Kate Fisher wants to move on from grief. Her five-year-old daughter died from bone cancer and she split with her uncaring husband. When she meets with Mark Roberts, suffering his own emotional turmoil after parting with his lover and the death of her son in a house fire, she believes she’s found the perfect person to help her forget her past, and him forget his. They fall in love, and she becomes pregnant. Her baby comes early-but so too does a grievous shock that tears to the roots of her raw emotions, threatening the end of her new happiness and the safety of her one surviving daughter.
One day in November, when a few snow flakes had settled on the ground, and the air temperature had fallen to two degrees below freezing point, a man wearing a black canvas jacket, with a black scarf wrapped tight around his face, took a step from the shadows and watched the flames engulf the child’s bedroom. For several seconds they licked around the windowsill then shot upwards, making silhouettes, dancing against the dark night sky. Soon, the top of the house became engulfed in a fireball. He knew nobody would survive, and pulled the collar of his jacket up around his neck, turned, and started to run back through the dense woods. The snow had begun to thicken, but he didn’t notice, his mind full of what he’d achieved and what he still had to do. He ran fast, dodging and twisting to avoid trees and bushes. Twigs and bracken snapped loud beneath his pounding feet. The wail from the sirens from the emergency services’ vehicles deafened him, telling him they were near. He started to sprint.
Emma turned to the left and gasped. Big red sparks exploded with ferocity in the night sky above the roofs of the houses in the next road. Her road, where she lived, but she couldn’t reach it. The traffic in front and behind had ground to a standstill: blocked solid. People had left their cars to gape at the spectacle: large, intense, and furious, almost like a firework display.
I have to get there. Oh my God, it could be our house. She gagged, and thought she’d throw up. Her hand shook as she reached for the car key, almost like she suffered from Parkinson’s diseases or a neurological disorder. She slammed the door behind her, and started to run along the grass verge, passing the stationary cars. A searchlight from a helicopter, hovering low over the fire, shone through the dense smoke, making an eerie sort of haze. At the top of the road, she turned left, and ran another two hundred yards until she reached the first house in the street where she lived.
‘I don’t believe it. It can’t be.’ Thick smoke shrouded the houses. Two fire appliances stood in front of her home. An ambulance with its doors wide open was parked next to them. Emma stumbled a few paces forward and collapsed. She was sick. Vomit covered her face. She forced herself onto her hands and knees and tried to crawl forward. Chunks of sharp gravel and stones dug into her flesh. The pain made her yell, and she made herself stand up. She staggered two paces forward then fell over again.
‘Oh God, someone help me, that’s my house burning down there.’ Tears poured down her face. ‘My son, my son, my partner,’ she sobbed. ‘Where are they? Please someone help me. Please, please, please…’
‘You alright, luv?’ a policewoman asked a few minutes later, her hand on Emma’s shoulder.
Emma twisted her head up a little. ‘Where’s Sean? Where’s my son? Where’s John? That’s my house that’s burnt down.’ The policewoman knelt down and pulled Emma up to a sitting position. Emma’s head flopped onto the policewoman’s shoulder. She started to sob again.
Night Running is coming soon.
Harry Fingle stories
The first story.
Giant international corporations hire hitmen. The CIA and MI6 sanction immoral and illegal skulduggery. People die. Harry Fingle–an investigative journalist, searching for his brother’s killer–is appalled, and tries to publish his findings. He’s gagged, an assassin is briefed, and his ex-lover is stabbed.
Harry’s a pawn in a real-life game of chess played out by the security services.
The second story.
The wrong man is murdered in a café in Istanbul. A feared Russian assassin is mortified and vows to right his mistake. Harry Fingle’s lover becomes over-inquisitive, and his spy-friend tells him to watch out.
Tension mounts. The Russians hire a Serbian hitman as a back-up executioner and Harry begins to question his trusted spy-friend’s loyalties.
The final story
Murderers walk free from court, juries are nobbled, spooks leak secrets, police fix investigations, prisoners escape, and the media stay silent. Zero One is dominant. One man controls it.
A lingering love affair, Harry Fingle’s discovery of the name of Zero One’s chief, and the breakout from jail of Harry’s nemesis–the feared Russian assassin Grigoriy Nabutov–make for a tense and emotional conclusion to the trilogy.
Harry Fingle box set
Playing Harry, Assasination Continuum, Zero One in one three-book box set.
Finished, being edited, and will be published later this year
Wattpad. Read for free:
Selected chapters from the three books in The Harry Fingle Collection–Playing Harry, Assassination Continuum, and Zero One–plus the The Harry Fingle Collection-trailer in full.
Plus three complete books in the Originals series.