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Shattered Pieces (Undercover Elite Book 1)

By´╝ÜSuzanne Steele

Prologue


I wish I could tell you that this is a story with a happy ending. I wish I could tell you that this is like so many other stories I have seen and read, where there is a wonderful reunion   for mother and daughter, but I can’t.

The simple fact of the matter is that my birth mother never wanted me. From the moment I left her womb, until the day of her death, she made sure I knew that she wished I had never been born.

Though I still can’t wrap my brain around how it’s possible that some women never bond with their children, I have finally realized that my mother is one of the few without the ability. I made the conscious decision to accept this reality and move on. I had to. It was either that, or turn into a whining, beat-down, shell of a woman who uses the past as an excuse to never make a difference in this cold, fucked-up world where we live.

I have no regrets for the life I have been allotted and I harbor no resentment. I suppose if I hadn’t gotten in the mess I was in, he never would have taken me. Ours most certainly isn’t a story with fairytale attributes; it is more like a nightmare. I believe wholeheartedly that the ugliness found within the pages of this story is my mother’s doing and not Cash’s. Though he went about inserting me into his life in a questionable manner, it was a necessary evil.

I’m certain he justifies kidnapping me. You know… the whole ‘the end justifies the means’ thing. Regardless, I am a better person for it and though I kicked and screamed when he first took me against my will, I went along with the training that followed nonetheless.

The story within these pages is a very real, raw, and depictive story, but it is one that needs to be told. Others need to hear that being broken is okay, being unwanted is okay, and being abandoned is okay. I believe we all come with our own set of scars, cracks, and blemishes that make us the beautiful messes we are. I believe perfection is overrated. I have chosen, rather than hide my imperfections, to embrace them and share my experience with others so they too can move past their shame and into their freedom. I don’t know how to be anyone but who I am and I refuse to paint a false image that will crumble because it has no foundation of truth.

This is my story…





Chapter One


Johnnie

“Oh shit, shit, shit,” I groan as my car barely sputters into the parking lot of the strip club where I work. I need a new car but I’m never going to get it on my waitressing salary. My boss and the girls I work with keep telling me how much more money I could make if I would just dance but I can’t do it. I watched the slow demise of my older sister when she took that route. No, I won’t let that happen to me.

I rush back into the dressing room to put on the slutty clothes. I hate them but I won’t get any tips if I dress the way I prefer—like a boy to ward off advances. It’s fitting that I got stuck with a boy’s name at birth; I really am a tomboy at heart.

I throw my bag down and quickly pull the top over my head to change when I look up to see my boss. “Hey, some fucking privacy here would be nice!”

“You’re late.” The bastard doesn’t even try to hide the fact that he’s staring.

“So dock my pay. I’m broke anyway.” I pull on a crop top t-shirt that I had cut up and wiggle into a denim mini-skirt.

“With a body like that, you could be rich if you quit waitressing and started dancing.”

I have no intention of telling him why I refuse so I just duck under his arm and make my way out onto the floor. I walk over to the bar and have to yell to be heard over the loud music and catcalls from the men watching Andrea grind against the dancing pole. I shudder to think what a nasty petri dish that pole must be with everyone rubbing on it nightly. The bartender makes her way over to give me my tray along with a pad and pen to take orders. I don’t know why she gives it to me. I never use it, preferring to rely on memory alone.

“That hot ass stalker is here. I saw him talking to the boss earlier.”

I roll my eyes and she just continues to speak. “Why in the world you ignore that fine ass specimen of a man is beyond me.”

“Why he continues to stalk me is beyond me,” is my only response.

I turn to make my way out into the mass of people and look over to the darkened corner where I know I’ll find him. He’s there, casually leaning against the wall like he owns the place. He crooks his finger in my direction and I obediently walk over to take his drink order.

Standing in front of him, my 5’10” frame feels inordinately small. I can smell his cologne and I have to push away thoughts of how gorgeous he is. Tonight, he’s wearing a tan, tailored suit with a black, button-up shirt complete with cufflinks that look like they cost more than I make in a month. His jet-black, long, layered hair is the kind that tempts you to run your fingers through it. His coal black eyes bore through me as he speaks, “You’re late and now you have to sit with me all night because I’ve already paid what you got docked.”

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