Found Wanting: A Novel

By Robert Goddard

In the summer season of 1909, an unassuming English bobby crossed paths with Russian royalty. Now, a century later, the key entrusted to him is ready to be printed.

Richard Eusden is on his method to paintings in London one unremarkable wintry weather morning while he's intercepted by way of his ex-wife, who asks him to ferry an outdated connecté case to their good friend Marty Hewitson in Brussels. Richard expects to be again in London in the day, yet in Belgium, Marty is nowhere to be stumbled on. as a substitute, Richard comes face-to-face with a ruthless kidnapper and his outrageous call for: the connecté case in alternate for Marty’s life.

The determined try to store his outdated pal units Richard off on a race throughout Germany after which north, first to Copenhagen, then to Helsinki. regardless of the contents of the case, they hyperlink a Danish magnate and his family’s darkish mystery to the deaths of a number of blameless humans. And now that key's commencing to tug on the threads of a bigger mystery—one related to the destiny of the Grand Duchess Anastasia, final of the Romanovs.

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Then the opposite. Eusden blinked as his eyes adjusted to the harshness of the sunshine. A squat, bullnecked, shaven-headed guy in denims and windcheater stared in at him. Then one other guy seemed at his shoulder: taller and thinner, wearing a depressing overcoat with the collar pulled up. He had a around, soft-featured face, a mop of ginger hair shot with silver and matching stubble around his fleshy jaw. His small blue-green eyes studied Eusden via circular-lensed glasses. “You’re Eusden? ” His voice used to be natural West Coast American. “Yes. ” “Let’s get the celebration going, then. Come on out. ” His squat spouse took anything from within his windcheater and pointed it at Eusden: a gun. “We’re no longer approximately to take no for a solution. ” the 2 males stepped again as Eusden stood up slowly, moved to the tip of the van and climbed out. They have been in a few form of workshop, sealed through a ceiling-high shutter-door and a smaller wicket-door set inside it. there have been no home windows, simply 3 clean partitions, alongside one in every of which ran a naked bench. a 3rd guy used to be leaning opposed to the bench, staring, like his partners, at Eusden. He was once tall and seriously equipped, with black hair and beard, a hawkish nostril and darkish, simmering gaze. He wore an extended black leather-based coat and was once chewing gum vigorously. Beside him, at the bench, stood Clem’s connecté case. “Who are you humans? ” Eusden requested, taking a look instantly on the chatty one and attempting to not sound as fearful as he particularly was once. “I’m Brad. the man with the gun is Gennady. the man with the gum—who additionally has a gun, via the way—is Vladimir. Sorry I couldn’t retain the alliteration going. They communicate English after they have to, yet and they converse in alternative routes. ” “What do you need? ” “You, activity. the fellow who offed our first-class acquaintances Ilya and Yuri a couple of nights again. ” “That used to be an coincidence. ” “You’re most likely correct. You don’t glance in a position to getting the higher of them. And Yuri? He was once continually a hell-rider. yet let’s now not enable the evidence to get within the approach of an exceptional grudge. There’s not anything Gennady would prefer larger than placing a bullet on your brain—after kicking the shit out of you. a chum dies. A stranger will pay. outdated Ukrainian culture. That’s the place they’re from. They consistently like me to indicate that they’re no longer really Russian. they only glance and sound as though they're. And get tetchy once they haven’t swallowed a gallon of vodka lately. For the list, they’re stone chilly sober at the present time. Draw your individual conclusions. whereas you’re at it, inform me what your position is in Mjollnir’s association. ” “I don’t have one. ” “Why’d you come back to Helsinki, then? ” “They blackmailed me. ” “Ah, correct. So, what did they are saying they sought after you to do? I’m assuming they didn’t point out they have been making plans at hand you over to us. ” “I was once to … authenticate the letters. ” Eusden nodded in the direction of the connecté case. “Strictly non-essential, game. We faxed them copies of the whole thing. yet i suppose it sounded believable to you. truth is, even though, we stipulated your head on a platter plus the large fats payoff correct from the get-go.

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