Shadow Warrior (Shadow Riders #4) - Christine Feehan Page 0,1

that kind of personality. He needed his woman to trust him implicitly and allow him to care for her. For every aspect of her life. Where, in the modern world, could a woman like that be found? That would be impossible as well. Two impossibilities meant it wasn’t going to happen for him. He would be in a loveless, arranged marriage for the rest of his life.

He sighed and turned his attention back to that whisper of impending danger that had drawn him to the club. The floor plan had three tiers. The top tier was extremely expensive but provided the most privacy. Most of the celebrities stayed there to party. Bodyguards were prevalent, and the club’s highly trained security were visible as well. The third tier wasn’t a place Vittorio would expect to have any real trouble, but his every instinct pointed him in that direction.

He waited for the music to change and the light show to begin. The dancing colors cast all kinds of shadows throughout the large club, giving him plenty of choices. He selected a shadow that cut through the bar on the second-tier landing and zigzagged its way up to the highest tier where the Ferraros kept a table reserved just for family.

He stepped into a thin, dark streak and instantly his body was sucked into the tube, pulled apart and flung through tables and chairs and up two winding staircases to the top tier. Standing in the mouth of the tube, he needed a few seconds for his body to feel as if it had come back together. There was always the sick feeling that came with fast travel, with being pulled apart and put back together.

The moment Vittorio was up on the top floor, the sense of conspiracy, of danger, became overwhelming. He closed himself off from the noise and concentrated on that feeling of trouble. Of a fated doom. At the third table from the Ferraros’ exclusive seating sat three men. He recognized two as enforcers for the Saldi family. Just seeing them in his club caused the knots in his gut to tighten.

No one could keep drugs out of a club, but they didn’t allow sales there. The Saldis, a notorious crime family, brought drugs in and sold them from streets and alleys to the private parties of the rich. Every kind of drug anyone could possibly want, they provided. But not in a Ferraro club. It was one of the few things the Saldis knew the Ferraros would go to war with them over.

The Saldis were recognized as a branch of the largest crime family in the States. Giuseppi Saldi was the acknowledged leader and was certainly the biggest crime boss in Chicago. These particular men worked for his brother, Miceli Saldi. The big question was, why were two of Saldi’s goons sitting in the Ferraro nightclub making a deal with some lowlife junkie? Clearly they were conducting business of sorts. The Saldi enforcers blended in, with their expensive suits and Rolex watches, but the man sitting across from them was, by comparison, in disheveled clothes that had seen better days.

Vittorio was going to have to review the security tapes. There were certain protocols in place. Every doorman, every bouncer and every security guard was required to be familiar with the Saldis and their employees. If they entered the nightclub, the Ferraro family was to be informed immediately. That hadn’t happened.

The fact that the two Saldi enforcers sat in the VIP section on the third tier and no one had called a family member to let them know added an additional sin against the club’s security measures—or the Saldis had paid off someone high enough up in the nightclub’s management that they were able to sneak through. If that were the case, who else had they allowed in?

Vittorio needed to move around and listen to the conversations. The sale of drugs was always going to be a problem in clubs the world over, but the Saldis blatantly selling in the Ferraro nightclub was going to start a war no one wanted, and it didn’t make sense.

Vittorio stayed in the shadows and moved as close as possible in order to hear the conversation over the pounding beat of the music. He recognized Ale Sarto and Lando Gori, Miceli Saldi’s top enforcers. If either or both showed up at your door, chances were you weren’t going to survive the encounter. They were dressed in suits and looked sharp and handsome, but Vittorio