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Authors: MJ Eason

Free Fall

BOOK: Free Fall
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 Free Fall

The Spy Who Loved Me, Book 3

MJ Eason

Published 2015

ISBN: 978-1-62210-268-6

Published by Liquid Silver Books, imprint of Atlantic Bridge Publishing, 10509 Sedgegrass Dr, Indianapolis, Indiana 46235. Copyright © Published 2015, M. J. Eason. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, recording or otherwise, without the prior written permission of the author.

 

Manufactured in the United States of America

Liquid Silver Books

http://LSbooks.com

This is a work of fiction. The characters, incidents and dialogues in this book are of the author’s imagination and are not to be construed as real. Any resemblance to actual events or persons, living or dead, is completely coincidental.

Blurb

Special Agent Rainie McClain wants out. Out of The Agency. Out of the shadow life that has consumed her for far too long. But walking away from The Agency means letting go of the only man she’s ever loved, her husband, Captain Roc Branson.

Dedication

To the men and women in our armed services who risk their lives daily to preserve our freedom. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Chapter 1

There was something familiar about the man I’d spotted watching me in a storefront window earlier. At first, I hadn’t thought much about it, but when I stopped for coffee at Starbucks, there he was again.

I’d seen him before. I just couldn’t place where. For a brief second, our eyes met. A familiar tingle of warning ran through me. He definitely presented a threat.

It wasn’t so much that he looked the part—at least not as far as his physical appearance was concerned.

But then, as I’d long ago learned, most dangers didn’t.

The streets of D.C. were crowded tonight. On nights like this, the warmth of an Indian summer, along with the full moon, brought people out in droves. That meant I had a difficult decision to make and not much time to make it. If the man following me turned out to be more than just some weirdo, then I needed to find out what he was up to and more importantly, why he’d chosen tonight of all times to follow me. Did he know something?

Did he have news of my brother?

While I was unfamiliar with this section of the city, I did remember from my Bureau training that Wisconsin Avenue cut through the upscale district known as Georgetown and provided a variety of shopping options as well as tasteful restaurants and clubs, depending on what form of entertainment you were looking for. When it came to choices to confront the person following me, well, those were not so great. I did a quick assessment of my options and found they were limited to only two: a crowded outdoor restaurant or a noisy club. I opted for the club where the music could be heard for blocks away. Should I be forced to subdue my stalker, there would be less likelihood of anyone taking notice of a physical confrontation.

Three hours had now passed since the caller identifying himself as my long-lost brother asked me to meet him in this particular area of the city. I’d been standing in this same spot for more than an hour, searching the sea of faces for someone familiar, while trying not to make eye contact or call any unnecessary attention to myself.

I was beginning to believe this had all been a setup. I glanced at my watch. Well after midnight. Time to call an end to this quest and find out the possible involvement of the man following me.

Electricity
was one of those clubs where the young people went to be seen. Tonight, all the beautiful people were here, arrayed in the latest fashions.

Places like this had become the latest rage among the local college kids.

I forced aside my trained law enforcement instincts that told me I’d probably find more drugs right here on the first five kids I searched than growing in the jungles of Colombia.

With difficulty, I made my way across the crowd of twentysomethings gyrating around
Electricity
’s tiny dance floor to what sounded like Katy Perry blasting through the club’s top-of-the-line sound system.

To my right, I spotted the back entrance to the club and headed toward it, hoping the immaculately dressed man following me would do the same. I was in luck. He took the bait.

Why would someone like him be following me in the first place? Had he discovered my connection to The Agency? It was a distinct possibility, considering the information we’d recently uncovered. But if this were the case, then why me? Why not one of the other Agency members? More specifically, why not Roc, our commander?

The Agency was an elite group of FBI agents whose sole purpose was to fight the war on terror on U.S. soil. As our leader, Roc Branson had chosen the name The Agency because it was another name for the CIA and in Roc’s mind, what we did was indeed covert work. We’d been handpicked because we excelled in our fields. Because of the type of work we did, we’d each made enemies. Had one of mine found me?

I stepped out into the muggy D.C. night and slipped along the edge of the wall, flattening myself into the shadows of the club. Instinctively, I reached inside my jacket for my weapon, tossing my handbag aside. The second my stalker walked through the door I had the drop on him.

“FBI. Freeze, that’s far enough.” I’d caught him off his guard. He stopped halfway out the door, searching the shadows until he spotted the glint of my weapon.

I allowed myself a second to evaluate the situation. The man appeared to be somewhere in his mid-thirties and extremely well-dressed for what I believed his true identity to be—a member of the Freedom and Liberation for America, or FLA, one of the most elite terrorist groups operating within the U.S. borders. It occurred to me then that I wasn’t afraid of him, which surprised me because in the past there was always an element of fear involved in every single one of my encounters with the FLA. Rightly so. They were cold-blooded killers who would stop at nothing to further their cause.

He was handsome in a certain polished sort of way. I sized him up to be just a little over six feet tall, around one-eighty to one-ninety in weight, and dressed as if he had stepped off the pages of GQ.

Definitely not your typical ground force terrorist, so what was he doing out in the field, and more importantly, why had he chosen to follow me? For the moment, I let that question go. My main concern was learning his identity.

I stepped closer, forcing the man farther away from the door and out of range of any curiosity seekers who might be interested in our little exchange. Then I kicked the door shut with my foot.

A quick pat-down didn’t produce any form of ID, but it did reveal a gun. A Glock. Standard weapon of choice among many government agents.

Who was this man?

I tucked the Glock behind my back into the waistband of my jeans and moved cautiously in front of him so the only light, a stark exterior bulb, shone directly into his eyes while I remained hidden in the shadows.

“What’s your name?” When he simply smiled at my question, I prodded, “I’d advise you to start talking. You have exactly five seconds to tell me why you’re following me. Who sent you?” I leveled my weapon at his chest and began counting. “One…” As much as I wanted to question him about my brother, I didn’t dare. Not until I found out who he was working for.

“You won’t shoot me.” I took out my cuffs and stepped close enough for him to feel the weapon’s barrel against his chest. Uncertainty quickly replaced his previous cockiness.

“Turn around.” When he made no move to obey my command, I reached for his right arm and forced it quickly behind his back, effectively incapacitating him. Caught off guard, he fell back against the wall. I’d rendered him helpless in a matter of seconds. Years of training by some of the best in the business made this move second nature to me.

With the cuffs snapped securely in place, I turned him back around so I could watch his expression while I attempted to obtain answers to my questions.

“Are you out of your mind?” he forced out through clenched teeth, losing some of his cavalier attitude.

His voice held a trace of an accent. Almost indiscernible. It took me a second to place it but when I did, the man’s mystique ratcheted up another level. At some time or another, he’d lived somewhere in the Middle East, possibly Saudi Arabia. The straight blond hair he’d swept back from his face revealing startling blue eyes certainly wouldn’t place him there.

“Two…”

“You’re making a huge mistake.” I think he realized I wasn’t kidding.

“Let’s try this again, shall we?” I ignored his outburst entirely and continued with my questioning. “Who are you and why are you following me? I’d suggest you think about your answers very carefully, because you’re running out of time. You have exactly three seconds left before I call for backup and take you in for official questioning.”

My gaze slid over his tall, albeit slightly yuppie good looks. If I were to meet him on the street under different circumstances, I would figure him to be just your normal well-to-do success story.

From the cut of his dark gray business suit, right down to the four-hundred-dollar pair of Italian Moreschi shoes, the man exuded success. No one would ever mistake him for evil…until it was too late.

I found myself drawn to his ice-blue eyes. They didn’t necessarily possess the cunning of a cold-blooded killer.

“What makes you think I was following you? I could be just your average Joe out for a good time on the town.” When my arched brow revealed my skepticism, he changed his approach slightly. “Okay. Maybe I wanted to meet you. You are a very attractive woman.” When I reached for my cell phone, he quickly added, “I really wouldn’t do that, Rainie McClain.”

Rainie McClain
?

The fact that he knew my name threw me. He’d done his homework. He was prepared.

“You don’t know who you’re dealing with, Rainie. We both know you aren’t acting on any authority but your own by being out here tonight. Otherwise, this place would be crawling with agents by now.”

I ignored the truth and identified myself to the dispatcher.

“This is Special Agent Rainie McClain with the FBI, badge number 4952201. I need immediate assistance in transporting a prisoner. Send backup to the intersection of M Street Northwest and the 1200 block of Wisconsin Avenue. I’m in the alley behind the club
Electricity
.” I gave dispatch a brief rundown of the situation then asked the officer to contact my commander, Roc Branson, and have him meet me at FBI headquarters where I would be transporting my prisoner.

“Rainie, you’re making a huge mistake,” my prisoner said. “Let me go and we can smooth this over easy enough.”

I kept my weapon trained on his head and ignored his attempt to get me to let him go.

Within minutes, two uniformed officers pulled into the alley.

My prisoner glanced from the patrol car to me. “Rainie, don’t do this…please. You don’t know who you’re dealing with.” Apparently, my stalker was still trying to reason with me.

“It’s too late. Whatever you have to say, you can save it for interrogation.” I turned to the two officers, addressing the taller of the two—a young man with a crop of bright orange hair who was clearly the senior. “I need you to take him to headquarters. Don’t engage him in conversation. I’ll follow once I’ve retrieved my vehicle.”

The officer glanced questioningly at his partner, a young Latino woman who barely looked old enough to be out of the academy.

“Yes, ma’am,” they complied in unison.

I watched as they loaded my now-furious prisoner into the back of their patrol car and headed out of the alley, occasionally sounding their siren to clear the way.

I retrieved the Ford Expedition from the parking garage a few blocks over and drove through crowded streets to the J. Edgar Hoover Building on Pennsylvania Avenue.

I arrived shortly after the patrol car. “Thanks, officers,” I told them, then escorted my prisoner to the interrogation room.

I took the cuffs off. “Have a seat.”

Reluctantly he did as I asked.

“You know you have the right to remain silent, but I really suggest that you talk to me. If you cooperate, it will go easier for you. Why were you following me?” I had just begun the interrogation when Ed Peyton, the Deputy Director of the Bureau’s Anti-Terrorism Unit, walked into the room, followed closely by Roc.

Ed barely spared me a glance. “I’ll take it from here, Agent McClain.”

“I beg your pardon?” I glanced to Roc for some clarification. Roc merely shook his head as if to say ‘not here.’

Under the best of circumstances, it was hard for me to keep my dislike for Ed a secret, but when he simply waltzed into the middle of an interrogation and undermined my authority in front of a suspect, well, I had to bite my tongue to keep my opinion to myself.

“I said I’m taking over the interrogation from here. What part of that don’t you understand?” Ed’s steely eyes met mine, forcing me to my feet just so I would be on more of an even playing field with the man who was Roc’s direct commander.

BOOK: Free Fall
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