Authors: this is a great opportunity to spotlight a few lines or even a paragraph or two from a new release or backlisted title. Readers: you get to sample some delicious snippets! We’ll do our best to tease, titillate and tantalize you into the weekend.
I'm teasing with DARWIN'S EVOLUTION, an Ultimate Recon/Hot SEALs Crossover novella that came out January 26th. In today's tease, retired Master Sergeant Sadie Hawkins came home from lunch with her mom and her instincts are screaming.
Sadie knew something was wrong as soon as she pulled up in front of her mother’s cabin. She put the car in park and surveyed the environs, the hair on the back of her neck standing up. Clarice unclipped her seatbelt and made to get out of the car, but Sadie laid a hand on her arm.
Clarice froze. “What is it?”
Sadie shook her head. “I don’t know, but something doesn’t feel right. Stay here until I give the all-clear.”
“I’m serious, Mom. Let me check it out first. I’ll be back in a few.”
Sadie pushed the door open and closed it behind her as she stood beside the car. The afternoon sunshine painted thick shadows under the trees and heated the ground enough for the warm loam to perfume the air. Wind rustled the branches and needles, but no other sounds came to her ears. She inhaled through her nose, testing the air for scents that shouldn’t be there.
Motioning for her mom to stay in the car, she took a few steps toward the house until the sounds of another vehicle on the gravel road met her ears. She shifted her body to keep both the house and the drive in view as a mid-sized black car drove up beside hers and parked. Some of her unease released as Cyrus got out.
“What’s going on, Sadie?” His voice remained easy, but his expression turned wary.
“I don’t know. My gut says something’s wrong. I don’t want my mom to get hurt. Help me recon the place?”
“Roger that. Do you think someone’s here?”
She paused and sank inwards like she had when reconnoitering enemy installations. Her gut said something had been set, but no one stayed to see it go off. But the saboteur might be nearby to watch the results.
“I don’t think they’re in close proximity, but they might be hiding in the trees within scope distance.” She scanned the nearby forest for signs of disturbance, but without walking the grounds, she couldn’t see anything. “I’m gonna go through the house. Can you walk the perimeter? We’ll stay in contact with our cell phones.” She dug hers out and found his name in her contacts. She pressed “send” on the call as she raised her gaze to his.
He accepted the call and nodded. “What about weapons?”
“All of mine are inside.” She shrugged and grimaced as she slid the phone into her back pocket, the call still live. “I didn’t expect to need them so soon after retirement. I might start carrying again after this, though.”
“Let’s see what we find, first.”
“Roger that. Keep an eye out for trip wires.”
He raised his eyebrows. “Trip wires? You think something’s booby trapped?”
She shook her head. “I don’t know, but my gut only gets this tight when I have to be extra vigilant. I’ve learned it means I need to take all the precautions.”
“Copy that. Rendezvous on the south side of the house?”
“Copy that.” She nodded to him and stepped up on the porch, holding her breath as she listened for movements inside.
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