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Hunted By A Shadow: Chapter 42


Renzo and I are peeking around the wall at the full restaurant.

“Oh my God. Half the critics in New York are out there,” I whisper, my stomach a tight ball of nerves.

“They better not dare say anything bad,” Renzo mutters. “Or there will be bodies floating in the Hudson.”

I slap his chest and scowl at him. “You’ll do no such thing!”

Turning around, I head back to the busy kitchen.

Renzo grabs my arm, and I’m yanked backward. He grips hold of my jaw and plants a hard kiss to my mouth.

“Good luck, amo. You’ve got this.”

Shooting him a thankful smile, I pull free and rush to my station so I can continue cooking.

“I need spring onions,” I call out.

“Yes, Chef!”

A few seconds later, a bowl of finely chopped spring onions is placed on my counter. I quickly add it to brew, and while it boils, I check on the spicy brisket soup.

The orders come fast and non-stop, and I get lost in my work.

Two hours into my opening night, Viviana walks toward me and says, “A customer would like to meet you, Chef Davies.”

I glance at Chef Ji and say, “Keep an eye on everything.”

“Yes, Chef.”

I follow Viviana to the table where a woman is seated. A polite smile forms on her face when she sees me.

Standing up, she offers her hand, and as I shake it, she says, “I’m glad to see you’ve opened your own restaurant after the accident. I was worried we wouldn’t get to taste your food again.”

Not knowing who she is, I ask, “Again? I’m sorry, have we met?”

She shakes her head. “I’m Klara. I was the inspector who recommended Dame for their Michelin Star.”

Holy shit.

The blood drains from my face, but she quickly adds, “Relax. I’m only here to enjoy your food. I’m no longer with the organization.”

I let out a breath of relief and smile at Klara. “Thank you for coming to my opening night.”

“I just wanted to compliment your signature dish. It’s an explosive sensation I thoroughly enjoyed. I’m confident it will make the headlines soon.” She begins to walk away, then pauses to add, “I’m glad you’re back, Chef Davies. You were missed.”

“Thank you so much. It’s good to be back.”

When she heads to the door, I turn around and walk to the kitchen in a daze of pure happiness.

The rest of the night goes by in a blur, and by the time the kitchen is clean and the staff leaves, I let out an exhausted breath.

I glance around the space, and feeling satisfied with the successful opening night, I begin to think about tomorrow and the week ahead.

“You were amazing tonight,” Renzo suddenly says.

My eyes dart to where he’s leaning against a counter, a proud smile on his face.

Walking to him, I plant my face against his chest and let out a sigh. “I’m so tired.”

“Let’s go home, amo.”

The next moment, he picks me up bridal style, and chuckling, I wrap my arms around his neck.

I don’t complain as he carries me out of the restaurant and sets me down on the back seat of the Bentley.

I watch as he locks the door of the restaurant, and when he comes to slide in beside me, I snuggle into his side.

During the drive home, I nod off several times, but when Fabrizio parks the car in the basement, I’m wide awake again.

When we walk into the penthouse, I kick off my shoes and let out a groan as I wiggle my toes. My eyes fall on a massive bouquet of red roses that takes up all the space on the coffee table in the living room.

“Holy crap, that’s huge,” I gasp as I walk closer.

“It was the biggest arrangement I could fit into the elevator,” Renzo says. “I was aiming for a rose for every tear you cried because of me.”

“Renzo,” I breathe as I brush my fingertips over the petals. “You didn’t have to.”

“Yes, I did.”

I turn around to thank him for the beautiful flowers but freeze when I see him down on one knee.

Shock shudders through me, and after the busy and emotional day I’ve had, I can’t keep my eyes from misting up.

“Even though I kidnapped you, you were the one who took me captive. You’ve seen me at my worst and still chose to love me.”

Tears stream down my cheeks as I stare at the man who’s changed my life in so many ways it’s still hard to believe it happened.

He clears his throat then says, “This is me officially asking you to be my girlfriend and partner in crime.”

I let out a burst of laughter as I move forward. “Get up so I can kiss you.”

Renzo climbs to his feet then takes a small box from the inside pocket of his jacket. Opening it, he holds it out to me so I can see the Sapphire ring.

“This is a you-belong-to-me ring. It has a tracker so I can find you if you’re ever in trouble.” He takes it from the box and slides it onto my ring finger. “I want every fucker out there to know you’re taken.”

“It’s beautiful,” I murmur before I lift onto my tiptoes to kiss my man.

Suddenly he lifts me from my feet and carries me bridal style up the stairs. “I want to see you naked with only my ring on your finger.”

“Hmm…I like the sound of that,” I chuckle as I press kisses to his neck. “A perfect ending to a perfect night.”

Walking into the bedroom, he places me on the bed, and staring down at me, he says, “A perfect beginning to a perfect life, amo.”


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