The Healer

Free The Healer by Sharon Sala

Book: The Healer by Sharon Sala Read Free Book Online
Authors: Sharon Sala
listen here,” Hicks began.
    “No. You listen,” Bourdain said. “Keep your mouth shut and get here as soon as possible, and we’ll talk later.”
    He hung up the phone in disgust, but the emotion soon passed. The ends justified the means, and he would consider the rest as collateral damage. And, looking at the positive, there was no way to connect the hired guns to him, and the chopper they’d flown into Snow Valley on had been painted with fake identification numbers. Once it landed at Bourdain’s estate and unloaded the cargo, it would be repainted again, guaranteeing the impossibility of tracing it. Ultimately, the men had done what he sent them to do. He got up quickly, anxious to make sure all was ready for the arrival of his new guest.
    He’d had one of the largest bedrooms at the mansion readied for company, adding a minibar and a big-screen TV, as well as all the latest in video equipment. He didn’t know that Jonah had never laid hands on a video game, and would not be tempted by television programming or liquor. In Bourdain’s world, it was all about who had the best and the most toys. In Jonah’s, it had been about family and freedom—the very things that Bourdain had just destroyed.
    The carpet in the bedroom was soft and thick, the bed and bed linens luxurious. The burgundy draperies at the twenty-foot windows were of the finest fabric. But it was the lock on the outside of the door and the bars at the windows that ruined the ambiance.
    He’d thought of everything—everything except the fact that nature itself was about to revolt at what he had done.
    Bourdain was on the verandah at the back of his estate, watching for the arrival of the chopper, when the phone rang again. He stepped back inside the French doors and picked up the receiver.
    “Hello.”
    He could hear men cursing and shouting, and the sounds of heavy impact, then Hicks was screaming in his ear.
    “They’re everywhere! They’re everywhere! Flying into the windows! Flying into the blades! There’s blood and feathers all over and—”
    Bourdain’s heart skipped a beat. What on earth was happening? Were they about to crash?
    “Hicks! Hicks! Slow down! I can’t understand what—”
    “Birds! All kinds of birds…they’re everywhere! Eagles. Doves. Ducks. Hawks. Little ones. Big ones. They’re following us. There’s no way to get away from them!”
    “What the hell do you mean…birds are everywhere?”
    “It’s this damned Indian’s fault. First there were the wolves…now it’s birds! He won’t call ’em off. I told him if he didn’t I was going to put a bullet—”
    “Hicks! Hicks!”
    “What?”
    The timbre of Bourdain’s voice turned lethal. “You harm that man and I’ll kill you myself. Do you hear me?”
    Hicks laughed, and it sounded crazy.
    “Kill me? Hell! You won’t get the chance. This son of a bitch you wanted so bad is going to do it for you.”
    “Just get him here alive!” Bourdain shouted.
    “We’re all trying to stay alive!” Hicks shouted back; then he laughed again, and the sound cut through Bourdain’s senses like a knife. “Consider this your only warning. You better batten down the hatches at your fancy mansion, because if we manage to get there in one piece, your troubles won’t be over. They’ll just be beginning.”
    The dial tone was as startling to Bourdain as what Hicks had said. No one hung up on him. Ever. Yet Hicks had not only done so, he’d seemed to be threatening him, as well.
    Bourdain slammed the receiver back onto the cradle. What the hell did the man mean, first wolves, now birds? He stomped outside, scouring the skies for signs of their arrival.
     
    Without waking up, Bourdain rolled over to his other side, then settled back into the dream, picking up several hours after where he’d left off.
     
    Bourdain was in the library reading when he realized it was getting dark. A glance at his watch told him it was too early for sundown. The only other thing it

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