Capture of the defiance, p.1
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       Capture of the Defiance, p.1

           S. E. Smith
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Capture of the Defiance


  Capture of the Defiance

  Breaking Free Book 2

  S. E. Smith

  Contents

  Acknowledgments

  Synopsis

  Tourist Map of Hong Kong

  Chapter 1

  Chapter 2

  Chapter 3

  Chapter 4

  Chapter 5

  Chapter 6

  Chapter 7

  Chapter 8

  Chapter 9

  Chapter 10

  Chapter 11

  Chapter 12

  Chapter 13

  Chapter 14

  Chapter 15

  Chapter 16

  Chapter 17

  Chapter 18

  Chapter 19

  Chapter 20

  Chapter 21

  Chapter 22

  Chapter 23

  Chapter 24

  Chapter 25

  Chapter 26

  Chapter 27

  Chapter 28

  Chapter 29

  Chapter 30

  Epilogue

  Additional Books and Information

  About the Author

  Acknowledgments

  I would like to thank my husband Steve for believing in me and being proud enough of me to give me the courage to follow my dream. I would also like to give a special thank you to my sister and best friend, Linda, who not only encouraged me to write, but who also read the manuscript. Also to my other friends who believe in me: Julie, Jackie, Christel, Sally, Jolanda, Lisa and Jake (who loved Voyage), Laurelle, and Narelle. The girls that keep me going!

  I would also like to say a very special thank you to Hsu Lee. Her kindness and consideration in supplying me with Author Survival Packs at the conventions the past few years has been wonderful. Thank you, Hsu!

  —S.E. Smith

  Montana Publishing

  New AdultActionAdventureFiction

  Capture of the Defiance: Breaking Free series

  Copyright © 2017 by S.E. Smith

  First E-Bookprint Published January 2017

  Cover Design by Melody Simmons

  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED: This literary work may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, including electronic or photographic reproduction, in whole or in part, without express written permission from the author.

  All characters and events in this book are fictitious or have been used fictitiously, and are not to be construed as real. Any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, actual events, or organizations are strictly coincidental and not intended by the author.

  Summary: A young woman’s trip to join her grandfather on his sailboat turns into a deadly race when he and the Defiance are taken, forcing her to seek help from old friends to discover what happened to him before time runs out.

  ISBN 978-1-942562-85-6 (paperback)

  ISBN 978-1-944125-01-1 (eBook)

  Published in the United States by Montana Publishing.

  {1. New Adult – Fiction. 2. Thriller – Fiction. 3. Action/Adventure – Fiction. 4. Suspense – Fiction. 5. Romance – Fiction.}

  www.montanapublishinghouse.com

  Synopsis

  New York Times and USA TODAY Bestselling Author S.E. Smith returns with an emotionally charged action adventure thriller filled with suspense.

  Makayla Summerlin is excited to join her grandfather, Henry, in Hong Kong during a college break. She plans to help him sail the next leg of his journey around the world on the Defiance, but events take a frightening turn when her grandfather is kidnapped and the Defiance disappears! Unsure of what to do, Makayla reaches out to an old friend for help.

  Brian Jacobs’ work at the Consulate General in Hong Kong is just a stepping-stone for his political career. His life for the foreseeable future is carefully optimized for success, but everything is turned upside down when he receives a frantic call for help from a friend. Their meeting quickly turns into a race for survival when Makayla is almost kidnapped in front of him. Seeing Makayla again awakens old feelings inside Brian and he knows he will do everything he can to help her, no matter the cost.

  When the situation turns deadly, both Brian and Makayla find unexpected help from another old friend and a Hong Kong detective. Together, the four race to find Henry and protect Makayla. Their efforts to unravel the mystery of why a wealthy crime lord would target Henry and Makayla; and to find the Defiance will take them further than they ever expected to go, but will they be able to discover the truth before time runs out for Henry?

  Tourist Map of Hong Kong

  1

  Hong Kong

  The figure of a man pushed through the crowds gathered along the Graham Street Market, uncaring of the curses he was drawing. Sweat beaded on his brow despite the cool breeze and temperate weather. His gaze swept the collage of faces. Almost immediately, his eyes locked with the intense, dark gaze of a man searching the crowd – for him.

  Gabriel Harrington swallowed and backed away. He stumbled when he ran into an older woman who turned and began admonishing him. Pushing past her, he ignored her tirade when she continued to yell after him. His frantic flight that had started earlier that morning was now one that meant life or death.

  Turning sharply, he cut between two of the merchants’ booths, pushing the colorful material hanging down on display out of his field of vision as he rushed through. He had already passed the irritated merchants before the men could say anything. He made another sharp turn along the sidewalk toward the busy intersection, urgently glancing behind him. If he could just get across it, he could lose himself in the crowd of pedestrians.

  The skin on the back of his neck tingled and he could feel the sweat sliding down between his shoulder blades under his shirt. He slipped his hand into his pocket for the small box. It was still there.

  He breathed a sigh of relief and glanced over his shoulder again. Slowing to a fast walk, he relaxed a little. He didn’t see the man who had been following him. Reaching into his pocket, he pulled out his cell phone and quickly dialed the number he had memorized.

  “Do you have it?” The voice on the other end asked in a terse tone.

  “Yes, but I’m being followed,” Gabriel muttered, glancing both ways before entering the intersection.

  “Where are you?” The voice on the other end demanded in a brisk tone. “I’ll send backup.”

  “I’m leaving the market near Shelter Cove. I’ll… Shit!” Gabriel hissed, pausing about three-quarters of the way across the intersection.

  “What is it?”

  “There are two of them,” Gabriel said hoarsely. “I’ll try to get the package to you.”

  “I have a team en route,” the man said.

  “It’s too late,” Gabriel replied with resignation, turning and seeing the other man he thought he’d lost standing not more than fifty feet from him. “I’ll hide the package and notify you of the location as soon as I can.”

  “Negative,” the man hissed, but Gabriel was already turning to cross the intersection at a diagonal angle.

  He had only taken a few steps when he saw a third man appear on the corner in the direction he had been about to go. Twisting, he bumped into an older man carrying several canvas shopping bags. Gabriel muttered an automatic apology under his breath, even as his hand slipped the package from his pocket and into one of the bags. His gaze swept over the old man’s face, trying to memorize it before he backed away.

  He darted across the intersection. He was almost to the curb when a van, trying to beat the red light, turned the corner. Gabriel registered the impending impact just seconds before his body hit the windshield. He rolled several feet before coming to a stop. In the distance, he could barely make out the old man turning to see what had happened before everything went
black.

  *.*.*

  Makayla looked around the Customs area of the airport from her place in line. There was a sea of people arriving from all over the world. Her lips curved upward when she saw a harried mother trying to grab a wayward toddler in front of her. The smile turned to a sympathetic grimace when the little boy started crying when his mother picked him up. Several people standing behind her gave the woman an annoyed glance.

  Makayla started to turn away when she noticed that the woman had dropped her passport on the ground when she had bent to pick up the little boy. With a murmur, she motioned for the two people behind her to go ahead. With a tired sigh, she waited until they had passed her before she stooped to retrieve the fallen documents.

  “You dropped this,” she murmured, glancing at the woman’s name on the open passport. “Would you like some help, Hsu?”

  “Oh, yes, please,” the woman stuttered, startled, before she breathed out a tired sigh. “It has been a long trip.”

  “Where are you traveling from?” Makayla asked politely, adjusting the diaper bag that had fallen off the handle of the stroller before she pushed the baby carriage forward along with her own carry-on.

  “Seattle,” Hsu replied with a grateful smile. “Thank you so much for your help.”

  “You’re welcome,” Makayla replied with a sympathetic grin. “My name is Makayla, by the way.”

  “That is a beautiful name,” Hsu responded, moving forward with the line. She gave a relieved groan when she saw they were next and awkwardly adjusted the little boy who had finally fallen asleep on her shoulder. “I think I can put him in the stroller now.”

  “Oh, yes,” Makayla said, quickly moving the diaper bag so that Hsu could carefully place the sleeping boy in the stroller.

  “Where are you from, Makayla?” Hsu asked politely, straightening and placing a hand on her lower back before she took the diaper bag Makayla was holding. “He is getting heavy.”

  “I’m from Florida,” Makayla said, adjusting her backpack on her right shoulder. “He looks it. How old is he?”

  “He will be three next month,” Hsu replied before she turned to the Customs agent. “Thank you again for your help, Makayla. I hope you have a pleasant visit in Hong Kong.”

  “You too, and good luck!” Makayla replied, watching as Hsu pushed the stroller up to the window.

  A moment later, it was Makayla’s turn. She walked up and presented her passport. The agent behind the window briefly glanced up at her and then down at her passport.

  “What is the purpose of your visit?” The agent asked in a cool, disinterested voice.

  “Vacation,” Makayla replied with a polite smile.

  “Are you traveling alone?” The man asked, suddenly more focused on her when he looked up from her photo to her face.

  “No, I’m joining my grandfather who is already here,” she replied, keeping the smile on her face, even though the man’s sudden assessing gaze was making her uncomfortable.

  “How long will you be staying?” The agent asked with a smile.

  “A week,” Makayla answered.

  She quietly answered several more questions before she breathed a sigh of relief when he stamped her passport and handed it back to her. She quickly passed through the gate and into the main section of the airport. She was relieved to get out of the crush of people. Fortunately, she was able to bypass the wait for baggage claim. Twenty minutes later, she was in a taxi heading for the marina where her grandfather was docked at the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club in Shelter Bay.

  Sinking back into the seat, she stared at the tall buildings and crowded streets. She didn’t even want to think about how the taxi driver was able to navigate through the streets without hitting either a pedestrian or another car. All the sights, sounds, and colorful assortment of people were overwhelming for her exhausted brain.

  “Is this your first visit to Hong Kong?” The driver asked, glancing up in the mirror before returning his gaze to the road in front of him.

  “Yes,” Makayla answered, staring out the window.

  “You have friends here? I can tell you the best places to go for young people,” he said, laying his hand on the horn when a car cut in front of him. “There are lots of young people here.”

  Makayla shook her head. She knew he would think she was strange if she told him she preferred to be in places where there weren’t that many people, or buildings. That was one reason she had gone into the field of study that she had chosen in college. As a marine biologist, she could escape from the mad rush of urban life and spend most of her time either in a lab or on a research ship.

  “No, thank you,” Makayla finally replied when she realized that the driver was waiting for her response. “I’m meeting up with someone.”

  “Okay,” the driver replied.

  He finally took the hint that she wasn’t a very talkative passenger and refocused his attention on the traffic instead of her. She knew she was attractive and was used to drawing men’s attention. It wasn’t that she was a beauty. She wasn’t delusional enough about her looks to think that. It wasn’t until she had overheard a couple of guys talking about her in one of her classes that she finally realized what it was about her that drew attention.

  It wasn’t her looks, but her attitude and appearance of aloofness that was like a red flag to guys. They liked the challenge of trying to get her to open up for them. She had never been very social and really didn’t care to be around a lot of people. It had taken a while to finally figure out it was a defense mechanism – a wall between her and the world. Deep down, she knew it was probably because of the way she had been raised. Oh, she didn’t blame her mom. Her mom had enough baggage without Makayla adding to the load. Makayla had learned at an early age that life could suck, and she didn’t want to fall into the same dark hole that her mom had.

  Her gaze softened when she thought of her mother. Her mom had been doing so much better since she married Arnie Hanover three years ago. Makayla liked Arnie. He had been there for her mom, supporting her, encouraging her, and calmly waiting until her mom was ready to take control of her own life. It was something that Makayla had secretly wished for through the years, but had doubted would ever happen.

  Pushing the memories back into the box that she kept them in, she refocused on the landscape. It took her a moment to realize they were already traveling outside of the city. It would take almost an hour to get to the yacht club. Henry, her grandfather, had offered to pick her up, but Makayla had told him it didn’t make sense for both of them to spend the money to take a taxi to and from the airport. It would give her time to unwind as well.

  Makayla leaned her head back and closed her eyes. At twenty-two, she was fortunate enough to be in a better position than most girls her age. Her father had died before she was born, but he had left a trust fund that she had inherited when she turned twenty-one. The fund had grown over the last twenty plus years, and while she wasn’t wealthy by most standards, she had a nice nest egg that had allowed her to focus on her education without having to worry about how she would pay for it. Between the trust fund income and the summer internships that she had worked, she had never had to touch the principal to live on. It also helped that she didn’t need much. When living in a small dorm room or on a research ship, there wasn’t a lot of room for material things.

  Makayla opened her eyes when she felt the taxi slow down and turn. She blinked her eyes to clear the gritty tiredness from them. She sat forward when she realized that they were turning into the yacht club.

  She quickly fumbled for the information her grandfather had sent her and her passport to show identification to the security guard at the gate. She pressed the button on the window when the guard leaned down to talk to the cab driver.

  “I’m here to see Henry Summerlin,” she stated, holding out the documents showing Henry’s membership card and her ID. “He should have notified you that I was coming.”

  “Good afternoon, Ms. Summerlin. Welcome to
the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club,” the security guard greeted in a polite professional tone. He glanced at the documents before returning them to her. “Mr. Summerlin is located in E40. Please go down to the turning circle. It will be located on the third turn. Have a nice day.”

  “Thank you,” Makayla murmured, impressed with the efficiency of the guard.

  Her gaze swept over the man’s immaculate uniform of dark bluish-gray pressed slacks and white short-sleeved shirt with the emblem of the yacht club on the shoulders. The man’s black hair was cut close to his head, and his dark brown eyes were as warm as his greeting. A small, relaxed smile curved Makayla’s lips. The journey from the airport had been less stressful than she had feared.

  Within minutes, the red and white taxi drew to a stop at the beginning of a long dock. She could see the numbers depicting the dock slips in several different languages. She quickly leaned forward and paid the driver before grabbing her carry-on and backpack. She drew in a deep breath, relieved to have finally arrived from Florida, pushed open the door, and stiffly slid out of the taxi.

  2

  Makayla rolled onto her toes and stretched the soreness out of her muscles as the taxi pulled away. She glanced around and lifted her face to the fading sunlight. It felt good to be out of the cramped confines of the airplane and taxi, and to be out in the wide open spaces again.

  She shielded her eyes and gazed around her. In the distance, she could see low mountains behind the tall high rises of the city overlooking the sapphire blue waters of the bay. Excitement filled her when she stared out at the variety of sailboats, powerboats, and multi-million dollar yachts either berthed or anchored in the surrounding waters. She couldn’t help but shake her head at the thought of how out of place Henry’s small sailboat must look there among the larger vessels.

 
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