The Worst Fear Excerpt Chapter Four

Chapter Four

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As the black Suburban pulled away from FBI Headquarters and sped past the Washington Monument, Niles settled into  the  rear  seat  and  thought  about  that  exchange  with  Dixon. They had worked together early in their careers when Niles was Senior Special Agent on a joint terrorism task force investigating Saudi funding of fringe Islamic terrorist groups. For the past two years, they had spent a lot of time with each other; he considered Dixon a friend. 

     

‘Sorry, Markus.’ The way he said it bothered Niles. What was Dixon trying to tell him? His plan was being scrapped? After all that time and effort? Petrone was shutting it down before it even got started?

       

The two NSA agents riding up front in the Suburban didn’t say a word as they headed up the B-W Parkway toward Fort Meade. The driver had his foot into it, too; at one point Niles glanced at the instrument panel to check their speed. 

     

“Eighty- five…?” he said out loud. “I’d like to get there in one piece, if y’all don’t mind.” 

       

The agents ignored him. 

       

Niles sat back and fished out his ear buds. If he was going to die today, he decided, at least he’d go out listening to some straight-up syncopation.
       

He fired up Miles Davis’s ‘Seven Steps to Heaven’. The up-tempo iconic standard filled his ears with the singular sound of the maestro at his most masterful. 
       

Niles closed his eyes and embraced the music, satisfied that, with Miles riffing in his head for the next half hour, give or take, assuming they didn’t crash, he would be ready for whatever was coming his way out at Snoop Central.