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Undercover In Silicon Valley

Published by: eXtasy Books

Author : Donna Del Oro

ISBN :978-1-4874-4137-1

Page :232

Word Count :69027

Publication Date :2024-05-24

Series : A Jake Bernstein FBI Thriller#0

Heat Level :

Available Formats : Undercover In Silicon Valley (prc) , Undercover In Silicon Valley (pdf) , Undercover In Silicon Valley (mobi) , Undercover In Silicon Valley (epub)

Category : Contemporary Romance , Romantic Suspense and Mystery , Romance , What's New

  • Product Code: 978-1-4874-4137-1

Silicon Valley is more than just high tech when a terrorist cell threatens the American way of life, and it’s up to undercover FBI agent Jake Bernstein to stop them.

Fluent in Hebrew and Arabic, FBI agent Jake Bernstein goes undercover to infiltrate an Islamic terrorist cell in Silicon Valley. If he fails, thousands will die. But what price will Jake have to pay in order to serve his country? Will it cost him his newly rekindled relationship with Meg?

Venice, Italy

August 2005

Amad kept the boy in his line of sight. The youth walked stiffly, as if he had a rod holding his back straight.  The weight of the vest, no doubt, caused him discomfort. Fifteen pounds of Sem-Tex and ten pounds of steel ball bearings, tightly packed with wires attached to a detonator that weighed another pound. The boy’s hands never left the pockets of his bulky jacket, just as he’d been instructed. Good thing cool breezes from the Adriatic forced people to bundle up. No one would give the child a second look.

A good boy. Simple minded but devout and brave. A poor villager from north of Kandahar, a madrassa graduate who rarely spoke. His hooded brown eyes bespoke a short, miserable life. Today the boy would kiss the hem of the Prophet and be rewarded for his sacrifice.

Peripherally, Amad noted the great shipping channel on his left as he climbed the steps of a pedestrian bridge.  Jet black gondolas, leashed to their colorful poles, bobbed and swayed in the brisk sea breeze. A gigantic white cruise ship sailed into view, rounding the bend of the docks. How he would love to blow that vessel up and send thousands of Satan worshippers to a watery grave. Ah well, perhaps—Inshallah! Allah willing, that would happen someday.

Although it was windy, the sun bathed his face with a strange warmth.  He exulted in the warmth, for that meant St. Mark’s Square, Piazza San Marco, would be filled with tourists as well as Italians scurrying about to wait on the spoiled Infidels. In the distance, the soft strains of an orchestra drifted out to the channel via the broad walkway to his right as he approached the walkway of the winged lions.

The two columns of winged lions, symbols of Renaissance Venice, towered above the crowd as it moved along with him toward the square, their destination not quite the same as his. Amad held the vain Venetians in silent scorn. Long before their Renaissance, the city’s Jews had loaned money to the Devil Crusaders while the Venetian merchants gladly stocked their traveling coffers. Today they all would pay for past and present sins against Allah.

Of course, that was not his only motive for revenge. Many ghosts filled his mind, all crying for retribution, including that of his beloved brother.  Mostafa lived inside Amad’s head, a voice among thousands, strengthening him, making him resolute and hard. One infidel’s death for every Muslim death. That was the righteous motto of a true ikhwan. A brother of Allah.

Amad, dressed in the high turban and polished suit of a Sikh businessman, stopped at the outer corner of the Doge’s Palace. Around the corner, the vast Piazza San Marco fanned out to the west of Saint Mark’s Church. Time to get down to business. In one hand, Amad held a mobile phone, specially programmed so that a certain sequence of numbers would set off the detonator inside the youth’s vest. With feigned care, he studied an English-language tourist map while remaining at the corner. From his vantage point, Amad could peer over the map and track the young martyr’s progress toward the center of the piazza. Another ikhwan, the boy’s recruiter and handler, had rehearsed the youth the day before and thus far he showed no signs of hesitation. The boy, as instructed, walked among the milling crowd in front of St. Mark’s Church and halted. 

Amad briefly wondered how much damage the church would suffer. No matter. He’d already estimated the fatalities would range between fifty and sixty, the wounded perhaps another fifty. One never knew.  Due to the crowded conditions at this time of day, and the added weight of the vest, the numbers killed and maimed would be high. 

Let the power of the Believers reign and let terror strike the hearts of the Infidels.

The youth gazed up at the four horses on the front façade of the cathedral. Amad watched as the boy then closed his eyes. In all his purity and trust, the boy waited. Mustn’t make him wait too long.

Amad retreated to the other side of the palace wall, the side that faced the shipping channel. A gondolier waved to him and shouted something in Italian. Ignoring the man, he held up both the map and the mobile phone, the former to conceal his face as he muttered a prayer in Arabic. When he was ready, his right thumb pressed the sequence of numbers. Amad counted five seconds for the signal to bounce off the nearest cell tower, which he’d located south of the shipping channel. 

Silence followed as the explosion seemed to suck the air out of the vast square. A moment later, the sudden eruption of sounds was indistinguishable, one from another. The only one that stood out for Amad was the bell in the clock tower which bonged once loudly.

Screams pierced the afternoon air.  

Amad shuddered, then opened his eyes and looked up. His gaze met the gondolier’s a moment before the man dove into the well of his boat. 

An elderly tourist couple flung themselves on their knees in front of him. Amad hadn’t noticed them before. Their proximity shocked him.

“Qu’est-ce que c’est?” the woman cried, her eyes wild with terror. The man and woman looked up at him.

“I don’t know,” said Amir in perfectly accented British English, “The square. Something happened.”

“Mon Dieu!” The couple helped each other rise and then hurried around the corner. Amad had the impulse to yell at them. No! But why should he? They were infidels, just like the ones cut down in the square.  Old, young—what difference did it make? Nevertheless, the woman’s long wail sliced through him and he shivered.

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Tags: Romance, Contemporary, Mystery