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Authors: Martina Cole

Faces

BOOK: Faces
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FACES
 
 
MARTINA COLE
 
 
headline
 
Copyright © 2007 Martina Cole
 
 
The right of Martina Cole to be identified as the Author
of the Work has been asserted by her in accordance with the
Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988.
 
 
Apart from any use permitted under UK copyright law, this publication
may only be reproduced, stored, or transmitted, in any form, or by any
means, with prior permission in writing of the publishers or, in the case of
reprographic production, in accordance with the terms of licences issued by
the Copyright Licensing Agency.
 
 
First published as an Ebook by Headline Publishing Group in 2008
 
 
All characters in this publication are fictitious and any resemblance to real
persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.
 
 
Every effort has been made to fulfil requirements with regard to
producing copyright material. The author and publisher will be glad
to rectify any omissions at the earliest opportunity.
 
 
Cataloguing in Publication Data is available from the British Library
 
eISBN : 978 0 7553 5066 7
 
 
This Ebook produced by Jouve Digitalisation des Informations
 
 
HEADLINE PUBLISHING GROUP
An Hachette Livre UK Company
338 Euston Road
London NW1 3BH
 
Table of Contents
 
 
 
 
 
 
Martina Cole is the No. 1 bestselling author of fourteen hugely successful novels. Her most recent,
Close
, went straight to No. 1 in hardback and paperback.
The Take
won the British Book Award for Crime Thriller of the Year, and was a No. 1
Sunday Times
hardback bestseller, as well as a No. 1 bestseller in paperback.
The Know
was selected by Channel 4’s
Richard & Judy
as one of the Top Ten Best Reads of 2003.
Maura’s Game
,
Faceless
and
The Graft
shot straight to No. 1 on the
Sunday Times
bestseller lists, and total sales of Martina’s novels are now at nearly eight million copies.
Dangerous Lady
and
The Jump
have gone on to become hugely popular TV drama series and several of her other novels are in production for TV. Martina Cole has a son and daughter, and she lives in Essex.
Highly acclaimed for her hard-hitting, uncompromising and haunting writing, as well as her phenomenal success, Martina Cole is the only author who dares to tell it like it is.
Praise for Martina Cole’s bestsellers:
‘Cole has the amazing talent of making characters appear larger than life. Another fabulous effort’
Sun
 
‘Right from the start, she has enjoyed unqualified approval for her distinctive and powerfully written fiction’
The Times
 
‘A masterpiece of plotting, characterisation and drama... Terrific stuff from a terrific lady’
Mirror
 
‘Martina Cole again explores the shady criminal underworld, a setting she is fast making her own’
Sunday Express
 
‘Martina Cole pulls no punches, writes as she sees it, refuses to patronise or condescend to either her characters or fans’
Independent on Sunday
DEDICATION
 
For Natalia Whiteside, my first granddaughter, the heart of my heart.
I have been blessed with my children, and with my grandchildren, and also with my daughter-in-law Karina.
Life, I realise, is all about what you leave behind, and the people you leave behind, when you go. God is good, and nobody knows that better than I do. My mum always said that God pays back debts without money, that what goes around comes around. I have the family I dreamed about all my life, and it’s growing larger and stronger with each passing day.
I wish love, luck and happiness to all my readers, and I thank God for all the good in my life and for the happiness I encounter on a daily basis. It wasn’t always like that, but I do know that the secret of real happiness is enjoying the good times while you can, and making the most of the time you spend with the people you love.
 
And for a special friend, Eve Pacitto. A wonderful woman.
She was always there for anyone who needed a friend, and she was a good friend to me over the years. She was kindness itself, and she always put others before herself. I’ll miss her and our lovely lunches. My heart goes out to the two Peters.
 
For nanny Donna never to be forgotten.
It was a privilege to know you and to be your friend. Life will be so much poorer without you. God bless you and keep you, a star among stars.
And a very special mention for dear friend Diana, she really is my No. 1 fan, as I am hers. A real mate, a real character and a much-loved woman. She has a wonderful family and a wonderful personality, and I feel honoured to be your friend. Chin up, mate, and love and hugs.
And also for Delly, a sister we would all love to have.
Prologue
December 2006
 
Mary Cadogan was lying on her bed. She was frightened, but then she was always frightened. Frightened her husband would get nicked, and even more frightened that he wouldn’t.
She didn’t want to advertise the fact that she was lying here, fully dressed, on a freezing December night, waiting for the man who was more than capable of ending her life, physically as well as emotionally. Mary’s breath was heavy in the room; it had the rancid smell of the habitual drinker, it was sour, it was disgusting, but no one ever mentioned that. Her drinking, like everything else about her life, was not something to be talked about openly. But everyone in her orbit was aware that no amount of breath mints or chewing gum would ever really mask it. Mary’s life made them all feel inadequate, especially Mary herself.
Danny Boy Cadogan could make the most hardened criminal nervous and paranoid, especially if Danny decided he wanted to talk to them about something. Danny could make the most innocent of statements sound like a declaration of war, and the most innocuous of comments into a terrifying and threatening reality.
Mary Cadogan felt the usual tightening in her chest that always accompanied the mentioning of her husband’s name. The fact that he had the same effect on everyone did little to calm her nerves. She had seen him in action, close up and personal, for years, and she knew that anyone with an ounce of brain tissue would not attempt to thwart him without at least some kind of powerful weapon, even if only to turn it on themselves rather than face his wrath. Mary could see her reflection in the mirror opposite her bed. It amazed her that she always managed to look so serene, so well groomed, not a hair out of place no matter what turmoil was going on around her; no matter what was happening to her. It was a knack she had, a persona she had created over the years to make sure her husband and the father of her children did not know what she was really thinking. In fact, she had up until recently made sure that
no one
in her orbit knew what she was thinking; it was a survival tactic that had kept her from going out of her mind.
Living, as she did, in a minefield, with a man who saw any kind of disagreement as a personal affront, she had learned many years before to just agree with everything and anything he said. She
had
to agree, it was what you did with someone like Danny Cadogan. And you had to make it look like you really believed what he was saying was right, that you could suddenly see how much cleverer he was. Whether it was about a large issue, such as where they would live, or a smaller issue, such as what the kids should have for breakfast. That’s how petty and childish it could get.
At first, she had believed his love for her would be enough to change him, change his domineering ways, but she had all too quickly been disabused of that notion. If anything, he had just got worse and, as the years had gone on, she had shaped a calmness and a believability that made her life if not happier, then at least bearable to the outside world.
Mary put a perfectly manicured hand up and instinctively patted her perfect hair into place. Her brother Michael had tried in his own way to make it better for her, but she suspected that he knew he had failed her, as he had failed them all, including Danny. But at least he could keep him in line, at least as much as anyone could anyway. Danny had always been a law unto himself, everyone knew that within a few seconds of meeting him. Even as a boy he had been possessed of a fighting spirit that had kept older, stronger boys away from them all and, where they grew up, that made Danny Cadogan an asset. He had been a natural-born leader and, in fairness, he had led them all in the right direction; they had all done well out of him in their own ways. But now he had put them into such a difficult position that there seemed to be no way out.
Danny’s mother was downstairs with the kids, and even she was subdued, quietly listening to her godforsaken radio as always. Humming along to tunes long dead, and remembering things long past.
 
Michael Miles, Mary’s brother, sighed loudly. ‘Do you think he’ll do it, really?’
‘Who knows. He never lets anyone know what he has in mind. I don’t think he knows what he’s going to do himself, until the last fucking second.’ Jonjo heard his own voice. It was, as always, neutral.
‘Wait until Eli gets here, and then we’ll go from there. Stop fucking acting like a child. It’s all in place, now shut the fuck up.’
Jonjo knew then that this was over, even though he believed that nothing would happen tonight, or any other night. It had been for nothing. Danny would do what he wanted as always, why should that change, why did they even think they could stop him? Might as well try to stop a bullet with a tennis racquet.
Michael understood Jonjo’s trepidation, had experienced it so many times over the years himself, even though he was the only person alive who Danny Boy treated with any kind of respect or decency. Danny Boy actually liked him and, against all the odds, he loved the man back. But enough was enough, for all of them. He started the car then. ‘It’s time.’
They drove away quickly, the realisation of what they were going to do making them both quiet.
 
As far as Danny Boy was concerned Mary Cadogan had no private thoughts. But she did, and she had let them get the better of her. She had actually allowed herself to believe that something good might actually happen. She’d allowed herself to dream that Danny might be taken out and for no other reason than that she couldn’t take this life any more. It was like living in a vacuum: Danny controlled her every move, her every thought, he even chose her friends. And now she had shown her hand to his brother, Jonjo, had let him know the truth of their marriage, and he would always have that over her, and the same thing would happen with her poor brother Michael, and Jonjo, she knew now, was not a great one for loyalty. Tonight had proved that much.
As she lay there she wondered if it would be better for everyone concerned if she just got up, went to her car, a brand-new Mercedes, after all Danny Boy’s wife had to be seen in the best, and, revving it up, whether she should just aim it at the nearest wall. Now that would put an end to it. The other scenario was to aim the car at Danny Boy himself. She smiled at the audacity of the thought. If the Serious Crime Squad didn’t have the bottle when it came to Danny, what chance did she have? She would be dead within seconds if her husband survived which, knowing that bastard, he would.
BOOK: Faces
8.36Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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