Get Free Copy

100 free copies left

This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.

0
Free copy left
You can read our best books
Gregg Hurwitz would love your feedback! Got a few minutes to write a review?
Write a Review

Orphan X

By Gregg Hurwitz All Rights Reserved ©

Thriller

Trial By Fire

Evan’s twelve- year- old body is stiff in the cushy passenger seat of the black sedan as he is driven in silence. His cheek is split and his temple bruised. Blood slides warmly down his neck, mixing with panic sweat. Raw skin rings his wrists where the handcuffs were. 

His heartbeat thunders in his chest, his head. 

He uses all his will to give nothing away. 

He has been in the car only five minutes. The leather smells expensive. 

The driver has given his name, Jack Johns. But nothing else. 

An old guy, at least fifty- something, with a wide, handsome face. He’s built square like a catcher and has a baseball squint to match. 

Jack tugs a handkerchief from his rear pants pocket, fluffs it out, and offers it across the console. “For your cheek.” 

Evan looks at the fine linen. “The blood’ll stain it.” 

Jack’s face registers amusement. “It’s okay.” 

Evan wipes his face. He was the smallest of the kids, the last one picked for sports. It was only through a savage set of challenges that he found his way into this seat, that he’d managed to get himself chosen. 

None of them had known what to make of the Mystery Man when he materialized at the edge of the cracked basketball courts, eyeing the boys as they’d played and fought. Hidden behind Ray- Bans, dragging his fingers along the chain- link, smoking cigarette after cigarette. He walked slowly, never in a rush, and yet every time he seemed to vanish as quickly as he’d appeared. Theories abounded. He was Chester the Molester. A rich businessman looking to adopt. A dealer in human organs on the black market. A recruiter for the Greek mob. 

Evan had been willing to take the leap. 

He has been taken out of circulation as surely as if he’d been zapped off the streets by a flying saucer. 

Trial by fire, yes— a recruitment of some sort, but for what, Evan still has no idea. 

All he knows is wherever he is heading now has to be better than what’s behind him in East Baltimore. His stomach gives off a rumble that embarrasses him even here, even now. He glances at himself in the side mirror. He looks malnourished. Maybe where he’s going, food will be abundant. 

Or maybe he’ll be the food. 

He works up his nerve. Clears his throat. “What do you want me for?” he asks. 

“I can’t tell you that yet.” Jack drives in silence for a time, then seems to realize that his answer isn’t satisfactory for a kid in Evan’s position. “I may not tell you everything right away,” he adds in a tone that stops shy of apologetic, “but I will never lie to you.” 

Evan studies him. Decides to take him at his word. “Am I gonna get hurt?” 

Jack drives on, looking dead ahead. “Sometimes,” he says.

Continue Reading Next Chapter
Further Recommendations

Darren Powell: Very nice read. Lots of surprising treats from: Schrodinger’s cat and dervish dance forms; to sensei masters and brownian motion. I wasn't expecting this, so it was a pleasant discovery.Also liked the 'cross-over' events connecting one character's/or group's journey to another. I like how that wa...

Alex Reltin: This is a great story! I love how well you go into detail and emotions of Capri, and Mel. You have amazing dialogue and overall it's just a thrill to read!The only critique I could find is that some of the paragraphs should be separated. For example:-"If Nia would have just let me take the car an...

AGrace: I really liked this. It was different and I loved all the characters. The crystals were a cool idea and i love reading about witches.

Alex Rushmer: I really love your writing style in this story. Usually the whole narration from a journal sort of thing doesn't work for me, but you really pull it off here. I like the main character's blatant way of putting things. I think that it lends a lot to his character and to the story. You tell it like...

pikagirl311: Katie Masters has definite skill when it comes to plot work and characters. The story is well-paced and pulls you along with the tide, keeping you hooked until the very end. The only reason I did not give it five stars across the board is due to a few minor quibbles with misspellings and such lik...

Ali Albazaz: I started reading "Caged" few hours ago and I'm on chapter 7 now. Caged is definitely one of the most addictive stories I've ever read. Thank you so much for writing this novel.

Bboyjoon: A brilliant but unsettling story about 5 murders committed by a serial killer. This novel scared me a little bit and I have to commend you for being able to do that. I wanted to know if you’ve actually met a serial killer before. I mean the way you’ve described the mind of a psychopath is extreme...

europeanlove: I gotta hand it to you. I love reading. I read books everyday. When the book is good I can read it in probably 13 hours. Your story was amazing. Great prose, very imaginative. Incredible dialogue. I am deeply impressed. Keep it up.

demonwolfproductions: I really enjoyed this book, it kept me thrilled right to the end. My first book on this app and I loved it! The way the story drew out and how the plot twisted at the end was simply amazing. I couldn't stop reading!

More Recommendations

AJDay: Hello JaimePAvane,So, this is my first review on this site, and I am glad I found your story. I like where you are going with it and I am curious to see what future chapters look like. Firstly, your narrator; I love that she is describing not just her life but the world around her. Obviously a wo...

Jan Imonti: Loved the story, but didn't like the delivery...had to read this on my computer on line. Wasn't able to download it to my kindle. Excellent story, lots of twists and turns. Fairly quick read. Love the versitility of Mitchell's writing. Keep up with the great mysteries.

This story wasn't for you ?
Look at our most viral stories!
King's Lament

FreakyPoet: "you made me laugh, made me cry, both are hard to do. I spent most of the night reading your story, captivated. This is why you get full stars from me. Thanks for the great story!"

The Cyneweard

Sara Joy Bailey: "Full of depth and life. The plot was thrilling. The author's style flows naturally and the reader can easily slip into the pages of the story. Very well done."

This story wasn't for you ?
Look at our most viral story!
Spectra

Ro-Ange Olson: "Loved it and couldn't put it down. I really hope there is a sequel. Well written and the plot really moves forward."