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City of Ghosts: Death Hunter Series Book 1

City of Ghosts: Death Hunter Series Book 1

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A ghost collector grows deadlier than the spirits he hunts…

Shane Ryan knows all about pain and suffering. A retired Marine gunnery sergeant, Shane has seen the worst humanity has to offer. He survived his ordeal, but his soul has been tainted by the darkness, leaving him with a permanent connection to the world of the supernatural.

Shane sees the spirits of the dead, he hears their whispered cries of pain. And it’s a gift he plans to put to good use, when he travels to Detroit to investigate the death of one woman who saw through all the darkness in his heart. A woman who became his lover, many years ago.

Shane is certain she was working a case, tracking down a deadly collector of the paranormal. And he’s determined to use his abilities to force the spirits haunting the urban sprawl to reveal her killer. But when he clashes with retired police detective Enoch Liddell, Shane realizes he’s not the only one hunting ghosts.

The two men soon find themselves locked in a supernatural game of cat and mouse. But it will take more than guts and guns to defeat this opponent, and his sinister ally…

207 pages

Chapter 1: The Bedouin

As Harry approached the fallen dead man, Enoch walked into the room and saw a knife and a lead-lined box on the floor. Enoch took a pair of heavyweight leather gloves out of his pocket, pulled them on, and, as Harry and the Arab battled in the hallway, he picked up the knife. For a moment, he turned it over and examined it. The blade was curved and set in a dull, mother-of-pearl handle. With a shrug, Enoch lifted the box, dropped the knife into it, and closed the lid.

Harry let out a laugh from the hallway as his foe disappeared. As Enoch turned to face the dead man, Harry shook his head.

“Guy was a helluva scrapper,” Harry observed.

“Are there any more of them in here?” Enoch asked.

Harry shook his head. “Not that I know of.”

“Good. There is something else I have been meaning to speak to you about.”

Harry raised an eyebrow. “What’s that?”

“There is a woman who has been poking around some of the scenes where we recovered items,” Enoch explained. “I have her address at home. Tomorrow night, I would like you to go to the house and kill her and her husband.”

Harry frowned. “Just ‘cause she’s been pokin’ around?”

Enoch nodded. “I do not want her stumbling on us and stopping our retrieval of items. We have a quota.”

“Yeah, I know all about the quota, boss,” Harry said. “Okay. Yeah, I’ll swing by tomorrow night. Kill ‘em both?”


“Does it need to look like an accident?”

“I would appreciate it if it did,” Enoch answered, “but if it is not possible, then do not stress yourself. I will take what I can get.”

“Sure thing. I’ll make it as quick as I can,” Harry added. “Hate it when they take too long to die. Makes me feel like I did it wrong, you know?”

Enoch didn’t, but he nodded anyway. Tucking the box under his arm, he and Harry left the apartment, the sounds of Detroit a constant, pleasant hum in the background.

Chapter 2: Out of Order

Mack Finch closed her eyes and tried to marshal her thoughts. She focused on the most recent incident. It had been Danny Edelman, an old sailor who had been found dead in his bathroom, his head smashed against the cabinet.

Like several other veterans in the Detroit area, Danny had owned a haunted weapon. It had been a source of pride for him, and he had enjoyed showing it off. Both Mack and Kris had seen it before, as well as the distinctly unfriendly ghost who had been connected to it. Danny’s girlfriend, who had known about the knife, had reached out and told Mack that it was missing. It was the only object that had been taken.

And, like Danny, some of the other veterans had ended up dead, their haunted items missing.

I told him to get rid of it. Danny couldn’t speak Arabic, and the Bedouin was nasty as hell whenever Danny let him out of the box.

Who else knew that he had the knife? Did they kill him for it? Hell, did the Bedouin kill him? If it was the living who took it, are they responsible for the other strange deaths that have popped up in the news lately?

Mack leaned over her keyboard and stared at the computer screen. She bit her lower lip, tapped the mouse with growing frustration, and then clicked on the image in front of her. As the picture zoomed in, she straightened up.

She had managed to get her hands on an access login for the Detroit Police network, and what she was looking at was a list of recent deaths and homicides and a file she had made of the victims’ obituaries. Several of them were for veterans who had owned items possessed by violent ghosts.

I’ve been to the scenes, she thought. I’ve talked with the relatives. Some of the deaths look like accidents. Others are undeniably murders.

All the haunted items from the veterans are gone. Every one of them. Are the ghosts doing the killing? Or is it someone else? And if it’s the ghosts, who’s taking the items afterward?

Mack shook her head, pushed her chair back as she stood, and paced her small office. She turned sharply on her heel and went back to the computer. Without sitting, she clicked on several windows, setting them side by side until she could see the layout completely.

Whoever the thief is or are, they seem to be able to gain access to any place in Detroit. But how do they know which deaths are caused by the dead?

Damn. I’ve been working these cases for two weeks now and I know I’m missing something. It’s there, I just can’t see it! I need an unbiased set of eyes on this.

Leaning over the back of her chair, she brought up her email, opened a new message, and typed out a note quickly.

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