Page 5

her hand dug into her purse and removed the switchblade. She watched as her thumb depressed the catch and the blade snicked out into the night. She watched as she put her back against the crate, waiting for Catherine to step into range; and then as her left arm came up and snaked around Catherine’s throat, expertly, the fingers slipping inside Catherine’s mouth. She watched as her right hand moved the blade up, finding the correct angle perfectly, elegantly, as if she had done this just yesterday. She slid the blade between the fourth and fifth ribs, directly into Catherine Danielson’s heart. Catherine began to shake. Katarina, embracing her from behind, held on tightly. For a few seconds, Catherine shivered almost sensuously; then she let out a papery sigh. Not dead yet—but her chest cavity already would be filling with blood. Her punctured heart would drown itself. Katarina removed the switchblade before she lowered Catherine to the dock. She wiped the blade clean on Catherine’s raggedy coat, then flung the knife into the water. After that she worked quickly, without looking at the body lying on the dock by her feet. She found the box she had put there earlier in the night, a small cardboard parcel tucked between two crates. From the box she withdrew two heavy, misshapen pieces of scrap steel, already entwined with ropes. She tied the loose ends of the ropes to Catherine’s ankles. The wind was bitter and cold; she ignored it. From farther up the dock she could hear intermittent cheers as the cruiser discharged its passengers and the band played on. Once she had the weights fastened to Catherine’s ankles, she stood up and surveyed her handiwork. She took a long, critical look; a small furrow of concentration appeared on her brow. Then, abruptly, she rolled the body off the dock with one foot. The splash sounded very loud. Following the splash came a few moments of hissing as the ocean closed back up over the intruding object. Then silence. The band struck up a fresh tune—“Don’t Blame Me.” Katarina picked up Catherine Danielson’s purse, dug through it, and found a cigarette. She slung the purse over her shoulder, lit the cigarette, and moved back down the dock.

Profile for johnaltmanwriter

A Gathering of Spies - Excerpt  

A BEAUTIFUL NAZI SPY AND AN ENIGMATIC BRITISH DOUBLE AGENT MATCH WITS IN THIS GRIPPING WORLD WAR II THRILLER Gorgeous, cunning, and lethal,...

A Gathering of Spies - Excerpt  

A BEAUTIFUL NAZI SPY AND AN ENIGMATIC BRITISH DOUBLE AGENT MATCH WITS IN THIS GRIPPING WORLD WAR II THRILLER Gorgeous, cunning, and lethal,...