Profile PictureM.E. Purfield - Autistic Author of Genre Fiction

The Pick-Up - eBook

1 rating

Sometimes the job can be peaceful. Sometimes it can be downright violent!

Hanna Posner is a woman living off the grid, taking delivery jobs that no one else would dare to do.

When she takes a job to deliver a package across the country and tries to help Kate, a teen runaway, her life takes a turn for the worse.

They quickly find themselves the target of the Impalers, a pair of deranged killers who want nothing more than to see them dead.

With no one to turn to, and nowhere to hide, Hanna and Kate must rely on their wits and strength to survive.

Filled with suspense and cringing violence, this fast-paced crime novel will keep readers on the edge of their seats from start to finish.

BONUS: Two Hanna Posner crime stories!

Chapter 1

She watched him from across the booth as he shoveled the Mexican omelet into his mouth and realized that, most of the time, her life was in his tattooed hands.

“So you ready for another job?” Bagley asked.

Hanna Posner, the name she had been using the last year, nodded and sipped her coffee. The thirty-two-year-old woman with short dark hair and matching eyes stared out the diner window at the empty parking lot. The sun had not yet risen over the North Dakota plains. Even though a few cars and trucks drove up and down Route 94 through Medina, they had not stopped to find food and energy at the Hash Diner and Rest Stop.

“Sure,” she said, her voice deep but only because she had been up all night driving to this location. Bagley always picked a semi-public spot close to the drop-offs after an assignment. “I’m always up for quick cash.”

Leaning back, Bagley smiled, chewed, and shook his head. Close to his fifties, he wore his blond and white hair long and with a few strands of cornrows like he was an aging heavy metalhead transforming slowly into a Rastafarian. Celtic designs inked his hands and arms sticking out of the blue short sleeve shirt but his stubbly face was clean. Even handsome.

Hanna thought about giving him more of her time than what he asks for at work but then decided she shouldn’t get involved with her boss. She had done it before and ended up doing five in the Georgia State Prison in Reidsville. No way she was going to risk that again.

“You’re getting cocky, little girl,” he said.

Hanna puffed. Little girl? Really?

“What do you mean?” she asked.

“Meaning you’re getting secure about your job,’ he said. “Like an old-timer.”

“I have been working for you for almost a year.”

“And doing great. You’re one of my best.”

“So I’m allowed a little cockiness. No?”

Bagley drank some of his water, spat a sneaky little ice cube out, and said, “Maybe. But you shouldn’t be cocky during the job. You could make a mistake.”

“You’re wasting your words,” she said. “I’m a total pro.”

“Never had any conflict while working an assignment?” he asked, traced with doubt.

“Didn’t say that.”

His pierced brow went up in question.

“Oh?” he asked.

Hanna smirked. Most of the time Bagley’s assignments went down perfectly. She picked up the package and delivered it. No cops. No interference. No problem. But sometimes when the moon was full, maybe, she ran into a problem. Nothing so big that she had to call Bagley to bail her out. Not that she thought he would bail her out. Hanna knew she was on her own. And on her own, she escaped the conflict with no problem and no trace.

“You can level with me, you ever run into a problem on the job?” he asked, curious, no sign of anger or edge. Almost trusting.

Hanna sipped her coffee, finishing it. She waved to the teen-aged waitress with no hips behind the counter and pointed to her empty cup.

“You know it’s bad luck to reveal trade secrets,” Hanna said.

Bagley smiled and nodded. The waitress filled Hanna’s cup and left. She dumped a lot of milk and sugar into the cup. The place served Colombian coffee as if trying to be like a New York or New Jersey diner. Hanna hated the taste of Columbia coffee. It reminded her of a cockroach a kid made her eat back when she grew up in the state system. She preferred stronger blends like French roast.

Done with his spicy omelet, home fries, and bacon, Bagley cleaned his mouth with a paper napkin. His face shifted into a serious expression. Into business.

“Okay,” he said. “I have something for you.” He opened the saddlebag at his side and pulled out a letter-sized envelope. “Business as usual.”

Hanna took the envelope, folded it, and slid it into the back pocket of her jeans.

“When do I start?”

“Pick-up is on June 5th.”

“Cool,” she said.

“Will I need anything bigger than a car?”

“Nope,” he said, counting out cash and placing it on the counter. “This should cover it.” He meant the bill, not her fee. Her fees were always sent to an off-shore account under another name he set up for her.

“Thanks for the coffee,” she said.

“I wish you would eat something when we meet,” Bagley said, sliding out of the booth.

“Why?” she asked.

“Like to treat my employees,” he said, standing and smoothing his blue button shirt over his potbelly. His khaki pants hung loosely over his skinny legs. Bagley was the most non-threatening person she ever met. Yet she knew he could be dangerous. Was dangerous with other people. She knew never to cross him. He held her life in his hands. “Give them little perks.”

“Trust me,” Hanna said. “You do.”

He smiled and nodded, not sure what she meant. “See ya,” he said and left the Hash Diner, waving goodby to the waitress and old man working the register.

Hanna remained seated, finished her crappy coffee, and waited for the bill.


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The Pick-Up - eBook

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