Billionaires, Bullets, Exploding Monkeys
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Seattle billionaire and software titan Jeff Pepper couldn't have chosen a worse day to check up on the research project he's been funding at the university hospital for more than a decade. When gunmen move in, seizing control of the building in their search for a previously unknown weapon, Jeff is caught in the middle of a nerve-wracking hostage situation, one in which he is an all-too-valuable pawn. As tensions mount and the body count rises, his only hope for survival rests on the shoulders of Nick, a deadbeat kid trapped in another part of the building. Working with law-enforcement officials outside, Nick must guide a special team through the locked-down facility and help them save as many lives as possible, while Jeff Pepper uses every negotiating trick up his sleeve to see that he and his fellow captives make it out alive.
wanted them to do, but all in all, he himself did nothing. In the year that Nick had worked in the department, about 85 percent of his work had come from Raj. Raj had papers to submit. Raj had publisher proofs to correct. Raj had monumentally important reports to write, articles to cowrite. It was that whole cowriting bit that really pissed Nick off. The guy didn’t write a thing! He just had his post-docs and collaborators put together dozen upon dozens of drafts, then he’d cherry pick the bits
façade. His mind was racing. He looked at Tim, who had just hung up the phone. He couldn’t hear a word that had been said. Nina and David’s expressions showed mutual confusion. Who had this guy been talking to? More of his cohorts? The police? What would happen now? Were they about to see Raj’s project in action? On himself?? Jesus. Tim’s hand still rested on the phone receiver as it sat in its cradle on the wall. He brought two fingers to the bridge of his nose and squeezed the skin between
“I was in another part of the building when the alarms went off. My girlfriend was with me. Her name is Morgan Phillips.” There was a pause. “Morgan is here with us, Nick.” Nick’s breath caught in his throat. “She is?” He exhaled in a series of stammering gasps. “Thank God.” Phelps continued, his southern drawl dripping through the handset. “Son, we’re not sure what the hell is going on, but we’re hoping you might be able to give us a little more information about what’s happened in there.”
like a balloon left out in the sun. Then everything, face, features, neck, seemed to pulse and bubble, before every inch of skin, every pore, every human element turned inside out and exploded in a geyser of churning blood and pulp. Ransom turned away as the bloody silhouette of what had once been David Drake twisted in the misty red air and fell to the floor. Men and women in the crowd were screaming in terror. Ransom heard the sounds of people getting sick. Even the news guys, always the most
circuits, which immediately shorted out the system, sending up a plume of smoke. “How many of those fork things have you got?” Ransom asked. “Plenty,” Luke replied as he pulled the cover from the fan, moved the blade to the side with his foot, and leaned his back against the metal ducting. “See you inside.” He pulled his arms against his chest and slid into the darkness. Ransom and Gomez listened carefully for a thump or a muffled scream. Gomez looked at Ransom a little warily. This was the