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Peter nodded, his expression grim. "We've got to get somebody legit in here so the cops'll think we're taking steps to keep the contestants safe."

If Gene took offense at the comment, he didn't show it. "I think I know just the person. It'll take some doing, but I hear she's strapped for cash."

Peter looked at Gene with disbelief. "She? Gene, we need somebody who'll keep the fucking cops at bay, not another broad on the set."

Gene shook his head. "Oh, this one ain't just another broad, believe me."


Chapter 2


Leine Basso dropped her purse on the floor, kicked off her shoes and stalked across her apartment to the kitchen. She opened the refrigerator door and grabbed a beer. The old appliance clanked in protest.

Holding the cool bottle to her forehead, she walked over to the couch and dropped onto it, sighing with relief. Three down, two to go. God, she hated looking for a job. Especially when it seemed like everyone and their brother was out there doing the same thing.

Leine set the bottle on the thrift-store maple coffee table, leaned back and hiked up her skirt, struggling to peel off her pantyhose. It wasn't easy. The oppressive heat and the high humidity was fairly unusual for Seattle, even if it was the middle of August. Didn't matter if she took a shower or not; once she stepped outside, she was as damp as if she had.

Why didn't I just stay at the last job? Leine paused for a moment in her battle for freedom from the polyester and nylon blend. Oh yeah. Because you didn't like the creep masquerading as your boss and he ended up on the floor with a broken collar bone when he tried to grope you. A real player. Not only that, but he was a few heads shorter than Leine's five-foot-ten inches and she knew from experience that the guy would continue to be on her ass, one way or another, in order to prove himself the alpha dog. A lot of short guys had a chip on their shoulder. Except her husband, Frank.

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