Home > Code Name : Revenge (Jameson Force Security #9)

Code Name : Revenge (Jameson Force Security #9)
Author: Sawyer Bennett

 

CHAPTER 1

 


Dozer


No one thought it strange, least of all me, that Greer and Ladd wasted no time in getting married. They were on the verge of doing just such a thing twelve years ago when mutual stupidity drove them apart. I feel I can say that in a judgmental tone because I, too, have done such a thing. But we all have regrets in life, many of which aren’t fixable.

Luckily for the new Mr. and Mrs. McDermott, theirs was easy enough to repair.

Since neither Greer nor Ladd are overly religious, they chose to have the ceremony in a community hall in Upper St. Clair, which is where Ladd lives. From the time he went to California to retrieve the one who got away until the exchange of vows, a mere four days passed. Greer had no family to worry about in terms of schedule and ability to fly in for the wedding, and Ladd’s parents live in Ohio. They own a flooring company and had no problem taking a few days off to come see their son get married for the second time, but to the woman he should’ve been wed to all along.

Many people were deeply touched that Greer asked Ladd’s ex-wife, Britney, to be her matron of honor. Weird? Yes, but also just very right. I’ve always admired Ladd and Britney’s ability to maintain a steadfast friendship even after their divorce, and Britney has become fast friends with Greer.

Completely weird. Completely right.

The actual ceremony was short but heartfelt, and what followed was an immense party filled with good food, even better liquor, and a really crappy-looking wedding cake from the local grocery store since there was no time to have a decent one made. Ladd wore a tailored suit, just one of many he has to have for our line of work when formal attire is needed. Greer went about as nontraditional as one could get and opted for a blood-red cocktail dress that she happened to have in her array of clothing. They made a striking couple, not only because of their near-perfect good looks, but because they looked like two halves of a whole coming together.

I normally don’t wax poetic about this sort of shit, given that I’ve been unsuccessful in love, but that doesn’t mean I can’t take joy in my friend’s happiness.

My gaze sweeps across the room of mostly Jameson employees and a few outside friends. Groups of two, three, four, and five people talk and laugh. There was no time to get a DJ, so music spins from an iPhone hooked to Bluetooth speakers. Cage and Jaime are the only ones dancing, looking like quite the fools. But I suppose the fact that they can be silly together is a testament to how right they are for each other. After all, Cage married her under false pretenses, telling her he was a used car salesman rather than a secret security agent. It took Jaime getting kidnapped—and Cage saving her—for the truth to come out. Luckily, she’s a forgiving soul.

My eyes land on Kynan, the man who started this company, who’s considered the patriarch of the Jameson family. He served as Ladd’s best man.

Kynan stands with his hand wound around his wife Joslyn as they talk with Camille and Jackson. Kynan and Joslyn are very much like Greer and Ladd, having been in love long ago and with that common theme of stupidity tearing them apart. Their second chance is working out nicely. Camille and Jackson are newly in love. He was assigned as her bodyguard and fell in love with the royal princess who stands to inherit not only a country but the world’s largest and wealthiest ruby mine. Many would call him a lucky son of a bitch for those reasons alone, but he scored big time by the mere fact that Camille is an incredibly genuine and down-to-earth woman. She doesn’t give a rat’s ass about her wealth and only wants to help people. I suspect we’ll all be in Bretaria in about a year’s time for their wedding, but no official word on that yet.

Saint Bellinger and Cruce Britton are elbow to elbow talking about something. They’re thick as thieves, which is quite funny since Saint used to be a professional thief. Their wives, Sin and Barrett, are also close friends, but they couldn’t be more different. Sin was also a professional thief, and Barrett is a world-renowned physicist whose IQ actually rivals mine; she’s also the president’s niece.

And yet, when we have Jameson functions, those two are joined at the hip. I expect it’s because their husbands were involved in early missions when Kynan first took control of Jameson, so they’ve been around the longest.

Sin is pregnant, due in July, I believe, and I notice a lot of low whispering between the women. The fact that Barrett is not drinking alcohol leads me to believe we might have another Jameson baby on the horizon.

My eyes land on my best friend at Jameson, Bebe Grimshaw. She’s standing with her son Aaron and our resident psychiatrist, Corinne Ellery Brandeis, newly married herself to another love from the past, Clay.

There is so much love, honor, and commitment among the couples in this room, but probably none as profoundly well-deserved as my best friend Bebe. She pulls her son Aaron out onto the dance floor and boogies to Justin Timberlake’s “Can’t Stop the Feeling” with absolutely no embarrassment. This, coming from a woman who spent years in prison for a crime she actually committed, stealing nuclear codes to sell to another country. That’s shocking to most people within our organization when they learn her backstory, but then they’re told the circumstances—that someone forced her to steal the codes, or they would kill her son. While the court system didn’t care about her reasons, Kynan McGrath did, and he used his very significant power with Congress to spring her from prison. He later followed through after she provided a great service to our country in outing and capturing the hacker who forced her to steal the codes and was given a presidential pardon.

Her fiancé, Griff, watches from the edge of the makeshift dance floor, his eyes possessive of her and his soon-to-be stepson. He’s one of my favorite people in this room, and if there’s anybody here who deserves happiness, it’s those two.

“You going to cut a rug?” a man says from behind me, and I turn to see Malik and Anna. They’re holding hands, looking so right together. Anna’s husband worked for Jameson and lost his life during the same mission where Malik was captured and held for months in a Syrian desert prison. I suppose their love story is as deserving as Bebe and Griff’s, but for very different reasons.

“I’m not sure you could handle my dance moves,” I tease. “But any time you want to throw down, just say the word.”

“Oh no,” Malik backpedals. “This boy most certainly can’t dance unless the music is nice and slow and Anna’s in my arms.”

“Excuse me while I go puke,” I say with exaggerated faux nausea and Anna giggles.

We watch Bebe and Aaron dance. She looks over at me and waves. I lift my chin in acknowledgment. She then gestures for me to join them on the dance floor.

Malik shoves me toward the floor. “Go get ’em, Doze.”

Now, I’ve got some damn good moves, and I don’t mind showing them off. Without hesitation, I join Bebe and her son, and soon, others follow.

It’s late, and the party is wrapping up. Ladd and Greer left over an hour ago for a quick honeymoon down to Turks and Caicos. Because Jameson is a family, no one felt compelled to leave when they did, and we continued drinking, dancing, and eating. I went light on the champagne because I have to work tomorrow morning and I cannot stand being fuzzy-headed. Besides, I’ve never been one to get drunk.

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