Chapter 1

 

 

Another Riot.

            Trisha Callahan knew something had happened when she woke up to the smell of smoke drifting over her apartment complex. And between gobbling down a piece of buttered toast, and showering and dressing, she gleaned the details of last night’s siege from KFOM.

            Now, she stood brushing her long, black hair that fell in waves over her slender shoulders and wondered how this could happen. Impatiently, she tossed the brush onto the rattan tray holding an assortment of toiletries then fastened her blue blazer, leaving the top buttons open to reveal a stylish silk blouse.

Riots had been popping out all over the country like pox, but she never thought it could happen here. Not in Everman—a city known for its low crime and friendly inhabitants.

Where are you God?

If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray . . .

Hadn’t her pastor predicted this? That America would fall unless believers prayed? She couldn’t get it out of her mind. It was the reason she rose an hour early every morning before work. So she could pray. Well, she had been praying for months now and where was God? Everyday another car bomb; another random killing by a terrorist. This was not the America she knew. The America she had grown up in. It broke her heart to see what was happening to the country she loved.

She fingered the buffalo-horn cross by her throat.

What more could she do? She grabbed her purse and keys. She had to stop thinking about it and get her mind on work. The boss’s secretary had called even before her alarm went off and told her to come in for an early meeting. And Michael Patterson was not a man to be kept waiting.

Even so, she’d try getting more news in the car. She snatched the remote to click off the TV, but not before hearing the anchor rattle off the riot’s toll: three confirmed dead, more than twenty injured, eighteen arrests, ten cars torched, two entire buildings destroyed, with five others partially fire damaged.

She took a deep breath as she fingered the cross one last time then bolted out the door.