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Jack Reacher: One Shot

A Novel

Jack Reacher: One Shot
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US$ 9.99
BONUS: This edition contains an excerpt from Lee Child’s The Affair.

Six shots. Five dead. One heartland city thrown into a state of terror. But within hours the cops have it solved: a slam-dunk case. Except for one thing. The accused man says: You got the wrong guy. Then he says: Get Reacher for me. And sure enough, from the world he lives in—no phone, no address, no commitments–ex–military investigator Jack Reacher is coming. In Lee Child’s astonishing new thriller, Reacher’s arrival will change everything—about a case that isn’t what it seems, about lives tangled in baffling ways, about a killer who missed one shot–and by doing so give Jack Reacher one shot at the truth.…

The gunman worked from a parking structure just thirty yards away–point-blank range for a trained military sniper like James Barr. His victims were in the wrong place at the wrong time. But why does Barr want Reacher at his side? There are good reasons why Reacher is the last person Barr would want to see. But when Reacher hears Barr’s own words, he understands. And a slam-dunk case explodes. Soon Reacher is teamed with a young defense lawyer who is working against her D.A. father and dueling with a prosecution team that has an explosive secret of its own. Like most things Reacher has known in life, this case is a complex battlefield. But, as always, in battle, Reacher is at his best.

Moving in the shadows, picking his spots, Reacher gets closer and closer to the unseen enemy who is pulling the strings. And for Reacher, the only way to take him down is to know his ruthlessness and respect his cunning–and then match him shot for shot….
Random House Publishing Group; June 2005
ISBN 9780440335474
Download in secure EPUB
Excerpt
C H A P T E R 2


Reacher was on his way to them because of a woman. He had spent Friday night in South Beach, Miami, in a salsa club, with a dancer from a cruise ship. The boat was Norwegian, and so was the girl. Reacher guessed she was too tall for ballet, but she was the right size for everything else. They met on the beach in the afternoon. Reacher was working on his tan. He felt better brown. He didn’t know what she was working on. But he felt her shadow fall across his face and opened his eyes to find her staring at him. Or maybe at his scars. The browner he got, the more they stood out, white and wicked and obvious. She was pale, in a black bikini. A small black bikini. He pegged her for a dancer long before she told him. It was in the way she held herself.

They ended up having a late dinner together and then going out to the club. South Beach salsa wouldn’t have been Reacher’s first choice, but her company made it worthwhile. She was fun to be with. And she was a great dancer, obviously. Full of energy. She wore him out. At four in the morning she took him back to her hotel, eager to wear him out some more. Her hotel was a small Art Deco place near the ocean. Clearly the cruise line treated its people well. Certainly it was a much more romantic destination than Reacher’s own motel. And much closer.

And it had cable television, which Reacher’s place didn’t. He woke at eight on Saturday morning when he heard the dancer in the shower. He turned on the TV and went looking for ESPN. He wanted Friday night’s American League highlights. He never found them. He clicked his way through successive channels and then stopped dead on CNN because he heard the chief of an Indiana police department say a name he knew: James Barr. The picture was of a press conference. Small room, harsh light. Top of the screen was a caption that said: Courtesy NBC. There was a banner across the bottom that said: Friday Night Massacre. The police chief said the name again, James Barr, and then he introduced a homicide detective called Emerson. Emerson looked tired. Emerson said the name for a third time: James Barr. Then, like he anticipated the exact question in Reacher’s mind, he ran through a brief biography: Forty-one years old, local Indiana resident, U.S. Army infantry specialist from 1985 to 1991, Gulf War veteran, never married, currently unemployed.

Reacher watched the screen. Emerson seemed like a concise type of a guy. He was brief. No bullshit. He finished his statement and in response to a reporter’s question declined to specify what if anything James Barr had said during interrogation. Then he introduced a District Attorney. This guy’s name was Rodin, and he wasn’t concise. Wasn’t brief. He used plenty of bullshit. He spent ten minutes claiming Emerson’s credit for himself. Reacher knew how that worked. He had been a cop of sorts for thirteen years. Cops bust their tails, and prosecutors bask in the glory. Rodin said James Barr a few more times and then said the state was maybe looking to fry him.

For what?

Reacher waited.

A local anchor called Ann Yanni came on. She recapped the events of the night before. Sniper slaying. Senseless slaughter. An automatic weapon. A parking garage. A public plaza. Commuters on their way home after a long workweek. Five dead. A suspect in custody, but a city still grieving.

Reacher thought it was Yanni who was grieving. Emerson’s success had cut her story short. She signed off and CNN went to political news. Reacher turned the TV off. The dancer came out of the bathroom. She was pink and fragrant. And naked. She had left her towels inside.

“What shall we do today?” she said, with a wide Norwegian smile.

“I’m going to Indiana,” Reacher said.



He walked north in the heat to the Miami bus depot. Then he leafed through a greasy timetable and planned a route. It wasn’t going to be an easy trip. Miami to Jacksonville would be the first leg. Then Jacksonville to New Orleans. Then New Orleans to St. Louis. Then St. Louis to Indianapolis. Then a local bus, presumably, south into the heartland. Five separate destinations. Arrival and departure times were not well integrated. Beginning to end, it was going to take more than forty-eight hours. He was tempted to fly or rent a car, but he was short of money and he liked buses better and he figured nothing much was going to happen on the weekend anyway.

What happened on the weekend was that Rosemary Barr called her firm’s investigator back. She figured Franklin would have a semiindependent point of view. She got him at home, ten o’clock in the morning on the Sunday.

“I think I should hire different lawyers,” she said.

Franklin said nothing.

“David Chapman thinks he’s guilty,” Rosemary said. “Doesn’t he?
So he’s already given up.”

“I can’t comment,” Franklin said. “He’s one of my employers.”

Now Rosemary Barr said nothing.

“How was the hospital?” Franklin asked.

“Awful. He’s in intensive care with a bunch of prison deadbeats. They’ve got him handcuffed to the bed. He’s in a coma, for God’s sake. How do they think he’s going to escape?”

“What’s the legal position?”

“He was arrested but not arraigned. He’s in a kind of limbo.

They’re assuming he wouldn’t have gotten bail.”

“They’re probably right.”

“So they claim under the circumstances it’s like he actually didn’t get bail. So he’s theirs. He’s in the system. Like a twilight zone.”

“What would you like to happen?”

“He shouldn’t be in handcuffs. And he should be in a VA hospital at least. But that won’t happen until I find a lawyer who’s prepared to help him.”

Franklin paused. “How do you explain all the evidence?”

“I know my brother.”

“You moved out, right?”

“For other reasons. Not because he’s a homicidal maniac.”

“He blocked off a parking space,” Franklin said. “He premeditated this thing.”

“You think he’s guilty, too.”

“I work with what I’ve got. And what I’ve got doesn’t look good.”

Rosemary Barr said nothing.

“I’m sorry,” Franklin said.

“Can you recommend another lawyer?”

“Can you make that decision? Do you have a power of attorney?”

“I think it’s implied. He’s in a coma. I’m his next of kin.”

“How much money have you got?”

“Not much.”

“How much has he got?”

“There’s some equity in his house.”

“It won’t look good. It’ll be like a kick in the teeth for the firm you work for.”

“I can’t worry about that.”

“You could lose everything, including your job.”

“I’ll lose it anyway, unless I help James. If he’s convicted, they’ll let me go. I’ll be notorious. By association. An embarrassment.”

“He had your sleeping pills,” Franklin said.

“I gave them to him. He doesn’t have insurance.”

“Why did he need them?”

“He has trouble sleeping.”

Franklin said nothing.

“You think he’s guilty,” Rosemary said.

“The evidence is overwhelming,” Franklin said.

“David Chapman isn’t really trying, is he?”

“You have to consider the possibility that David Chapman is right.”

“Who should I call?”

Franklin paused.

“Try Helen Rodin,” he said.

“Rodin?”

“She’s the DA’s daughter.”

“I don’t know her.”

“She’s downtown. She just hung out her shingle. She’s new and she’s keen.”

“Is it ethical?”

“No law against it.”

“It would be father against daughter.”

“It was going to be Chapman, and Chapman knows Rodin a lot better than his daughter does, probably. She’s been away for a long time.”

“Where?”

“College, law school, clerking for a judge in D.C.”

“Is she any good?”

“I think she’s going to be.”




Rosemary Barr called Helen Rodin on her office number. It was like a test. Someone new and keen should be at the office on a Sunday.

Helen Rodin was at the office on a Sunday. She answered the call sitting at her desk. Her desk was secondhand and it sat proudly in a mostly empty two-room suite in the same black glass tower that had NBC as the second-floor tenant. The suite was rented cheap through one of the business subsidies that the city was throwing around like confetti. The idea was to kick-start the rejuvenated downtown area and clean up later with healthy tax revenues.

Rosemary Barr didn’t have to tell Helen Rodin about the case because the whole thing had happened right outside Helen Rodin’s new office window. Helen had seen some of it for herself, and she had followed the rest on the news afterward. She had caught all of Ann Yanni’s TV appearances. She recognized her from the building’s lobby, and the elevator.

“Will you help my brother?” Rosemary Barr asked.

Helen Rodin paused. The smart answer would be No way. She knew that. Like No way, forget about it, are you out of your mind? Two reasons. One, she knew a major clash with her father was inevitable at some point, but did she need it now? And two, she knew that a new lawyer’s early cases defined her. Paths were taken that led down fixed routes. To end up as a when-all-else-fails criminal-defense attorney would be OK, she guessed, all things considered. But to start out by taking a case that had offended the whole city would be a marketing disaster. The shootings weren’t being seen as a crime. They were being seen as an atrocity. Against humanity, against the whole community, against the rejuvenation efforts downtown, against the whole idea of being from Indiana. It was like LA or New York or Baltimore had come to the heartland, and to be the person who tried to excuse it or explain it away would be a fatal mistake. Like a mark of Cain. It would follow her the rest of her life.

“Can we sue the jail?” Rosemary Barr asked. “For letting him get hurt?”

Helen Rodin paused again. Another good reason to say no. An unrealistic client.

“Maybe later,” she said. “Right now he wouldn’t generate much sympathy as a plaintiff. And it’s hard to prove damages, if he’s heading for death row anyway.”

“Then I can’t pay you much,” Rosemary Barr said. “I don’t have money.”

Helen Rodin paused for a third time. Another good reason to say no. It was a little early in her career to be contemplating pro bono work.
But. But. But.

The accused deserved representation. The Bill of Rights said so. And he was innocent until proven guilty. And if the evidence was as bad as her father said it was, then the whole thing would be little more than a supervisory process. She would verify the case against him independently. Then she would advise him to plead guilty. Then she would watch his back as her father fed him through the machine. That was all. It could be seen as honest dues-paying. A constitutional chore. She hoped.

“OK,” she said.

“He’s innocent,” Rosemary Barr said. “I’m sure of it.”

They always are,
Helen Rodin thought.

“OK,” she said again. Then she told her new client to meet her in her office at seven the next morning. It was like a test. A sister who really believed in her brother’s innocence would show up for an early appointment.




Rosemary Barr showed up right on time, at seven o’clock on Monday morning. Franklin was there, too. He believed in Helen Rodin and was prepared to defer his bills until he saw which way the wind was blowing. Helen Rodin herself had already been at her desk for an hour. She had informed David Chapman of the change in representation on Sunday afternoon and had obtained the audiotape of his initial interview with James Barr. Chapman had been happy to hand it over and wash his hands. She had played the tape to herself a dozen times Sunday night and a dozen more that morning. It was all anyone had of James Barr. Maybe all anyone was ever going to get. So she had listened to it carefully, and she had drawn some early conclusions from it.

“Listen,” she said.

She had the tape cued up and ready in an old-fashioned machine the size of a shoe box. She pressed Play and they all heard a hiss and breathing and room sounds and then David Chapman’s voice: I can’t help you if you won’t help yourself. There was a long pause, full of more hiss, and then James Barr spoke: They got the wrong guy. . . . They got the wrong guy, he said again. Then Helen watched the tape counter numbers and spooled forward to Chapman saying: Denying it is not an option. Then Barr’s voice came through: Get Jack Reacher for me. Helen spooled onward to Chapman’s question: Is he a doctor? Then there was nothing on the tape except the sound of Barr beating on the interview room door.

“OK,” Helen said. “I think he really believes he didn’t do it. He claims as much, and then he gets frustrated and terminates the interview when Chapman doesn’t take him seriously. That’s clear, isn’t it?”

“He didn’t do it,” Rosemary Barr said.

“I spoke with my father yesterday,” Helen Rodin said. “The evidence is all there, Ms. Barr. He did it, I’m afraid. You need to accept that a sister maybe can’t know her brother as well as she’d like. Or if she once did, that he changed for some reason.”

There was a long silence.

“Is your father telling you the truth about the evidence?” Rosemary asked.

“He has to,” Helen said. “We’re going to see it all anyway. There’s the discovery process. We’re going to take depositions. There would be no sense in him bluffing at this point.”

Nobody spoke.

“But we can still help your brother,” Helen said in the silence. “He believes he didn’t do it. I’m sure of that, after listening to the tape.
Therefore he’s delusional now. Or at least he was on Saturday.
Therefore perhaps he was delusional on Friday, too.”

“How does that help him?” Rosemary Barr asked. “It’s still admitting he did it.”

“The consequences will be different. If he recovers. Time and treatment in an institution will be a lot better than time and no treatment in a maximum security prison.”

“You want to have James declared insane?”

Helen nodded. “A medical defense is our best shot. And if we establish it right now, it might improve the way they handle him before the trial.”

“He might die. That’s what the doctors said. I don’t want him to die a criminal. I want to clear his name.”

“He hasn’t been tried yet. He hasn’t been convicted. He’s still an innocent man in the eyes of the law.”

“That’s not the same.”

“No,” Helen said. “I guess it isn’t.”

There was another long silence.

“Let’s meet back here at ten-thirty,” Helen said. “We’ll thrash out a strategy. If we’re aiming for a change of hospitals, we should try for it sooner rather than later.”

“We need to find this Jack Reacher person,” Rosemary Barr said.

Helen nodded. “I gave his name to Emerson and my father.”

“Why?”

“Because Emerson’s people cleared your brother’s house out.
They might have found an address or a phone number. And my father needed to know because we want this guy on our witness list, not the prosecution’s. Because he might be able to help us.”

“He might be an alibi.”

“Maybe an old army buddy, at best.”

“I don’t see how,” Franklin said. “They were different ranks and different branches.”

“We need to find him,” Rosemary Barr said. “James asked for him, didn’t he? That has to mean something.”

Helen nodded again. “I’d certainly like to find him. He might have something for us. Some exculpatory information, possibly. Or at least he might be a link to something we can use.”

“He’s out of circulation,” Franklin said.




He was two hours away, in the back of a bus out of Indianapolis. The trip had been slow, but pleasant enough. He had spent Saturday night in New Orleans, in a motel near the bus depot. He had spent Sunday night in Indianapolis. So he had slept and fed himself and showered. But mostly he had rocked and swayed and dozed on buses, watching the passing scenes, observing the chaos of America, and surfing along on the memory of the Norwegian. His life was like that. It was a mosaic of fragments. Details and contexts would fade and be inaccurately recalled, but the feelings and the experiences would weave over time into a tapestry equally full of good times and bad. He didn’t know yet exactly where the Norwegian would fall. At that point he thought of her as a missed opportunity. But she would have sailed away soon anyway. Or he would have. CNN’s intervention had shortened things, but maybe only by a fraction.

The bus was doing 55 on Route 37, heading south. It stopped in Bloomington. Six people got out. One of them left the Indianapolis paper behind. Reacher picked it up and checked the sports. The
Yankees were still ahead in the East. Then he flipped to the front and checked the news. He saw the headline: Sniper Suspect Hurt in Jail Attack. He read the first three paragraphs: Brain injury. Coma.
Uncertain prognosis.
The journalist seemed torn between condemning the Indiana Board of Corrections for its lawless prisons and applauding Barr’s attackers for doing their civic duty.

This might complicate things,
Reacher thought.

The later paragraphs carried a reprise of the original crime story, plus updated background, plus new facts. Reacher read them all.
Barr’s sister had moved out of his house some months before the incident. The journalist seemed to think that was either a cause or an effect of Barr’s evident instability. Or both. The bus moved out of Bloomington. Reacher folded the paper and propped his head against the window and watched the road. It was a black ribbon, wet with recent rain, and it unspooled beside him with the center line flashing by like an urgent Morse code message. Reacher wasn’t sure what it was saying to him. He couldn’t read it.




The bus pulled into a covered depot and Reacher came out into the daylight and found himself five blocks west of where a raised highway curled around behind an old stone building. Indiana limestone, he guessed. The real thing. It would be a bank, he thought, or a courthouse, or maybe a library. There was a black glass tower beyond it. The air was OK. It was colder than Miami but he was still far enough south that winter felt safely distant. He wasn’t going to have to refresh his wardrobe because of weather. He was in white chino pants and a bright yellow canvas shirt. Both were three days old. He figured he would get another day out of them. Then he would buy replacements, cheap. He had brown boat shoes on his feet. No socks. He felt he was dressed for the boardwalk and thought he must look a little out of place in the city.

He checked his watch. Nine-twenty in the morning. He stood on the sidewalk in the diesel fumes and stretched and looked around. The city was one of those heartland places that are neither large nor small, neither new nor old. It wasn’t booming and it wasn’t decrepit.
There was probably some history. Probably some corn and soybean trading. Maybe tobacco. Maybe livestock. There was probably a river, or a railhead. Maybe some manufacturing. There was a small downtown area. He could see it ahead of him, east of where he stood. Taller structures, some stone, some brick, some billboards. He figured the black glass tower would be the flagship building. No reason to build it anyplace else than the heart of downtown.

He walked toward it. There was a lot of construction under way.
Repairs, renewals, holes in the road, gravel piles, fresh concrete, heavy trucks moving slow. He crossed in front of one and hit a side street and came out along the north side of a half-finished parking garage extension. He recalled Ann Yanni’s fevered breaking-news recap and glanced up at it and then away from it to a public square. There was an empty ornamental pool with a fountain spout sticking up forlornly in the center. There was a narrow walkway between the pool itself and a low wall. The walkway was decorated with makeshift funeral tributes. There were flowers, with their stems wrapped in aluminum foil. Photographs under plastic, and small stuffed animals, and candles. There was a dusting of leftover sand. The sand had soaked up the blood, he guessed. Fire engines carry boxes of sand for accidents and crime scenes. And stainless steel shovels for removal of body parts. He glanced back at the parking garage. Less than thirty-five yards, he thought. Very close.

He stood still. The plaza was silent. The whole city was quiet. It felt stunned, like a limb briefly paralyzed after a massive bruising blow. The plaza was the epicenter. It was where the blow had landed. It was like a black hole, with emotion compressed into it too tight to escape.

He walked on. The old limestone building was a library. That’s OK, he thought. Librarians are nice people. They tell you things, if you ask them. He asked for the DA’s office. A sad and subdued woman at the checkout desk gave him directions. It wasn’t a long walk. It wasn’t a big city. He walked east past a new office building that had signs for the DMV and a military recruitment center. Behind it was a block of off-brand stores and then a new courthouse building. It was a plain flat-roof off-the-shelf design dressed up with mahogany doors and etched glass. It could have been a church from some weird denomination with a generous but strapped congregation.

He avoided the main public entrance. He circled the block until he came to the office wing. He found a door labeled District Attorney.
Below it on a separate brass plate he found Rodin’s name. An elected official, he thought. They use a separate plate to make it cheaper when the guy changes every few Novembers. Rodin’s initials were A. A. He had a law degree.

Reacher went in through the door and spoke to a receptionist at a counter. Asked to see A. A. Rodin himself. “About what?” the receptionist asked, quietly but politely. She was middle-aged, well cared for, well turned out, wearing a clean white blouse. She looked like she had worked behind a desk all her life. A practiced bureaucrat. But stressed. She looked like she was carrying all the town’s recent troubles on her shoulders.

“About James Barr,” Reacher said.

“Are you a reporter?” the receptionist asked.

“No,” Reacher said.

“May I tell Mr. Rodin’s office your connection to the case?”

“I knew James Barr in the army.”

“That must have been some time ago.”

“A long time ago,” Reacher said.

“May I have your name?”

“Jack Reacher.”

The receptionist dialed a phone and spoke. Reacher guessed she was speaking to a secretary, because both he and Rodin were referred to in the third person, like abstractions. Can he see a Mr. Reacher about the case? Not the Barr case. Just the case. The conversation continued. Then the receptionist covered the phone by clamping it to her chest, below her collarbone, above her left breast.

“Do you have information?” she asked.

The secretary upstairs can hear your heart beating,
Reacher thought.

“Yes,” he said. “Information.”

“From the army?” she asked.

Reacher nodded. The receptionist put the phone back to her face and continued the conversation. It was a long one. Mr. A. A. Rodin had an efficient pair of gatekeepers. That was clear. No way of getting past them without some kind of an urgent and legitimate reason. That was clear, too. Reacher checked his watch. Nine-forty in the morning. But there was no rush, under the circumstances. Barr was in a coma. Tomorrow would do it. Or the next day. Or maybe he could get to Rodin through the cop, if need be. What was his name? Emerson?

The receptionist hung up the phone.

“Please go straight up,” she said. “Mr. Rodin is on the third floor.”

I’m honored,
Reacher thought. The receptionist wrote his name on a visitor pass and slipped it into a plastic sleeve. He clipped it on his shirt and headed for the elevator. Rode it to the third floor. The third floor had low ceilings and internal corridors lit by fluorescent tubes. There were three doors made of painted fiberboard that were closed and one set of double doors made of polished wood that were open. Behind those was a secretary at a desk. The second gatekeeper. She was younger than the downstairs lady but presumably more senior.

“Mr. Reacher?” she asked.

He nodded and she came out from behind her desk and led him to where the windowed offices started. The third door they came to was labeled A. A. Rodin.

“What’s the A. A. for?” Reacher asked.

“I’m sure Mr. Rodin will tell you if he wants to,” the secretary said.

She knocked on the door and Reacher heard a baritone reply from inside. Then she opened the door and stood aside for Reacher to go in past her.

“Thanks,” he said.

“You’re most welcome,” she said.

Reacher went in. Rodin was already on his feet behind his desk, ready to welcome his visitor, full of reflexive courtesy. Reacher recognized him from the TV. He was a guy of about fifty, fairly lean, fairly fit, gray hair cut short. In person he looked smaller. He was maybe an inch under six feet and a pound under two hundred. He was dressed in a summer-weight suit, dark blue. He had a blue shirt on, and a blue tie. His eyes were blue. Blue was his color, no doubt about it. He was immaculately shaved and wearing cologne. He was a very squared-away guy, no question. As opposed to me, Reacher thought. It was like a study in contrasts. Next to Rodin, Reacher was an unkempt giant. He was six inches taller and fifty pounds heavier. His hair was two inches longer and his clothes were a thousand dollars cheaper.

“Mr. Reacher?” Rodin said.

Reacher nodded. The office was government-basic, but neat. It was cool and quiet. No real view from the window. Just the flat roofs of the off-brand stores and the DMV office, with all the ductwork showing. The black glass tower was visible in the distance. There was a weak sun in the sky. At a right angle to the window there was a trophy wall behind the desk, with college degree certificates and photographs of Rodin with politicians. There were framed newspaper headlines reporting guilty verdicts in seven different cases. On another wall was a photograph of a blonde girl wearing a mortarboard and a gown and holding a degree scroll. She was pretty. Reacher looked at her for a moment longer than he needed to.

“That’s my daughter,” Rodin said. “She’s a lawyer, too.”

“Is she?” Reacher said.

“She just opened her own office here in town.”

There was nothing in his tone. Reacher wasn’t sure whether he was proud, or disapproving.

“You’re due to meet with her, I think,” Rodin said.

“Am I?” Reacher said. “Why?”

“She’s defending James Barr.”

“Your daughter? Is that ethical?”

“There’s no law against it. It might not be sensible, but it’s not unethical.”

He said sensible with emphasis, hinting at a number of meanings. Not smart to defend a notorious case, not smart for a daughter to take on her father, not smart for anyone to take on A. A. Rodin. He sounded like a very competitive guy.

“She put your name on her provisional witness list,” he said.

“Why?”

“She thinks you have information.”

“Where did she get my name?”

“I don’t know.”

“From the Pentagon?”

Rodin shrugged. “I’m not sure. But she got it from somewhere.
Therefore people have been looking for you.”

“Is that why I got in here?”

Rodin nodded.

“Yes, it is,” he said. “That’s exactly why. Generally I don’t encourage walk-ins.”

“Your staff seems to be on board with that policy.”

“I certainly hope so,” Rodin said. “Sit down, please.”

Reacher sat in the visitor chair and Rodin sat behind his desk. The window was on Reacher’s left and Rodin’s right. Neither man had the light in his eyes. It was an equitable furniture arrangement. Different from some prosecutors’ offices Reacher had known.

“Coffee?” Rodin asked.

“Please,” Reacher said.

Rodin made a call and asked for coffee.

“Naturally I’m interested in why you came to see me first,” he said. “The prosecution, I mean, rather than the defense.”

“I wanted your personal opinion,” Reacher said.

“On what?”

“On how strong a case you’ve got against James Barr.”

Rodin didn’t answer immediately. There was a short silence and then there was a knock at the door and the secretary came in with coffee. She had a silver tray with the works on it. A French press, two cups, two saucers, a sugar bowl, a tiny pitcher of cream, two silver spoons. The cups were fine china. Not government issue, Reacher thought. Rodin likes his coffee done right. The secretary put the tray on the edge of the desk, so that it was exactly halfway between the desk chair and the visitor chair.

“Thanks,” Reacher said.

“You’re most welcome,” she said, and left the room.

“Help yourself,” Rodin said. “Please.”

Reacher pushed the plunger down and poured himself a cup, no cream, no sugar. It smelle
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ISBNs
0440335477
9780385336680
9780440335474