Thursday, July 6, 2017

Take the Bai Road Excerpt

Take the Bai Road
A Bai Hsu Novel, Book 2
By Erika Mitchell
Amazon: (not until July 5)
Champagne Books:


“What I need is someone on the ground tracing this from A to B, all the way to Z. I want to put you on a freighter bound for Lázaro Cárdenas. The freighter is run by the same company that brought the crate in the picture into the country. I’m hoping there’s another shipment on board. Once you’re in country, shadow that shipment and report back on every set of hands it passes through.”

“Sounds simple enough.”

“It’s not. You’ll be NOC for this assignment, and there will be no official record of the operation. It’s the only way I see this working if there’s a leak on our side of the fence. You’ll communicate with me as often as you can, but the reality of this assignment is that your resources will be limited, maybe even nonexistent. You’ll be undercover as a deck hand on the freighter, with all the luxuries that entails, and tracking that shipment through Mexico is going to be dangerous as hell.” Faro leaned forward, his face grave. “This assignment is going to be difficult, and if it doesn’t go well you’re not coming home. Do you understand the risks?”

I considered my answer for a moment. A NOC (pronounced ‘knock’) mission, or Non-Official Cover for the uninitiated, meant I’d be operating without the official approval of my government. If I was caught, I’d be disavowed by the United States, tortured for information, and then executed. Even if I wasn’t caught, I’d be tracking a cartel-affiliated shipment along cartel-patrolled roads through the middle of Mexico. If I took this assignment, I’d be volunteering for weeks without sleep, quality time with a ship full of bored, unshowered men, and the potential for a messy and very painful death, all for the slight possibility that we might find out more about an organization we weren’t even sure existed.

Faro was right. This was going to be dangerous. It was going to be dangerous, unpleasant, and maybe not even worth it. It should tell you how tired I was of working at Headquarters that I couldn’t wait to get going on it.

Advance praise for Take the Bai Road:

“Take the Bai Road is chock full of danger and suspense. Starting with a slow burn in the power corridors of Washington, D.C., the story erupts into violence in Mexico and slams to an exciting finish in Seattle. Bai Hsu’s search for the elusive Ghost Cartel will enthrall you.”— Gayle Lynds, New York Times best-selling author of The Assassins

“Mitchell’s winning tale…is constantly in motion…Fast-paced, invigorating, and entertaining.”—Kirkus Reviews

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