I will be short and sweet today as I am working through last minute copy edits on this book! So, without further ado, I hope you enjoy Chapter Six of COVERT REICH.
Jake glanced at his watch. He was running late to meet Kelly. Shit. Why was he so easy to read? He couldn’t lie to her. She was so damn on top of it. It was one of the things he liked about her, but at this moment, her intellect wasn’t making things easy. She was involved now whether she knew it or not, and he’d have to find a way to protect her.
Well, he could just not tell her the truth. That was one idea. But then what would he tell her? And how would he convince her he wasn’t lying? Her bullshit meter was too sensitive for that. It was an impossible situation. There was one thing Jake knew for sure, though: the people behind all of this were bad. Really, really bad. What choice did he have? Kelly would be relentless until she got the truth out of him. He knew that. Hell, maybe he even needed her help. Letting her in might be a good thing. Maybe there was a way the two of them could work together, figure out exactly who these people were.
Figuring out what to do about it once they knew, however, would be another story entirely.
Jake picked up the picture of his daughter again and traced the outline of her face with his fingertip. “Oh Beth, what have I gotten myself into?” He remembered a time when his little girl had complete and total faith in him, trusted him implicitly. Daddy could do no wrong. But if she knew how much danger he had put her in, she’d hate him. No. He could not tell Kelly. He would have to think of something. Send her down a dead-end path. The threats they had made about what they would do to his daughter if he breathed a single word to anyone made him shake.
He set the photo down, determined to come up with a story to pacify Kelly. He took his coat from the back of the chair and pulled it on. He walked across the hall to shut the lights off in the morgue. Ty had already gone home for the day. He glanced around the room to make sure everything was status quo and flipped the switch. “My briefcase,” he said out loud. He couldn’t forget that. His mind was not working the way it usually did. He was consumed by the mess he was in. He had to find a way out of it. Get back on track. This place and this situation were going to eat him alive.
He had to find a way out.
He took another step back towards his office, totally unprepared for the blow to his head.
He hadn’t heard a thing, but now a warm sensation oozed down his back, the pain immense as he collapsed to the ground. A groan escaped from between his lips. His head smacked hard against the cold floor, making a loud thud. He tried to pick himself up, only to collapse again. The pain grew more intense with each labored breath. His vision blurred. He knew the warm blood trickling from the back of his neck would soon run cold.
They knew. God damn it. They knew he’d talked.
Oh God, Kelly.
He prayed someone would find him before he died. He had to get to her before they did. Impossible, though.
Footsteps along the floor, passing him. “Really fucking stupid. At least for your sake, we decided you are dispensable, my friend. If you weren’t, I’d be killing your kid right now. Lucky for her.”
Jake felt another sharp pang beginning on one side of his neck traveling across to the other. The pain numbed with the realization his throat had been cut. He attempted to bring his hands up to stop the bleeding. No chance.
He closed his eyes. An image of his daughter flashed through his mind.