"When darkness is at its darkest, a star shines the brightest." ~ Louise Philippe
Bleeding Heart had always been a tumultuous city but in the past year since he had been there, Jack could swear that it had grown twice in size.
And with a population of a little under half that of Boston, its streets were bustling roadways of activity. Skyscrapers here actually scraped the sky, reaching towards the beating sun during the day and yearning for the speckled stars at night.
Anyone who was anyone or owned anything had property or business in Bleeding Heart. That's just how it was. People came from miles around to trade, sell, and deal in other dubious pastimes.
To say the least, it was the perfect conducive environment to cultivate crime.
Which meant the Federal Bureau of Investigation had already staked its claim in the middle of the city.
Jack shaded his eyes from the glaring sun reflecting off the towers of glass surrounding him. He craned his neck to watch Will lead a struggling David Jameson up the concrete steps and inside the newly erected Bureau building.
Jack glanced over his shoulder to see the retreating figure of Coldwater. After the four hour drive to the city, she had been all but ready to vacate the cramped car. As soon as the vehicle came to a halt, she had dashed out.
Unsurprisingly, she absolutely refused to step one foot inside the FBI Headquarters. She said that she was pretty sure if she went inside, they would never let her leave a free woman.
Which left Jack.
Standing on the steps of the entrance and wishing he was anywhere else.
Behind the doors was the unknown. He was in for a fierce tongue lashing that rivaled the forces of a hurricane. The Commissioner could not be happy with how things turned out.
After all, there was the dead body of Silvia Praxton and the very much alive body of V.C. Coldwater to worry about. He couldn't decide which one would get him in more trouble.
Given, any reprimand he received would probably be valid. It was his own fault for getting in bed with Doctor Coldwater.
In a metaphorical sense, thank you very much.
But, regardless, it didn't mean that he was looking forward to it.
Sucking in a breath and accepting his fate, Jack pushed open the double doors and walked to his execution.
As a severe-looking woman whose graying hair was pulled back in a rigid chignon that hugged the nape of her neck in a tight embrace, Commissioner Niña Velázquez was a political powerhouse. A white skunk stripe in her hair ran smoothly through her hair, starting at one temple and following the curve of her skull.
The blue shoulder pads of her uniform broadened her shoulder and gave her the appearance of furious bull, widening its stance before charging.
At this precise moment, Jack could definitively say he would rather be facing her animal counterpart. Then he would be able to run away.
Standing just an inch over five feet, the woman in front of him shouldn't have been imposing in the slightest.
However, she intimidated Jack more than all the drill sergeants he had ever encountered.
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Eridanus Flooding (WATTY 2018 WINNER)Mystery / Thriller
Commander Jack Rhodes is a retired Navy Seal. Well. Retired isn't what he would call it. More like fired. Yes. Fired would be the correct choice of word. No one retires at the age of 32. When a mission went wrong, leaving Jack as the only survivor...