Smooth Lies releases this week in print on October 17th.
Here's an excerpt.
March, Black Sea, off the coast of Romania
"You won't need those tags where you're going," Riker said. Drops of tobacco juice ran down his chin and dripped onto Jake's chest. Jake Henley wanted to reach up and smack the bastard, but the bindings on his wrists prevented him from doing a lot of things he wanted to do.
Riker twisted the chain, forcing the metal to cut into Jake's skin, abrading his flesh. One more scrape wouldn't make a difference after they dumped him overboard. Riker growled and yanked at the tags. They broke free, dropping Jake's head to the deck of the small speed boat. His commanding officer, Lieutenant Colonel Amos Riker, sneered as he stuffed the dog tags into his front pocket. Waves splashed over the deck of the boat, chilling Jake to the bone.
Riker pulled Jake to his knees. Pain traveled up Jake's legs to his spine. Shit, he'd been beaten, but he wasn't beat. Riker's abuse couldn't turn him against his country. Money hadn't worked and neither would the threat of death.
"Anything you want me to tell your wife?"
Jake's throat went dry. His mind swam. Sophia knew nothing about his work, but defending her wouldn't save her. He'd learned the hard way after a week of intensive interrogations and beatings had left him with one eye swollen shut and a heavy concussion. The skin around his eye would heal if he lived, but he'd never forget the look on Riker's face when Jake told him to go to hell.
The boat rocked and Jake pitched to the deck. Pain shot up his side as Riker delivered a swift kick. Bile rose in Jake's throat. He gagged and his stomach clenched painfully but nothing came up.
"It's time. Andre, do the honors."
Andre moved forward, grasping Jake by the back of his shirt and lifting him from the deck. Andre spat in Jake's face. "I'm going to have fun with your wife."
Jake felt it rising, the rage he'd held in check for seven days. Andre's words were just another tactic, but one that worked. Jake's blood boiled. "No. You fucking bas..."
Andre's knee connected with Jake's chest, draining the air from his lungs. Jake sagged against Andre. An eerie calm settled over the boat and the hair on the back of Jake's neck stood on end. His feet lifted off the deck, and for a moment he hung over the water. An explosive breath drained the air from his lungs as an icy spray hit his face and chest.
Jake closed his eyes and said a quick prayer for Sophia. She knew nothing about the device he'd developed. Riker had it wrong, but he couldn't change the bastard's mind. Sophia was exceedingly intelligent and a damn good engineer, but she wasn't his partner on this project.
"Did you get the rope tight enough?" Riker asked
"Trust me," Andre said in a voice sounding like Jake's own.
Copyright Sara Thacker 2008