Submerged (Bound Together #1)

By: Lacey Black

Bound Together Book 1


For my beautiful niece, Allex.

Follow your dreams no matter where they take you. Believe in yourself above all else. And always smile because it lights up your eyes.

To me, you will always be two years old, wearing a pillowcase on your head, and staging a wedding in the closet. I love you to the moon and back!

Prologue – One Perfect Night


2 years ago

“Come on, don’t be a pussy,” my little brother, Luke, says as he slides the little glass in front of me with that shit-eating grin plastered across his smug face.

“Don’t be a dick. I’ve already had four shots tonight, and I don’t want to show up for my first day tomorrow hungover,” I defend weakly before taking my fifth shot of Jose Cuervo of the night. The burning liquor sliding down my throat isn’t quite as harsh as it was earlier in the evening. Maybe that’s because the tequila has already warmed me all the way down to my steel-toed boots.

“Shit, you’d be expected to show up hungover. They’d probably think something was wrong with you if you didn’t look like hell,” he says before mirroring my actions and taking the shot of golden liquid.

Tomorrow is my first day on my new job. Or should I more accurately say that it’s my first day on our new assignment. Tomorrow starts the day I become someone else. I will no longer be Blake Thomas, special agent with the FBI. No, tomorrow I become Blake Crisp, mechanic at First Class Auto Repair. After months of hard work, intel, and setting this job in motion, I’ll finally be going undercover to help rid the world of one more scumbag. One more crook. One more dirty businessman; if you can even call him that. First Class Auto Repair is anything but a reputable repair shop; at least not behind the scenes.

The FBI has been building a case against Roman Hernandez for the last decade. The auto repair is a front for something much deeper and darker, but how deep and dark, we have yet to truly reveal. The last two agents to go underground in the company both disappeared, never to be heard or seen from again. Oh, we have our speculation as to what happened to the agents, but no trace of their bodies have ever been found. Their intel just stopped, their handlers unable to contact them, their trail gone cold.

“I’d really like to be able to think clearly, though,” I tell Luke as my attention is pulled towards the front door.

My mind is always busy; it’s a result of the job. My eyes continually scan the crowd, watching hands and body language, observing the exits. I absorb everything around me, taking it all in with an eagle eye, filing it away in my expansive memory. It’s one of the things that makes me damn good at my job. Reading people: it’s the thing I excel at.

When a minor rotator cuff injury my senior year of UNLV killed any future at a pro football career, I packed up my shit and moved to Quantico, Virginia. My mom cried the entire time, but there I found a place I felt like I truly belonged. A purpose. Over eight hundred grueling hours of training that tested and pushed me to the breaking point, both physically and mentally. I graduated in a small ceremony where my family stood and cheered, was selected as recipient of the Director’s Leadership Award by my peers and superiors, and finally handed my brand new credentials and a shiny Glock 22 .40 Smith & Wesson.

Before I can throw a smartass comment back at the man sitting across the table from me, my attention is drawn back to the front entrance; or more precisely, to the woman who just walked through the door. With long, black hair and the darkest brown eyes I’ve ever seen, she’s a goddess, and I’m completely enamored by her. The tight black tank top accentuates my favorite female feature, that’s for sure, but the short little black skirt is what has my attention right now. It fits snug around her beautiful heart-shaped ass and hits mid-thigh, with lean legs, a mile long, enticing me with each step she takes. All I can picture now is how they’d look wrapped around my neck. Her entire outfit leaves little to the imagination, and if the lustful looks on half the jackasses in this bar are any indication, she’s fulfilling many fantasies all over the fucking room with her mere presence.

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