Mysterious Circumstances. Rita Herron

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Mysterious Circumstances - Rita Herron

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      Images of Olivia flashed through Craig’s head

      Then another image appeared—the attacker waiting for her when she’d arrived home, ambushing her. The Savannah Squares and graveyard whirled past. Concrete tombstones and monuments stood in rows, the symbols of death macabre in the murky gray light. The fear that Olivia might be severely injured twisted his insides.

      He’d told her he’d take care of things—had promised to protect her….

      But he’d failed and now someone had tried to kill her.

      It seemed like an eternity, but he finally reached the street to her apartment. As soon as he reached the porch stoop, he saw her lying on the ground near the flower bed.

      “Olivia, can you hear me?” Craig’s throat jammed as he knelt and checked her pulse. It was weak and thready, but she was alive….

      Mysterious Circumstances

      Rita Herron


      MILLS & BOON

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      Award-winning author Rita Herron wrote her first book when she was twelve, but didn’t think real people grew up to be writers. Now she writes so she doesn’t have to get a real job. A former kindergarten teacher and workshop leader, she traded her storytelling for kids for romance, and writes romantic comedies and romantic suspense. She lives in Georgia with her own romance hero and three kids. She loves to hear from readers, so please write her at P.O. Box 921225, Norcross, GA 30092-1225, or visit her Web site at


      Olivia Thornbird—A reporter who wants to know the truth about her parents’ deaths—even if it kills her.

      Special Agent Craig Horn—A tough, hard-edged FBI agent without a conscience—until he meets Olivia Thornbird.

      Dr. William Thornbird—Olivia’s father died researching the strange virus killing innocent people in Savannah. But did he take the truth about the virus and his wife’s death with him to his grave?

      Dr. Ruth Thornbird—Her death twenty years ago was suspicious—could it be related to the current rash of virus/suicides in Savannah?

      Senator Horn—Craig’s father will do anything to protect his reputation, even keep secrets….

      Dr. Hal Oberman—The Department of Public Safety’s job is to protect the public. Is Dr. Oberman protecting himself instead?

      Dr. Martin Shubert—He is suffering long-term effects of the virus that killed Olivia’s mother—but was he responsible for the virus’s creation?

      Dr. Fred Fulton—Thornbird’s coworker is racing against time to study the virus and create an antidote. Will he be able to do so in time to save Olivia?

      DJ Dunce—A hired killer. But who is he working for, and why is he targeting Olivia?

      Iskha Milaski—An internationally known terrorist, is he responsible for the virus that is being used to murder innocent people?



      Chapter One

      Chapter Two

      Chapter Three

      Chapter Four

      Chapter Five

      Chapter Six

      Chapter Seven

      Chapter Eight

      Chapter Nine

      Chapter Ten

      Chapter Eleven

      Chapter Twelve

      Chapter Thirteen

      Chapter Fourteen

      Chapter Fifteen

      Chapter Sixteen

      Chapter Seventeen

      Chapter Eighteen



      Too many people had died already.

      Ruth Thornbird had to tell someone the truth about what was going on. She’d come to this hellhole of a place hoping to help eradicate disease and had devoted her every day and night to the project, traveling to un-godly primitive areas to save lives.

      But she’d been brought to Egypt under false pretenses. And three weeks into her mission, her orders had changed.

      Now she was investigating a strange outbreak of an unnamed virus that was killing people in droves. A disease she suspected could have been prevented.

      Worse, she also suspected innocent people were being used as test subjects without their knowledge.

      Yanking the sterile gloves from her hands, she tossed them into the bin designated to collect biohazardous materials and rushed toward the small cubicle serving as her temporary office. Darkness bathed the cramped space, the desk lamp shedding the only light from a low-wattage bulb. The clock read nearly midnight. She’d purposely waited until everyone was gone so she wouldn’t get caught.

      Once she phoned the proper authorities and sent them her suspicious findings, she’d ask to return stateside. As much as she wanted to help cure this disease, for the first time in her life she actually feared what she might find—that there was no cure.

      And that her own government was to blame for the outbreak.

      Guilt slammed into her for being a coward and wanting to run, and she hesitated, but the angelic face of her eight-year-old daughter Olivia flashed in her mind, and her fingers tightened around the handset. She desperately wanted to hug her child. To forget that horrors like this existed.

      The door squeaked open behind her. She jerked around, shocked to see a man enter and move into the shadows. Her nerves on edge, she searched his face for recognition, but he wore a surgical suit and mask. The only visible part of his body—his eyes.

      They stared at her with a coldness that sent a chill down her spine.

      “Who are you?” she asked.

      “That doesn’t matter,” he said in a low voice. “But I can’t let you leave here, Dr. Thornbird.”

      The low timbre of his tone made her stomach clench. She reached for her purse, but the man vaulted forward, knocked it from her hand, then manacled her wrist. When she saw the hypodermic in his hand, her blood turned to ice.

      He lifted the needle so the tip glinted in front of her face. “You know what’s in here, don’t you?”

      A sob caught in her throat. She not only knew, but she’d witnessed the deadly results of its effects. The bodies she’d been studying. The horrible way the people had suffered. The inevitable death.


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