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Authors: Graham Ison

Reckless Endangerment

BOOK: Reckless Endangerment
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Table of Contents

Cover

Recent Titles by Graham Ison from Severn House

Title Page

Copyright

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

Chapter Nineteen

Recent Titles by Graham Ison from Severn House
The Hardcastle Series

HARDCASTLE’S SPY

HARDCASTLE’S ARMISTICE

HARDCASTLE’S CONSPIRACY

HARDCASTLE’S AIRMEN

HARDCASTLE’S ACTRESS

HARDCASTLE’S BURGLAR

HARDCASTLE’S MANDARIN

HARDCASTLE’S SOLDIERS

HARDCASTLE’S OBSESSION

HARDCASTLE’S FRUSTRATION

HARDCASTLE’S TRAITORS

Contemporary Police Procedurals

ALL QUIET ON ARRIVAL

BREACH OF PRIVILEGE

DIVISION

DRUMFIRE

GUNRUNNER

JACK IN THE BOX

KICKING THE AIR

LIGHT FANTASTIC

LOST OR FOUND

MAKE THEM PAY

RECKLESS ENDANGERMENT

WHIPLASH

WHISPERING GRASS

WORKING GIRL

RECKLESS ENDANGERMENT
A Brock and Poole mystery
 
Graham Ison
 
 

This eBook is copyright material and must not be copied, reproduced, transferred, distributed, leased, licensed or publicly performed or used in any way except as specifically permitted in writing by the publishers, as allowed under the terms and conditions under which is was purchased or as strictly permitted by applicably copyright law. Any unauthorised distribution or use of this text may be a direct infringement of the author’s and publisher’s rights and those responsible may be liable in law accordingly.

 
 
 

First published in Great Britain and the USA 2014 by

SEVERN HOUSE PUBLISHERS LTD of

9–15 High Street, Sutton, Surrey, England, SM1 1DF.

eBook edition first published in 2014 by Severn House Digital
an imprint of Severn House Publishers Limited

Copyright © 2014 by Graham Ison

The right of Graham Ison to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted in accordance with the Copyright, Designs & Patents Act 1988.

British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data

Ison, Graham author.

Reckless endangerment. – (A Brock and Poole mystery; 13)

1. Brock, Harry (Fictitious character : Ison)–Fiction.

2. Poole, Dave (Fictitious character)–Fiction.

3. Police–England–London–Fiction. 4. Murder–

Investigation–Fiction. 5. Missing persons–

Investigation–Fiction. 6. Detective and mystery stories.

I. Title II. Series

823.9'14-dc23

ISBN-13: 978-0-7278-8362-9 (cased)

ISBN-13: 978-1-78010-506-2 (ePub)

Except where actual historical events and characters are being described for the storyline of this novel, all situations in this publication are fictitious and any resemblance to living persons is purely coincidental.

This ebook produced by

Palimpsest Book Production Limited,

Falkirk, Stirlingshire, Scotland.

ONE

T
he flight was scheduled to take off from Heathrow Airport at eight o’clock that July morning. It had been pouring with rain for quite a few days in London and the temperature had dropped to an unseasonably low fifties Fahrenheit.

When the passengers were settled, and the huge Boeing 777-300 had been towed away from the walkway and positioned for take-off, members of the cabin crew started to move through the aircraft, handing out newspapers and magazines, and ensuring that everyone was comfortable. Once that was complete, a steward described the safety measures that should be taken in the event of an emergency.

With a surge of power that thrust the passengers back in their seats, the Boeing left the ground, immediately creating the illusion that it had lost speed.

Once it had reached optimum altitude and the seat-belt warning light had been extinguished, the cabin crew explained how the in-flight movie could be accessed and enquired what else the passengers may need to sustain them for the long flight to Miami.

‘Good morning.’ The smiling man seated in the first-class section of the aircraft was in his late thirties, good-looking and a frequent traveller to Miami, where he had business interests. ‘It’s nice to see you again …’ He paused while making a pretence of reading the stewardess’s name badge. ‘Sharon.’

‘Good morning, sir.’ The stewardess’s name was Sharon Gregory. She was twenty-six years of age and a petite honey blonde. She returned the man’s smile. ‘Would you care for coffee, sir?’

‘Thank you. That would be most welcome, Sharon.’

‘Breakfast will be served shortly, sir.’

‘I look forward to it. You’re very kind,’ said the man.

‘We aim to please, sir.’

‘And you do. I’ve always found your service to be impeccable, Sharon,’ said the man, with a knowing look.

‘Will you be staying in Miami long, sir?’ Although it sounded like the normal trite enquiry that cabin crew staff made, there was more to it than that. The passenger and the stewardess were not strangers to each other; in fact, they enjoyed an intimate relationship, and one that was a closely guarded secret from the airline for which Sharon worked. At least, by Sharon. But he was far from being the only man in her life.

‘Just for twenty-four hours. I have business meetings all afternoon.’

‘Oh!’ Sharon struggled to keep the disappointment from her voice. ‘That doesn’t leave you very much time for pleasure, then.’

‘Oh, I wouldn’t say that,’ said the man, and smiled again. ‘You never know what might happen in Miami,’ he added in a whisper.

Nine hours later, the huge aircraft touched down at Miami International, taxied to the walkway and the passengers began to alight.

‘Enjoy your stay, sir,’ said Sharon to the man from first class. She was standing at the exit, a fixed smile on her face, bidding farewell to the disembarking passengers. ‘I hope we’ll see you again soon.’

‘I’m sure you will,’ said the man, his mouth twitching into a smile that hinted of the promise of things to come.

Once the enormous airliner was empty, the crew gathered their suitcases and left the aircraft, making their way to customs, and thence to the crew bus that awaited them at the airport terminal.

An army of cleaners descended on the Boeing and began the routine task of clearing up after the largely untidy passengers who had just left; the sooner the cleaners finished, the sooner they would be off duty.

A tractor moved the aircraft away from the walkway to its stand and the task of refuelling began.

Arriving at the Shannon Hotel, Sharon Gregory stepped through the automatic doors into the cool, tiled lobby and checked in. A bellhop immediately seized her suitcase and took the key to her room from the receptionist before leading the way to the elevator.

In contrast to London, the temperature in Florida was up in the nineties and the humidity had hit eighty-four, not that Sharon Gregory understood or cared about humidity percentages. She did, however, know that it was damned hot, but being the United States her room was cool and spacious, the air conditioning blasting out at full power. All of which made her grateful that the airline for which she worked always put their crews into this particular luxury hotel for stopovers. It was twelve noon Miami time and she now had eighteen hours in which to relax and enjoy the sun. And anything else that might take her fancy.

The bellhop put her suitcase on the luggage rack. ‘I won’t open the balcony doors, Ms Gregory,’ he said, ‘otherwise the room will get hot and stuffy pretty soon.’

‘Thank you.’ Sharon handed the young man a few dollar bills.

‘You have a nice day now, Ms Gregory,’ said the bellhop, adroitly pocketing his tip.

Dismissing the idea of having an early dinner – her body clock told her it was five in the afternoon – she stripped off her clothes and scattered them carelessly about the room. Walking through to the bathroom, she spent the next ten minutes luxuriating under the needlepoint jets of freezing cold water that struck her body from all angles. But she felt no cooler when she stepped out of the shower.

Dispensing with the need for a towel, she returned to the bedroom and, ignoring the bellhop’s advice, slid open the balcony doors. For a moment or two she gazed down at the beach and considered, yet again, how lucky she was to have a job that took her to such an idyllic place. Some of her former school friends in her native Basildon worked as hairdressers, shop girls or checkout assistants at a supermarket, but such mindless occupations would not have suited Sharon. And the dismal selection of available men would have suited her even less.

Turning from the balcony, she opened her suitcase and took out a small leather bag. Inside was a collection of perfumes: Tommy Girl, Coco Mademoiselle, Chanel No 19, Prada Amber and Lancôme Trésor. Each of them was a gift from one of the several men in her life. And she always ensured that she wore the right perfume for the man who had given it to her when she was about to make love to him. Although uncertain whether the man she had spoken to earlier would appear, she nevertheless selected his favourite, Lancôme Trésor, and dabbed it behind her ears and between her breasts.

Her preparations were interrupted by the ringing of the telephone. She crossed the room and sat on the edge of the bed to take the call.

‘Hello?’

‘Fancy a swim, Sharon?’ It was her crewmate Cindy Patterson calling from the room next to her own.

That was a bloody nuisance, thought Sharon, and presented her with a minor dilemma. Should she wait on the off chance that her lover would arrive, or should she go to the beach? He’d said he had meetings all afternoon. She made a decision; after all, she might find a hunk on the beach who would catch her eye, and she could hardly tell Cindy that she was waiting to get laid. But the sea water would wash off her perfume. Oh, what the hell. She had plenty more and she might only sunbathe anyway.

‘Sure. See you on the beach. Usual place?’

‘I’ll be there in ten,’ said Cindy.

Sharon took a moment or two to study her all-over tan in the mirror, a tan that had ensured there were no ugly white lines or patches. Donning a string bikini, she shoved her feet into a pair of flip-flops and slipped into one of the hotel’s terry robes. Grabbing a towel, she was about to leave for the lift that would take her direct to the beach when there was a knock at the door.

‘Just coming, Cindy,’ shouted Sharon, assuming that her friend had decided to call for her rather than meet her on the golden sands beneath her window.

She opened the door and the first-class passenger she had served on the flight that morning entered the room. Before locking the door, he hung a ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign outside, as he always did on these occasions.

Sharon smiled. ‘I thought you said that you had business meetings to attend all afternoon, darling.’

‘I cancelled them.’ The man moved closer to where Sharon was standing, arms at her sides, and slid the robe from her shoulders. Quickly untying the bows of her bikini, he allowed the microscopic pieces of fabric to fall to the floor.

‘I don’t have the time, darling, really,’ said Sharon. ‘Cindy’s expecting me on the beach in a few minutes’ time and she’ll wonder where I am.’ But it was a futile protest and she didn’t mean a word of it.

‘Cindy will have to wait,’ said the man, quickly stripping off his clothing. ‘Unless she’d like to join in.’

‘Naughty,’ said Sharon. ‘I want you all to myself.’

Later, when the couple were lying side by side and perspiring freely from the exertions of their love-making, the man raised himself on one elbow and gazed down at the girl.

‘You are a thoroughly wanton woman, Sharon Gregory,’ he said. ‘But you know that, don’t you?’

‘Of course I am, darling. And aren’t you pleased? However, there’s something I want to talk to you about. Something that will mean we can be together always.’ And she went on to explain what she had in mind. But before her lover could respond, the telephone rang. Reaching across him, she deliberately lowered herself so that her breasts were pressing on his chest. ‘Hello?’

‘Where the hell have you got to, Sharon?’ demanded Cindy crossly. ‘I’ve been on the beach for nearly an hour already. What’s more, there are some dishy men about: a crowd of hunky all-American six-packs in a variety of colours, for a start. It’s not like you to miss out on an opportunity like this.’

‘Sorry,’ said Sharon. ‘I had to take a call.’

‘Oh, really? I wasn’t born yesterday, Sharon,’ said Cindy sarcastically, and terminated the call.

BOOK: Reckless Endangerment
6.71Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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