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Terror is closer to home than you think…
In Fairfax, prominent Judge Ogden Broadwater is shot and killed on the doorstep of his home. The video camera shows a slender unidentified person wearing a baseball cap. Because of his celebrity and influential friends, FBI Agent Hayes and his team are assigned to investigate the murder.
In Washington, DC, successful businessman Newton Linville is shot with a single bullet in the parking garage of his company. Again, the slender killer remains unknown.
In Delaware, Secretary of State Brendan Hickstedt is killed on his way to lunch. Passersby see a slender figure leaving the scene, but by the time the police arrive, the killer is long gone.
In Washington, DC, FBI agent Theodor Adams is kidnapped on his way home. Street surveillance shows four men grabbing the young agent and dragging him into a van. The kidnappers do not demand a ransom, and the leads that the FBI team with Nicolas Hayes follow come to nothing.
As pressure mounts from his superiors, Hayes is more concerned about his missing partner. Can he find him and the mysterious killer?
The FBI agents crossed the street and the neighboring properties. Should Hall be watching the street, he wouldn’t see them coming. Matthew felt butterflies in his stomach and wished he had Nicolas at his side. Theodor looked and acted like the newbie everyone took him to be. He didn’t have experience and coolness. Matthew prayed that Hall was heading his way. Even if he had to take the fire, Matthew preferred being in danger over watching the rookie getting caught in the crosshairs. There was no doubt that Hall, a killer of five people, was armed and batshit-crazy. He had already killed eight people and in no case he had been squeamish about shooting. One more victim would not change the verdict.
Quietly, Theodor and Matthew crossed the low fence into the premises. They ducked under an open window and stopped to listen to the conversation inside.
“Stay there and don’t move!” a rough male voice hollered. “If you move, you’re dead!”
Matthew frowned. The voice was close.
“We do what you want,” a female voice replied, sobbing. A baby wailed loudly, and she tried to soothe him or her. “Please, do not hurt us.”
Matthew made eye contact with Theodor.
The young agent looked grim and was panting heavily. He’s right there, he mouthed. Right in that room.
Matthew nodded and frowned instead of asking a question.
I can take him out.
Matthew’s eyes widened. How?
Jump. Theodor pointed toward the open window. I can jump right into the room.
Matthew was flabbergasted. He couldn’t imagine his partner climbing up toward the window fast enough to point a gun at Hall. What do you mean?
Theodor flashed a smile and leaned the rifle against the house. I’ve done that many times. It’s not that high.
Do you need help?
Do you know leapfrogging? Theodor showed him what he meant. Then it’s even easier.
Matthew thought that he would need a leap of faith instead of a frog to let his partner do this stunt. He cocked his head, pondering but knowing that any method that led to success was welcome. He holstered his gun and pressed his hands against the wall below the window, slightly bent. He braced for the impact and hoped his back would not break with Theodor’s weight. He glanced over his shoulder. Theodor took three steps back, nodded, and then ran toward him, made a big step up to land with his right foot on Matthew’s lower back and was gone a moment later. When Matthew looked up, Theodor had already crossed the windowsill. He heard a shot being fired and a body tumbling to the floor.
“It’s okay, I’m with the FBI,” Theodor said. He reappeared at the window, grinning. “He’s out cold, might be dying. The woman and her baby are okay. Do you want to come up?”
“I’d prefer entering through the door, if you don’t mind.”