Captive of Fate

Captive of Fate by Lindsay McKenna Read Free Book Online Page A

Book: Captive of Fate by Lindsay McKenna Read Free Book Online
Authors: Lindsay McKenna
in the darkness that was now turning gray with the promise of dawn. Finally, she heard Matt calling the radioman. In approximately twenty minutes, they would be landing. She closed her eyes, her heart and body responding to his husky voice. How could one man so completely disrupt her complacent life-style?
    She became aware of Marines and Costa Rican police gathering outside.
    Several stretchers were stacked nearby, and the men waited in the thick fog like dark apparitions. Finally, the flares were lit, and then she heard the puncturing beat of rotor blades overhead. Cauley’s happy voice exploded over the intercom.
    “We’ve made it! We did it! Look out, here we come.”
    She felt a surge of joy rising in her breast as she returned to the window, watching the unwieldy helicopter slowly lower itself into the muddy area outside the hut. Tears crowded into her eyes as she saw the men running forward with the stretchers to be swallowed up by the wall of fog. Brushing the tears away, Alanna turned and walked back to the bedroom.
    She tried desperately to sort out the turmoil of her feelings. All too soon, she heard Cauley’s jubilant words as he entered the hut and several other men’s voices raised in laughter. She drew her knees up, resting her chin on them, and stared at the lone blanket in the opposite corner where Matt had slept briefly. The raucous joking and laughter continued for another ten minutes, and she managed a sliver of a smile as she heard Cauley telling his story.
    The major’s voice bubbled with excitement and relief. “As we dropped down the first time, I told Matt to be ready to kiss his rear good-bye if we hit anything.”
    “That ring of flares,” Matt interrupted drily, “looked like a dull glow even ten feet up.”
    “Yeah,” another voice interjected, “we noticed the left side of the chopper is smashed in. What’dja do, Major Cauley, try to land it on its nose?”
    “Hell, no,” Cauley chortled. “Things were so bad I set the girl to the left of the landing circle the first time. We found ourselves in the supply crates. If you think the nose looks bad, you should see the crates! Some new paint and it’ll look like new, right Matt?” Cauley asked.
    “It will, but I won’t,” he returned.
    Alanna listened as the entire group exploded into laughter. She realized it was one way to relax after the harrowing event. From the sound of it, they were lucky they hadn’t crashed. But her own tension was not so easily relieved. She was upset and unsure of herself due to his unexpected kiss. Humiliation flooded her at the thought of the way she’d allowed herself to be swept uncompromisingly into his arms. She had been frightened for him, and he had taken advantage of the situation!
    Closing her eyes and rubbing her temples to ease the nagging headache, Alanna tried to find some acceptable excuse for her erratic behavior. She could hear Paul’s droning voice buzzing in her head: “Really, Alanna, logic should have told you the answer. Push aside your emotions and look at the black and white of the situation. If you do that, then answers become clear, and you don’t knock yourself out with worry and anxiety….”
    Sighing, she opened her troubled eyes. Logic and emotion. Did they ever go together? Or were they like Matt Breckenridge and herself—too different to be combined? Alanna knew one thing: she would never allow the Marine colonel to touch her again. His kiss had evoked too many explosive emotions she thought finally controlled.

Chapter Four
    S he forced herself to go back to sleep, shutting out the noises from the other room. Her anger simmered just beneath the surface until utter exhaustion drew her back down into the folds of blackness.
    It was daylight when she awoke the second time. Stretching stiffly, she sat up, feeling the chill of the room. Fog hovered around the small, paned windows, and she rubbed her hands briskly to get the circulation going. The door opened, and Matt

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