Never let it be said that I'm a tease...
In this scene, Marc has managed to escape the police who were hot on his tail after using Sophie as a hostage to break out of prison. He hasn't refreshed Sophie's memory, and she still doesn't recognize him. He had broken into a sporting good store high in the mountains for gear to help him make his final getaway, leaving Sophie handcuffed inside her own car, which he used to get away from the prison. But Sophie, still afraid he might kill her, has done a few desperate things to escape, and those things have backfired on her in a very dangerous way...
From Chapter 4 of Unlawful Contact
Marc stepped outside, sucked cold, fresh air into his lungs, savoring the shock, the chill, the scent of it. Wind-driven snow pricked his cheeks and forehead, caught in his beard, sand-blasting the lingering stench of prison from his skin. He couldn’t have gotten better weather if he’d asked for it. The storm would delay the cops, cover his tracks, make it almost impossible for search teams to pick up his trail. By sunrise tomorrow, he’d be free and clear.
Of course, anything could happen.
He rounded the corner, stopped in his tracks. “Oh, for fuck’s sake!”
Sophie lay sprawled in the snow beside the open car door, struggling clumsily to get upright, arms stretched over her head, her wrists still cuffed to the door handle.
He reached her in two long strides, dropped the pack on the ground, and knelt beside her, fear kicking him hard in the gut. “How in the hell did you manage this?”
Apart from a fresh bruise on her cheek, her face was deathly pale. She shivered violently, snowflakes on her skin and lashes, her wrists badly bruised, her fingers bloodless. But when she looked at him, her eyes spat fire. “B-bastard!”
At least she was conscious and aware and cussing.
“Save the name-calling for later, sweetheart.” He covered her with the parka he’d stolen for her and shoved a hat over her head to preserve whatever body heat he could, then dug in his pack for the pocket knife, knowing he had to get her warm if he wanted to save her life. “Right now, you have bigger problems.”
He flipped to one of the attachments on the pocket knife—a thin metal blade—and jimmied it into the tiny space beside the teeth of the handcuffs, forcing back the internal locking mechanism, freeing first her right wrist and then her left. Then he slipped his arm beneath her shoulders and eased her to a sitting position.
Furious with her, even angrier with himself, it was all he could do not to shout. “Do you realize how fucking stupid this was? Jesus, Sophie! Are you trying to kill yourself?”
She tried to push him away, her motions sluggish and weak. “I-I forgot. K-killing m-me is y-your job.”
“Don’t tempt me!” He stuffed her arms into the sleeves of the stolen parka, then dug in the pack for one of the emergency hand warmers. “Can you stand?”
“Y-yes.” But she didn’t budge.
“Damn it!” He lifted her off the snowy ground, buckled her in the passenger seat, then activated the emergency warmer and slipped it inside her parka. “Stay awake, do you hear me? Watching you die is not on my list of things to do tonight!”
Tomorrow's blog: Email me your favorite moments from Surrender. I'm reading it now, and I'm going to post my favorite excerpts. Let's see how we compare — yours vs. mine. Plus I'll share the unpublished art that preceded the cover that eventually went onto the book and you can vote as to which version you like best.