Twist (Book 1): The Abnorm Chronicles-Twist

Twist (Book 1): The Abnorm Chronicles-Twist by Kevin J. Anderson Read Free Book Online Page A

Book: Twist (Book 1): The Abnorm Chronicles-Twist by Kevin J. Anderson Read Free Book Online
Authors: Kevin J. Anderson
Tags: Science Fiction/Superpowers
home, but instead he chose to wait in his cramped office, drinking bad coffee, hoping but not hoping to receive a report of a brutal killing almost two thousand miles away.
    You have to do something about making better choices in life, Cooper , he said to himself.
    Rolling his shoulders to relax the muscles, he twisted his head to the left and then the right, popping his neck. Then he went back to the desk, sat down, propped his feet on the corner of the desk.
    He tossed another pencil at the ceiling, but it took him three tries to impale the acoustic tile again. His hand patted around the top of the desk, looking for another pencil to throw.
    The datapad chirped, interrupting him, and that brought him more awake and alert than any amount of coffee, fresh or stale. This was it. He knew it. Pulling his feet off the desk, he sat upright and swiveled around to pick up the datapad.
    As he had feared and expected. Victim four had just been found at 10:15, Mountain mountain Timetime. Female, mid-twenties. Throat slashed with broken glass, a jagged bottle found at the scene. Name: Chloe Eccles. No one would have an idea yet whether or not she was a Brilliant—it wouldn’t even occur to the investigating officers.
    Yet, without looking, Cooper knew.
    Nevertheless, he cross-checked with the DAR’s mountain-region master list, found her name easily, and was not surprised. Chloe Eccles was only a tier-five talent, but still a Brilliant. She had also served briefly in the military, Air Force cadet, but had dropped out. The Denver detectives would see that as the only tenuous thread that bound all four victims.
    But Cooper had another piece of the puzzle.
    No doubt about it. The DAR had been formed to keep an eye on the advanced humans, making sure they posed no threat to society. Now it seemed that Brilliants were the ones being threatened.
    Instead of experiencing a sense of triumph, Cooper felt sick in the pit of his stomach. Sometimes he hated being right.
    Picking up the phone, he dialed Director Peters.

Chapter 12
     
    Silence bounced through Adam’s mind. There was no resistance, no thought. He was even more detached from the world than usual . . . out of grief, out of self-preservation. Trapped in his wheelchair without the use of most of his body, he had only his mind and his gift, and now he shut down even that.
    Ingrid , too, remained silent as she applied ointment to his damaged fingers. She worked her way over Adam’s hand, massaging. She remained silent, working, aware of his shock and trauma of what he had witnessed.
    She must think it was some kind of PTSD, that seeing the murder had reminded him of his own devastating injuries from his time in Special Ops. Yes, he had been hammered by watching his comrades killed in action during the covert Cuban mission, but that was a military operation. They had all been prepared to die.
    But Chloe! This was Chloe ! She had been in her own apartment, relaxing, her guard down, enjoying a normal life, and Adam had been beside her, vicariously. She’d been slaughtered in her own doorway, left to bleed out in puddles on her own floor.
    The bastard had killed Chloe!
     
    He closed his eyes, ignoring Ingrid, ignoring the world, feeling the pain inside and paying no attention to the therapist’s ministrations. Ingrid did not scold him; since he could use only one hand, he knew full well that he had to be particularly careful about that arm—he knew that, and Ingrid knew well enough not to scold him. Not now. As she tended his wounds, she chose not to press for answers.
    From clawing himself across the floor, hauling the dead weight of his entire body using only the fingertips, he had torn and shredded his nails, bruised his fingers, sprained his knuckles, hurt his wrist. He didn’t care, and he would do it all again.
    But he would never have that chance. Chloe was dead.
    After his frantic call to 9-1-1, he’d instructed his chair to call Ingrid. He had nobody else, and he’d been

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