So Many Boys (The Naughty List #2)

So Many Boys (The Naughty List #2)
Suzanne Young


1:00 A.M., SEPTEMBER 12

A branch splintered under the operative’s heavy boot, cracking loud enough to make her pause. After a quick look around Riley Richards’s back lawn, she continued her path toward his half-open bedroom window.

Even from the yard, she could hear their soft murmurs. She crouched down in the wet soil of the flower bed, taking out the night-vision goggles she’d stolen. Silently she clicked on the viewfinder and peered in.

The suspect, Riley, was in there along with his accomplice, Megan Wright. They were sitting on his bed (fully clothed), talking. Talking?

The operative narrowed her eyes and shifted in the dirt. This was not what she’d anticipated. Proof might take longer than previously thought, and the black latex jumpsuit she’d snatched was getting filthy.

When she’d found the SOS files and gone through them, the operative had seen a problem—a reason why SOS wasn’t as effective as it could’ve been. The society was set up to be secret, completely undercover. And that was the problem. It left no room for intimidation. And if the operative hoped to make SOS her own success—and outshine Tessa Crimson—she’d have to fix that. She had a plan.

Clicking off a few stills, the operative listened patiently. Megan was looking sideways at Riley as they sat hip-to-hip on his navy blue comforter.

“So, do you want to work on that chemistry lab?” Megan asked, twisting a long strand of blonde hair around her finger.

The left side of Riley’s mouth twitched. “Not really.”

“But I thought you said—”

“I wanted to see you,” he interrupted. “But I knew you wouldn’t if I didn’t say it was for school.”

Megan bit her lip. “Jenn’s my friend,” she whispered. “You know that.” She shifted uncomfortably, moving away from the suspect. “I shouldn’t even be here right now.”

But when Megan didn’t get up to leave, the operative tensed, finger poised over the viewfinder. No matter how Riley got her to his house, Megan obviously wanted to be there. This was about to become a full-fledged cheat.

“I’m sorry,” Riley whispered, reaching out to touch Megan’s arm. “I know this is hard, but…I like you, Meg. Don’t you like me?”

The operative paused on the record button as she suddenly became fascinated with the developing relationship. Sure, Riley was propositioning Meg, but not really—not in a way that offered real proof. Liking someone wasn’t the same as adultery. Not unless Megan agreed to go through with it. Would she?

“I…” Megan stopped long enough to make it clear she didn’t want to say what she was about to. “I should go.”

“Please,” Riley murmured, taking her hand. “Don’t leave yet.”

Outside, the operative watched, knots forming in her stomach as she waited to see if they’d cheat. In the SOS files she’d found the official tally sheets. Tessa Crimson had caught more than two hundred cheaters. The operative tightened her jaw. It would be hard to beat Tessa at her own game when she played it so damn well.

Just then Megan’s ring tone filled the darkened room with the latest drama-club anthem, something by Journey. Megan reached into her pocket to look at her caller ID, then drew in a quick breath.

“It’s Jenn,” she said.

Riley let his hand drop from Megan’s as she clicked off her phone and slid it self-consciously back into her jeans.

Riley sighed. “I’ll walk you out.”

The operative was disappointed. She chewed hard on the corner of her thumbnail, lost in thought. If she was going to take over SOS and make it what it should be, she’d need to out-spy the former team. But this mission hadn’t offered the sort of evidence she’d need to confirm Jenn’s suspicions, and more troubling than that was the fact that Megan had resisted. Cheaters weren’t supposed to resist. Until now, there’d been a one-hundred percent infidelity rate. The operative was counting on that to continue.

As soon as Riley’s bedroom door had closed behind the suspects, the operative stood up in the flower bed and slid her body through the open window.

Ouch! She looked down to see that the fabric around her thigh had snagged on the sill and ripped a hole in her suit, leaving a long scratch. Irritated, she straightened, glancing around the room for Riley’s computer. When she spotted it, she walked over and inserted the CD she’d hidden in her cle**age.

When it was in, the operative clicked Run. It would copy Riley’s entire hard drive—every program, every picture, every application. There must be something of value in there, something incriminating.

The operative tapped her boot as she waited. The computer beeped, and she bent down to look at the screen. Wipe complete. She hit the space bar a few times, but nothing else came up.

“Shit,” she murmured, reaching over to eject the CD. She examined the disc carefully. Oh, no! She’d accidentally inserted the data eraser. She shook her head, reaching up to bite her nail again as she considered her problem.

She looked around the room for any other collectible data, hoping the mission wouldn’t be a total loss. Then she saw it. Riley’s phone was resting on his dresser.

Walking over, she removed the battery and took out the SIM card, slipping it into her bra once she had it. With a satisfied sigh, she pulled a tiny listening device from her pocket, looking it over as she traipsed toward the open window. She brought it up to her lips and kissed it, leaving a tiny smudge of red across the surface. Then she peeled back the adhesive and stuck it under the edge of Riley’s desk as she passed.

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