Justice and Lies Sneak Peek #1

When I said that things were gearing up in regards to Justice and Lies, I wasn’t kidding. Edits are officially underway, with about the first 10,000 words edited and ready for a final name and spell check.

I hate coming up with names when I’m writing, so name checks are an important part of my process to make sure I don’t have a bunch of “BAD GUY ONE” or “SPECIAL AGENT LAST NAME” hanging out in my draft.

Thankfully neither of those happen in this first sneak peek, which is the opening half to the first chapter! It’s a new team, a new bad guy, but still the same snarky Cassie, if not more. I will admit, I was having some good giggles editing this chapter because I forgot how much fun she was to write.

So, without further adieu, here’s sneak peek #1.

Justice and Lies

“Are you ready, Cassie?”

Of course I am. After months and months of waiting for this moment, we’re finally pulling up outside of the hotel. Months of following him and trying to speak to him online, months of keeping our distance and trying to connect the financial records we have, tonight is finally the night we arrest him and bring him in. 

“Yeah, let’s do this. I’m ready to go,” I say. 

The van comes to a spot, having finally found our parking spot. If I weren’t in the van, I would probably be jumping up and down, trying to get some of the energy out. I don’t want to say I’m pumped, but I am more than ready for this to happen. 

I’m obviously not the only one in the van or the only one involved in the process, with Savannah driving in the front. Here in the back of the utility van with me, I have Rachel and Mason, two of my other teammates. Inside the hotel, I have one more team member, waiting and watching in the back of the bar, Isaiah. Our senior agent, Juan, stands at the front desk, ready to set us up with a room if needed. 

While Rachel stays here for communications, Savannah and Mason will sneak out to go to the hotel’s security room to keep eyes on us.

That just leaves me: the woman who’s going to make the magic.

“Here, check your makeup one more time before we kick you out,” Rachel says. She pulls a compact out of her shirt pocket and hands it to me.

“I’m always paranoid I’ll get lipstick on my teeth,” I say, taking it from her, and popping it open to check.

No lipstick on my teeth but it is red lipstick, as bright as my hair (almost) and I worry that I will leave it on everything. The wine glass, a tooth, my hand if I accidentally wipe it, maybe on him…. 

I check the rest of my face, like my eye makeup, just to make sure everything is set. I think I have more makeup on than I’ve worn in the last two months combined, but this man likes his women to be covered in makeup.

That’s when he likes women and not young girls. That’s what brought us here, to the hotel, to meet him tonight. His love of young girls, teenagers. 

We have evidence, and we have an arrest warrant, so now we just have to arrest him. Easy enough, right? 

And bonus points for me if I get a confession out of him. 

While we have plenty of evidence, this kind of evidence is always a smoking gun. A confession on tape that we can play over and over again in a trial would be the end of him. 

I just need to get him drunk enough to spill his guts. The more I can get, the better off we’ll be when he stands trial.  I just hope when I do, I’m not as drunk as he is. 

“Are you ready, Cassie?” Juan asks.

“Yes.” I readjust my heel, making sure it won’t pop off when I get out of the van. I’ll head out first to hit the hotel bar and meet him there. “Is he in there yet?” I ask.

“Nope, still half a mile away. You’ve got time to go in there and settle in. Maybe have your first drink, too.”

Thank goodness. It’ll give me some time to get a feel for my surroundings.

“Let’s do this,” I say. I hand Rachel her compact back before I open the door to the van and slide out.

The door closes behind me, closing the opportunity to go back. This is my job, though, this is what I train for. Taking a moment, I smooth my dress out, making sure to give him some eye candy in the cleavage department. I just need to make sure he doesn’t see the microphone taped in there, too. 

With a deep breath, I walk into the hotel. It’s one of the old hotels in downtown, several diplomats stay here on a regular basis. It’s upscale and classy, a place where you only meet a prostitute if she calls herself a call girl or an escort. 

I give a quick nod to the receptionist, pointing to the bar off to the left to indicate that’s where I’m going. She looks to Juan, and I catch him nodding to her. Looks like we’ve decided to give the staff the heads up tonight. We don’t always do, but since this man is well known, I’m guessing Isiah told the receptionist and her manager. 

Based on Mason’s tracker in the van, Daniel Hayes is currently about half a mile away, so I have plenty of time to get situated. 

As I walk into the bar, I see Isaiah sitting at a booth in the corner, just where he should be. He gives a nod of the head to me, acknowledging that I’m here and he sees me. I just look at him while he does, another nod could give us both away. 

The agreement online was that I’d meet Hayes at the bar. There isn’t anyone at the bar, given it’s a Wednesday night. No one wants to hit the expensive bar in the middle of the week if they’re not here for business. 

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