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Death Dealer: Cult of the Endless Night Series Book 5

Death Dealer: Cult of the Endless Night Series Book 5

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Shane Ryan is out for vengeance. And Hell itself can’t stop him…

Retired marine and Ghost hunter, Shane Ryan, is no stranger to betrayal. A lifetime of battling supernatural evil has left him bitter and scarred. But when a former ally, Connor Loughlin, reveals the true depths of his depravity, Shane is determined to put him down once and for all…

Tracking the conniving businessman to a shadowy medical clinic, Shane is shocked to discover the true purpose of this blood-drenched laboratory—the harvesting of tormented souls, for profit and power. Forced to battle a horde of wrathful spirits, Shane barely manages to escape with his life. And his quarry is still on the loose.

But Shane isn’t the only one hunting Connor down. And they’ll stop at nothing to claim their revenge. With an army of deranged cultists standing between him and his target, Shane Ryan has his work cut out for him.

Shane has fought evil before. And he will make sure Connor faces the hell he’s about to unleash.

211 pages

Chapter 4: The Widow

Shane sat on a bench in Boston Common. Jaker sat beside him, impatient and fidgety. He had spent years standing behind benches in the park, reading over shoulders, and never sat on them. But Shane had forbidden him from standing behind him. He didn’t like the ghost looming.

“Are you incapable of sitting still?” he asked.

The ghost shrugged and stood up.

“I’ll just stand over here. Is that okay?”

“Fine,” Shane answered. Better than leaning in until he was almost touching Shane’s face, which he had a habit of doing.

Madeline West had immediately returned the call he placed to her office and shot down his request to come see her just as quickly. She proposed coming to him instead. Meeting someplace neutral. He suggested the park.

Shane was not sure how much responsibility she inherited when she took over for her husband, but he had no doubt that her dropping everything to meet him in a park was a great disruption in her day. That could only mean one thing.

She wanted to keep as far away from Shane as she could, and she felt this was the easiest way. Like ripping off a band-aid, she’d meet Shane, see what he wanted, and get rid of him as fast as possible. Luckily, that was also what he wanted.

Barely twenty minutes had passed since their call before Shane spotted Madeline West walking down a path toward him. She looked different from when he’d last seen her. Her hair was changed, and she wore a business suit. She looked younger and much less scared than during their previous encounter.

“Mr. Ryan,” she said, approaching him but not offering a hand.

“Mrs. West,” he replied, standing.

“Ms.,” she corrected. She held out a blank manila envelope.

Shane took it without bothering to look at the contents and offered her a seat on the bench. She shook her head, and her dark eyes drifted to Jaker.

“Yours?” she asked.

“The park’s,” he told her.

Jaker smiled and waved.

“You can see me, too? This has been an exciting week.”

“I’ve divested myself of most of my former husband’s dealings that related to the Endless Night. Did that the first day. I want nothing to do with them, Mr. Ryan. Not now, not ever again.”

“I don’t blame you,” he told her.

“Most of the Endless Night businesses were so caught up in false fronts, fake names, and shell corporations that there was little connecting them to Randall in the first place. For those that do, I sold stock where I could or dumped companies outright. All that remain are legitimate businesses that my husband had lent to the others for who knows what purposes.”

“That’s this?” Shane held up the envelope.

Madeline shook her head.

“All assets I still have with no other controlling partner that’s linked to the Endless Night. It’s not much, and none of them do anything that might be of interest to you, as far as I know. But I didn’t look into it because, frankly, I don’t want to,” she explained.

Shane nodded. He understood her position. Her husband had been involved in a lot of dark and dangerous things. Cutting and running made sense.

“I’ve moved on with my life. I live in Wellesley. I run a legitimate business. I don’t want these people in my life.”

“Have you heard from anyone, though? Cultists who are still out there resurrecting your husband’s work?”

“No,” she answered. “No one has reached out to me, and I wouldn’t answer if they did anyway. Anyone who survived left town that day. I’ve heard from people who have heard from people, but that’s all. Rumors of Randall’s cronies setting up shop in Seattle, or Paris, or anywhere but here. Not many survived, as you know.”

“I didn’t do a head count,” he replied.

“I did. Because they were corpses in my house. I had to have bodies dragged out of my house by people paid to keep it quiet because God knows how anyone would have rationally explained what happened.”

“How did you explain it?” Shane asked. He’d heard in the news that West had died suddenly but not any specific details.

“We told the media that Randall and some friends died in a boating accident. That’s not easy to arrange spur-of-the-moment, just so you know.”

Shane smiled and shrugged.

“Sounds almost like you’re blaming me.” He lit a cigarette.

She locked eyes with him, her expression cold for a moment before she sighed and shook her head, smiling despite herself.

“I’m glad he’s dead if that’s what you’re asking. I’m glad I’m free and those… jackasses are gone with him. But you could have been a little more subtle.”

“Blame the ghosts,” he countered. He hadn’t killed most of the people in the house. West’s collection had.

“I blame Randall,” she told him. “But it’s in the past. I’m done with him, I’m done with them, and that envelope means I am done with you, too, Mr. Ryan. I’m not ungrateful. You saved my life that night; I know that. But now that I have the life I’ve wanted, I can’t let any of you back in.”

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