In Ayden K. Morgan’s Kill for You, a cartel slave is forced to face her worst nightmares and biggest fears when she falls for a Los Angeles homicide detective after he rescues her at the scene of a gang-related mass shooting. Faith has been used and abused for most of her life, but she’s still fighting to do what’s right. Octavio, a seasoned homicide detective, finds the lines between duty and desire rapidly blurring when it comes to the tortured woman who holds answers he’s been seeking most of his life. Can he break down her walls and win her heart?
Kill for You is the second book in a series of interconnected full-length novels featuring law enforcement officers willing to do whatever it takes to protect the women who need them most. Each book can be read as a standalone, has no cheating, and a guaranteed HEA.
Kill for You (A Warrior for Her #2) by Ayden K. Morgen
The last thing Detective Octavio Hernandez expects to find at the scene of a mass gang-related shooting is a brown-eyed angel standing bravely in the midst of the chaos. One look at Faith Donovan and the homicide detective knows there’s more to her than meets the eye. She’s keeping secrets that just might help bring down Los Zetas, one of the biggest drug cartels in Los Angeles.
He just has to convince her that trusting him is worth the risk.
Forced upon a mother who didn’t want her and enslaved by a gang that refuses to let her go without a fight, Faith’s life has never been her own. She thought she’d made peace with her fate…until Octavio sweeps in and carries her out of her blood-soaked cage.
Faith trusts no one, but the hardened detective makes it difficult to remember why. The way he cares for her makes her ache for what she never thought she’d find: love and a family of her own. But trusting him when she knows he has an ulterior motive is one of the most difficult things she’ll ever do.
He swore to give her the freedom she craves, but when the secrets she holds paint a target on her back, keeping that promise will prove no easy feat.
To secure her freedom and win her heart, this detective will move mountains. And take down anyone standing in his way.
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I jerk upright to find Octavio standing over me, his expression indecipherable. Deep shadows surround his eyes and his sharp jawline is scruffy. He looks tired, like he’s on the verge of falling over. His hair is damp and he’s changed clothes. He must have showered.
I glance over his shoulder, only to realize Agent Gunner is gone and the television is off. The shadows in the room are deeper, like the sun is well on its way to setting for the night. The soft glow of the kitchen light leaks into the room, illuminating the area immediately around me.
“I must have fallen asleep,” I mumble, sitting up in the chair and rubbing the heels of my hands against my eyes. “What time is it?”
“It’s a little after seven.”
“I’ve been sleeping for two hours.”
Octavio’s lips quirk into a smile. “You need the sleep.”
“So do you.” I tip my head back. Not for the first time, I realize how much bigger he is than me. His thighs are thick, his waist trim. He’s tall and powerful, like a Redwood. He doesn’t make me feel small or fragile though. Not even when he’s towering over me like he is right now. He makes me feel…as if I belong somewhere. As if I’m home.
Except this is his home, not mine.
Sadness flows through me at the reminder.
I push myself to my feet, the desire to flee before he breaks my heart rising fast. I don’t think I can handle him telling me he regrets kissing me. Not right now.
He takes a step back to keep from crowding me.
“I’m still tired,” I lie, refusing to meet his gaze. My emotions are too raw. The day’s events have broken open still healing wounds, leaving me feeling fragile, exposed. “I’m going to get in bed.”
“You should eat something, Faith.”
“I’m not hungry.” It’s not a lie. The thought of food sends bile creeping up my throat. Octavio doesn’t need to know that part though. “I had a big lunch.”
He growls wordlessly, thrusting out an arm to stop me from slipping past him. “Stop trying to run from me, little bunny. It’s pissing me off.”
“I’m not running from you.”
His eyes flash fire at me. “You’re lying to me.”
“I’m not…” The warning look he sends in my direction unravels my protest before I can even fully formulate it. “You’re tired, Octavio. I’m just trying to get out of the way so you can go to bed. You’ve only had two hours of sleep since you got up yesterday morning.”
“I’d sleep a hell of a lot better if you were in my bed with me, conejita.”
“That’s…not a good idea.”
“Because it’s not.”
Another growl rumbles in his chest. Something almost predatory flares in his chocolate eyes. He takes a step toward me, his expression fierce. I back up, but he keeps moving forward, stalking me like a wild animal until my back is pressed against the wall beside the recliner. My heart pounds like a drum against my ribcage and my stomach flutters.
“Back up,” I whisper, my voice shaking.
“I’m not going to hurt you.”
I never thought he would, but he’s too close. If he touches me, I’ll crumble. And being rejected by this man once was enough. I don’t think I’ll survive a repeat of that.
“I’d tear my heart out of my chest before I hurt you.”
“You already hurt me,” I whisper.
“How?” He leans over me, placing his forearm on the wall above my head. His scent surrounds me, making me dizzy. I lock my knees, clenching my hands into fists to keep myself from wrapping them in his shirt. “Tell me, little bunny. What did I do to hurt you?”
“You didn’t want me.” I grit my teeth and square my jaw, fighting the urge to cry over that fact. I think I’d sell my soul to belong to this man, but he doesn’t feel the same way about me. That shouldn’t matter as much as it does. It shouldn’t hurt so damn badly. My own mother didn’t want me, but I think knowing Octavio doesn’t want me hurts even worse than that.
“Ah, angel,” he whispers, his voice pained…as if I hurt him. “Don’t you know I’d kill any man who tried to touch you?” He brings his right arm up, tipping my face up toward his with gentle fingers. The intense expression on his face sears into me, stealing my breath. “Tu me vuelves loca. Te adoro. Te necesito. Quiero que seas mio.“
“I…what?” My head spins and I know there’s no way I’m awake because there’s no way he just told me that he adores me. That he needs me. That he wants me to be his.
“You drive me crazy. I adore you. I need you. I want you to be mine,” he whispers, leaning forward to place his lips against my cheek as he confirms that I didn’t mishear anything he said.
“I…” My mouth won’t work. My tongue feels thick and heavy, like it’s cloven to the roof of my mouth. My knees tremble, threatening to give out beneath me.
“Believe me,” he whispers, his voice a rumbling growl of sound that liquefies my insides. “When you kissed me, I never wanted you to stop. It was the best damn kiss of my life. But I was trying to be good, Faith. I was trying to be honorable. To be the kind of man who deserves you.”
“I didn’t want you to think I was anything like Sanders, willing to use my position as your caretaker to get you into my bed.” He leans back until his chocolate gaze collides with mine. Nothing but sincerity burns in the dark depths of his eyes. “I’ve tried so damn hard to be good. But I’m just a man. And if I don’t make you mine soon, I’m going to lose my fucking mind in want of you.”
“Octavio.” My mind spins again, trying to make sense of what he’s saying, trying to fit it into place with what I know about him. That he thinks he’s anything like Agent Sanders breaks my heart. How can he not know that I’ve never once compared him to that horrible man? That I would never compare them? “You’re nothing like him. You are a good, honorable man.” I swallow hard, tears welling in my eyes. “The best man I’ve ever known.”
“If you knew the things I think about doing to you, little angel, you might not be so quick to defend me,” he murmurs. “You might be horrified.”
I stare up at him. “Do you think about taking me against my will?”
“Never,” he swears.
“Do you think about hurting me?”
“I would tear my own heart out first.”
My lips curve upward. I reach out, placing a hand against his scruffy cheek. “Then you’re nothing like he is, Octavio. I may not have…experience…but I’m not naïve. I know what men think about, what they want. I…” My cheeks heat, though I’m not sure why when he just told me he feels the same way I do. “I think about doing those things too. With you.”
“Te extraño. Quédate conmigo esta noche, conejita. Te quiero en mi cama. Por favor.” He kisses my cheek again, his scruffy jaw gently abrading my sensitive skin. “I miss you. Stay with me tonight, little bunny. I want you in my bed.” His lips sweep toward my ear as he translates. He always translates for me even though I don’t need him to do it. I think he likes saying it in both languages, likes giving me his words every way I can understand them. “Please.”
I whisper the only answer I’m capable of giving him. “Yes.”
He pulls back again. Another growl rumbles in his chest, stark need etched across his face. “I’m going to pick you up now,” he warns me, his expression fierce and so damn soft at the same time.
He wraps one arm around my waist, using the other to sweep me up into his arms. I wrap mine around his neck, resting my head against his shoulder. He holds me like I’m priceless as he carries me out of the living room and then down the hall to his bedroom.
“You sleep in here from now on. No more hiding from me in the guestroom. I don’t like it.”
“Okay,” I whisper as he lays me on his bed and then takes a step back.
His gaze sweeps up and down my body, satisfaction stamped all over his handsome face. He reaches behind his head, yanking his shirt off.
My stomach bottoms out at the sight of him without his shirt. Just like every other time I’ve seen him like this, he takes my breath away. His body is the type of perfection most people are never disciplined enough to find. His muscles are cut, defined, the product of years of control and hard work. His caramel skin is beautiful. The tattoo that runs up his arm, ending a mere finger span from his neck, makes him look lethal.
My breath shudders from my lips in a strangled exhale when he drops his pants, leaving him in nothing but a pair of black boxers that mold to his thick, powerful thighs. His erection tents the fabric, jutting almost obscenely from his body. There’s a wet spot on the front. His legs are covered in coarse hair, the muscles there sculpted too.
This man was made for loving and made for war, there’s no denying either.
He stalks toward me like a lion stalking prey, his lips curved into a smirk. “Now your turn.”
“Um…I…” I flounder, suddenly nervous.
He notices. He crawls up the bed toward me. “Shh, bebé,” he whispers, planting his fists on either side of my face and tipping his head forward until our lips are a mere breath apart. “I won’t ask you for anything more than you’re willing to give. I just want to hold you tonight, skin to skin. Okay?”
“You might not…” I take a breath. “You might not like what you see. I’m not, um… I’m not beautiful like you. I have scars. Everywhere.” Admitting to this man that my body is far less beautiful than his has humiliation climbing up my throat and staining my cheeks. But he should know, before he takes my clothes off and realizes that for himself. He should be prepared.
He freezes over me, barely seeming to breathe. “Do you know why I call you conejita, Faith?”
“Because I’m scared of everything.”
“No.” He smiles at the annoyance in my voice. “People think rabbits are jumpy because they’re timid and afraid, but they aren’t. They move quickly and dart away because it keeps them alive. They startle easy because they honed that reflex to survive living amongst dangerous predators. You’re a survivor, just like they are. You may think you’re afraid of everything, but I’ve seen you react without hesitation to help others. You were willing to face down a group of men who tormented you for years, just to help me. You’re more powerful than you think you are, and there is nothing about you that doesn’t please me.”
“Okay,” I whisper, my entire body melting into the bed.
“If leaving your clothes on makes you feel safer, leave them on. But your scars don’t make you anything less than perfect. Not in my eyes, Faith. Not ever.”
Any embarrassment I felt vanishes in a puff of smoke, unable to stand against such grave sincerity and sweetly spoken devotion. This man…Lord, this man is going to break me wide open and own every piece of me.
Books with Purpose
20 to 40 million people currently live in slavery. Over 60% of them are women and children like Faith in Kill for You. Yesterday, 100% of proceeds from Kill for You went to Operation Underground Railroad, an organization that rescues child victims of human trafficking and slavery. I’m very happy to announce that, for the life of the novel, 10% of proceeds from Kill for You will continue to go to Operation Underground Railroad.
To date, Operation Underground Railroad has rescued over 3,200 children from slavery and has helped prosecute over 1,800 human traffickers. Learn more about O.U.R. and pledge your support here.
Ayden K. Morgen is the Amazon Bestselling author of the Ragnarök Prophesies series. She lives in the heart of Arkansas with her childhood sweetheart/husband of fifteen years, and their furry minions. When not writing, she spends her time hiking, reading, volunteering, causing mischief, and building a Spork army.
She graduated summa cum laude with her Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice and Forensic Psychology in 2009 before going on to complete her graduate degree in CJ and Law.
She puts her education to use as a 911 Dispatch Supervisor, where she’s responsible for leading a team of dispatchers as they watch over police, EMS, and firefighters for her county. Her books feature law enforcement officers, the women who love them, and the difficult cases that drive them.
She also writes New Adult Fantasy as A.K. Morgen.