GENRE: Women's Fiction
A 20-something journalist, Danica, has just been told by a CIA operative that she could rescue her brother who is being held by pirates.
"Why are you willing to help me?" Danica asked.
He looked away, then back. "There's something else I haven't told you."
"Uh-oh. I don't like the sound of this."
He smiled. "Nothing dastardly. Just that I've done a lot of reading the last few days, and I feel like I know you from your articles."
"They're about other people," she pointed out.
"Oh, your voice shines through, alright. Your thoughts. Your personality. Your sense of humor." He paused. "And then there's your essays. You wrote one your senior year in college about your brother and the personal sacrifices he made to get top honors at the military academy. After I read that, I don't know, I just felt like I had to help you find him. Rescue the rescuer, if you will."
Silence descended between them. The lunch crowd had thinned out. Only five other tables had patrons. Danica became aware of the sound of a faucet being turned on in the recesses of the kitchen, laughter from one of the tables, the painful pounding of her troubled heart. The high school students had long since gone, leaving a mess of napkins on the floor. A distant memory came to her: in high school, her brother used to sneak cheese fries into the house late at night. He always saved some of it for her if she'd already gone to bed.
Her finger traced a heart someone had carved on the battered table top. "I miss him," she said.
"I can imagine."
She raised anguished eyes to his. "You said something preposterous earlier. You said I could rescue my brother."
He nodded. "Yes. You can. And it's not as preposterous as you think."
"Okay then. How?"