Was a Time by James Hallan

Was a Time by James HallanWas a Time…and the big pendulum arcs down through the mix…

Bob Lee St. John is…missing, gone, vanished, and…maybe…dead? Were there an obit it would read: ‘he’s survived by a stolen van, a length of chain, a (previously-stolen-apparently-recovered) Beretta 92, a recording of Bob Lee admitting to Fr. Carruthers that he killed his three latest victims, and, oh yeah, an ear…his ear…Bob Lee’s ear…confirmed by DNA and facial recognition software, the preceding courtesy of a manifesto left for Sam Whinett by an unknown personage a too-eager media lunk dubbed the Samaritan, an understandable but incorrect interpretation of that Biblical character…

…and the pendulum arcs down to reveal a different horror…

Really, the idea should’ve occurred to someone before now…serial killers have to start somewhere; they just don’t suddenly pop up. A freak chance has found Bob Lee’s suspected starting place: a backhoe operator unearths an old mine shaft south of Dalton…the bucket filled with dirt and rocks and bones…human bones…five and six-year-old little boy bones…Bob Lee’s target age victims…fifteen of’em…thirty years’ worth…and Bob Lee, one-time Dalton boy is number one with a bullet (sorry…bad pun) again ‘cause coincidences rarely are. A new investigation is begun into the mine shaft-now-crime scene looking for the link…looking for Bob Lee and his partner…yeah, partner ‘cause someone had to get the van and the chains and the Beretta for’im. Sam Whinett’s got an idea who the partner might be: Bob Lee’s up-country six-foot-five badass redneck cousin name of Clay Cobb; ‘cept Cobb’s already watching Sam (a) ‘cause Sam’s looking into the mine shaft thing and Cobb’s got some skin in that game and (b) Sam might…just might…bring Cobb close to the Samaritan, and close is good enough when y’all have a skill set for violence and a load of revenge on your mind; Bob Lee was blood-kin, ya see, an’ ‘sides, he weren’t never convicted of anythin’ they said he done…

So Sam reaches out to a friend, Alex Crawford, former military police cop-now-man Friday for Devone McCloud ‘cause Sam needs help with some off-the-books background and Alex’s willing to help out but…
…and the pendulum swings back around…

With some very close, very personal, half a century old Crawford family business that calls to Alex…literally…by way of an old man-blast-from-the-past who first, knocks Alex sideways, second, then tells him to come home to Leesville, Louisiana for more ‘cause miracles do happen…epiphanies too…and history changes…people too …especially people…and Alex heads home to the truth and a decision he’s gotta make and that can go either way ‘cause he ain’t a cop anymore and the reason why comes swinging up on the damn pendulum and…

Well, hell…sometimes y’all just have to go home again…

WAS A TIME is available from Amazon.

 *****

James Hallan is the alter-ego of Jim Silver, previously published hardback author of Assumption of Risk and Kill Zone, by Simon & Schuster.

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