Sneak Peek at the Deadly Driver sequel

Written by J.K. Kelly on April 21st, 2022

For those who enjoyed reading or listening to DEADLY DRIVER here’s a little something from the sequel that’s well underway.

The scent from the night’s inferno reminded him of his Uncle Pete’s fireplace and of the many campfires Bryce Winters had enjoyed in his younger days back in Vermont.  Charred wood always left an unmistakable aroma. As dawn broke over Park City, Bryce navigated through coals and what was left of torched, massive beams that had formed the cathedral ceiling over his trophy room. This was no redolent, sentimental reverie. This was a nightmare.  “ CIA bastards,” he muttered with disgust.

The sheriff called out to him from what was left of the front entry: the carved grizzly bear on the door that had greeted guests and welcomed him home so many times was now nothing more than a fond memory.

            “Come on, Bryce!” he shouted. “It’s not safe.”

The look Bryce gave the lawman when he turned to respond was enough of an answer. For someone who raced Formula One cars for a living, taking his life in his hands at over two hundred miles per hour, the danger from the smoldering remnants of the now ruined, rustic mountainside home wasn’t a concern.  Finding who did this and making them pay would come next. For now, he wanted—and needed—some space.

            “I’ll be out of here soon,” Bryce said as he kicked at some of the debris. “I’ve got to head down to Daytona for the Rolex.” He paused as he saw yet another prized possession in the rubble. “I guess this will get me there a bit early.” 

Seconds later, a crystal flake drifted gently onto Bryce’s nose and what was left of his mountain getaway was now in stark contrast: everything burned black was now frosted with snow. The skiers in the area would the thrilled, but for him this could just as well be karma putting a sheet over the corpse. He had been living a dangerous life on and off the track—it might be closing in on him yet again.

            Bryce kicked at more debris with his hiking boots and kept searching. When he finally did find what he was looking for, his reaction let the sheriff know he should get back in his patrol car and drive away. Bryce knelt, brushing away soot and ash with his hand before picking up what had been, until today, his most prized possession—his first winner’s trophy.   

He grabbed the once magnificent symbol of his racing success by one of its handles mounted on either side and lifted it: the handle snapped off and the partially melted cup fell back into the rubble with a thud. Bryce looked around and focused on the only thing other than his fireplace and gun safe that appeared to have survived the flames: one windowpane.

He threw the severed handle at it, smashing it to bits.

“Got that out of my system,” he said to himself. “Now, let’s go find them and return the favor.”

He turned to look one last time at what was left of his home, unaware of what lay beneath the debris. He recalled the night his kitchen was shot up by a renegade CIA agent in a botched kidnapping. He thought of the Christmas weekend he’d spent there with his Uncle Pete before he passed….

Something caught his eye: movement in the trees, up on the hill across the road from his gated property. It wasn’t a moose this time.

The police had cleared the road of television trucks, reporters, and the curious who had assembled to see the spectacle, but a few photographers were perched on the slope above, recording his every move. They had no idea who they were really hounding. Bryce wasn’t just a champion race car driver—he was a CIA-trained hit man. Taking a life was all in a day’s work—under the code name “Deadly Driver”.

He took a few long, slow breaths of crisp mountain air to calm his rage, clear his head, but the charred wood smell and the moist snow brought him back. He wouldn’t consider asking the CIA, or the FBI for that matter, for help in tracking the arsonist.  There wasn’t anyone at either agency he could trust—not with his life. Pulling his phone from his jeans pocket, he called the only person he needed at that moment.

            “Change of plans,” he told his pilot. “Gas her up. We’re out of here in an hour. Florida.” He pondered for a few seconds and made a second call, this one to someone whom Sandra Jennings, his now dead and buried CIA handler, had suggested once before.

            “Matt Christopher, this is Bryce Winters. I need your help.”

Minutes later, at Matt’s direction, Bryce drove to town and into the indoor parking garage of a high end ski resort. It was cold in Park City, bitter cold. As he emerged from his car a dark green Land Rover pulled up behind him and in moments Bryce was whisked away to the airport.

Only days before, Winters had been in a much friendlier environment. Lying on one of Ibiza’s beautiful beaches he had much to appreciate: the anonymity, the ideal weather, warm Mediterranean waters, and a beautiful Spanish blonde he’d met days earlier.  His hand, badly injured during the murder attempt in Park City months before, bore some scars but was functioning perfectly as he brought a cold beer to his lips…then…something entered his peripheral vision: she was headed for the turquoise water.

It was as if a storm cloud had suddenly covered the sun. She reminded him of Kyoto, the first woman he’d been able to open his heart to in years, only to have her run as far from him as she could. Who could blame her? She had fallen in love with a famous race car driver, moved from her home in Japan to the States to be closer to her brother—and to him—only to realize what a dangerous life her man led and that she was suddenly caught up in it. Perhaps the kidnapper’s breaking her arm and shoving a gun in her face in Singapore had been enough to call it quits? No,—he couldn’t blame her.

IF you haven’t taken DEADLY DRIVER for a ride yet why wait any longer. Click here to order a copy in print, Kindle, or Audible formats and stay tuned for more…


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