by midnight, to be honest. Then, he’d go right back to normal.

Alone. Just how he liked it.

Roman lifted a brow and looked at Delia. “Well, I’m guessing you didn’t invite me for my charm.”

Delia surprised him with a laugh. “It’s true. I did invite you to be on my team for your brain. Specifically, your hippocampus and your cerebral cortex.”

“Wow. You really know how to flatter a guy,” Roman said, but Delia shook her head.

“Oh, no! It’s a compliment. Or two, actually. Because, while I do believe you have a vast knowledge of a lot of varied topics and excellent recall, both of which will make you an excellent trivia team member, I also think you possess a fair amount of charm.”

His brows shot up. “You think I’m charming?” Most people would use literally every other adjective in the English language before settling on that one to describe him.

“I think you have your own brand of charm,” Delia said, her blond hair brushing the shoulders of her Doctor Who T-shirt as she nodded. “But yes.”

Roman picked up his beer and took a healthy swallow to finish it off. “You’re probably the only person in this bar who thinks so.”

Before she could argue—and she looked like she might—a curvy brunette walked up and knocked him on his ass. Okay, so it was figurative. The woman had simply arrived at Delia’s side, hugging her in greeting and giving up a smile that Roman felt in no less than a dozen places. The twinkle in her eyes balanced out their dark brown color, her gold-toned skin taking on a glow in the soft bar light. She was taller than Delia by a good few inches, which made her only a few inches shorter than Roman’s six-foot-two. From the glossy black hair tumbling down her back to the bright-red heels peeking out from the cuffs of her jeans, this woman was fucking gorgeous.

Also, staring directly at him.

“Hi,” she said, for what Roman just realized was the second time, and shit, Delia must have introduced them. “It’s nice to meet you.”

His brain, thank God, bitch-slapped him back to reality before sending his hand out to meet the one she’d outstretched in greeting. “You, too,” he said.

Okay, so his tone was maybe a little more chilly than he’d intended, but he had no business being poleaxed, however momentarily, by anyone. Especially a beautiful woman. Feelings were dangerous enough. Strong feelings, instant feelings? Those were a risk he had to guard against at all costs.

She turned her smile on him, putting his resolve to the test. “So this is the notorious Agent Roman.”

Roman channeled all of his effort into keeping his surprise—or any other emotion, for that matter—far from his face. “Notorious?”

“Absolutely.” She nodded, sending the honey-vanilla scent of her hair into the air, and Christ, she even smelled distractingly good. “I was hoping you’d be here tonight, actually. I wanted to thank you.”

This was getting weirder by the second. He was one hundred percent certain he’d never seen this woman before. He was good at faces, and hers? Yeah, he’d have to be six feet beneath the dirt to forget one so pretty. Although, now that he looked with more care, something about her was vaguely familiar.

“We just met,” he pointed out, trying to place a) how she knew him despite that fact, and b) how she looked so familiar even though he was certain he didn’t know her.

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