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Hidden Bloodlines by Karen Van Den Heuvel

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  • The J.C. Classified Series

    Gutsy Colorado attorney Victoria Bailey has just successfully prosecuted a serial killer—or has she? Betrayed by her college sweetheart, she's vowed to remain single and dependent on no one but herself. All goes according to plan until her best friend's wedding rehearsal. A missing groom, a murdered trial assistant, and an unexpected encounter with two men from her past bring her well-controlled life crashing down.

    Highly decorated, retired Navy SEAL Christian Van der Kruis has seen much death and is ready to experience a new life. Now part of a global special ops organization, he attends a wedding, never expecting to be brought face-to-face with death and the only woman he ever loved…Victoria.

    Rating: Sweet
    Page Count: 298
    Word Count: 71230
    978-1-5092-0878-4 Paperback
    978-1-5092-0879-1 Digital

    Excerpt

    “Victoria prosecuted the wrong man.”

    Sandy Forrester pressed the cell phone closer to her ear, trying to hear the strained voice as she dropped her bags just inside the hotel room door. She was out of breath. Traffic leaving Denver was hectic, but she’d made it in time for the wedding festivities at Eustis Park’s historic Preston Hotel. “Dennis, is that you?”

    “Yeah, but Victoria is in danger.” He coughed.

    “What kind of danger?” Sandy grabbed the doorjamb to steady herself while her eyes rested on the pad and pen on the end table next to the bed. Carefully stepping over her bags, she grabbed the writing tools. “Did you hear me? What kind of danger?” Her voice rose an octave.

    No answer.

    “Dennis, are you all right?”

    “No. I need help.” His raspy voice was barely audible.

    “Where are you?”

    “At the hotel, in the spa. Please come. Warn Victoria.”

    “What’s wrong?” The line went dead. What’s going on here? Victoria couldn’t have prosecuted the wrong man. I saw him. I worked that case. That man was pure evil, but we put him away. How can Victoria be in danger? From whom? An accomplice?

    Sandy scribbled one word and checked her watch. 2:17 p.m. The rehearsal dinner was at 6:00.

    She tried to steady her hands while dialing Victoria. “You have reached Victoria. Please leave a message. Beep.”

    “It’s Sandy. You must be at the bridal tea party. Call me. It’s urgent.”

    I have to get to Dennis. He’s not one to cry wolf, and he needs help. But what is wrong with him? He sounds injured, but why contact me? Why not just dial 911? Unless Victoria is in imminent danger…Victoria please call me! Sandy called the front desk. “I believe one of our wedding guests may be hurt at the spa. Can someone meet me there?”

    “Absolutely, ma’am. I’ll send our wedding coordinator over right away. She’s a medic.” The voice of the gentleman at the front desk radiated concern.

    “Thank you.”

    Running out the door, she dialed Peter. Voice mail again. “Hey. Was hoping I didn’t get your voice mail. I just received a strange call from Dennis. He’s at the spa.” Sandy paused, contemplating the worst. “And I think he’s hurt. Call me as soon as you get this.”

    Sandy grabbed the purse she’d dropped to the floor and jumped into the elevator she left minutes ago. I was just admiring this Otis elevator. Now I wish I could get this old thing to move faster. She dug through her purse hoping to locate her pepper spray while the elevator made its slow descent. She found the spray and let out a sigh of relief. Dennis’s call scared her. Thankfully, I have some protection.

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Hidden Bloodlines

Hidden Bloodlines

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