It’s Wedneday again and that means words. Apparently, someone picked up the #1linWed mantle and offered new prompts, currently **RENEW**. And the always dependable #ThursdayThreads offers this for inspriation: “Thank you for volunteering.” I’d mentioned in my Monday follow-up last week that I’d had to do some more backtracking in the WIP. Lo and behold, those prompts fit in perfectly with some revisions I was making in Chapter 2. What follows is the full, expanded version.
Major-general David Muir was a fit man in his early fifties. His short, dark hair showed traces of silver at the temples. Stern and buttoned up, he was far from the caricature created by Gilbert and Sullivan. His strain showed around the edges.
“Wolves,” he said, shaking his head in a total lack of understanding. He didn’t notice Kin and Loch stiffening. “She was over there studying a pack of wild wolves from the Carpathian Mountains. They’d been relocated to a refuge down in the central part of the country. Right before the bloody Russians decided to invade.” His fists curled on his desk. “I told command that we should have taken a stronger stance when bloody Putin annexed Crimea.”
Pushing back from his desk, he stood. “I’ve always been a soldier first, but she’s my only child.” His cell phone buzzed and he glanced down. Wincing, he explained. “Her mother’s calling. Again. Alana and I barely speak, haven’t truly spoken to each other in years. We divorced when Meghan was two. Alana’s idea. I soldiered on, quite literally, I fear. Meghan spent some vacations and holidays with me when my postings were appropriate.” He glanced at the still buzzing phone. “I should take that but I have nothing to tell her.”
“We appreciate your aid in expediting certain things, sir,” Duke said. “And while I can’t promise one hundred percent success, we do have a good record of completing our missions. We need all the information you can give us as to where you think her current location is and if there’s any way we can track her.”
All the starch seemed to go out of the man. He sank back into his desk chair and dropped his face into his hands. A moment later, he looked up and continued. “I bloody well wanted to send my entire division in after her. We have special units—” He paused to stare at Kin, suddenly distracted. “You look familiar.”
Habit had Kin coming to attention and he just managed to hold back a salute. “I served in the 22nd SAS Regiment, sir. CTW.”
“Counter Terrorism Wing.” Muir almost relaxed. He fixed his gaze on Duke. “If this is the caliber of your team…” He trailed off, not quite sure what rank to assign Duke.
“Chief works,” Duke said into the awkward silence. “I was US Navy. SEAL. Chief Petty Officer.”
The worried expression on Muir’s face faded and the lines around his eyes smoothed out. “My little girl is in good hands then. We have an Atlas flying to the base at Mihail Kogălniceanu, Romania. They are NATO and are prepared to assist you. Your contact is Major Radu of their Military Logistics Administration. He is fully briefed and…” He hesitated. “I trust him. He’ll make necessary arrangements and supply whatever military equipment and transportation you need. He will also insure that you are updated on the current situation within Ukraine’s borders.”
“Is your daughter still on the move?” Duke asked.
Muir rubbed his eyes. “No. Apparently not. Her current location is in the file, along with the information on tracking her phone. The signal has been stationary for twenty-four hours. She’s somewhere northwest of Odessa. The last ping from her phone indicated she was out in the middle of…nothing. No towns nearby.”
“That’s all we need then,” Duke said.
The team stood, ready to leave. Muir followed them to the door. “Thank you for volunteering. You have renewed my faith that she will return home safely.”
Not that they had, Kin thought. Volunteered that is. Duty was duty and this mission was currently theirs.
And so the adventure begins. Writers, did you find some inspiration in the prompts? Readers, do you think Kin would volunteer if he hadn’t been “drafted” for this mission?
**Psst. The answer is yes. Mother had him the minute he saw Meg’s face up on the big screen in the conference room. 😉