I received over 5,000 downloads of my novel No Remorse last week. Hope you enjoy readers!
Here’s a little taste of Chapter 1:
Lee McCloud ached to kill the five men in the valley below. But he couldn’t. Not yet. He ignored the sharp piece of rubble under his ribs and eased the sniper rifle into the familiar position, butt firmly against his shoulder, hand cupping the grip, finger resting on the trigger guard. Like spooning with a woman, Mac reflected, though he hadn’t done that in a while.
He watched the Ford Explorer, with Bob at the wheel, racing towards the meeting point up through the barren hills surrounding the El Carrizo dam. He switched his view back to the five men standing around a van and a Land Cruiser. Checking the laser range finder, he adjusted the Hensoldt scope. Six hundred yards. As close as he and his men would dare go. They couldn’t risk stirring the loose rubble to get closer. As it was, they’d only just made it into position before the Mexicans showed.
He wouldn’t admit it in a psych evaluation, but he enjoyed the feeling of having an enemy in the crosshairs. For a few seconds he had God-like control. All he had to do was squeeze. But right now they needed confirmation that Sophia and Danni were in the van before he could give the order.
The exchange was taking place a few miles outside Tijuana. Desert country, scarred with boulders and littered with caves and patchy grass that reminded him of an area northeast of Kandahar, where four years ago his unit had freed a six-person UNAMA team held by Taliban insurgents. But not before they had raped the two women and castrated the team leader.
A gust of wind blew grit in his weathered face. Swallowing several times to suppress the urge to cough, Mac put a small pebble in his mouth, sucking on it to relieve the irritation. He could hear the click of the digital SLR behind him as Termite took photos of the kidnappers and their vehicles through the zoom lens, in case they needed evidence later.
He pressed his radio’s talk button. “Sierra One, this is Sierra Six. Notify when you are in position. Over.”
He shifted his aim to the skinny one with the bowlegs, who he assumed was the leader by the way he was ordering the others about. All of them wore gray uniforms with Atlantic blue caps and a Mexican flag patch on their left shoulder. The uniform of the Federales, the Mexican National Police. From the nonchalant way they were standing around, he decided they probably were real cops. If anything, this made him angrier. They were kidnappers. Taking advantage of their position to earn a corrupt living. Way he figured it, killing these creeps would do both countries a favor.
All the same, if they had to let the bastards go or forfeit the ransom money, he wouldn’t care, so long as they got Sophia and Danni back safely. The three volunteers he’d recruited from his Delta unit knew that freeing the girls was their one and only priority.
“We’re good to go, Sierra Six. Over.” Scotty’s voice was as mellow as a tenor’s. After six months away from combat operations, Scotty was hungry for action and had been the first to volunteer for the unauthorized mission.
Mac shifted the crosshairs of his scope to the thickset Federale with the pockmarked face and dull eyes. This guy reeked of thug—he was spinning a long-bladed knife as though it was a juggler’s club, had a tattoo of a skull on his neck, and when he laughed his lips pulled to one side in a sneer, as though he’d been cut and sewn back together by a surgeon with Parkinson’s disease. All of these guys would kill without hesitation, Mac was sure of it.
Scotty and Freckle were tucked away somewhere in shadows on the next hill. Two firing positions gave them better observation capability and a broader perimeter of fire.
After the call from Bob telling him the sixteen-year-old best friends, Sophia and Danni, had been snatched off the street in Tijuana, he’d had just enough time to grab three volunteers, hunt down some kit from the Delta store, and hitch four seats on the shuttle from Fort Bragg to San Diego. With luck, they’d be back on base before anybody noticed. But if the shit hit the fan, they were on their own.
“Sierra One, I’ll take the guy with the knife and the leader with the pistol. Scotty, you take the two with the AK-47s. Freckle, you stop the van going anywhere.”
“Affirmative,” Scotty said.
Bob’s dusky silver Explorer bounced along the rutted gravel track past the ruins of an adobe hut and pulled up near the kidnappers’ Land Cruiser. It was close enough now that he could hear the two fathers in the Explorer talking through the transmitter disguised in Bob’s belt.
The kidnappers’ leader flicked his cigarette onto the barren ground and hacked up a gob of spit as the two men got out of the Explorer. None of the kidnappers made any attempt to adopt a defensive position.
That was when Mac realized something wasn’t right.