By Alex Archer, Mel Odom
With one small chess piece, the sport begins…
For archaeologist and television host Annja Creed, a late-night cellphone name from the NYPD capability something: there's been a homicide and the police desire her services. the one hyperlink among a useless physique and the killer is a small elephant of white jade. An artifact that's long gone lacking.
Once belonging to Catherine the nice of Russia, the elephant used to be key in a dicy political gambit all these years in the past. yet there's one other tale hooked up to the artifact—a rumor of an historic hidden treasure. And for a cruelly formidable media rich person with a penchant for tomb-raiding, the elephant is little short of necessary.
Annja needs to make her circulation fast, touring throughout a number of continents with purely the help of her notable sword—purportedly an analogous sword wielded via Joan of Arc—and a mysterious temple monk. It's a perilous conflict of wits, and one mistaken circulation may suggest online game over.
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Additional info for Pretender's Gambit (Rogue Angel, Book 51)
Detective Broadhurst. ” “I may say it’s strong to work out you. in its place, I’m simply going to say sorry I’m seeing you back below those conditions. ” Annja nodded and grew to become her awareness to the room. The residing region was once small and well stored for the main half. “An older guy lives right here by means of himself? ” “Yes. ” Broadhurst appeared a bit stunned. “Somebody informed you? ” Annja pointed to the foil continues to be of the television dinner sitting at the espresso desk. “Single man. ” She pointed to the small tv within the nook. It used to be an older set, now not a flatscreen. “Older man who listens to the tv greater than he watches it. ” She pointed on the wall the place a unmarried black-and-white photo of a tender guy and girl hung. “I’m presuming that’s the fellow at a far more youthful age. He lives on my own or there will be extra pictures. ” She touched the golf green effortless chair that had visible greater days and an both battered, nonmatching sofa. “And larger furnishings that wouldn’t be so dusty. ” Broadhurst smiled a bit extra. “You can be a cop. ” “She’s greater than a cop,” Bart stated. “She’s going as a way to aid us with the elephant. ” “Elephant? ” Annja requested. “You’ve acquired an elephant in right here someplace? Now that may be a shock. but when you’ve bought an elephant in the following, I’m convinced that might have damaged the hire. perhaps the ground. ” Bart gestured to the again of the house. “This is the place it will get undesirable. ” * * * “HIS identify used to be Maurice Benyovszky,” Broadhurst acknowledged. “According to some of the buddies, he ran a small mail-order company out of his domestic. He seems like a bit outdated man attempting to get through. From the appearance of the house, until he’s obtained a secure deposit field filled choked with funds someplace, Benyovszky wasn’t getting wealthy. ” The lifeless guy used to be in his seventies at the least, and he could nonetheless have seemed like the black-and-white photograph within the front room if a person hadn’t overwhelmed his face into pulp. wearing a pale purple apartment gown and pajamas, the outdated guy lay crumpled at the ground in entrance of a giant table coated with knick-knacks, a working laptop or computer and a digicam. Paper luggage lined his arms, positioned there by way of the crime-scene techs to maintain facts. He could have been 5 toes tall and weighed 110 kilos. Blood stained the again wall and curtains over the room’s window and the ceiling in an incredibly instantly line. “His killer beat him to dying with what used to be most likely a hammer of a few variety. ” Bart’s voice used to be calm and hole, his specialist tone whilst he used to be speaking a few case. “We haven’t chanced on the homicide weapon but, yet that’s what we’re trying to find. The cast-off blood tells us the place the killer and his companion have been status. ” “There have been of them? ” After the preliminary surprise of seeing the physique, Annja’s brain slipped into problem-solving mode. “Yeah. The killer—” Bart pointed to massive, bloody footprints that have been a ways better than the lifeless guy could have made “—and the companion. ” He indicated a moment set of footprints that have been smaller, but nonetheless greater than the victim’s. “Nobody observed something?