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Camino Winds (Camino Island, #2) by John Grisham Read Online (FREE)

 

Elaine was coming around her desk with a smile and handshake as the guard closed the door.

“I feel as though you should frisk me,” Bruce said.

“Bend over,” she snapped and Bruce burst out laughing. She waved to a sofa and said, “Might as well laugh, Cable, you beat us fair and square.”

They took seats around a low table and she began pouring coffee.

“You got the manuscripts back,” he said. “Everybody’s happy.”

“Easy for you to say.”

“It was a brilliant idea, Ms. Shelby.”

“Drop the formal stuff. I’ll be Elaine and you’ll be Bruce, okay?”

“Fine with me.”

“You call it brilliant, in our business we call it a failure, which, I hate to say, is not that unusual. We are dealt the toughest cases and we don’t always win.”

“But you always get paid.”

“Damned right we do. Don’t you just love Mercer?”

“I tried my best. Great girl, wonderful writer.”

“Did you guys make it all the way to bed?”

“Oh, I never kiss and tell, Elaine. That’s very unprofessional.”

 

“You have a horrible reputation for chasing the young female writers.”

“Why is that horrible? I assure you it’s all consensual. These liberated women are on the road and looking for fun. I just try to accommodate them.”

“We know, we know. That was our plan.”

“Almost brilliant. Was it your idea?”

“We have teams, no one works solo around here. It was a joint effort.”

“Okay. What can you tell me about this outfit?”

“I understand you want to hire us.”

“I’m interested, but I need to know more.”

She took a sip of coffee and recrossed her legs. Bruce refused to notice. “Well, for lack of a better description, we are a security firm.”

“Do you have a name?”

“Not really.”

“So, if I eventually write out a check for payment, it will be ‘pay to the order of…’ ”

“Alpha North Solutions.”

“How wonderfully bland.”

“And you came up with ‘Bay Books’?”

“I did. Much sexier.”

“Is it really that important for you to like our name?”

“I guess not.”

“May I proceed? You did inquire.”

“I did. Please. Sorry.”

“Anyway, we provide security for companies and individuals, we investigate crimes for insurance companies and other clients, we subcontract with the federal government to consult on security matters. We operate around the world, with headquarters here.”

 

“Why here?”

“Why does it matter?”

“It doesn’t, I guess. It’s just that you’re stuck out here in the middle of nowhere with nothing but eight-lane roads running in all directions.”

“It’s convenient. Dulles is right there and we travel a lot. Virtually every employee here is former FBI or CIA, and this area is home.”

“And you?”

“FBI for fifteen years, worked primarily in recovering stolen art.”

“And manuscripts.”

“Among other items. I’ve looked through the materials you sent, interesting reading, and you’re smart to avoid email. I assume the locals down there have not made much progress.”

“Not much at all, I’m afraid.”