Save Your Breath by Melinda Leigh Read Online (FREE)
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Where is she?
Hiding in the shadows outside Olivia Cruz’s small white bungalow, he checked his watch. It was nearly ten o’clock. For the past few weeks, Olivia had left her house on Thursday evenings around five o’clock and returned by nine thirty. She should be home by now. Unless she’d changed her routine.
He crossed his arms and tapped his chin with a forefinger.
Maybe she wasn’t coming home at all tonight. She occasionally spent the night at her boyfriend’s house. Sometimes, the boyfriend slept here, but that hadn’t happened on a Thursday night.
He’d give her another twenty minutes. If she didn’t show up, he’d return to his van. He’d left the vehicle at a park about a mile away and jogged to Olivia’s house. For now, he was comfortable and in a good position near her garage. A six-foot section of fencing at the front corner of the bungalow shielded the garbage can from passersby and provided him with an excellent hiding place. The September night had a pleasant snap. He peered around the wooden panel and scanned the street. The suburban neighborhood was quiet enough to hear the soft sounds of the night. A breeze rustled dead leaves on the grass, and a dog barked in the distance.
Headlights swept across blacktop as a car turned onto the street. Excitement and nerves warmed his blood.
Is it her?
He took a long, deep breath of woodsmoke-scented air and controlled his heart rate. He’d studied his target and planned the night with meticulous precision. Yesterday, he’d collected the surveillance cameras he’d planted several weeks before. Designed to catch thieves stealing packages from doorsteps, they looked like landscape rocks. With sixty days of battery life and cellular transmission, the cameras had allowed him to monitor Olivia’s activity remotely. The cameras—and plenty of good old-fashioned surveillance from his van and the shed of a vacant house behind hers—had enabled him to paint an accurate picture of her daily routine.
He would take no chances.
The vehicle approached. A white Prius. Olivia’s car. She was home.
It was on.
He cracked his neck and pulled the gloves from his pocket. After tugging them on, he opened his lightweight running backpack in which he carried a roll of duct tape, a length of rope, a mask, and a knife. His fingers traced the outline of a capped syringe in the chest pocket of his jacket.
He had everything he needed.
He pulled the mask from his backpack and put it on. In the unlikely event he was unsuccessful, his identity had to be protected. He’d prepared for every possible what-if. Having a Plan B was just as important as a Plan A. He could not get caught.
The garage door rolled up, and the interior brightened. The Prius turned into the driveway of Olivia’s bungalow and drove into the garage. Listening, he poised on the balls of his feet and waited.