Hey there everyone! I am just posting once this weekend. I forgot to sign up for Weekend Writing Warriors so I don’t have a blurb for that. Instead I’m going to put some more music out there with an excerpt from the end of Hunting Heartbreak. So, SPOILER ALERT! The song featured this week is Red by Chevelle. Enjoy, and don’t forget to grab a copy of Push for Power, the second book in the Mark of the Yakuza Series.
The reddish glow of the sun began rising nearly three hours after Kas had entered her disconnected meditation. A sense of calm engulfed her, and she opened all of her senses waiting for the sound of a disturbance, something that would announce Akira’s arrival.
Kas need not listen for subtleties. Only a few moments after Kas noticed the lightening of the sky, and alarm shrieked from within the house, something Akira likely tripped on purpose to signal Kas of his arrival. Thundering footsteps echoed like trampling elephants, breaking the heavy silence. With one last deep breath, Kas left the bed, toppled the small table, and grabbed hold of one of the legs. She winced at the pain in her ribs, but refused to let it stop her from her goal. Bracing her foot on one side, Kas yanked at the leg from the other side, using her weight to pull the shaft of wood upward. It took three tries, but finally the wood splintered free.
Kas limped to the large window, braced her palm on the wide end of the busted leg then jammed the solid wood into the window pane, backing the blow with her weight. It took nearly five blows, but finally the glass webbed then burst in a tinkling fountain, some shard hanging like icicles from the window’s frame. Kas grabbed one of the larger shards and limped over beside the bed.
Taking the remainder of the towel she had shredded before, Kas wrapped the end of the glass so she had a better hold. She hoped to sit for a moment and breath through some of the pain, but the door burst open and five men rushed inside: Jiro, Ichiro and three others. Anger livened Jiro’s face, but fatigue wore at him, his eyes red with dark sacks below.
Kas wasted no time. If she was going to get her freedom she had to take out the man giving the orders. Akira would likely be coming through her window soon. With a rush of speed Kas charged Jiro, holding the glass braced at her hip aiming to sink it into Jiro’s midsection.
None of the men were able to snag her in time to stop her progress, but Jiro was able to dodge to his right. Still, Kas drew blood from his side, and the shard of glass remained whole. She turned again, determined to harm him as much as possible, if not kill him.
Ichiro grabbed her around the midsection and Jiro moved in closer. Kas remembered Jiro’s words, how Ichiro hired Ryan to spy on them all, and though he helped her from the warehouse, his betrayal stung Kas, because she began to care, too. Kas flailed and slashed at Ichiro, and landed a solid kick to Jiro’s temple. Jiro fell, and Kas broke free in time to round Ichiro and ram the shard into the meat connecting his neck and shoulder. Blood spurted everywhere, and before Kas could bask in her revenge, Jiro lunged at her.
During her attack Akira appeared, a golden ring of sunlight encircling him; he was her hero. Another of his security climbed in behind him and they both engaged the guards in the room as Kas continued to struggle with Jiro. Both of
them fought exhausted, on too little sleep, too little energy, and the fight would leave them both drained.
Jiro used her momentum to shove her into the wall, and she was not able to get the shard of glass out of the way in time. It dug into the flesh by her hip and blood bloomed over the intricate design of the kimono. Pieces of the glass broke and fell to the ground, leaving Kas with a somewhat dull, round shape. Regardless the shape, if Kas could get close enough to run it across Jiro’s neck she could kill him.
Again, Kas tried rushing Jiro, but he caught an opening and punched her hard in the ribs. The pain made her drop to her knees, the glass shard held loosely at her side. Kas tried pushing the pain away, catching her breath, but she knew an attack from Jiro came, so she braced for it. Instead Kas heard a man yell, and Jiro went flying to the side.
Hak burst through the window, brandishing her discarded tanto. He must have pulled it from the warehouse. He fought clumsily, but with strength Kas would not have expected from someone of his stature.
The distraction made it easy for Kas to rush up behind Jiro and shove the glass shard into the soft flesh of his already injured side, jamming it up under his ribs. He screamed then started coughing, and blood trickled from his mouth. The injury fueled his rage, and he turned and backhanded Kas then kicked Hak in the groin. With a groan he pulled the glass from his side and lunged at Kas. The glass became imbedded in her stomach, and Kas could feel the warmth seeping from her. Jiro kicked Hak in the face, making sure he was down then pulled a gun from somewhere, aimed it between Kas’ eyes, but something made him stall. He did not fire, but studied her with a sense of longing. Perhaps behind all that was wrong with him, he did sincerely care for Kas. Whatever the cause, Kas was glad he did not shoot.
Akira finally downed the guard he was fighting, knocked the firearm from Jiro’s hand then jabbed him with a sharp blow to where Kas had stabbed him with the glass. Jiro fell.
Kas let Akira grab her by the arm. “We have to get out now!”
Noise enveloped them, and the sharp smell of smoke burned Kas’ nostrils. “Hak, come on. Let’s go.” She stretched her arm out to him, refusing to exit the room until he grasped her hand. Between Akira and his men, they were able to help everyone down to the ground. Kas looked around, finally noticing the orange glow did not come just from the rising sun, but from the large fire that was slowly consuming the entire house.
“A fire? Akira, when the Sha–”
“I did not set the fire.”
Before Kas had time to answer, Ryan burst from one of the office windows, coughing and hacking to free his lungs from the pollutants and smoke.