Some qualities are obvious. For example, agents in the Department of Covert Operations have to be well-trained to handle the tense, dangerous situations the DCO is always getting itself into. It probably helps if they’re courageous, physically fit, and tactically proficient (i.e., they can shoot straight and make good decisions under stress).
But of course, there’s more to it than that. Typically, these agents work in a team of anywhere from two to five people, usually with at least one shifter. They have to be able to work and function in a team environment. That means they have to be able to trust each other with their lives. That takes a certain kind of person, and if you have an issue working with shifters (humans who possess certain animal DNA that allows them to exhibit some of that animal’s traits and capabilities) then maybe you need to move on and do another job. DCO teams are the ultimate example of diversity in action. They blend people based on their abilities without regard to how different the people are. Color, gender, breed…none of it matters. Can you work together and do the job?
Of course, there’s that complicated little issue of the DCO’s first general order—a human teammate is expected to “eliminate” their shifter partners if there’s even a chance that the shifter’s identity might be compromised. That’s a policy created by politicians and bureaucrats, though. In reality, no team could function if its members couldn’t trust each other. If you’re worried about your own partner killing you, how effective are you really going to be? So, the teams have to figure out a way of giving “lip service” to this high level policy without really doing it. That balancing act by itself can be difficult and requires the right kind of people.
But there’s more than the physical, tactical, and teamwork abilities going on here. Whether they know it or not, some of these agents are going to end up as the hero and heroine in one of my books. Therefore, they have to remember that this series exists in a romance world, so people working at the DCO have to measure up when it comes to being romantic as well as heroic. For those select people, there are certain special qualities I look for.
Just focusing on the guys for the moment (since that what’s really important, right girls?). They need to have a strong, hunky build, six-pack abs, sensuous lips, strong hands, as well as confidence in and out of the bedroom, eyes that smolder, the ability to kiss a woman in a way that will weaken knees, and possess that certain something that lets them sweep a woman off her feet. That’s a tall order for a guy who has to be able to shoot and scoot! Face it, even in X-OPS, a woman has to have her standards!
But I can’t leave the woman out! They’re in a Paige Tyler book! That means they have to possess some kick-butt attributes. Not all of them will have to be like Ivy Halliwell, the heroine from Her Perfect Mate, a feline shifter who can stand up to any guy in a fight, but you can’t be a damsel, either. You have to be bold and brave, and when your guy is in trouble, you have to be willing to risk your life to help him.
As you can see…being a member of an X-OPS team is a tough job. It’s not for everyone, but it’s worth it once you make it in!
About Her Fierce Warrior
The woman tensed. As anger and fear ricocheted across her face, her eyes changed from red to green to brown in a dizzying display like nothing he’d ever seen.
Every instinct in Angelo’s body screamed at him to lunge for his weapon. Instead he set his feet for impact, blocking her slashing claws. Unbelievably, after a few moments of struggling, she went still, all the fight gone…
Minka isn’t sure she should trust the sexy Special Forces soldier who found her. Subjected to horrors, on the run from scientists set on locking her in a cage, Minka is terrified of the monster she’s becoming…and somehow, Angelo is the only one who can calm the beast inside her and make her feel safe.
But can she trust the way he makes her feel when she’s not even sure she can trust herself?
Paige Tyler is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of sexy, romantic fiction. Paige writes books about hunky alpha males and the kick-butt heroines they fall in love with. She lives with her very own military hero (a.k.a. her husband) and their adorable dog on the beautiful Florida coast. Visit www.paigetylertheauthor.com.