Home > Brutal Prince : An Enemies To Lovers Mafia Romance(6)

Brutal Prince : An Enemies To Lovers Mafia Romance(6)
Author: Sophie Lark

The curtains are on fire, probably from a spark tossed out of the grate.

I have to get a fire extinguisher before the whole house burns down.

That makes sense.

Until some person leaps up from behind a chair and darts past me out of the office.

That startles me even more than the fire.

Realizing I wasn’t alone in the library is a rude shock. I’m so surprised that I don’t even get a good look at the intruder. All I register is that they’re medium height, with dark hair.

Then my attention is dragged back to the rapidly multiplying flames. They’re already spreading across the ceiling and the carpet. In minutes, the whole library will be ablaze.

I sprint down the hallway to the linen closet, where I know we keep a fire extinguisher. Then, dashing back to the library, I pull the pin and spray the whole side of the room with foam until every last ember is extinguished.

When I’m finished, the fireplace, the chairs, and Catriona’s portrait are all doused in white chemical foam. My mother’s going to be fucking furious.

Which reminds me, there was someone else involved in this debacle. I dash back to the head of the staircase, just in time to see three people making their escape: a blonde girl who looks a hell of a lot like Nora Albright. A brunette I don’t know. And Nero fucking Gallo.

I knew it. I knew the Gallos had snuck in.

The question is why?

The rivalry between our two families goes back almost all the way to Catriona. During Prohibition, our great-grandfathers battled for control of the illegal distilleries in the north end. It was Conor Griffin who won out, and that money has been fueling our family ever since.

But the Italians never go down easy. For every shipment of booze Conor cooked up, Salvator Gallo was waiting to hijack his trucks, steal the liquor, and try to sell it back to him at double the price.

Later, the Griffins took control of gambling at the Garden City racetrack, while the Gallos ran an illegal numbers game inside the city. When liquor was legal again, our families ran rival pubs, nightclubs, strip joints, and brothels. While continuing to supply less-legal party drugs, guns, and stolen goods.

Nowadays, the Gallos have moved into the construction industry. They’ve done pretty well for themselves. But unfortunately, our interests always seem in conflict with theirs. Like right now. They’re backing Bobby La Spata for my Alderman seat. Maybe because they like him. Maybe because they just want to stick their thumb in my eye one more time.

Did they come here tonight to talk to some of the swing vote guests?

I’d like to get my hands on one of them to ask. But by the time I track down the security we’ve hired for the night, the Gallos are long gone, including the tall kid.

God DAMN it.

I head back to the library to reassess the damage. It’s a fucking mess—a smoking, stinking, soggy mess. They destroyed my favorite part of the house.

And why were they even in here, anyway?

I start looking around, trying to figure out what they were after.

There’s nothing of significance in the library—any valuable papers or records would be in my father’s office, or mine. Cash and jewelry are stored in the various safes scattered through the house.

So what was it?

That’s when my eye falls on the mantle, spattered with decelerant foam.

I see the carriage clock and the hourglass.

But my grandfather’s pocket watch is missing.

I hunt around on the ground and even in embers of the birch logs, in case it fell inside the grate somehow.

Nothing. It’s nowhere to be found.

Those fucking wops stole it.

I storm back downstairs where the party is just getting going again after the interruption of the fire alarm. I see Nessa giggling with some of her friends. I could ask her if she invited Sebastian Gallo, but there’s no way she’d be clueless enough to do that. Plus, she looks so happy despite the commotion—I don’t want to interrupt her.

I don’t extend the same courtesy to the rest of her friends. Catching sight of Sienna Porter, I seize her by the arm and pull her a little way off from Nessa.

Sienna is a skinny little redhead from Nessa’s college. I’ve caught her sneaking looks at me a time or two before. More importantly, I’m pretty sure she was one of the girls talking to Sebastian earlier in the night.

Sienna doesn’t protest me hauling her away— she just blushes tomato red and says, “H—hi Callum.”

“Were you talking to Sebastian Gallo earlier?” I ask her.

“Uh, well, he was talking to me. I mean, to all of us. Not to me specifically.”

“About what?”

“About March Madness, mostly. You know his team played in the first round—”

I shake my head, cutting her off.

“Do you know who invited him tonight?”

“N—no,” she stammers, eyes wide. “But if you want, I could ask him . . .”

“What do you mean?”

“I think he’s meeting us at Dave and Buster’s later.”

“What time?” I say, squeezing her arm a little too hard.

“Uh, ten o’clock, I think?” she says, wincing.


I let go of her. She rubs her arm with her opposite hand.

“Thanks, Sienna,” I say.

“No problem,” she says, totally confused.

I pull out my phone and call Jack Du Pont. We’ve been friends since college, and he works as my bodyguard and enforcer when I need one. Since we hired a whole security team for the party, he didn’t come over tonight. But they’ve proven themselves to be pretty fucking useless. So it’s Jack I want now.

He picks up after one ring.

“Heya boss,” he says.

“Come pick me up,” I tell him. “Right now.”









We pile into Nero’s car, roaring away from the Griffins’ house as quickly as we can without running over any partygoers. Nero and I are whooping, Dante is glowering, and Sebastian looks mildly curious.

“What the fuck did you do?” Dante demands.

“Nothing!” I say.

“Then why are we running like we’re about to have ten cops on our tail?”

“We’re not,” I say. “I just got busted in the house. By Callum Griffin.”

“What did he say?” Dante asks suspiciously.

“Nothing. We didn’t even speak.”

Dante stares between Nero and me, thick eyebrows so far contracted that they look like one straight line hanging low over his eyes. Nero is trying to seem nonchalant, keeping his eyes on the road. Sebastian looks completely innocent because he is innocent—he was just drinking a Diet Coke with some redhead when we grabbed him.

I think Dante’s going to drop it.

Then he lunges forward and grabs a handful of my hair, pulling it toward him. Because my hair is attached to my head, this yanks me forward across the seats.

Dante inhales, then shoves me back, disgusted.

“Why do you smell like smoke?” he demands.

“I don’t know.”

“You’re lying. I heard an alarm go off in the house. Tell me the truth right now, or I’m calling Dad.”

I scowl right back at him, wishing I were as big as Dante, with gorilla arms that look like they could tear you to pieces. Then I’d be a lot more intimidating.

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