Here’s a taste of what to expect from my next novel. For those who have read my previous books you’ll notice the immediate change in voice and tense. Singularity will be written in the more conventional past tense and has a much less descriptive voice to it.
Without further ado, I give you a sneak peek at Chapter 1 set in the year 2035……..
Metal screeching and glass popping welcomed Nathan Miller to the spot Mickey Spagnuolo was killed.
The hydraulics of the car crusher whined as they flattened three cars into a slab of steel.
What a way to go.
“The boss will see you now.”
A hand on his shoulder more than the words got Nathan moving. Through twilight gloom he followed the bodyguards up the metal staircase.
It wobbled under their weight and made him glad he couldn’t hear it groan over the scrapyard noise.
At the top, the two guards stood aside to usher him into an office overlooking the yard.
“Nate,” Police Commissioner Michael Logue said, “You’re just in time.”
Pointing to the Vid Projection Screen opposite the window he asked, “You heard about this bombing in D.C.? Thirty-one dead at a Hayes campaign fundraiser.”
Logue shook his head. “This country has gone to hell. We can’t even protect a sitting President anymore.”
Looking around the room Nathan said, “Heard she wasn’t the target of that. Wasn’t it some researcher for AmeriGEN?”
With a wicked grin, Logue turned the screen off and said, “No big loss then I suppose; Evil Empire can afford to lose a few. This bill in the Senate passes I’m sure they’ll find more.”
Nathan stroked his chin. “No offense Commissioner, but you didn’t drag my ass out here to discuss current affairs did you?”
Again the smile. “No Nate, I didn’t.”
“Then what are we doing here?”
“I love it here,” Logue said, “This is where I solve problems.”
Nathan nodded. “Yeah…I remember Mickey.”
A whump from outside resonated through the floor and shook the walls. Behind Nathan the guards slipped into position.
“What are you playing at here Commissioner?”
“Like I said—this is where I solve problems.” He sighed. “And lately Nate, you’ve become a problem.”
The guards grabbed Nathan following a nod from Logue. Reacting on instinct he shoved the left guard against the wall. His hand formed a vice around his throat.
“Enough.” Logue aimed his revolver at Nathan’s head. “Let him go Nate. They’re only going to search you.”
“What the hell is this? You don’t trust me now?”
“Right now I trust no one.” Keeping the revolver dead center he said, “Arms out, palms up.”
Nathan ground his teeth for a moment before he released his hold. The guard dropped to his knees coughing.
A moment later he lunged for Nathan but Logue stopped him as he said, “I wouldn’t if I were you. Trust me; this man will take you to pieces.”
The guard rubbed at his throat while Nathan gave him a sarcastic smile.
The guards patted him down as Logue said, “When we first met I knew you’d either become one hell of a cop or die trying.”
“That a fact,” Nathan said, “How disappointing for you then.”
Logue smiled. “Nah. Way I figure it, you were one hell of a cop before you almost died on that subway trying to be a hero. Lucky for you we could save you.”
Nathan glared at him as the guards continued their search. “If that’s what you want to call it.”
Logue made a face. “Still angry about that huh?”
The guard gave Nathan a strange look as he felt the steel in his left arm where a bone should be.
“Come on Nate,” Logue said, “You’re better this way. It’s remarkable; I can’t even tell what parts are you. How much of you is cybernetics? The entire left side was it?”
“Left eye, cheek bone, jaw, shoulder, arm, hand, six ribs, and the leg from the knee down.”
Logue whistled. “Remarkable.”
Once the guards left Logue asked, “Would you like a drink?”
“I’d like to know why I’m here. You really think you can get me into that crusher?”
Logue smiled at this while laughing under his breath. “Take a seat and we’ll get started.”
Turning the VPS on Logue displayed the King’s Ransom—a popular blog site run by Alexis King. After a moment he loaded the most recent post.
It began full of accusation and contempt.
“Tomorrow will be a shameful day for Union City when Nathan Miller returns to active duty with the UCPD. A thug with a badge and a gun, this city has lived under his ‘protection’ for far too long.
“As was reported here a month ago, Miller is at the center of an illicit operation of racketeering, extortion, money laundering, obstruction of justice, and a protection ring selling police badges out for hire.
“None of these charges have been disproved and yet his suspension has been lifted because fear and intimidation have bred silence.
“But no more. He’s a disgrace to the uniform, the police department, and the city at large. The Ransom will not rest until this criminal is brought to justice. I urge my followers to join me in petitioning the mayor’s office to have Nathan Miller jailed for his crimes.
“Our police service should not have to deal with this infamy, but so long as they insist upon protecting the very criminals they are rightfully charged with arresting—we will make them infamous!”
“Thoughts?” Logue asked.
Dismissive Nathan said, “She’s nothing.”
“Nothing that got you suspended.”
“Because somebody talked to her.” Nathan narrowed his gaze. “It won’t happen again.”
“You know who talked?”
Logue leaned back with a sigh. “Well until then something needs to be done about this. It’s not nothing, and it’s a short walk from you to me.
“She wants to report about fear and intimidation I say it’s time she experienced it. Shut her up…or make her disappear. I don’t care which. We run this city and she’s not going to change that. Get this done.”
Nathan stood and turned with a nod.
“And one other thing Nate.” Logue smiled. “Welcome back.”
Feel free to offer your comments and thoughts!