Deadly Game(2)

By: Christine Feehan

"Ekabela was taken out anyway. They just brought in another shooter and I didn't get the pleasure of putting the guy in the ground."

Ken frowned at his twin. "You're making it personal."

"The senator made it personal when he delivered you to Ekabela so that sadist could torture you. I'm not going to pretend. I want the senator dead. Ken. I don't mind looking the other way if someone wants to slit his throat. If he lives and continues the way he is. he's bound to become president, or at least vice president, and then where are we going to be? He knows we know he's dirty. The first thing he'll do is send us on a suicide mission."

"Like when they wanted to send us back to the Congo to kill Ekabela?" He had to stop looking at those carcasses. He was going to get sick, his stomach churning in protest. He could almost hear the steady drip of blood even though he was yards away. It ran like a small stream down through the boards and collected in a dark, shiny pool. He tried to shut off the sound of his own screaming in his head, but his skin was crawling and each scar throbbed as if every nerve remembered the steady slice of the relentless knife.

"Ekabela deserved to die." Jack said. "He more than deserved it and you know it. He leveled villages, committed genocide, ran the drug industry and stole from the UN when they tried to get food and medicine to the area."

"That's right, but look who stepped into his shoes. General Armine, more feared and hated than Ekabela. and how strange that the transition of power went so smoothly."

"What the hell are you trying to say, Ken?"

Ken looked up at the clouds obscuring the sliver of moon, watching them spin slowly and lazily, a dark veil with nowhere to go. He remembered the pattern of the clouds in the jungle, the sway of the canopy and the smell of his own sweat and blood. "I'm saying we never make things personal, but someone has been doing just that for us. I don't like it and I like this job even less. I think we're being set up again. I just don't believe in coincidences, and this is a huge one."

Jack swore under his breath and fit his eye to the scope, carefully surveying the mountain cabin several hundred yards away. "He's in there with his wife. I could take him out and we could just walk away clean; no one would be the wiser."

"Just our entire team."

Jack flashed a small, humorless grin at his brother. "They'd help me and you know it. They detest the man nearly as much as I do."

"Someone wanted Armine in a position of power. Someone here, in the United States. I've thought a lot about this, Jack. Every assignment we've been sent on in the past year has created a void, a hole for some other lowlife to step into. From Colombian drug lords to General Ekabela in the Congo, we're creating a vacancy in those positions of power and someone is manipulating that. I just don't happen to think it's the president of the United States." He cast his brother a quick glance. "Do you?"

Jack swore again. "No. I think we're screwed."

"I can't ask Logan if the admiral gave him the order face to face, because Jesse Calhoun contacted him, said it was urgent, and Logan went to see him. Jesse's been conducting an investigation into the Ekabela-Senator tie. That's why Kadan Montague took his place on the team."

"I thought Jesse was still in a wheelchair," Jack said. "The last I heard he was inactive and doing physical therapy."

"Well, apparently he's working again. He's one of the more powerful psychics on our team and he's got brains. The admiral wasn't about to give him up. It was a hell of a thing what they did to him. Between enhancement and the psychic experiments and Jesse's legs, he got the short end of the stick."

"We all did. When we volunteered for the psychic testing," Jack said, "we had no idea we were pointing a gun at our heads. We're screwed, Ken. We're in so deep, hell, all the GhostWalkers are. What have we gotten ourselves into?"

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