100-150 words

“On the street in front of him, behind all the screaming SWAT cops now rushing toward him, three big black SUVs raced from the west on the one-way street in front of the Hyatt and slammed to a stop just shy of the corner.

Just like in the movies, two tactical agents rode on the runners on both sides of each vehicle, one hand gripping a railing on top of each SUV and the other gripping an assault rifle. They all jumped off their vehicles in unison before the SUV had even come to a complete stop, and they all headed straight for Carl, rifle stocks jammed against their shoulders, barrels aimed at Carl.”

–excerpt from: http://amzn.to/1ARtVed

“They came out of nowhere. One second the sidewalk was empty of all life, not a living soul, not a single car on the street. The next, the sidewalk was filled with men in black. All were fully decked out in black tactical gear and Kevlar vests with the big, white capital letters S-W-A-T over the left breast. They all wore black helmets with face shields, and they all had shotguns and automatic rifles.

He froze, stunned, with his coffee cup inches away from his lips. He’d beenjust about to take another sip. The steam wafted up through the tiny hole right in front of his face.

“Well, f*** me sideways,” was all Carl could think to say.

–excerpt from: http://amzn.to/1ARtVed

300 words

The FBI SWAT team – Erickson called them Crisis Response personnel – arrived at the target house for their raid at fourteen minutes before noon on Monday. Carl felt a measure of safety, or even isolation from the event, because his operations house was twelve miles away. He and his assistant, the young Mr. Garcia, watched the raid unfold on a fifty-five-inch high-definition monitor. Carl knew he was playing a dangerous game with combat-trained professionals, and he could tell the FBI troops were trained every bit as well as military special ops soldiers. Regardless, the FBI cops he was watching on the monitor enabled his mission. Find the high-level director named McGrath and make him pay.

The two assault teams lined up in front of the house next door to the target house. A sniper’s head and the barrel of his rifle, along with the binoculars and head of his spotter, could be seen just over the ridgeline of the pitched roof of the neighboring house. One of the men peeked around the edge of the house and scanned the target house with a small handheld device that Carl’s mercenaries said was a thermal imager. Then the assault teams proceeded to the front and back of the target house. The doors were not locked; Carl had seen to that. On cue, both teams breached. There was no sound on the monitor, but Carl could imagine the assault teams screaming at the top of their lungs like they had when they attacked him a month ago at the downtown Starbucks. He figured maybe two of each team would head toward the kitchen where the decoy thermal signatures were located, while the rest would methodically clear all the other rooms. Carl figured it would take five seconds at most for the units to reach the kitchen and realize they’d been had. He nodded to Garcia.

“Do it.”

The detonation on the high-def monitor was nothing short of spectacular…

–excerpt from: http://amzn.to/1ARtVed

500 words

McGrath hurried into the op center. On the wall monitors in front of him he saw the destruction that remained of the kidnap site as well as photos of the kidnapper and the girl who was taken.

“Sitrep,” he said loudly. Agent Nancy Palmer stood immediately behind the four analysts who sat at computer workstations in front of the wall monitors. She was orchestrating the analysts’ data searches and coordinating the activities of other federal agencies — DHS, FBI, CIA — on her encrypted cell. Palmer tapped an analyst on the shoulder. “Put up the video on the left monitor.”

Almost instantly, McGrath saw the back of the limo from the dash cam of the following police cruiser. A flash of light streaked into view from the right, and the front end of the limo smashed into the pavement with a huge explosion. The back end lifted off the road a few feet, then crashed back down. Another missile streaked into view, and the lead escort cruiser lifted skyward on a pillar of fire. It flipped end-over-end, before crashing down and exploding. Then suddenly, the camera view twisted and spun crazily as a third unseen missile blasted the trailing police cruiser into the air. The camera came to rest upside down facing the halted limo.

As Agent Palmer stepped over beside him, he said, “They used a low-yield RPG just powerful enough to stop the armored car.” She nodded at the monitor. “They clearly wanted the passenger cabin undamaged, but there’s no way the officers in the escorts could have survived.”

A large, black SUV drove into view and pulled alongside the limo. It stopped slightly across the adjacent lane, and two upside-down figures in black tactical gear got out. One man carried a black circular device. It was about the diameter of a dinner plate, and maybe six inches thick. He held it against the limo’s rear passenger window for a few seconds. Agent Palmer said, “I’m guessing it’s a high-speed diamond-tipped drill.”

McGrath nodded and watched as the second man attached something to the center of the black plate, then both men stepped away from the limo a moment later, pulling the black plate with them. Smoke issued from the small hole in the window. The door on the opposite side of the limo opened, and a man and woman in black suits stumbled out with their handguns up. Gagging and coughing, they pulled a teenager out with them. The two tactical aggressors made quick work of the suits, shooting both in the head. Then they dragged the girl over to the SUV. A man inside shoved the door open and for a brief moment, he faced the dash cam. The video froze and the man’s face filled half the center monitor.

McGrath said, “People, this is top priority. We must get that girl back.”

–excerpt from: http://amzn.to/1ARtVed

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