Foreign Affairs: An Interrogation Report for Suspected Russian Spy

SUBJECT:  Ex-KGB Agent Nikolai Markov, hero of THE RUSSIAN TEMPTATION by Nikki Navarre

State secrets have never been this sexy.

State secrets have never been this sexy.

INTERROGATOR:  CIA Agent James Riley, hero of AN AFFAIR OF DECEIT by Jamie Michele

LOCATION:  CIA Interrogation Facility, Washington, D.C.

DATE:  Yesterday 

RILEY:  Given these anomalies in your travel documents and your, ah, colorful history, you’ll understand why we need to ask a few questions, Mr. Markov.  Mind if I call you Nikolai?

MARKOV (lighting a Gauloise cigarette): I’d prefer it if you didn’t, Dr. Riley. As I’ve explained repeatedly to your CIA underlings, my name is Nikolai Kirov, and I’m an independent security consultant. A simple case of mistaken identity, no doubt, that you seem to have confused me with this ex-KGB hit man I take it you’re looking for.

RILEY (studies the suspect with keen olive-green eyes): For an innocent man, you seem remarkably calm about being detained by the CIA.

MARKOV:  Ah, the operational psychologist emerges. Tell me, Dr. Riley, why did you reject the customary pathways of your profession for a thankless career in CIA Counterintelligence?

RILEY: Never regretted it for a second. But I’m not the one being detained. What I’m really interested in, my friend, is the nature of your relationship with our ambassador Skylar Rossi.

MARKOV: The more relevant question is, why are you interested in Skylar Rossi? My sources indicate you have a rather significant romantic attachment of your own these days, if memory serves, with the frighteningly capable Assistant D.A. Abigail Mason.

RILEY (leans forward): Let’s leave Abigail out of this. Clearly you guys have a pretty good file on me. And the reason we’re interested in Ambassador Rossi is because our sources tell us you were hired to kill her. Beautiful woman like that, brilliant chemical weapons scientist, a reformed Mafioso’s daughter and one of our most talented diplomats. Yeah, you can say we’re interested in your intentions.

MARKOV: Your sources were, quite simply, misinformed.

RILEY: You going to pretend you don’t even know her? You’ve been shadowing her every move, ever since she set foot in that secret city in Siberia to investigate that illicit chemical weapons plant. She get a little too close for comfort?

MARKOV (smiles): You could say that. I might have begun my association with Ambassador Rossi as her security escort—her minder, you’d say, at the express request of the Russian authorities. But our relationship has become a bit more…personal.

RILEY: Are you telling me now you slept with Skylar Rossi?

MARKOV (laughs): I’m telling you I’ve fallen in love with her. Surely, given your recent history with the fetching and talented Ms. Mason—a woman your own superiors ordered you to investigate—you can understand how that might have transpired.

RILEY curses and reaches for the camera.

Here the video transcript ends abruptly. A stenographer’s footnote indicates the two men spoke for some time before Markov was released and the two left together for a Georgetown bar. There, reports indicate they were joined by Assistant D.A. Abigail Mason and Ambassador Skylar Rossi for what appeared to become a social encounter over cocktails.

As of this writing, the investigation into ex-KGB agent Nikolai Markov has been placed on indefinite suspension.  For further reporting, interested parties are referred to:


AN AFFAIR OF DECEIT by Jamie Michele


WHAT FUN! Nikki did a fantastic job imagining what would happen if our two heroes ever met. My Riley is a definite good guy–he’s the open-hearted foil to my ice-cold heroine–while Nikki’s Nikolai is so bad, he’s criminal.

If you’re looking for an idea of just how bad this guy is, let me break the news: he’s an assassin. Full-on, and he’s the best in the business. Of course, he makes it clear that he doesn’t target innocents, women, or children. So there’s that–we know that he has only killed people already involved in the underworld, those people who would have killed him if given the chance. Nonetheless, at the beginning of the book, we’re not sure if he’s out to kill or protect the heroine. Sometimes I’m not sure he even knows, and that uncertainty gives their sexual attraction a knife-edge of tension. If the heroine kisses him, will he use that moment of vulnerability to crush her throat? Or will he use those consummately capable hands for pleasure? The question kept me on the edge of my seat as I read.

Personally, I like it when a happy ending to a love story is as inevitable as it is impossible, and that’s often the case with a hero or heroine who has gone so far to the dark side that they believe themselves to be unredeemable. That’s what keeps me turning pages; that’s why I read romance. Because let’s be honest: we all know how it’s going to end. The HEA is the DNA of all romance. So I crave the suspense created by a hero and heroine who are as perfect for one another as they are each other’s worst enemy. That’s the case with The Russian Temptation, and why I recommend you read it!

So my question for you, dear reader, is:

Who is your favorite dark hero (or anti-hero) in TV, movies, or books?

For me, I always loved the aristocratic but mercenary Julian Sark in TV’s Alias. Naturally, he and heroine Sydney shared a bit of flirtatious banter, but never actually locked lips, no matter how much I wanted them to. Makes me think I ought to be writing fan fiction… 😉

17 responses to “Foreign Affairs: An Interrogation Report for Suspected Russian Spy”

  1. […] at the Ruby Slippered Sisterhood today interviewing fellow Ruby (and writer of sexy intrigue/thrillers) Nikki Navarre about her […]

  2. Kate Parker says:

    Jamie, Nikki, both stories sound great.

    And one of my favorites is Leroy Jethro Gibbs of NCIS. A tortured soul, he’s the biggest reason for the series’ success.

    • Thanks, Kate! I loved AN AFFAIR OF DECEIT and everything Jamie writes. Her Assistant D.A./martial artist heroine Abigail Mason only has a cameo appearance in this “interrogation”, but she was a super fascinating anti-heroine and a perfect match for the easy-going, ethical and good-natured CIA guy Riley.

      • Nikki, you’re the best. I’m delighted to hear that you found Abigail to be an anti-heroine. I didn’t think of her in that way when I wrote her, but only because I didn’t know anything about romance back then. Now I know better, but I’m kind of glad I didn’t. I don’t think I would have done things the same way in either of the Affair of… books.

    • Kate, thanks to your comment, I just got lost in a Wikipedia train about NCIS, a show I’ve only seen a few times, and not recently, but now I want to pick it back up! Mark Harmon really has aged well, hasn’t he??

  3. What a fun idea! Love the new cover, Nikki! Beautiful and intriguing.

  4. Thank you, Jamie & Riley, for a grueling but effective interrogation of my hero Nikolai. 🙂 I’m glad our heroes made their peace in the end! I can see them in that Georgetown bar with our heroines, swapping stories. It’s so much more fun doing cross-promotion with other authors…especially Rubies!

  5. June Love says:

    What a great twist for an interview! Loved it. The books sound wonderful. Nikki, your cover is awesome.

  6. Oh cute!!!! Loved this! Super congrats. This looks delicious. ~D~


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