A nightmarish new case plunges Alex and Matthew into personal and professional chaos as they pursue a killer who traffics in the most vile of human traits. They quickly learn that the current killings are somehow tied to a decades old murder, which comes with a hefty mix of suspects. As they begin to dig into the cold case, they start to realize that one of their suspects is hiding an evil so horrific it can barely stand the light of day.
Unfortunately, the evil they stalk is only one side of a multi-sided problem. Twisted around old loves and never forgotten treacheries, the case threatens their growing feelings for each other and dangerously undermines their professional relationship, while pitting them against a killer more deadly than any they’ve faced. Can they survive the dual threat? Will they reach for each other when things get rough? Or will they let misunderstanding and menace kill the future they’ve started building together?
“If you like Suspense, Intrigue, Humor and Romance; Street Smart and the Smart Investigations Series is the way to go. Ms. Cheever has upped her game with this one. With Smart Alex (book 1) we met the Smart family and learned of the Investigation Business that Matthew Smart owned and operated. We also met Alex, Matthew’s new sexy temporary assistance, and her role in Matthew’s life. Street Smart takes off from there. Ms. Cheever lets us delve deeper in the the family’s lives as well as Matthew and Alex’s relationship as they take on another mysterious case. However this case touches a little too close to home and has everyone on edge. 2 Thumbs up for an awesome book that you do not want to miss and if you haven’t read book 1, I highly recommend it too.”
~The Shoppers Express
“Alex and Matthew embark on another adventure. While they struggle to understand their personal needs and ambitions a murder mystery knocks on their door. Street Smart is full of underlying passion, love, mystery and suspense. Lots of twists and kept me guessing til the end about who was behind it all. An interesting story line with real world implications. Another great read!”
~ Charity Chimni Reviews
A crimson puddle shone on the filth-strewn floor of the alley. Ben Phillips stepped over the pool of blood and shoved his hands in his pockets. He eyed the brick walls of the passageway, his pulse skimming upward at the telltale arc of glistening red spatter. To his knowing eye the spray of blood was a horror story writ large on the soot-blackened walls.
Arterial blood. Violent death.
A soft groan called to him from the nearby shadows. His hand fumbled for his cell phone even as his feet moved forward. Someone needed help and if Ben was anything, he was a sap for the needy. A cape-less crusader with a deep well of personal flaws. A vigilante against pain and injustice, armed with a blood pressure cuff and a scalpel. His mindless affinity toward helping the ill, the indigent, the lost, was both his best trait and his worst.
But even as he punched the numbers, 9-1-1 into his phone he realized it was a penchant that was destined to be his downfall.
Another soft sound had him stilling, the call unsent. His gaze narrowed against the foggy shadows that filled the end of the closed off alley. A tall, metal fence sliced the narrow space in half, severing the egress routes to one. His gaze skimmed upward, over the ancient, rusted fire escape, which someone had pulled up to a distance of eight feet above ground.
He frowned. Ben had been sure he’d heard two voices. Two male voices slashing angrily back and forth before the shout of pain and the husky call for help.
His pulse spiked. If there was only one way out…
Behind him something crashed and Ben jumped, spinning around with a cry of surprise. A wiry form bolted from beneath the dumpster near the mouth of the alley and scampered toward the street, long tail snapping.
Just a cat.
Ben closed his eyes, pulling air into his lungs, and when he opened them he started to laugh. His imagination was on overdrive. He was making monsters out of scavenging felines.
“Please…” a gritty voice implored.
Ben’s gaze found the dark form huddled against the wall a mere ten feet away. He hurried forward. “It’s okay, I’m a doctor,” he told the bedraggled form. The man’s face was softened by shadow and filth, an oily fringe of too-long hair sticking to one cheek. Despite the fact he couldn’t really see the man’s features, something about him seemed familiar.
As Ben knelt beside the fallen man, the stench of unwashed skin and loosened bowels wafted upward, tugging on his gag reflex. He shoved revulsion back and placed his fingers against the man’s filthy throat. A warm slickness coated his fingertips. Ben pulled them away and looked at the blood painting his skin.
The man coughed, spraying bloody sputum in an arc that splattered Ben’s face. Too late he realized he wasn’t wearing a mask. Or gloves. The injured man shifted slightly, his hand coming up to grasp Ben’s wrist. The grip was impossibly strong–painful–enhanced by adrenalin-fueled desperation. “Help…”
Ben covered the bloody hand on his arm. “It’s okay. I’m a doctor,” he repeated. He didn’t know what else to say. He had no tools with him, nothing to ease the man’s pain. He ripped a sleeve off his shirt and wrapped it around the man’s throat, tying it tightly to staunch the flow of blood from the long gash there. Then he remembered his phone. He retrieved it from the alley floor where he’d dropped it, his thumb reaching for the Send button.
But he never made the call. The soft scuff of a footfall behind him brought Ben’s head around. Pain sheared through his skull, turning the charcoal gray of night to black.
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