Option to Kill (Nathan McBride 3)

Option to Kill (Nathan McBride 3) by Andrew Peterson

Book: Option to Kill (Nathan McBride 3) by Andrew Peterson Read Free Book Online
Authors: Andrew Peterson
aren’t supposed to ask that.”
    “Sorry. Couldn’t resist. Let’s eat.”
    “You have the coolest bathroom I’ve ever seen. It’s so clean.”
    “Soap and water are cheap.”
    “Do you watch TV from the bathtub?”
    “Hockey and football, mainly.”
    “That’s so male.”
    “Well, last I looked….”
    “I saw a Blu-ray player.”
    “I like movies. Sometimes I listen to music.”
    “What’s your favorite song?”
    “‘Adagio for Strings,’ by Samuel Barber. It’s pure genius.”
    “I’ve never heard of that.”
    She sat a comfortable distance away on the couch. “You just prayed.”
    Again, Lauren amazed him with her level of awareness. She’d make a good operations officer someday.
    He nodded. “I’m thankful for the things in my life.”
    “I’ve been to church a few times. Everyone’s really nice.”
    “Goes with the territory.”
    They ate in silence for a moment.
    “What was it like, you know…being tortured?”
    He stopped midbite and looked at her. Be careful, there’s a demon down there. “I can’t speak for anyone else, but for me, the worst part isn’t the pain. It’s being powerless to stop it. It’s an extremely infuriating experience. You just have to disconnect from it.”
    “What do you mean, ‘disconnect’?”
    “You pretend it’s happening to someone else.” He took another bite, hoping Lauren wouldn’t pursue the subject further.
    “People can be really cruel to each other. Kids are the worst.”
    “How’s that?”
    “I mean like bullies. They make other kids cry for no reason.”
    “Bullies are insecure, that’s why they do it. If they had spiritual balance, they wouldn’t feel the need to hurt anyone.”
    “You’re pretty smart, I can tell.”
    “I’m just an ordinary guy.”
    “Ordinary guys don’t know stuff like you do.”
    He took a swig of water. “Tell me about your mom. What’s she like?”
    “I don’t know…she gets mad really easily. She cries a lot too. Like over small stuff. She accidentally broke a plate in the sink once, and then she broke every plate in the cabinet by throwing them on the floor. She sat on the floor crying for like an hour.”
    Nathan knew it well, built-up rage followed by depression.
    “Has she ever been physical with you?”
    “You mean like spankings? No, never. She gives me time-outs. Sometimes they’re pretty long. I had to spend the entire weekend in my room once.”
    “Bread and water?”
    “You seem like a pretty good kid. She’s done well raising you.”
    “I think she’s a good mom, but sometimes she goes away for days without telling me where she went. She doesn’t call, either. My stepdad got really mad whenever she did it.”
    “Maybe she just needs time alone. I do the same thing, but I always tell Harv where I’m going. He’d kill me otherwise. We need to stop at my security company to pick up some equipment. Have you ever been on a motorcycle?”
    “He nodded toward the garage door. “It’s in there.”
    “Can I see it?”
    “Lauren, you haven’t been completely honest with me.”
    “What do you mean?”
    “When you first saw me on the freeway, you recognized me.”
    Her tone became defensive, on the verge of panic. “My mom made me promise not to tell!”
    “Tell what?”
    “That I knew it would be you who helped me.”
    Nathan wanted to lash out but held back. “How did you know it would be me?”
    “I’ve seen you before.”
    “ When and where have you seen me?”
    “Last year, in the grocery store at La Jolla Shores. My mom wanted me to know what you looked like. Please don’t be mad at me.”
    “ Mad isn’t the word. I’m disappointed.”
    “That’s so much worse.”
    “I’m giving you a onetime ‘get out of jail free’ card. Remember when I said you couldn’t hold anything back?”
    “I meant it. Is there anything else I should know?”
    “The ring isn’t mine. My stepdad gave it to my mom,

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