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Dollars (Dollar #2)

Pepper Winters

  Dollars (Dollar Series #2)

  Copyright © 2016 Pepper Winters

  Published by Pepper Winters

  All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form, including electronic or mechanical, without written permission from the publisher, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles or reviews.

  This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.

  This book is licensed for your personal enjoyment only. This book may not be re-sold or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with another person, please purchase an additional copy for each person you share it with. If you are reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not purchased for your use only, then you should return it to the seller and purchase your own copy. Thank you for respecting the author’s work.

  Published: Pepper Winters 2016: [email protected]

  Cover Design: by Kellie at Book Cover by Design

  Editing by: Editing 4 Indies (Jenny Sims)


  Pepper Winters is a multiple New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today International Bestseller.

  Her Dark Romance books include:

  New York Times Bestseller ‘Monsters in the Dark’ Trilogy

  “Voted Best Dark Romance, Best Dark Hero, #1 Erotic Romance”

  Tears of Tess (Monsters in the Dark #1) CLICK TO BUY

  Quintessentially Q (Monsters in the Dark #2) CLICK TO BUY

  Twisted Together (Monsters in the Dark #3) CLICK TO BUY

  Je Suis a Toi (Monsters in the Dark #4) CLICK TO BUY

  Multiple New York Times Bestseller ‘Indebted’ Series

  “Voted Vintagely Dark & Delicious. A true twist on Romeo & Juliet”

  Debt Inheritance (Indebted #1) CLICK TO BUY

  First Debt (Indebted Series #2) CLICK TO BUY

  Second Debt (Indebted Series #3) CLICK TO BUY

  Third Debt (Indebted Series #4) CLICK TO BUY

  Fourth Debt (Indebted Series #5) CLICK TO BUY

  Final Debt (Indebted Series #6) CLICK TO BUY

  Indebted Epilogue (Indebted Series #7) CLICK TO BUY

  Grey Romance books include:

  USA Today Bestseller Destroyed CLICK TO BUY

  “Voted Best Tear-Jerker, #1 Romantic Suspense”

  Survival Contemporary Romance include:

  USA Today Bestseller Unseen Messages CLICK TO BUY

  “Voted Best Epic Survival Romance 2016, Castaway meets The Notebook”

  Multiple USA Today Bestseller ‘Motorcycle Duology’ include:

  “Sinful & Suspenseful, an Amnesia Tale full of Alphas and Heart.”

  Ruin & Rule (Pure Corruption #1) CLICK TO BUY

  Sin & Suffer (Pure Corruption #2) CLICK TO BUY


  Tears of Tess / Quintessentially Q / Ruin & Rule / Sin & Suffer / Debt Inheritance / First Debt / Second Debt are available now on iTunes, Amazon & Audible.

  Click HERE

  Upcoming releases are:

  Pre-order DOLLAR SERIES on All Platforms

  2016: Hundreds CLICK TO PRE-ORDER

  2016: Thousands CLICK TO PRE-ORDER

  2017: Millions CLICK TO PRE-ORDER


  TBA: Indebted Beginnings (Indebted Series Prequel) CLICK FOR MORE INFO

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  Pepper Winters

  Dollars Blurb

  Pimlico was stolen and sold all before her twenty-first birthday.

  Two years with a master who almost killed her is over.

  She has a new master now.

  A master who demands everything, expects everything, and requires ultimate access to her mind.

  Elder broke countless rules when he took the girl who wasn’t his.

  She confuses and bewitches him, but his fascination won’t save her from his desires.

  He wants to know her.

  She wants to forget.

  Together…they’re doomed.



  Dollars Blurb


  Chapter One

  Chapter Two

  Chapter Three

  Chapter Four

  Chapter Five

  Chapter Six

  Chapter Seven

  Chapter Eight

  Chapter Nine

  Chapter Ten

  Chapter Eleven

  Chapter Twelve

  Chapter Thirteen

  Chapter Fourteen

  Chapter Fifteen

  Chapter Sixteen

  Chapter Seventeen

  Chapter Eighteen

  Chapter Nineteen

  Chapter Twenty

  Chapter Twenty-One

  Chapter Twenty-Two

  Chapter Twenty-Three

  Chapter Twenty-Four

  Chapter Twenty-Five

  Chapter Twenty-Six

  Chapter Twenty-Seven

  Chapter Twenty-Eight

  Chapter Twenty-Nine

  Chapter Thirty

  Chapter Thirty-One

  Chapter Thirty-Two

  Chapter Thirty-Three

  Chapter Thirty-Four

  Chapter Thirty-Five

  Chapter Thirty-Six

  Chapter Thirty-Seven

  Chapter Thirty-Eight

  Chapter Thirty-Nine

  Chapter Forty

  Chapter Forty-One



  THERE COMES A point in life where determination supersedes circumstance. Where willpower wins over what should be done.

  I’d lived in that point for two years.

  I fought my battles silently. I lived in a war zone without a word. I didn’t do it consciously; I did it because I had no other choice.

  My idiotic will to survive kept me living, even when I wanted to die. It kept me hoping, even when none existed. And every day granted punishment, especially when the dragon-tattooed stranger entered my prison.

  He made it worse.

  So, so much worse.

  But then he came back.

  He stole me.

  Just in time.

  ARRIVING AT THE dock relaxed me a little.

  Not that I was tense.

  Killing didn’t faze me. Stealing a bleeding, dying woman didn’t increase my heart rate. I’d done worse, seen worse, lived through worse.

  It was just another day in my world.

  However, during the last few kilometres through downtown Crete, Pimlico had passed out again—either from pain or shock or loss of blood.

  Most likely all three.

  I didn’t intend for my hard work to be for nothing. I wanted her. I wanted to keep her—for the time being—regardless of what it would do to me and the hourly struggle I would endure.

  The second I’d set eyes on her, this was the path I’d chosen. It was inevitable for a man like me.

  Her strength, her bruises…everything about her screamed for it to end, yet she still clung to hope. That blind faith, tolerance for forgiveness, and stupid belief she could win latched onto the obsessions inside me and made me care.

  I didn’t want to fucking care. About anyone anymore. It hurt too damn much. But Pimlico…she’d been given a shitty life and somehow still glowed with expectation that somehow,
someway, she’d be free.


  I scoffed.

  I’d stolen her with the intention of keeping her, not freeing her.

  Her blood and silence forced me to answer that misplaced hope in her gaze but only to prove I could keep her alive and deliver a better kind of life, even while still belonging to someone.


  She belongs to me now.

  And that complicated my existence a shit ton.

  Stalking up the large gangway, I left the dealing of the car to Selix (it had its own berth in the hold below) and strode aboard the luxury yacht valued in excess of two-hundred million dollars. The expensive gleam and untouchable power of such a vessel didn’t hold my attention nearly as much as the wraith in my arms.

  Her blood soaked through my blazer, dousing me in crimson-wet violence, even as the rigging glittered with fresh white ropes and the timber balustrades gleamed with nautical speed.

  Pimlico roused, blinking at the turquoise sea and the sudden flurry of white dressed staff as they flew around deck to cast off. Before, I’d liked their uniforms and how smart they made my home. Now, I hated all things fucking white. Lies and sins and abuse all hid in the achromatic palate. Alrik and his colour preference had ensured I’d change the dress code as soon as possible.

  Pimlico flopped unconscious again, the bleeding from her mouth never ceasing.

  Taking her to a mainland hospital was not an option. All the doctors in Crete were butchers. I didn’t live on the land for a reason. I hated conceited assholes and brain-dead morons who believed their opinion mattered to those around them.

  Instead, I’d claimed the sea as my home.

  I’d lived on her waves and swam in her belly every day for the past four years. Even when I was on earth, my feet still swayed to the current of the ocean. Being back on the gentle roll stole my escalating worry over what I’d sentenced myself to and allowed me to breathe fully for the first time since I’d disembarked five days ago.

  Five days was far too fucking long.

  I needed to be far away from here. I needed empty horizons and lonely expanses.

  Ignoring the staff who glanced my way then did a double take at the girl leaving ruby droplets in my wake, I entered the first-floor deck and pressed the silver button for the elevator.

  It yawned wide as if waiting for such a task and closed silently, descending the moment I touched button nine.

  The mirrors on all four walls bounced my reflection back, showing a man who’d stepped over his boundaries of survivable circumstances. Already, the clawing inside me began. The repetitive thoughts of what I would expect from her in return for this. I’d fucked up my own life to save hers.

  She owes me more than she can ever repay.

  As the lift slowed and the doors opened, Michaels met me.

  “Selix called ahead, told me to prep surgery. Give me the scoop.” He glanced at the stolen slave in my embrace. He didn’t flinch at the blood or look at me with accusation. Mainly because he knew me. He knew I inflicted violence to those who deserved it but did my best to prevent those who didn’t.

  Selix had once again proven his excessive salary was worth it by streamlining Pimlico’s arrival. “Her tongue is partially severed.”

  “But not fully?” Michaels narrowed his eyes, tipping her chin up with a gentle finger. “That’s workable.”

  His no-nonsense manner was appreciated. I’d headhunted the English doctor from a sabbatical in India. He was one of the best in his field, and his field included most surgeries and other complicated care. I trusted him—especially after what he’d done for me two years ago when my own fucking arrogance almost got me killed.

  I clutched the unconscious girl tighter. “Severe blood loss. Multiple injuries—some old, some new. Doubt she’s seen a doctor in years.”

  Michaels nodded. “Right-o. The surgery is all prepped. I’ll concentrate on her tongue before doing a full assessment.” Snapping his fingers, two nurses rolled a gurney forward, waiting until I’d placed Pimlico on the green material ready for the operating theatre.

  My arms ached from carrying her, but I also ached for a different reason. I didn’t like that she was in so much pain.

  Fuck, get your head together.

  If I let sympathy and protectiveness gather so soon into owning her, I wouldn’t last a week.

  “How long before you’ve fixed her?”

  Michaels scowled, his red hair and white complexion hinting at his Anglo-Saxon roots. “Hard to say until I’ve assessed what needs to be done. Come back in a few hours, and I’ll let you know.”

  Impatience snarled, but I fought it back. A few hours to halt death and keep her in my world? It was a small price to pay.

  With a curt nod, I left the sterile deck of medicine, heading back up to fresh air. It was a ritual I never broke. I had to be at the bow when leaving port.

  My hands were slippery with Pim’s blood as I strode over an immaculate deck of oak, cherry, and teak. My mind raced with things I should be doing. The urge to take precautions –so I didn’t slip backward into my own personal hell—berated me.

  Now Pimlico was mine, I had no way of ignoring my desires. She was close. She was on my boat. The sooner I accepted that I had access to her whenever I damn well wanted and put rules in place so I didn’t destroy us both, the better.

  Not caring her blood stained my fingers, I dragged them through my hair as I stood at the front of the yacht. Engines growled below, propellers chopped the tide into sushi, slowly pushing the big beast into motion.

  I looked over my shoulder at the bridge where my captain and his team handled my vessel with expert ministrations. Leaving port on such a big ship was never easy, and my heart thudded as Phantom nudged away from her mooring then leisurely opened up, heading toward the open seas.

  As salty air replaced smog and the rock of a movable world deleted the landlocked mundane, I closed my eyes and forced myself to relax.

  The stickiness of Pim’s blood dried on my skin the faster Phantom flew. I would’ve given away my entire ill-gotten fortune to leap into the ocean and wash away the gore sticking to my flesh. However, I would have to be patient.

  Once we were far, far away, I’d get my wish. For now, I was happy saying goodbye to Crete.

  My thoughts turned inward to the dirt I’d climbed from, the mud I’d flung off my back, and the filth I’d invited into my world to survive.

  A few years ago, I’d found refuge in alleys, wielding a knife to protect the one person I cared about. Now, I stood on multimillion dollars’ worth of prestige with its silken decks, seamless windows, and bullet-shaped hull while glaring at the same mocking sun that’d watched me transform from penniless to prince.

  Up until today, I’d accepted the man I’d become to make that happen. I was happy with the man I’d become. But Pimlico refused to leave my conscience—taunting me with memories of hardship, hunger, and helplessness.

  She forced me to remember things I had no desire to recall all because she suffered the same way I had. Her prison included a home with a monster. My prison had included the streets with gangs.

  Our similarities ended there.

  Unlike her, who’d begged the devil for death and lived a half-life in a world she couldn’t escape, I’d cheated and stolen and built a bridge from destitution to untouchable.

  Like her, I’d killed those who wronged me.

  I was fucking proud of her for that.

  She’d surprised and impressed me when she’d pulled the trigger without any remorse.

  She was so bloody strong.

  I wanted to see how deep that strength went.

  It would be a little while before land fully disappeared, but by the time Pimlico woke up, she wouldn’t belong to terra firma anymore.

  Not to Alrik or assholes or death.


  By the time she woke up, she’d belong to me and the sea.

  And there was no escape with water as her new prison and me a
s her new jailer.

  I’m sorry for what I’m about to do to you, Pim.

  But you’re mine now.

  MY FIRST THOUGHT was of water and drinking and thirst.

  My second thought was pain.



  My hands flew up to hug my mouth. I wanted to cradle my butchered tongue. But someone grabbed my wrist, keeping me restrained.

  “Ah, no touching. You need to keep all foreign items—including unwashed fingers—away from the wound.”

  My eyes widened as I blinked into focus a man with shaggy ginger-red hair. His eyes were the first I’d seen in so long that didn’t harbour sin or evil sickness. His handsome face was normal. He was normal. Not an ogre or troll.

  He isn’t Mr. Prest.

  Where am I?

  My gaze drifted down his doctor’s gown, searching for a nametag.


  Not even a stethoscope around his neck or a thermometer peeking from his breast pocket. The only thing marring his clinical uniform was a horrendous splash of blood right over his chest.

  He followed my glance. “Yes, you, eh, threw up on the operating table before I could administer anaesthetic.” He frowned. “Do you remember the events leading up to now?”

  Wait, did Mr. Prest drop me off at a hospital?

  Am I free?

  My heart bounced in a cheerleading outfit to celebrate.

  Taking my wrist, he counted my pulse, not looking at the bruises or rope-bracelets I’d long since grown used to. “You’ll feel a bit sluggish over the next few hours, but I’ll keep your pain managed with morphine. If you feel any discomfort, let me know, and I’ll do my best to help.”


  He thought whatever drugs he pumped into the IV piercing the back of my hand muted the agony?

  He’s obviously never had a partially severed tongue before.

  The sensation was worse than any boot or fist. Stranger than any abuse I’d suffered. The muscle was swollen and thick and so different to what a tongue should feel like.

  Inhaling through my nose, I instructed the damaged thing to move. I winced in agony as pulls of pressure from the sharp knots of stitches hit me hard.