Pretty Lies is Annette and Anton’s origins story from the Guilty Pleasures world (Pleasure House world). All the books can be read in any order, but this one can especially be read first if you like since it’s a “prequel” and occurs first chronologically. Here are the other books
Here’s the SNEAK PEEK! (Copyright 2018, Kitty Thomas, all rights reserved.)
She finally reached the end and was greeted by a large iron gate and the most enormous white house she’d ever seen. Large Corinthian columns graced a generous front porch. There were five stories she could count. And two towers. Even though this place existed out in the middle of nowhere, it was lit up like a Christmas tree from the outside. Huge spotlights shone on the front of the building. It was so odd. Why would it be lit up like that?
A chill went down her spine. The gate was closed and locked, but there was a speaker box outside. She pulled up to it and pressed the button.
“Tony’s Pizza Place, may I take your order?” came the answer.
Then another voice in the background. “Shut up, Brian.” Neither voice was Russian.
“Let me speak to the Russian,” Annette said. She still didn’t know his name. She felt like she should know the name of the guy who’d kidnapped her sister.
“I’m sorry, no Russians here,” the first guy said.
“Is this Annette?” the Russian said.
Her heart started to pound harder in her chest. What the fuck was she doing?
“Y-yes. I-I want to make a trade. Me for my sister.”
His laugh was hard-edged and cruel. “And what if I decide to keep you both?”
This thought had seriously not occurred to her. It should have during such a long drive, but she’d tried so hard not to think about anything, that she had managed not to think about how stupid this entire idea was. The only thing she’d known to do was beg him to take her instead. It was the only way she could forgive herself for putting Janette in danger.
She’d tried also not to think about the implications of that. Assuming he let her sister go, did that mean he’d keep her as his slave? Like all the bullshit she’d told him at the club? How could she have thought it would be safe to talk like that… to write checks she couldn’t cash in the real world?
And that was something else… even if he let her go, how was Janette going to pay for the apartment? She surely wasn’t going to take up phone sex. It wasn’t her style.
“Did you call the police?” the Russian asked.
“N-no. You said not to.”
“Good girl. Did you call anybody else?”
“No. Please let me in.” If she could just get inside the house, she could convince him. She’d do or say whatever it took. She couldn’t think about anything except getting Janette free. Her sister was innocent in all this. Whatever else happened, she had to get Jan out of here. And if she couldn’t… at least they’d die together. Even if that was the only comfort she could offer, she was there to offer it.
After what felt like decades, the gate creaked open.
Annette parked in the circular drive and dropped her keys into the small clutch she’d brought. It only contained keys, cash, her driver’s license, and a lip balm. She didn’t even know why she’d brought the cash. What would she possibly use it for? Was she going to buy her sister’s freedom with thirty-three dollars and seventy-two cents? Like if her slavery offer wasn’t good enough, some pocket money was going to change his mind?
She was greeted at the front door by a very attractive blond guy who looked like he’d come straight from the beach.
“Where’s my sister?”
“She’s comfortable.” He stepped aside and let her into the house.
Her heels echoed too loudly over the marble floor.
“Follow me.” He led her out of the entry hall, past a large dining area that looked like a cafeteria, and down a long corridor. He stopped outside a door and held it open.
She wasn’t prepared for the bizarre scene that greeted her. The Russian and another guy with dark hair and even darker eyes sat on a couch playing a racing game on a video gaming system. The flat screen television they played on took up half of one wall.
The Russian glanced up at her, then went back to the game.
The blond guy crossed in front of them to much cursing from the dark-haired guy. The blond stopped at a pool table and picked up the cue.
“You didn’t cheat did you?” the blond asked.
“I assure you, I do not need to cheat,” a somewhat older man said. He looked to be around fifty.
“Hello? My sister?” She’d expected to be taken to her, or at least for the men in the house to be acting in a more sinister manner. Playing pool and video games hadn’t been on the list of what she’d thought she’d walk in on.
“Kiska, quiet,” the Russian said. He was fully engaged in the race with the other guy. After a few more minutes, the race ended. The Russian cursed, and the other guy beamed.
“Pay up,” the winner said.
“I was distracted by that,” he said gesturing toward Annette.
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