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Показать все книги автора/авторов: Brennan Allison

«Speak No Evil», Allison Brennan

Иллюстрация к книге

Evil – #1

For Trisha McKay Richins

A loyal and true friend, and the first person

I trusted enough to read my stories



AT THE VERY BEGINNING, she had seen his face and knew he would not let her live.

She couldn’t plead with him, he’d sealed her mouth shut. No way to beg, to appeal to his humanity. He had no humanity. Why hadn’t she seen it before? Had she been so blind that when he looked at her she couldn’t see the hatred, the anger, the sick lust?

She’d trusted him because she had no reason not to, but looking at him now, she saw the evil he’d hidden so well for so long.

The pain that had kept her awake for two nights had dulled, her body numb from abuse. She didn’t think about it, didn’t think about him, turned into herself, and remembered swimming at the beach. Or talking to her friends. Or how her mom was so proud of her when she graduated high school with honors.

Burning tears leaked from her eyes.

I’m so sorry, Mom.

He untied her once, to give her a bath. She was too weak to run, too tired to fight. But fierce pain reawakened when he scrubbed her body with soap, making her scream, a deep rumbling in her chest that couldn’t escape through her glued lips.

“I need to wash your body,” he told her calmly. “Just in case.”

Just in case of what? The water hurt, but it also woke her up. Maybe she had a chance. Maybe she could escape. If she could just scream, someone would come. Wouldn’t they?

She didn’t even know where she was.

He carried her back to the bed that reeked of her blood, her urine, and worse. She tried to get up, to run, but her legs gave way and she slipped to the floor. He gave an odd, coarse laugh at her weak attempt to escape before picking her up as if she weighed nothing and dropping her on the bed.

Then she saw the garbage bag.


She heard herself but no one else could as the bag came over her head. She fought him with everything she had and the bag tore.


The pain across her face was nothing compared to what she had already endured, but her strength didn’t match his. Another dark green plastic bag slid down over her face. She tried to hold her breath but couldn’t. Something else was pulled over her legs. She began to fade. She almost didn’t feel him tie up her body. She was light, a feather.

Death was her escape. There had to be something better than this, something brighter, something happy.

A heavy weight covered her body. Him. He was on top of her and she couldn’t breathe.

Plastic molded to her nose and her chest tightened.

No air…

She couldn’t fight, but her body tried. Her legs weakly kicked, her fingers clawed at the slick lining.

So tired. Can’t.

In the brief moment between life and death, when her body fought but her mind knew there was no hope, an odd peace washed over her.

I’m sorry, Mom.



Homicide detective Carina Kincaid stared at the dead, naked corpse of the young woman, avoiding the wide-eyed terror etched on her face. Her mouth was gagged, but what drew Carina’s eye was the word slut scrawled in thick black marker across her chest. A small red rose was tattooed on her left breast.

The victim lay in a disjointed fetal position, dried blood on her legs and vicious red welts on her breasts, indicating that her murder had followed a sexual assault. In California, that made the killer eligible for the death penalty. One small step toward justice, but it didn’t satisfy Carina. This Jane Doe would still be dead.

She glanced away from the body, just for a moment, and watched the waves roll up the beach. Back and forth, calming. Her cheeks stung from the early-morning salt air, but in just a few hours she’d be tugging off her windbreaker as the sun peaked over San Diego.

When she first arrived on the scene with Jim Gage, supervisor of the Forensic Field Services Unit of the San Diego Police Department, they immediately documented that the evidence had been contaminated. Three layers of heavy-duty green garbage bags had been cut away from the body. The park ranger hadn’t been able to lift what he thought was trash, so he sliced it open. What had he been thinking?

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