Hatch – The Mavericks Book 16 by Dale Mayer

What happens when the very men—trained to make the hard decisions—come up against the rules and regulations that hold them back from doing what needs to be done? They either stay and work within the constraints given to them or they walk away. Only now, for a select few, they have another option:

The Mavericks
A covert black ops team that steps up
and breaks all the rules …
but gets the job done.

The Mavericks Book 16
USA Today Bestselling Author
Dale Mayer


Hatch is more than happy to step up and to rescue the missing father-and-daughter archeological duo. Now if only it were that easy. They’d been questioned by the Egyptian government and released, with a warning to not leave Cairo. But, when their hotel room is found empty, most believe they took off ahead of punishment—but not Hatch’s team.

When the father’s foreman turns up dead, Hatch investigates the body-dump location and finds the daughter, weaving through the sand, ready to collapse.

Milly is shaken and grieving. During her captivity, her father dies, and she escapes, only to find herself lost in the sand dunes. She may be safe, but her father will never come home. Millie is determined to find the man responsible for her father’s death and for the information that’s changed her entire life.

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Marcus Bragner and his daughter Millicent aka Millie are archaeologists on a dig in Egypt with a US grant. Her father frequently clashes with the Egyptian government and is quite outspoken. This particular habit had them arrested and questioned about something that went missing, but they were released. They hadn’t been in their hotel long when they disappeared.

Killian contacts Hatch who is the next one to be in charge of a mission. He is pleasantly surprised to find his partner is one he’s worked with many times before, Corbin Wallace. They arrive in Egypt and find there is no new information for them. They need to go out and track down Millicent’s local friends. Hopefully one of them has some lead they can follow up on.

Millicent can’t remember much more than opening the hotel room door for room service. They are now being held in some sort of updated cave. When her father returns beaten from questioning, he tells Millie they want the location of a tomb that was being discussed in a pub. He doesn’t know where that is but they want him to find it and let them know first. They are an organized group of grave robbers, dangerous and asking the impossible. When her father dies thing just get worse, she is left in the desert with no supplies and no idea where she is.

Hatch and Corbin are investigating where the body of Marcus’ foreman was found, then chasing after the person who was watching them, when they hear a woman calling for help.

This is a favorite scene.

Ultimately she could do really nothing but wait and hope that somebody would take pity on her and let her out. Finally, after what felt like another hour of dozing and sitting here, realizing her bladder situation was rather desperate, she got up, went to the door, and beat on it with her fists. When no answer came, in frustration, she reached for the door handle and pulled. And damned if the thing didn’t open under her hands.

Swearing softly to herself, she pulled it open and stepped out. Judging by the faint light in the hallway, it was still night, probably a couple hours before dawn. The instinct to bolt was strong, but her need to go to the bathroom was even stronger. She quickly stepped out into the night, squatted, hating again that she had no toilet paper or anything, but she would make do because obviously any rescue of her wasn’t an option at this point. She just needed to escape as quickly as she could.

Stumbling forward, she raced down the hill, hoping nobody was watching her. Out here, if somebody decided to shoot her, she could do absolutely nothing about it. Hell, even the thought of getting away free and clear wasn’t much of an option at this point either.

She had no idea where she was, no idea if anybody was even out here looking for her or if she would have enough luck to stumble across somebody outside at this hour of the night or the wee morning maybe. She had no phone and no way to contact anybody. All she could do was resolutely put one foot in front of the other and keep going, hoping that she would find something.

After another ten minutes of slipping and sliding her way down the steep embankment, she heard a noise in the distance. Something like a bike. She stopped, trying to hear it again, torn between two minds, wondering whether she should call out for help, even though it could end up landing her with her kidnappers again.

Realizing she didn’t have a whole lot of choice if she wanted to survive, she waited until what appeared to be the sound of the bike slowing down and then coming to a stop, and she yelled for help. She yelled over and over again, until she had to stop because her throat was too dry to keep it up.

She kept walking, feeling so tired— more than that really, … utterly exhausted, mentally, physically, and emotionally. Just as she was about to give up, she heard a sound that brought tears to her eyes. It sounded like somebody shouting for her by name. She hollered as loud as she could, but her throat was so parched that her hoarse voice cracked.

She sagged to her knees, hoping that her efforts had been enough. But, when she heard nothing, tears formed in her eyes, and she started to scream again and again. Suddenly she was picked up in somebody’s arms. Immediately she fought hard, assuming it was her kidnappers. She was screaming, although it was more of a raspy shout than anything.

Finally she sagged against the strong arms in defeat. Only then she heard his voice.

“It’s okay. Hey, take it easy, Millie. You need to calm down. We’re here to rescue you. Easy, Millie. You’re safe now. It’s Hatch. Easy now.”

Held against his chest, she looked up, but, in the darkness, she could barely see, but the name? … “You’re here to rescue me?” she whispered. “Do I know you?”

He nodded. “Yes,” he replied, as if understanding that she couldn’t see much in the night. “Where’s your father?”

“He’s dead,” she said, sobbing. “They killed him.”

With his arms tightening around her, Hatch quickly led her somewhere nearby, but she couldn’t even tell where that was, except for the light that suddenly flashed in her face. Caught off guard and still stunned, she finally realized that a flashlight shone into her face, and she stopped wincing against the bright light.

“We’re just checking you over,” the man explained. “Do you need medical attention?”

She slowly shook her head and gasped hoarsely, “Water.” A bottle of water was placed in her hands, and she tilted it up and drank thirstily.

When he tried to take it away from her, she glared at him. He just smiled. “It’s yours. Don’t worry. You get to keep it, but remember. Too much, too fast won’t be good either.”

Reluctantly she slowed down on the chugging and nodded. “I know, but you don’t understand how desperate you can be when you don’t have water.”

He still held her in his arms, and she realized that she hadn’t been put down. “I can walk, you know,” she stated.

He slowly lowered her until her boots touched the sand, but almost immediately she collapsed.

She looked up at him again. “Well, I will walk. Just give me a moment.”

He shook his head. “It’s not necessary.” Picking her up again, he asked, “Do you think you can ride on my bike?”

She looked at him and nodded. “I think so.”

“Can you hold on to me?” he asked. “That’s all you have to do.”

She realized that he wanted to find out if she was strong enough to do that. “I can hang on,” she replied, and he immediately parked her on the back of his bike. It was just a small dirt bike, and it would be a hard ride on this desert. But, as he sat down in front of her and had barely taken any of the seat, she wrapped her arms around his waist and clung to him.

If nothing else, she would hang on long enough to get out of here, hopefully back to civilization. If she was lucky, maybe she’d even get out of this nightmare. She whispered against his ear, “I don’t know where my kidnappers are.”

He nodded. “Hang on. Let’s get the hell out of here first.”
Dale Mayer. Hatch (Kindle Locations 1220-1264). Valley Publishing Ltd.

Now that they’ve found her and learned of her father’s death, Millie shares what she learned from her capture. That her mother was murdered for one and that her father was involved in something illegal. She has no knowledge of that, but she can’t help but wonder.

There’s quite a bit of intrigue and suspense as Millie, with the help of Hatch and Corbin, looks for answers. The connection between her and Hatch is obvious and leads to a bit of sizzle.

I can’t wait for the next book in this series!

5 Contented Purrs for Dale!

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Coming Soon!

Dale Mayer

Dale Mayer is a USA Today bestselling author best known for her Psychic Visions and Family Blood Ties series. Her contemporary romances are raw and full of passion and emotion (Second Chances, SKIN), her thrillers will keep you guessing (By Death series), and her romantic comedies will keep you giggling (It’s a Dog’s Life and Charmin Marvin Romantic Comedy series).

She honors the stories that come to her – and some of them are crazy and break all the rules and cross multiple genres!

To go with her fiction, she also writes nonfiction in many different fields with books available on resume writing, companion gardening and the US mortgage system. She has recently published her Career Essentials Series. All her books are available in print and ebook format.

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