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The Darkness Within

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Summary

24-year-old forensic psychologist, Kira Roland, has a dark secret that even she isn't aware of. Feared and revered Bratva boss, Sergei Novikov, discovers it, and craves her for it. Two immensely intelligent and dangerous individuals, on opposite sides of the law, locked in a match of wills. When a checkmate turns into a stalemate, who will prevail? Who will surrender themselves to the other? The Darkness Within is a modern-day retelling of Beauty and the Beast, set in Russia's criminal underground.

Status:
Complete
Chapters:
51
Rating:
4.9 14 reviews
Age Rating:
18+

Prologue

Prologue

Sergei Novikov

The interior of the interrogation room is dull. Everything in this monstrosity of a prison complex seems to be dull—outside of the overly bright fluorescent lights, which always flicker and hum yet never dim.

Getting incarcerated certainly wasn’t the plan I had in mind when traveling to America for a business meeting. Well, more accurately, to commit a small massacre. Three American mafia families have been interfering with my business under the guise of being allies. The pompous pricks were so sure that I didn’t know of their scheme—that I wouldn’t see anything coming until they had stolen all of my alliances and ruined me.

So, I decided to pay a little visit to the states, setting up a business dinner to celebrate our success. The fools had easily fallen for it, thinking that I was perfectly oblivious to their true intents. Naturally, I killed them. All of them.

Well, my right hand—Igor—got in his fair share of fun as well. And then it all went to shit—someone had called the police. The police. A cardinal rule of organized crime is to tread carefully with the law—either have local law enforcement paid off to turn a blind eye, or avoid them all together.

Igor, thankfully, got away. I wasn’t as lucky—I was surrounded before I could escape. Before I knew it, I found myself locked up in a maximum-security detention center, awaiting a court date to be charged and then imprisoned for the rest of my life.

Fortunately, the prison isn’t as secure as the officers would like to think. It took Igor six hours to establish communication with me—through a guard who’s been on my payroll since I first came into power eleven years ago.

For the last two weeks we’ve been in contact regularly, via a burner phone. He’s already set up an escape for me, but unfortunately such things take planning and precision, so I’m stuck in this laughable excuse of a detention center for another several days. Well before my court date, but too damn long for my liking.

Naturally, I’m going along with what an inmate in my position would be expected to do—hiring a wonderful attorney, undergoing various evaluations, preparing for trial. But it’s all a façade—I have complete confidence I’ll be out here within a week, at most.

I flex my hands, which are enclosed in metal cuffs, chained to the interrogation table I sit at. The room is a small one—just enough space for a gleaming silver table and two matching chairs. I’m waiting patiently to meet my temporary psychiatrist; the person who’ll deem me either fit or unfit to stand trial. Even if the outcome of the evaluation shows that I’m unfit—the government would likely sentence me to a psych-ward for life, which would be even worse than prison. Good thing neither a psych-ward or life-long prison sentence will come to pass.

The worst part of prison is all the wasted time. For the last two weeks I could’ve been planning, working, and expanding my empire. Instead, I’ve been stuck here, which has kept me in a perpetual state of both irritation and boredom.

Celibacy is simply the cherry on top. The last time I went more than a few days without sex was in all-boys boarding school, when I was a preteen. Since then, it’s been a different girl a night—sometimes more than one, depending on my mood.

The majority of the women I fuck only jump on me out of desire to become queen of the Novikov bratva. Although I’ve made it clear I have no intention of having a queen—I enjoy ruling alone, having all the power to myself—that hardly ever deters them from being upset when I kick them out after a rigorous fuck.

Sometimes, that’s the most tiring and trying part of business. Everyone’s after me for one reason or another. The few uncorrupt lawmen want to be the one to finally incarcerate the great Sergei Novikov. Fellow bosses want to be part of my empire, wield even a fraction of the power that comes with it. Enemies want to overtake me. Women want my money or status. Being head of the Novikov mafia is like one big game—and all the players are rallying for the most powerful spot; mine.

If I had a ruble for every assassination attempt, I’d be able to purchase a continent. If I had a ruble for every time someone attempted and succeeded, I’d be in debt. Many have tried, all have failed. The monotony has been weighing on me far more than normal recently. Few things truly hold my interest anymore—none outside of my empire.

I glance up when a loud buzzing sounds, preceding the heavy metal door swinging open. The breath nearly leaves me when I see who stands in it; a beautiful woman. One who looks far too young to be working in a prison.

“Mr. Novikov,” she greets. Her voice is lilting and resonant—full of both authority and a mild boredom.

My eyes travel over her, as I drink in every detail of her being. She has raven-black hair swept up into a neat twist, showing off her elegant neck. Her torso is covered in a formal, silk button-up that, despite looking professional, can’t entirely hide the voluptuous breasts beneath it. A modest pencil skirt covers her legs, the material as dark as her hair, and stopping just above her knees. She wears black pumps that add a few inches to her relatively short height, and accentuate her toned legs.

Maybe it’s because I haven’t had sex for over a week—or maybe because this is, without a doubt, the most stunning woman I’ve ever laid eyes on—my cock stiffens until it resembles a steel pipe, pressing against the front of my scratchy prison pants until it aches.

She looks too young to be working with men like me—too beautiful, as well. Her face is no less gorgeous than her body—big eyes framed by jet-black lashes, prominent cheekbones, and lips straight out of a fantasy. She wears no makeup, and I guess that she can’t be more than twenty-five. For the first time in a long, long time, someone snags my interest. Her.

“My name is Kira Roland, I will be performing your psychiatric evaluation,” she goes on, crossing the room and setting a thick file onto the table before taking a seat.

She glances back to the doorway, exposing the neck I now ache to mark up with bites and kisses.

Kisses? Something must be wrong with me, since I never kiss. I mentally berate myself. I’ve gone too long without sex—that’s why my psychiatrist looks like the walking embodiment of a dark fantasy. I don’t kiss. I fuck ruthlessly, and then leave.

“You’re fine to go, Jared,” she says to the guard, standing in the doorway and shifting nervously. “I’ll call if I need you.”

The stocky guard inclines his head, stepping out. The door creaks shut behind him with a decisive click.

Kira looks back to me, and her eyes meet mine for the first time. They’re a vivid emerald green, with a glassy quality, and for a moment, I’m struck silent. I’ve only met one other person with eyes that shade; a man I wish I hadn’t had to kill, but did. His eyes were a unique emerald green, just as are my lovely new psychiatrist’s—for a moment, it almost feels as though I’m staring at him.

I’d know those eyes anywhere. Most people would have to wear contacts to achieve such a color.

What I didn’t know, is the man apparently had a child. A bastard child, I’d assume, since he never married.

My eyes drop to her I.D. badge. Doctor Kira Roland.

Kira, a beautiful name. A Russian name. Just like that, I decide she’ll be mine—belong to me, and only me from now on.

My lips curve into a rare, genuine smile. “Doctor Roland, it is a pleasure to make your acquaintance. I’m sure we’ll be getting to know each other quite well.”

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