Fatal Invasion The Fatal Series #13 by Marie Force
ISBN: 9781335000439 (paperback)
ISBN: 9781488032844 (ebook)
ISBN: 9781488205453 (audiobook)
ASIN: B077ZZ212L (Kindle edition)
Release Date: February 5, 2019
First the fire, then the heat…
A brutal home invasion. Two small traumatized survivors who may have witnessed the horror. Lieutenant Sam Holland has never worked a case quite like this one, in which her eyewitnesses are five-year-old twins. But when Sam steps up in a big way for them, she risks her heart as much as her career.
While Sam and her husband, Vice President Nick Cappuano, go to battle in more ways than one for her tiny witnesses, her colleague Sergeant Tommy “Gonzo” Gonzales battles his own demons. Months of unbearable grief and despair come to a head in an unimaginable way that threatens Gonzo’s status with the department and his relationship with his fiancée, Christina.
With trouble both at the precinct and on the case, Sam struggles to keep her priorities straight at home and at work while trying not to lose her heart to her latest crime victims.
Read an excerpt
Sam was the first of her team to arrive on the scene of the smoldering fire that had demolished half a mansion in one of the District’s most exclusive neighborhoods.
“What’ve we got?” Sam asked the fire marshal when he met her at the tapeline.
“Two bodies found on the first floor of the house, both bound with zip ties at the hands and feet.”
And that, right there, made their deaths her problem. “Do we know who they are?”
He consulted his notes. “The ME will need to make positive IDs, but the house is owned by Jameson and Cleo Beauclair. I haven’t had time to dig any deeper on who they are.”
“Are we certain they were the only people in the house?” Sam asked.
“Not yet. When we arrived just after four a.m., the west side of the house, where the bodies were found, was fully engulfed. That was our immediate focus. We’ve got firefighters searching the rest of what was once a ten-thousand-square-foot home.”
“Any sign of accelerants?”
“Nothing so far, but we’re an hour into the investigation stage. Early days.”
“Has the ME been here?”
“Could I take a look inside?”
“It’s still hot in there, but I can show you the highlights—or the lowlights, such as they are.”
Sam followed him up the sidewalk to what had once been the front door. Inside the smoldering ruins of the house, she could make out the basic structure from the burned-out husk that remained. The putrid scents of smoke and death hung heavily in the air.
“That’s them there,” the fire marshal said, pointing to a space on the floor by a blackened stone fireplace where two charred bodies lay next to one another.
Sam swallowed the bile that surged to her throat. Nothing was worse, at least not in her line of work, than fire victims. Though it was the last thing she wanted to do, she moved in for a closer look, took photos of the bodies and the scene around them, then turned to face the fire marshal. “Anything else you think I ought to see?”
“Keep me posted.”
He walked away to continue his investigation while Sam went outside, carrying the horrifying images with her as she took greedy breaths of fresh air. As she reached the curb, the medical examiner’s truck arrived. She waited for a word with Dr. Lindsey McNamara.
The tall, pretty medical examiner gathered her long red hair into a ponytail as she walked over to Sam.
“Fire victims,” Sam said, shuddering.
“Good morning to you too.”
“Hands and feet bound with zip ties.”
“Here we go again,” Lindsey said with a sigh. “Looks like it was quite a house.”
“Ten thousand square feet, according to the fire marshal.”
“I’ll get you an ID and report as soon as I can.”
“Appreciate it.” Sam opened her phone and placed a call to Malone.
“I’m at the scene of the fire in Chevy Chase.”
“What’ve you got?”
“Two DOA, bound at the hands and feet, leading me to believe this was a home invasion gone bad. I need Crime Scene here ASAP.”
“I’ll call Haggerty and get them over there.”
“I want them to comb through anything and everything that wasn’t touched by the fire, and they need to do it soon before the scene is further compromised. We’ve got firefighters all over the place.”
“Got it. What’s your plan?”
“I’m going to talk to the neighbors and find out what I can about the people who lived here while I wait for Lindsey to confirm their identity.”
“Keep me posted.”
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