Navy SEAL Clarke Unger came home from Iraq a changed man.
A renegade military doctor had implanted him with chips that enabled him to use his brain as a computer.
Nothing on earth could touch what Clarke was able to do by simply thinking about it. No firewall or security system could match the power of his mental CPU. Leaving the military and the Iraqi desert, Clarke figured his job was done, and he was finished with his part of the war on terror.
Or so he thought... He planned to spend his weekends enjoying the company of his best friend Kayla. Enter Max Trunker, another ex-SEAL and Hagan Warren, the powerfully connected CEO of Parsec Defense Systems. Warren would stop at nothing to acquire Clarke's power. Max Trunker would stop at nothing to have beautiful Kayla for his very own. When Trunker took beautiful Kayla hostage, and with terrorists planning to explode a nuclear EMP device above North America, Clarke's newfound faith in God and his cyber superpowers made him a key player in a titanic struggle between good and evil.
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This book has a mild science fiction flavor, begins in the deserts of Iraq and takes the reader through a brand new romance and industrial espionage linked with a terrorist plot to explode an EMP device over North America that is intended to destroy Western Civilization.
The weather-worn liquid crystal screen above the wide porch on Mom’s sprawling old farmhouse restaurant fed images of her award-winning meals and their prices to prospective customers. Mama’s shiny Lincoln Dunlieth sat in her spot at the right rear corner of the parking lot. Clarke twisted his neck and flexed as many of his tired muscles as he could before clunking across the front porch boards through the glass-lined Manor Bread screen door and made his way across the spacious dining room area to enter Mom’s big office where he found her finishing a meeting with the 15 evening shift employees. There was a hostess, three cooks, six waiters, three waitresses, and two bus boys. Mama was a tall woman, and she spoke with a southern drawl peculiar to the north Texas/Oklahoma area. Aside from the smile wrinkles around her eyes and mouth, Mom’s chocolate-colored skin was still smooth and while her waist was a bit thicker than Kayla’s but she still had the pleasing figure of a woman who kept herself in shape in spite of her sixty-six years. She spoke with sharp authority to a group who had heard the same speech dozens of times…
“… make sure to move any table trash as soon as they’ll let you to make it a little easier on the table cleaners and we can get the table ready for the next bunch when the customer clears out. I’m talkin’ used up lemon wedges, sweetner packets, you know, that kind of stuff. That’s the way they do it at big hotel restaurants and customers seem to like it when we do it here. Oh, and make sure groups know up front that the automatic gratuity now applies to ten or more rather than eight, else your tips might be a little weak. All right, troops, I want this evenin’ to go smooth and by the numbers. Upsell those desserts and appetizers and don’t foul up any orders or confuse the kitchen with bad tickets. Does everybody in here know how to smile? That’s all. Let’s get moving.”
Clarke stepped out of the doorway to give way for the employees as they shuffled past him into the restaurant area. One pretty waitress shot Clarke a demure smile on her way by, and Clarke half-heartedly returned it with a wink. He figured she was gawking at his neck scar and smiling to hide her disgust.
Mom smiled, noticing how oblivious Clarke was of how the waitress was ogling his broad shoulders and his strong jawline after she passed, in spite of his two-day growth of beard, his sweat-stained work shirt, and his wild hair. She closed her notebook and peered over her glasses at Clarke.
“Looks like you been workin’ hard, Corky.”
“Well, Kayla and I put more than a cord in the wood room and stacked the overflow outside.”
“You two have a nice drive from the city?”
“And a nice afternoon in the woods.”
“Didn’t cut your leg off with the chainsaw?”
“Not this time.”
“Didn’t cut Kayla’s leg off either?”
“Nope. I did manage to draw some blood on one of her arms.”
“She need stitches?”
“Not this time.”
“Good, I always worry about that. You two stayin’ here with me tonight? I got two vacant beds.”
“Nah, we’re drivin’, back, I guess. I always have so much I need to do, deadlines to meet and all, you know.”
“How ‘bout that meat loaf?”
“It could have been better.”
“Bite yo tongue, boy! I got the best meat loaf this side of the county.”
“You got the only meat loaf this side of the county. That meatloaf was three hours old.”
“You’d fuss if they hung ya with a new rope.”
“That’s old, Mama.”
“And dontcha go to sleep at the wheel drivin’ back after all this wood-cuttn’!”
“We’ll be fine. I’m just glad to be done with the firewood this time. You may have to hire it done next time around.”
“I hired it done every year while you were overseas.”
“Couldn’t get any work out of Kayla while I was gone?”
“Not a bit…” Mama’s tone got softer and more serious. “She really missed you while you were over there, Corky. I don’t know how she would have survived if you hadn’t come back.”
Mama lived in a hundred-year-old house in a part of town that had once been the family farm, but her late husband, having grown weary of farming, had subdivided the land and sold three-acre lots. Now there were well-to-do families raising kids on the same land where he had raised his crops for nearly half a century. They had raised Clarke as foster parents after his folks were killed. An unwed mother chose to sign baby Kayla over to Mama when she was born.
“It’ll be good not to have to worry about wood when the weather does get cold.” Mama paused to pull the curtains back and have a look out the window. “Shouldn’t Kayla have been back by now?”