Excerpt from The Storm Murders by John Farrow, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

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The Storm Murders

The Storm Murders Trilogy (Volume 1)

by John Farrow

The Storm Murders by John Farrow X
The Storm Murders by John Farrow
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  • Published:
    May 2015, 320 pages

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The stillness. The thrum of the furnace came on, the sound a blessing. A little white noise to fill the hollows in his head that felt cavernous now, as if his brain was being stretched wide. Ron consciously tightened his sphincter before the whole of his body loosened and disassembled. Talk about hyperreal, all right.

His partner continued checking around the corpse. He shouldn't be touching it, but he knew that. "Marc?" Speaking quietly. "What're you doing?"

"I can't see his hands."

The dead man looked armless. But he wasn't.

"Don't touch him."

He touched him. "He's tied up. His wrists."

"What?"

His arms lay behind his back. More blood swam under him.

Marc rose from his crouch. "Tied up and shot. I think he's missing a fucking finger. This is not just a murder. It's a fucking assassination. Call it in."

Ron did so. Glad for the task, and to hear back that help was on the way.

"He must've come and gone by the back door, in and out."

"Who? What?"

"The killer, Ron. He must've come and gone by the back way. You saw the road, the snow. No footprints. Nobody's moved. Let's check it out. Stay alert."

"Alert?"

As an answer, Marc raised his pistol, aimed at the ceiling. Ron caught on and did the same. He'd never drawn his weapon on duty before. All he'd ever pulled out on the job was a booklet of tickets to nail a speeder.

The downstairs level was a warren, a contagion of cramped rooms and closets and a bare-bones, yet charming kitchen, so it took a few seconds to find the route to the rear of the house to manage a clear view outside. They scanned the yard, the field beyond and the gently rolling hills. Not even a coyote track. A few distant fences, but nothing disturbed the beauty of the storm's overnight snowfall.

The furnace cut off, and they were returned to dead silence again.

"Check the side," Marc ordered. The rookie crossed the room and took in the view from the window there. Not so much as a snowshoe print. If Ski-Doo trails existed out there, and they probably did, they lay buried.

"Nothing," Ron reported. "The killer took off during the storm. Or before it."

"The guy's not been dead long enough." Marc was whispering. "He's warm. His blood—"

Without knowing the reason for it, the younger cop also lowered his voice to a hush. "How's that possible?"

Marc's voice was scarcely audible. "The killer's still in the house."

The rookie wanted to say, "What?" but swallowed the word. He got it. Adrenaline jumped through him even as he stood stock-still. He snapped out of it. He moved next to his partner. This time, he didn't have to be told to keep his pistol raised.

"Downstairs rooms first. One at a time."

"We don't wait for backup?" Whispering still.

"With a killer lurking around maybe? You want to sit still, wait to get shot?"

Ron was not sure. Neither choice seemed grand. The options might be equally dangerous, but he didn't think that that was the point. Weren't they supposed to wait for backup?

"Here's the thing," Marc determined. "That guy in the living room? He doesn't live alone. Somebody's life could be in danger here. Where's his wife?"

"Maybe she killed him."

"Maybe. Probably. Who else? Or—she's a victim, too. We don't know."

Photographs of her smiled up at them from the coffee table. A middle-aged, matronly sort. Not your average assassin. Not one to tie up her husband before she shot him. Ron nodded. Yes. This is why he became a cop. He was onside with this. They proceeded to the nearest room, a kind of home office, small, where he waited at the doorway as Marc went in and checked the large closet. Empty.

Excerpted from The Storm Murders by John Farrow. Copyright © 2015 by John Farrow. Excerpted by permission of Minotaur Books. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

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