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Sniper – Justin Graves Series Book 12 Copyright © 2014 by Terry Wright All rights reserved. No part of this story (e-book) may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without written permission of the author, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles or book reviews. This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidences are either a product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to any actual person, living or dead, events, or locales is entirely coincidental. Cover Art by Terry Wright ISBN: 978-1-936991-79-2


By Terry Wright Crawling on his belly, Specialist 4th Class Rodney Gantz was sure his camouflaged fatigues and blackened face would meld his features into the surrounding jungle. Sweat seeped from under his helmet as he made his way through dense underbrush, barely making a sound. A bayonet was clamped between the wiry Marine’s teeth. He would be ready to silently dispatch any perimeter guard he encountered. Stealth was his greatest asset. Success or failure of his mission depended on his uncanny ability to get in undetected. And Rodney was a pro. His target would never know what hit him. Commander O Ben Lai was due to arrive by bus. Back at HQ, Rodney’s general had briefed him on the situation. The enemy was planning to overrun the base. Hundreds of GIs would be slaughtered if O Ben Lai wasn’t and now. The United States and the Marine Corp were counting on Rodney Gantz to fulfill his mission and get the kill, a responsibility and an honor that he embraced wholeheartedly. He had trained with tenacity and brilliance, achieving the highest marksman ratings with his Harris M-89 sniper rifle at 1000


yards, the same rifle he’d lived with, slept with, and now crawled with strapped to his back. It had been a personal gift from the general for service to the Marines beyond compare. Rodney knew the outpost, in the clearing just beyond this thicket, was heavily guarded. The general had warned him that soldiers would surround O Ben Lai when he disembarked the bus. A clear shot would be difficult, not to mention any other threats that would have to be eliminated. It would take the utmost of concentration, nerves of steel between each well-placed shot as he allowed the rifle barrel to cool a couple seconds, and then Rodney Gantz would have only moments to escape afterwards. His route was well planned, though. His confidence was high. Reaching the edge of the clearing, and now shielded from view by leafy bushes, Rodney took in the scene before him through powerful binoculars. Heavily armed troops scurried in and out of their headquarters, a large building off to his left. It had a glass façade and automatic doors, which he thought was strange for a military outpost. In loose formations, soldiers marched across the compound, a blacktopped area marked off in rows of parallel sections. Jeeps, tanks, and armored personnel carriers had been parked neatly inside each of these spaces, a show of strength and strict organization. Rodney grinned. He was about to show them just how vulnerable they really were. “General to Sniper One, come in.”


Rodney set aside the binoculars, sheathed the bayonet that was clenched between his teeth, and keyed the satellite radio mike clipped to his collar. “Sniper One is in position, sir,” he whispered. “We’re all counting on you,” the general said. “I will not fail, sir.” A movement through the trees on the other side of the compound caught his attention. It was the bus arriving, right on time. “Over and out.” With heart beating wildly, Spec 4 Rodney Gantz knew it was his moment of glory. He retrieved the sniper rifle from off his back and slapped in a fresh M-14 clip loaded with twenty rounds of high-caliber ammunition. Settling into a prone shooting position, he firmly planted his elbows in the hard soil and zeroed the scope reticle in on the scene. His nose began to itch, but he ignored it. Nothing was going to distract him from this history-making shot. And he waited. The goddamned bus was delayed at a red traffic light. For the briefest of moments, he wondered why the enemy had erected a stop light this deep in the jungle. Undaunted, he concentrated on the crosshairs of his scope, the bus driver’s head now framed ominously from three hundred yards, well within the rifle’s calibration parameters. Because there was no wind angle to correct for, he could place a bullet square between the driver’s eyes. However, a professional sniper would not take such a high-risk shot. At this range, center chest


was not only a bigger target, but it had a high kill rate: severing arteries, collapsing lungs, and with a perfectly placed shot, exploding heart ventricles. Rodney considered himself a chest man and waited with the patience of a vulture. He didn’t have to wait long. The light turned green, and the bus proceeded into the compound, stopping in front of the headquarters building. Wetting his lips, he rammed the rifle bolt forward, chambering a round. And just as the general had predicted, a throng of soldiers emerged from the bus. Rodney tightened his finger on the trigger, crosshairs aligned and steady. Seconds went by, maybe five, maybe ten, and then there he was, Commander O Ben Lai, stepping off the bus. Rodney could tell by the ponytail he wore, dirty blond hair flowing down his back, and the small soldier with him, hanging on to his hand. Bang! A perfect chest shot. O Ben Lai bit the dust. Rodney chambered another round. “One thousand one. One thousand two. Pull.” Bang! One of the Commander’s aides joined him on the ground. “One thousand one. One thousand two.” Bang! The high-velocity round slammed a door guard through the plate glass.


Rodney snickered. “Like shooting ducks in an arcade. One thousand two.” As he chambered another round, he realized all potential threats had been taken out, as all the soldiers had ducked behind cover. “Mission accomplished.” Now Rodney slipped silently away. He had to report to the general. ***

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About the Author

There’s nothing mundane in the writing world of Terry Wright. Tension, conflict, and suspense propel his readers through the pages as if they were on fire. His mastery of the action thriller has won him International acclaim as an accomplished screenplay writer. He lives in Lakewood, Colorado, with his wife, Bobette. When they’re not writing, editing, or publishing, they enjoy country western dancing and travelling on their Harley Davidson motorcycle.


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The Duplication Factor (TWB Press, 2011) A sci-fi human cloning novel by Terry Wright

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In Book 12 of the Justin Graves Horror Series, Deckers, Texas, is under siege. A sniper is picking off citizens as they go about their dail...