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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.

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Further Recommendations

Hemanth Thiyagarajan: MA'AM the story was really good as well as the plot and your catchy writing style.Would i were give a rating it would 9 out of 10A few drawbacks were that you hinted about the upocoming danger in the nd of each chapter of the beginning i felt that it was not necessary only once you could have put...

Spring: I normally don't read fiction novels, but I absolutely enjoyed reading Silent Shadows! The style is quite different from the previous fiction novels I've attempted to read.Great job!

Donna J Rinas: I thought it was a great read! A real page turner. There were lots of surprising and unexpected plot twists. The descriptive writing was very well done and you could just envision the places in your mind. Could see this being turned into a movie! I really enjoyed it. Would love to read more...

Andrea Norton: This story was so well put together. It was suspenseful, the storyline flowed perfectly and it was full of interesting twists and turns. I found myself getting very involved in the story and read it in just a few hours. I'd really like to read more of this author's work!

Deleted User: Your San Quentin episode cuts an incredible parallel to something with which I am involved. Sounds real enough. Read just the four chapters thus far. Looking forward to continuing. Roy Jenner.https://www.inkitt.com/royjennerFinished now, Great read. Well done Steve.Enjoyed it to the end.re Plot...

Juzme34: Once I started reading I didn't want to stop. A few minor grammatical errors caught my attention, but a quick edit can fix those. I found the main character's view interesting, and her thinking process a bit odd. Yet it was easy to follow her train of thought. The story ends with the reader wanti...

hannahparson11: When I downloaded this app, I expected crappy writing from amateur authors. Needless to say, I am pleasantly surprised at the stunning writing this novel presented, and the amazing plot. Worth the read.

More Recommendations

briggy1998: I really enjoyed the book, even though I had to skip a few lines, because at times it could get a bit disturbing🙆🏻😅What I would have liked is if you could have given a bit more insight into jack's and fiona's relationship, especially the epilogue was a bit short 😬Other than that an amazing story!

C.K. Bachman: Just read the first chapter. Love how the main character thinks and is conflicted over his wife and the trickery he uses on her.

Chy Clayton: "pitiable thing, much like the Native American"Blatant racism doesn't deserve a single star. Wow, what a turn off. I read the first chapter and found it to be affected and forced, much like the opening analogy.----edited 5/1/15------Yesterday was unpleasant.The attacks here have been removed al...

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