Hoping to alleviate some of the damage done by ARe closing down so abruptly by posting this.
This book was previously published with All Romance Publishing. There are no additions to the original story, just a change of cover art but due to the demise of All Romance, if you have already purchased this title and require a copy, please email Rachel (firstname.lastname@example.org) with proof of purchase and she will send you a replacement.
Officer Finn Hallan has never run from a fight. With Niall’s life and love at stake, he’s not about to start now…
Finn Hallan is a member of the elite Norwegian Emergency Response Unit, code name Delta. When the team is sent to respond to a hostage situation on a Oil Platform in the Norwegian Sea, he has to face demons he thought he had buried a long time ago.
Scottish engineer Niall Faulkner’s skills in oil platform decommissioning takes him to the Forseti platform at the worst possible time. When he’s captured by terrorists, his only thought is that he will never get to tell his lover how he really feels.
Can Finn keep Niall alive? Or will they both die at the hands of hijackers in the frigid waters of the Norwegian sea?
The call came in just past fourteen hundred hours, Erik beating him to ops by about two seconds, both men pulling on vests and arranging holsters.
Finn had been reading, spending the quiet down time before dinner trying to get his head around some of the shit that had gone down today. Time at the Urskar training facility was hard work but it wasn’t hard physical work that was bugging Finn. He knew exactly what it was.
They’d talked this morning; he was working on the Forseti platform in the Heidrun oilfield for the next few weeks. They wouldn’t be seeing each other for a while, and that was fine. Finn was good with that. Of course, he didn’t like the fact Finn was flying in this weather. The storm passing through near the Forseti platform was a big one. And yes, he had to admit to himself he’d checked. And that was the problem. He’d checked the storm, he’d worried about the flight, and he was already missing the feisty, nerdy, sexy engineer enough to have it consuming his thoughts. All the what-ifs and the whens, and mostly the whys. He didn’t usually do serious, but Niall could make him change his mind. One guy with a soft voice and a wicked mouth comes along and suddenly Finn was losing control of his touch but don’t keep policy.
Then, this morning he’d fucked up. Big time.
He hadn’t been paying attention and he’d seriously blown things in training. He’d let his guard down and got a helmet full of pink dye with a spot-on head shot from a crowing Erik. It wasn’t so much the kill shot, it was why Finn had been distracted. He’d been thinking about Niall, and not in the I want to fuck that sideways kind of way, but in an I hope he’s okay and I’ll miss him kind of way.
Then Erik had to go and manage to kill him. It was the first time Erik had ever gotten the drop on Finn in training. It had taken three hair washes and vigorous scrubbing to get the pink out of his hair and off his left temple.
When they reached the briefing room Erik grinned at him, that shit-eating grin that told Finn he wouldn’t be living it down that Erik’s team had taken first blood in the mini war game they were taking part in. The grin didn’t last long, subsiding as soon as Cap walked in. After all, it didn’t matter what had happened this morning; now they were all about whatever had caused them to be alerted.
“About thirty minutes ago four bodies were found at the Grane oil terminal, identified as security assigned to the NorsDev Forseti Platform.”
Cap stared straight at Finn and for a brief moment Finn wasn’t really understanding the words. Then one thing hit him square in the chest. Forseti. That was where Niall was.
Rising to his feet he didn’t know what to say as fear gripped him. “Four?”
“We have reason to believe these four men were replaced so that a team of hijackers could get onto Forseti.”
“That’s being decom’d.” Erik sounded puzzled. “What kind of collateral does an empty oil platform have?”
“Only four?” Finn interjected. “What about the engineers? Niall Faulkner and his brother Ewan?”
Erik looked up at him and Finn could see the moment the information made sense in his head.
“Fuck. Niall is on Forseti?”
“Both of them… Niall and Ewan. Did they go? Does someone know if he…?” The rest of the team all stared at him, Cap included, and Finn realized he was coming off as a mad man. He subsided. No one could get information out if Finn was raving like a fucking lovesick moron.
“The pilots are back, they took one engineer and four security replacements. So, souls on the platform are one engineer, six skeleton crew, and the four security replacements. Eleven souls in all.”
The bottom fell out of Finn and dread stole his breath. Was it Niall or Ewan on Forseti? With who? Terrorists?
“Intel is showing no communications, or demands, but chatter has it that this is an isolated cell connected to the Hofstad Network out of Denmark.” Cap slid his finger on the laptop and the screen changed behind him to show four faces. Three fair-haired, one dark, all in fatigues with long addendums at the bottom of the photo. Ex-Marine, one former SAS. The names a blur. Except for one. Svein Roberg.
“He’s dead,” Erik said in disbelief, echoing Finn’s thoughts exactly. Roberg had a long history of fighting the good fight for whichever side paid him most. Ex-Special Forces, he had finally been taken down by the ERU two years before, just after Finn joined the team. In fact, it had been Finn who faced him down after tracking him to a small holding in Alta. They’d chased him to the Alta Dam, where the murdering fucker had died.
The bastard had tried extortion in the name of environmental concern and had killed three oil workers in an explosion at one of the dry land containment depots. Finn would never forget Svein’s face. He didn’t even fight when Erik and Finn had him cornered, simply dropped his weapon and raised his hands.
In the best traditions of all grandstanding bad guys he laughed then said, “I live to fight another day,” repeating this over and over as he fell to his knees. There had been madness in his words, and cunning in his silver eyes. Only when Finn had stepped forward did the madness manifest in a blur of motion, the two men grappling for the weapon and a bullet leaving Finn’s gun and carving into Svein’s neck, blood spurting. Time had slowed and Finn had watched in horror and a curious fascination as the terrorist leaped in a grotesque twist of muscles over the dam wall and down into the churning water below.
“They never found his body,” Finn said softly. But Finn hadn’t cared then. The fucker had a bullet in his neck and had fallen over six hundred feet. He had to have been dead.
“Until four weeks ago his file was silent, but chatter indicated there was movement and he was implicated right in the center of it all.”
“And no one thought to brief us?” Finn demanded hotly. “Why the fuck not?”
Several others in the team, Erik included, added their alarm.
Cap held up a hand and quieted the room. “Wheels up in ten,” he said.
And that was it. They knew nothing. They didn’t know why Forseti was the platform involved or why Svein Roberg had shown up. But, whatever information they received, they would be ready for action when they knew what the hell to do.
Erik grabbed his arm as Finn made to leave. “Finn?” he asked. The question was loaded. It was, are you sure you’re okay, do you know the man you’ve been seeing is on Forseti, and can you handle this, all wrapped up in one word.
Finn nodded. Didn’t matter how he felt or what he actually said to voice any of it, he was going with the team and he wasn’t putting doubt in Erik’s head.
“Let’s get this done.”
RJ Scott is the bestselling author of over one hundred romance books. She writes emotional stories of complicated characters, cowboys, millionaire, princes, and the partners who get mixed up in their lives. RJ is known for writing books that always end with a happy ever after. She lives just outside London and spends every waking minute she isn't with family either reading or writing.
The last time she had a week’s break from writing she didn't like it one little bit, and she has yet to meet a bottle of wine she couldn’t defeat.