Shadow Soldier

Shadow Soldier
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IN HIS PROTECTIVE CUSTODYDespite the fringe benefits of watching over Nicola Barrington, her covert "bodyguard" itched to get back into the fray. Assigned to the elite Special Designation Defense Unit, Alex Rodriguez leaped into action after a disarming moment of smoldering attraction paved the way for a sniper's lethal ambush. Seeking cover from a spray of bullets, Alex and Nicola sped away with trigger-happy assailants hot on their trail. But the danger was far from over. The senator's daughter was a pawn in a diabolical international terrorist attack that could topple the U.S. government. Even with gunshots exploding around them and feverish passion racing through their veins, this Shadow Soldier wasn't about to let his countryѿor his woman–down!

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He lived in the shadows…

Not like other people. He no longer had a Social Security number, no service record, no contacts beyond his immediate supervisor and occasional teammates. He didn’t even have a pair of damn dog tags. Nothing that could identify him.

Alex was part of a shadow created by the U.S. government to deal with problems that could not be handled in open daylight. And when the shadow fell on the people who created those problems, they disappeared.

That was what he was trained for, what he was good at. Not trying to act normal, playing house with a senator’s daughter. All he had to do was keep Nicola Barrington from getting too far under his skin in the next couple of days. Shouldn’t take more than that for the rest of his team to pick up the shooter. Damn. He wasn’t used to playing bodyguard. He was more of a seek-and-destroy man.

But guard her he would—at any cost.

Dear Harlequin Intrigue Reader,

To mark a month of fall festivals, screeching goblins and hot apple cider, Harlequin Intrigue has a provocative October lineup guaranteed to spice things up!

Debra Webb launches her brand-new spin-off series, COLBY AGENCY: INTERNAL AFFAIRS, with Situation: Out of Control. This first installment sets the stage for the most crucial mission of all…smoking out a mole in their midst. The adrenaline keeps flowing in Rules of Engagement by acclaimed author Gayle Wilson, who continues her PHOENIX BROTHERHOOD series with a gripping murder mystery that hurls an unlikely couple into a vortex of danger.

Also this month, a strictly business arrangement turns into a lethal attraction, in Cowboy Accomplice by B.J. Daniels—book #2 in her Western series, MCCALLS’ MONTANA. And just in time for Halloween, October’s haunting ECLIPSE selection, The Legacy of Croft Castle by Jean Barrett, promises to put you in that spooky frame of mind.

There are more thrills to come when Kara Lennox unveils the next story in her CODE OF THE COBRA series, with Bounty Hunter Redemption, which pits an alpha male lawman against a sexy parole officer when mayhem strikes. And, finally this month, watch for the action-packed political thriller Shadow Soldier by talented newcomer Dana Marton. This debut book spotlights an antiterrorist operative who embarks on a high-stakes mission to dismantle a diabolical ticking time bomb.


Denise O’Sullivan

Senior Editor

Harlequin Intrigue

Shadow Soldier

Dana Marton


Dana Marton lives near Wilmington, Delaware, and is married to her very own soldier hero. She has been an avid reader since childhood and has a master’s degree in writing popular fiction. When not writing, she can be found either in her large garden or her home library.

She would love to hear from her readers via e-mail at [email protected], or your can send post mail to: Dana Marton, P.O. Box 7987, Newark, DE 19714. SASE appreciated.


Nicola Barrington—For years, Nicola has managed to stay out of the limelight that surrounded her high-profile father. But when terrorists attempt to kill her, she’s pulled back into the world of political intrigue by the only man who can save her.

Alejandro (Alex) Jesús Rodriguez—Member of a top secret military group (Special Designation Defense Unit) established to fight terrorism. He does whatever it takes to protect his country, even breaking the rules when he has to. Except one—he never gets personally involved.

Senator Edward Barrington—Nicola’s father, ex-U.S. Ambassador to China. He has many enemies, political and personal, and more than his fair share of secrets to hide.

General Meng—Once a top military man, he disappeared from a Chinese prison five years ago. Has he been killed, or is he hunting those he thinks betrayed him?

Du Shaozu—Nicola’s latest client makes it clear he’s interested in more than Nicola’s consulting skills, but is romance what he really wants?

Spike—Alex’s teammate. He came to the SDDU from the FBI’s language program. One of the few men whom Alex trusts without reservation.

Colonel Wilson—Alex’s boss. He’s the leader of the SDDU, reporting straight to the Homeland Security Secretary.

In memory of Sheila Conway,

a true friend and wonderful writer.


With many thanks to Adél for her unwavering support.

Also, my sincere gratitude and appreciation go to two wonderful writers, Jenel Looney and Anita Staley, for their endless patience and help, and to the faculty at Seton Hill University, especially Leslie Davis Guccione, mentor extraordinaire.


Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter Eleven


Chapter One

She moved like a symphony.

Her arms extended with elbows slightly bent and palms facing forward, she began by working each major muscle group, then guided her body through her regular poses, ending with her face upturned toward the rising sun.

Watching her practice Tai Chi every dawn turned bearable the job that made Alejandro Jesús Rodriguez want to jump out of his slowly recovering skin at least a dozen times a day. He focused on the balcony, on her upthrust breasts, as she glided into her next routine.

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