White Lies

White Lies by Linda Howard

Book: White Lies by Linda Howard Read Free Book Online
Authors: Linda Howard
Tags: Fiction, General, Romance
  "You taste like coffee," she managed
to say when she finally forced herself to stand upright again, breaking the
contact.
                  His lips had been slightly parted, with a
disturbing sensuality, but at her words they took on a smug line. "They
wanted me to drink tea or apple juice—" he made it sound like hemlock
"—but I talked them into letting me have coffee."
                  "Oh?" she asked dryly. "How? By
refusing to drink anything until you had your coffee?"
                  "It worked," he said, not sounding
at all repentant. She could imagine how helpless the nurses were against his
relentless will.
                  Despite the fact that she no longer needed to
communicate with him in their old way, her hand went to his arm in habit, and
she was so used to the contact that she didn't notice it. "How are you
feeling?" she asked, then winced at the triteness of the question, but she
was still rattled from the effects of his kiss.
                  "Like hell."
                  "Oh."
                  "How long have I been here?"
                  To her surprise, she had to stop and count the
days. She had become so involved with him that time had ceased to mean
anything, and it was difficult to recall. "Three weeks."
                  "Then I have three more weeks in these
casts?"
                  "I think so, yes."
                  "All right." He said it as if giving
his permission, and she felt that he would give them three weeks and not one
day longer, or he would take the casts off himself. He lifted his left arm.
"I'm minus a couple of needles today. They took the IVs out about an hour
ago."
                  "I hadn't even noticed!" she
exclaimed, smiling a little at the note of pride in his ruined voice. She
wondered if she would ever get used to its harshness, but at the same time tiny
shivers went down her spine every time she heard it.
                  "And I refused the pain medication. I
want my head clear. There were a lot of questions I wanted to ask before, but
it took so much time and effort, and my brain was so foggy from the drugs, that
it was just too much trouble. Now I want to know what's going on. Where am I?
I've heard you call the doctor Major, so I know I'm in a military hospital. The
question is, why?"
                  "You're in Bethesda," she said.
                  "A naval hospital?" Astonishment
roughened his voice even more.
                  "Frank said you were brought here for
security reasons. There are guards posted at every entrance to this wing. And
this was a central location for all the surgeons they pulled in for you."
                  "Major Lunning isn't navy," he said
sharply.
                  "No." It was astonishing that he
could lose the most basic of memories, those of himself, yet retain the
knowledge that Bethesda was a naval hospital and that major wasn't a navy rank.
She watched the stillness of his mouth as he studied the implications of what
she had just told him.
                  "Then someone with a lot of influence
wanted me here. Langley, probably."
                  "Who?"
                  "Company headquarters, baby. CIA."
She felt a chill of dread as he continued, "Maybe the White House, but
Langley is the most likely bet. What about Frank Payne?"
                  "He's FBI. I trust him," she said
steadily.
                  "Damn, this is getting deep," he
muttered. "All these different departments and military branches
coordinating just isn't normal. What's going on? Tell me about the
explosion."
                  "Didn't Frank tell you?"
                  "I didn't ask for or volunteer any
information. I didn't know him." Yes, that was like Steve. He had always
held back, watching cautiously, though she

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