TITLE: Dead Odds
All FBI Conrad Keane wants is to reconnect with his estranged brother. After a reunion ends with Sean Riggins dead after a late-night mugging, Keane seizes a chance to redeem years poor decisions and avenge Sean. But his off-the-books investigation reveals the Sean he never knew, an entrepreneurial gambler linked to a local syndicate. When more gamblers turn up dead, an increasingly unpredictable Keane must find the killer before he loses his career – or his life.
Conrad Keane slammed his hand on the mahogany bar. “Enough.”
The two men in front on him jerked into silence. The father, Quentin Riggins, pointed a crooked finger at him. “We’re not done. And this doesn’t concern you.” He turned to his son. “Does it?”
Sean Riggins glared back.
“I’m just saying it’s been a great weekend, and you’re ruining it,” Keane said and shook his head.
For two balmy December days in South Florida, the three of them fished and drank, laughed and told stories. It was as much of a family reunion as Keane had ever enjoyed. He’d never had a beer with his half-brother, never even made the effort to be a part of Sean’s life beyond birthday calls and occasional holiday visits.
To Keane, the recent death of their mother — sainted by no one — had lifted a burden. He suspected Sean felt relieved, too. Today they’d bonded.
Yet Quentin — everyone called him Q — picked a fight as soon as he locked the door behind the last drinkers out of The Tides, his Boynton Beach bar.
“What’s the problem?” Keane asked.
“He wants to run my life,” Sean said.
Keane chuckled. “That’s what fathers do.”
“What would you know about it?” Sean shot back.
Keane blinked. He’d left his hard-ass, FBI attitude in Tennessee, never figuring he’d need it here. He cocked his head. “Listen —”
“See what I mean?” Q lifted his hands in frustration. “You try to set him straight, and he won’t hear it.