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Blood Wine - Susan Hart

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Blood Wine

By

Susan Hart

Copyright 2016 Susan Hart

Second Edition

Chapter 1

Peter von Rabenhorst and F.B.I. agent Lili Foxworthy sat with a small group of people on chairs placed on top of a grassy knoll at the F.B.I. headquarter in Quantico, Virginia. Nervous, Lili often turned to Peter to adjust his tie or button his jacket again, or looked around at her fellow agents or onstage, where her partner Jake’s photo was set up on an easel and draped with a black cloth.

Everyone wore a small black rose ribbon tucked into their lapels in honor of a fallen comrade, and out of respect.

It was a warm day and Peter ran his finger around his collar several times because when he sweated, his collar became limp as a rag. Lili knew that, today especially, his nerves were just about as limp and he looked worn out already—before the ceremony had even started.

They were there for Jake’s memorial service because he’d died a couple of weeks previously at the hands of Dieter Wolf in Germany. This was also a small induction ceremony for new, special agents who didn’t carry weapons but were being taken into the ranks because of unique skills or talents, such as a high level of translation ability for one or several languages, or for other rare skills.

There had been little training needed because these agents already possessed the talent necessary to complete their assignments.

Lili was uncertain how she’d react to her new partner, who was being assigned to her at this ceremony, because she and Jake had been good friends and partners for a decade and as long as Lili had been member of the FBI. He was her first and only partner at the agency.

She knew with a certainty that her life would be changed forever because her life, as well as Peter’s, could rest in her new partner’s hands.

The brief but moving memorial took ten minutes and Lili smiled as Peter went up to the stage and read the eulogy as if he was performing in one of his plays. His voice alone made her shake from emotion and memories long past and when he returned to his seat, Lili took his hand in hers again before the recruits were to be inducted.

There was a couple of minutes of silence so they could all remember friends lost forever, both recently and long ago, then Lili’s boss called up the first recruit—a young woman who’d been sitting in a special section along with half a dozen others.

Peter smiled when she was given the title of agent and when her badge was handed to her, they all applauded.

Several more names were read and the men or women went on to the stage, shook the director’s hand, then went back to their seats. There was one person left and this would be Lili’s replacement partner. She took hold of Peter’s hand and squeezed it tightly until the director read her new partner and inductee’s name—Peter von Rabenhorst.

He turned to her and smiled wickedly and gave her a quick kiss. Be back soon, baby. Sorry...partner.

Nervously, he walked to the stage and the director gave him his badge, which he clipped to his jacket pocket.

"I’d like to introduce you to our newest agent, Peter von Rabenhorst. We have a huge talent pool in the F.B.I. As you all know, but Peter’s area of expertise will be quite unique. His partner is Lili Foxworthy and Peter will be helping us out with undercover work. Because he’s a world class actor, I’m sure he’ll be able to impersonate anyone we assign to him.

Fortunately, it all works out because they just so happen to be married to each other.

Everyone laughed at the director’s joke and then he smiled, the audience applauded, and with a big grin on his face Peter went back over to Lili and sat down, then turned to her and nodded. Special Agent von Rabenhorst, she said—putting an emphasis on the ‘special’ part of Peter’s new title.

Agent Foxworthy, he repeated back.

Both laughed at the same time and it helped relieve some of the tension and sadness over Jake’s death. Now, I can really protect you. I know it’s only part time because I still have my other job at the theatre, but I’ve lined up an understudy on every play just in case I’m called to action.

Oh, you’ll be called to action many times, I’ve no doubt of that special agent von Rabenhorst, Lili told him as they got up and picking up their programs, walked off to chat with friends and fellow agents.

Most of it will be at home though. I won’t be calling you special agent all the time, either. That’s a privilege you’ll just have to earn.

He leaned over and caressed her cheek and kissed her as they walked. I’ll be ready whenever duty calls, you can be sure of that.

Peter paused for a moment and then asked her, Would you like to stay over at the hotel another night or shall I call up the pilot and have our jet waiting? We can be home in a few hours and I have in mind to show you how proud I am of my new assignment. Always grateful, too. Of course."

Home, Lili told him, and then taking his arm they said their goodbyes and got in their car to pick up their luggage and then drove to the airport.

Peter stood in the doorway of their master bedroom wearing only his tie, with the F.B.I. badge clipped to it. Lili grabbed a quick shower and when she turned back into the bedroom, saw him standing there—ready to leap into action at a moment’s notice as he had promised.

She gave him the once over; always ready to admire his beautiful body with its lightly tanned skin, thick yet spiky blond hair and brilliant blue eyes. Most of the time, all Lili saw was his truly giving spirit and intelligence and a deep kindness and caring about everything around him.

Peter’s eyes are a shade darker than Lothar’s were, Lili told herself. Peter is far more open and giving, because he has nothing to hide and nothing to keep secret, like Lothar had.

Always, Lili preferred to remember the good things about Lothar rather than dwelling on the horrible things he had done to so many women.

Well, agent Peter, I can see that your promotion to serve and defend our country, extends to me, she told him—admiring his ready willingness to make love or even simply cuddle at a moment’s notice.

She went over and leaned into him, brushing the last of the water from her hair and cupping his ass, pulled him as close to her body as she could. Even though there was a disparity in their height—he was six foot three and she was five foot four—they matched up in the right places.

Lili pulled on his tie and bringing his lips closer, nibbled on them gently as she kissed him.

Peter groaned and taking her chin in his hand, he also kissed her and cupped her backside and brought her onto just the tip of his already rock hard erection.

It was Lili’s turn to groan. "Peter...don’t ever stop defending me. I swear again, as I’ve said many times over, if you stopped being by my side or we couldn’t make love, then I’d want to