Reckoning (Wolfes of Manhattan #5) by Helen Hardt

Prologue





Zee





I’d felt more with Reid Wolfe—now my husband—than I’d ever felt before.

More than I’d ever wanted to feel.

Yes, I’d fallen hard. But I desperately wanted a husband who loved me as much as I loved him.

My flesh still numb, I walked with Reid back to the Wolfe Building. It was several blocks, and we didn’t talk.

We took the elevator up to his apartment. He gathered his staff in the dining room.

“I have some news,” he said. “This lovely lady and I were married this afternoon, so you now work for her as well as for me. Whatever she wants, please see to her needs.”

Lydia and the others were clearly surprised, but they all simply nodded and then went about their tasks.

I followed Reid to his bedroom. “I’ll have your apartment packed up and your things delivered as soon as possible.”

“My job…” I began.

“I’ll see if you can get an extended leave of absence.”

“Mo. The others. They can’t afford the rent without me.”

“That isn’t anything for you to worry about. I’ll cover it until they can get a new roommate.”

“My job…” I said again.

“I promise I’ll take care of all of it,” Reid said. “But you’ll never have to go back if you don’t want to, Zee. I’ll see that you’re always taken care of, even after the marriage ends.”

After the marriage ends…

So the marriage would end, in his eyes.

This was only temporary.

My heart broke in two.

I was in love—and married to the object of my affection.

And it was only temporary.





1





Lacey





Several hours earlier…

Someone pounded on the door to the conference room.

“What is it?” Reid yelled.

“It’s me.” The voice belonged to Terrence, Reid’s assistant.

“What do you want, Terrence?” Reid demanded.

Terrence opened the door. “I’m sorry.”

“Sorry for—”

Two uniformed NYPD officers followed Terrence into the room. “Lacey Ward Wolfe?”

My heart thudded. “Yes?”

“You’re under arrest for the murder of Derek Wolfe.” One of the officers entered and grabbed me out of my chair. Literally gripped my shoulders and forced me into a stand.

Rock stood, his green eyes full of fire. “Hands off my wife, asshole.”

I gasped, fear surging through me. I was innocent. Innocent! “Rock, please… You’ll just get yourself in trouble.”

Rock had already been through so much in his life because of his father, Derek Wolfe. This would only add to it.

The officer cuffed my hands behind my back. I was helpless. So helpless.

I hated being helpless.

“Come on,” Reid said. “You’re really going to parade her out of here in cuffs? The wife of our CEO?”

Would they listen to Reid’s words? Would they allow me my dignity?

“I’m only following orders, sir,” the blue said.

No, they would not.

“You have the right to remain silent,” the other officer began. “Anything you say can and will be held against you. You have the right to an attorney. If you can’t afford an attorney, one will be provided for you.”

My Miranda rights. The Miranda case was a staple in criminal law class. Anyone who’d ever watched a police drama knew them by heart. Somehow, though, I never thought they’d be directed at me.

“She’ll have the best fucking attorney,” Rock said. “What is the basis for this arrest?”

“Detective Morgan has determined probable cause and the DA agrees,” the blue who cuffed me offered. “That’s all we know.”

Reid glared at Terrence.

We all wondered if Reid’s assistant had been behind the phone call made from Reid’s office to Rock’s landline in Montana three weeks before Derek’s death.

“I’m going with her,” Rock said. “Don’t worry, baby. I won’t rest until you’re cleared.”

“I’m innocent,” I said softly.

“We know,” Reid said. “We’ll prove it.”





Handcuffed. Like a common criminal.