Twelve years on the prison planet Erebus makes a man long for death. The worst part for Tannin Everette is that he was framed for murder. He's innocent. When the ship Imojenna lands for emergency repairs, Tannin risks everything to escape...only to find himself face to face with the captain's undeniably gorgeous sister.
Zahli Sherron isn't planning on turning Tannin in. In fact, she actually believes him. Sure, he's sexy as every kind of sin, but he's no criminal—so she hides him. But no one escapes from Erebus and lives to tell about it. With every day that passes, Zahli further risks the lives of the entire crew...even as she falls in love with a man she can never have for herself.
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When the knife and her hands were spotless, she slipped the blade in a sheath on her belt, took a deep breath, then stepped around the body and walked out of the room. Tannin paused to shake his head before following after her.
Out in the corridor, she waited for him while he swung the door closed. He used the same program that unlocked the doors to totally screw the security protocol, so that if someone tried to get in, it should delay them for a decent amount of time.
“You’re an inmate.” The words somehow manage to hold equal amounts of surprise and suspicion.
He nodded. “Twelve years now.”
“How did you get into this building?” They started making their way back along the corridor, and he tried not to take it personally that she kept an obvious few feet between them.
When they reached the outer door, he held up his commpad to get them through.
“I hacked my way through the security system.”
“And you can do that without setting off any kind of alarm?” she asked as the door clicked open.
“Most people couldn’t. I can.” He motioned for her to wait and ducked out to make sure the coast was clear. He stepped out and held the door for her.
“So you’re some kind of hacking genius. Is that how you ended up on Erebus?”
He shook his head, though it would have been easier to claim a more minor, less brutal crime. “No, I learned all of my hacking skills after I got here.” He pointed. “The marketplace is that way. You’ll find signs to guide you back to the docking bays from there.”
For a long moment she stared at him, something going on behind those dark blue eyes. But then she simply nodded and turned away, hurrying along the building before disappearing around the far corner.
Tannin shoved a hand through his hair, took a deep breath, then walked off in the opposite direction. As if he needed any more excitement before he set out on what probably amounted to a suicide mission. About the best thing he could do now was bunk down in his apartment for a few hours until the time came and hope no one found the body he’d just helped to hide.
Jess has been making up stories ever since she can remember. Though her messy handwriting made it hard for anyone else to read them, she wasn't deterred and now she gets to make up stories for a living. She loves loud music, a good book on a rainy day, and probably spends too much time watching too many TV shows. Jess lives in regional Victoria, Australia, with her very supportive husband, three daughters, one ball-obsessed border collie, and one cat who thinks he's one of the kids.
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