Having abstained from killing for almost a year, the Highwayman is coming unglued.
Unsure if the FBI is watching, Lance Belanger spends his days and nights in a paranoid malaise, longing to kill again. Meanwhile, in Bucharest, Romania, an Interpol raid leads to clues and a witness who can identify the Highwayman. Armed with new evidence, newly promoted SAC FBI Agent, Dave Maxwell heads for Bucharest, as his team of investigators redeploys their investigation on their original suspect, Lance Belanger. It would appear, the net is closing.
But the Highwayman has other ideas.
Just after dusk, outside of Pittsburgh, four strangers exit a service van and perpetrate the mass murder of four families in their suburban homes. It doesn’t take long for the FBI to connect the killings to Highwayman, and when they raid Belanger’s properties, they are left a parting gift.
Another murder and a message for Maxwell from the Highwayman himself.
Come and find me!
As the killing ramps up, Maxwell leads a posse of investigators across two states, north to Canada to try and thwart the Highwayman in his endgame, that involves kidnapping, mass murder, and betrayal.
The predator is now the prey.
But can they stop him before he disappears for good?
From The Book:
His head cocked to the right, like a dog trying to comprehend language, and then he exploded into action. Sprinting for the car, he bumped up against the right fender, and there was an audible thud that should have been followed by a curse, but he just rounded the car and yanked the driver door open. As a matter of fact, he pulled the door so hard it creaked in protest as it swung beyond its usual arc.
“Cliff, what is it?” she asked.
He dropped into the car and turned the key without thinking that he’d left it running. The gear in the starter ground against the spinning flywheel. “Oh fuck, oh fuck, oh fuck,” he blathered. He cranked the gear lever into reverse and punched the gas pedal onto the floor.
Shawna’s neck snapped to the right, following the command of G-force created by the motion of the car. And if that wasn’t enough, Cliff tromped on the brakes, sending her head back against the headrest. Before she could protest, he shoved the accelerator to the floor, and they were off and running.
“Fuck me! Oh God, fuck!” He was staring straight ahead. “Which way did they go?”
“The van, Shawna, that fucking white van! Which way did it go?” He was digging in his jacket, fumbling for something as he turned the wheel to the left. “Did you see it?”
“I don’t know…” She started to cry.
“Here!” He pulled out what he was fumbling with and tossed the cell phone toward her. “Call 911, call them now!”
The cell phone bounced off her lap and onto the floor.
“What is it, Cliff? What did you see?”
“Call them, Shawna,” he ordered, and then tromped on the brakes again. “Fuck me!”
Shawna grabbed the cell and looked up. Cliff was breathing in and out, in and out. She swore she could hear his heart hammering inside his chest cavity. Then she saw what made him hit the brakes.
The van was stopped four hundred yards ahead of them, idling at a stop sign.
Cliff never tore his eyes from the white van. “Call them now, Shawna. Tell them where we are. Tell them everyone is dead. Tell them to hurry.” He clamped onto the steering wheel, his knuckles whitening. He swallowed and waited to see what the van would do.
“911, what is your emergency? Police, fire, or ambulance?”
Shawna gaped at her husband, then to the white van. “We’re in Grand Acres. We need the police, everyone is dead. Please hurry, I think we’re in real danger.”
The brake lights on the van suddenly released, and Cliff reached across and took Shawna’s hand in his. His palm was sopping with sweat but worse, it was shaking horribly. “Get ready to hold on to something.”
“Cliff? What did you see?”
He expelled a breath, his eyes darting momentarily in her direction, then back.
Then the right signal on the van began to blink, and it turned the corner. After a second, it was gone, but Cliff didn’t move an inch. He was locked on that corner, waiting.
He turned to her, his face chalky with shock, eyes wide and finally spoke. “They killed everyone, Shawna,” he whispered, almost as if he believed the vehicle they rode in might be bugged. “Everyone in that house was murdered.” His voice hitched. “Everyone, Shawna, even the kids.”