A new story by Savage, USA Today bestselling author!
Improvise, Adapt, and Overcome. The mantra is good enough for the Marines; it’s good enough for me. Improvise . . . Near the top of the world, I fight for my life against my opponent, Sebastian Stark. He has the upper hand in strength, but I have the cunning to turn the tables on him. I battle the elements, my demons, and him until Stark and I manage to strike a deal to ensure freedom for us both—and the women we love.
Adapt . . . Being alone comes naturally to me. I’ve spent most of my life alone. Sharing my experiences, opening up to another human being, developing a relationship—all these things are foreign to me. Sometimes I wonder if it’s even meant to be.
Overcome . . . I’ve been away from Lia for far too long, yet I still have commitments I must keep. When I make my way home, I will tell her I have decided to end the life I have led and move on to become the man she needs. I can overcome my demons; I must. But will Lia be willing to wait?
Read an excerpt
I sigh as I look down the side of the snowy ridge and swing my legs over to start my own descent. I need to find a good hiding spot until anyone who might be looking for me is gone. As I make my way slowly down the rocks, I wonder how long it will take for them to decide I’m buried in the snow.There aren’t a lot of options for hiding, but as I hear the whir of helicopter blades, I duck behind a ridge and press my back against the rock. The movement jars my dislocated shoulder, and I have to grit my teeth against the pain. All things considered, I’m lucky to be alive. I know it, but I don’t feel it. Just an hour ago, I was ready to die. It would have been a relief. Giving up, even briefly, had felt good.I probably just need a decent night’s sleep.A vision moves beside me, and as much as I want to ignore the specter, he stays in my sights, looking over at me with dark hair hanging in his innocent eyes.He’s not there. I know he’s not really there.Even with the intense cold, his presence makes my palms sweat. I let myself look in his direction even though I don’t want to. The kid looks the same as he always does—disheveled, dressed in a simple cloth shirt and trousers, no shoes. There is fear in his eyes as if he knows exactly what is about to happen to him.“Don’t you have some other poor asshole to harass?” I ask aloud.The kid tilts his head but doesn’t speak. He rarely does.I use the back of my glove to rub at my eyes. The snow melts on my skin, causing a chill as the wind hits my face. I need to stay dry, so I use the strip of cloth covering my mouth to wipe the melted snow away and then yank up my gloves.The helicopter passes over my head and out of sight. I glance over my shoulder at the icy mountain behind me. Mt. Windsor is the only actual land formation that makes up tiny Buckingham Island in Canada’s unorganized Nunavut territory. On a good day, the temperature might reach zero, but it’s not a good day.Soon, it’s going to be a really shitty night. I don’t think I’ll live through it.Shuffling away from the rock, I rub at my sore shoulder and start down the side of the mountain again. It’s slow going. Balancing with one arm basically out of commission isn’t easy, and the terrain is rough. The wind is at my back, trying to push me over, but I manage to stay on my feet.The vision of the kid, occasionally kicking at rocks that don’t move, follows me all the way down.My head pounds along with my heart. I close my eyes and shake my head, but he’s still there. It doesn’t seem to matter what I do anymore. I can’t get rid of him. When I first started seeing him, before I realized what he was, he would disappear soon after I first saw him. Now he lingers, taunting me with the memories of the boy I killed overseas.He doesn’t bother to hide when the helicopter passes over again, but I have to duck underneath a rocky outcropping. When I drag myself back out, he still stands there, staring at me. Maybe he’s feeling bolder since I told Stark about him.“Fuck you,” I mutter.
Shay Savage lives in Cincinnati, Ohio with her family and a variety of household pets. She is an accomplished public speaker, and holds the rank of Distinguished Toastmaster from Toastmasters International. When not writing, she enjoys science fiction movies, masquerading as a zombie, is a HUGE Star Wars fan, and member of the 501st Legion of Stormtroopers. When the geek fun runs out, she loves soccer in any and all forms - especially the Columbus Crew, Arsenal and Bayern Munich. Savage holds a degree in psychology, and she brings a lot of that knowledge into the characters within her stories.