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I answered the phone, and Susan Rodriguez said, "They’ve taken our daughter."
I sat there for a long five count, swallowed, and said, "Um. What?"
"You heard me, Harry," Susan said gently.
"Oh," I said. "Um."
"The line isn’t secure," she said. "I’ll be in town tonight. We can talk then."
"Yeah," I said. "Okay."
"Harry…" she said. "I’m not… I never wanted to…" She cut the words off with an impatient sigh. I heard a voice over the loudspeaker in the background, saying something in Spanish. "We’ll have time for that later. The plane is boarding. I’ve got to go. About twelve hours."
"Okay," I said. "I’ll… I’ll be here."
She hesitated, as if about to say something else, but then she hung up.
I sat there with the phone against my ear. After a while, it started making that double-speed busy signal noise.
She said our daughter.
I hung the phone up. Or tried. I missed the base. The receiver clattered to the floor.
Mouse, my big, shaggy grey dog, rose up from his usual napping spot in the tiny kitchenette my basement apartment boasted, and came trotting over to sit down at my feet, staring up at me with dark, worried doggie eyes. After a moment, he made a little huffing sound, then carefully picked the receiver up in his jaws and settled it onto the base. Then he went back to staring worriedly at me.
"I…" I paused, trying to get my head around the concept. "I… I might have a child."
Mouse made an uncertain, high-pitched noise.
"Yeah. How do you think I feel?" I stared at the far wall. Then I stood up and reached for my coat. "I… think I need a drink," I said. I nodded, focusing on nothing. "Yeah. Something like this… yeah."
Mouse made a distressed noise and rose.
"Sure," I told him. "You can come. Hell, maybe you can drive me home or something."
From the book CHANGES by Jim Butcher. Copyright © 2010 Jim Butcher
A mainstay in supernatural detective fiction since his debut novel, Storm Front (available in our exclusive omnibus, Wizard for Hire), Jim Butcher brought something new and thrilling to the genre with his bestselling Dresden Files, the tales of Harry Dresden, Chicago’s first—and only—practicing wizard. Now, after 11 novels, translations into several languages including Russian, Czech and Chinese, and a Hugo nomination for the graphic novel, Dresden Files: Welcome to the Jungle, Butcher’s star continues to rise with Changes, an adventure that may forever alter—and darken—Harry’s life.
Long ago, Susan Rodriguez was Harry’s lover—until she was attacked by his enemies, leaving her torn between her own humanity and the bloodlust of the vampiric Red Court. Susan then disappeared to South America, where she could fight both her savage gift and those who cursed her with it.
Now Arianna Ortega, Duchess of the Red Court, has discovered a secret Susan has long kept, and she plans to use it—against Harry. To prevail this time, he may have no choice but to embrace the raging fury of his own untapped dark power. Because Harry’s not fighting to save the world....
He’s fighting to save his child.
Hardcover Book : 448 pages
Publisher: Roc/Imp Of Nal Signet ( April 06, 2010 )
Item #: 12-969682
Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 8.25 inches
Product Weight: 16.0 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
The scope, scale, and culmination of this storyline are incredible. I can't wait for Ghost Story to see where the series will go next. Any author who can keep a series going for so many books without losing that spark is on the top of my list.
Reviewer: Arthur H
Once again, an excellent story. Harry calls on every ally he can think of to find and save the daughter he didn't know he had. Harry takes on a title he'd previously refused, and irrevocably cuts ties he had wanted to embrace. Lots of action, lots of emotion. And, just when you think Harry might get some peace, some happiness there is a final bitter ending. The title of this book is so understated, and so appropriate. Where previous books gave me a sense of knowing who Harry would be in the next book-to-be, this one leaves me totally perplexed. It's as if all his ties to the world are cut, and I wonder if he will ever see his mortal friends again.
A book has to open enough to read both pages easily or it is no good. My book club edition is no goos, but the publishers is great. Will be preordering all publishers now. And just for the record, e-books are SO OUT. Story by Butcher is one of best in series.
Reviewer: Raymond M
Jim Butcher is an exeptional author. I met him once at a book signing and I gotta say... He's just as witty as his books are.