Bartholomew (Empire #1) Read Online Penelope Sky

Categories Genre: Alpha Male, Dark, Erotic, Mafia, Romance Tags Authors: Series: Empire Series by Penelope Sky

Total pages in book: 80
Estimated words: 78076 (not accurate)
Estimated Reading Time in minutes: 390(@200wpm)___ 312(@250wpm)___ 260(@300wpm)

With Roan out of the picture, I’ve taken Croatia and eastern Europe. Now it’s time I take Italy as well.
I just need to get rid of the Skull King.
What better way to accomplish that than by using his daughter against him — who happens to live right here in Paris.
But my problem goes south the second I lay eyes on her.
She’s the perfect solution to all my troubles. All I have to do is put a knife to her throat to get what I want. The Skull King will cave. Italy will be mine.
But that’s the last thing I want to do.
What I really want to do is make her mine.
Who says I can’t have both?
At least until she finds out the truth…

*************FULL BOOK START HERE*************



The days grew longer. The nights shorter.

Gray clouds were replaced by sunshine, and rainy afternoons were replaced by colorful flowers. Paris came alive once again, the lights from the Eiffel Tower shining like a star rather than a lighthouse in the fog.

I hated it.

I sat alone at the bar. It emptied out shortly after I arrived, either because people didn’t like the look of me, or because it was almost midnight on a Tuesday. My half-full glass was my company, along with the bartender, who cast worried glances my way. I was the only reason he had to keep this place open, but he wouldn’t dare ask me to leave.

Finally, my guest arrived.

He stepped out of the cold and into the bar, in a long-sleeved shirt and dark jeans. His bright eyes found mine, and with a subtle look of annoyance, he joined me at the bar.

I rapped my knuckles against the counter. “Another for my friend here.”

The bartender was quick to help us, sliding the glass across the counter.

I held up my glass to him. “To old friends.”

Benton held my gaze for a second before he clinked his glass against mine. “And old enemies.”

The corner of my mouth lifted with a smile, and I drank.

He did the same.

We hadn’t spoken in six months, but his life had changed substantially. He was married now and had just found out he had a baby on the way.

I’d congratulate him, but it sounded like a miserable existence to me. “My invitation must have gotten lost in the mail.”

“It was just the three of us.”

“Did you knock her up on purpose, or…?”

“Yes.” Benton flashed his fierce eyes on me. “There are people out there who think children are a blessing rather than a curse.”

“I’m definitely not one of those people.”

“You don’t say.” He took a drink. “How are things in the Catacombs?”


“Are we talking about the air quality or business?”

“Both.” I brought the glass to my lips and took a drink.

“I find it hard to believe business has been stagnant with Roan out of the picture.”

I turned to him, my eyebrow slightly raised. “How did you know that?”


I was certain Benton disapproved of his brother’s choice, but he didn’t ask me to fire him. “Croatia isn’t that big of a market.”

“You’re still moving millions of pounds a week.”

“I hear the Skull King does more.”

Benton went rigid when he heard what I’d said. “I’d hoped you moved on from that.”

“Looks like you don’t know me as well as I thought.”

“You have more than enough, Bartholomew.”

“Until I have everything, it’ll never be enough.”

Benton studied me, his blue eyes showing all his thoughts like words on a page. “I understand the high you get with every conquest. It fades…and then you need another. With every bullet that misses your heart, with every skull you smash beneath your boot, it gives you something you can’t find anywhere else. But it’ll never fix the problem, Bartholomew. It’ll never fill that hole.”

“What hole?” I asked, my lips slightly curled in amusement.

Benton stared at me, refusing to actually say it.

I swirled the glass, watching the liquor spin like water in a flushed toilet. “The Skull King’s days are limited.”

“And then what happens when he’s dead? There’ll just be another.”

I tipped my head back and took a drink before I tapped the glass to the counter. “Not if I take his place.”



France shared a border with Italy, but the distance between us was still infinite. To control a territory that far away required intense delegation and management. I was up for the job and ready to kill anyone who resisted.

But I needed to know my enemy—and that required research.

It required spies.

It required massive payoffs.

I stepped into the living room, barefoot and bare-chested, wearing sweatpants with nothing underneath because I’d just finished with my favorite whore in the bedroom. Bleu was there waiting for me, a pitcher of ice water and a glass placed there by my butler. A black folder was sitting there as well.

I took a seat in the armchair, knees spread wide apart, sweat still on my back that smeared against the leather chair.