The Forgotten Soldier: A Pike Logan Thriller

4.25 avg rating
( 2,419 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9781101985038: The Forgotten Soldier: A Pike Logan Thriller
View all copies of this ISBN edition:
 
 

In this heart-stopping thriller from New York Times bestselling author Brad Taylor, Pike Logan returns with his most dangerous and personal threat yet: a Taskforce Operator gone rogue.

For years, the extralegal counterterrorist unit known as the Taskforce has worked in the shadows, anticipating and preventing attacks around the globe. Created to deal with a terrorist threat that shuns the civilized rule of law, it abandoned the same, operating outside of the US Constitution. Though wildly successful, it was rooted in a fear that the cure could be worse than the disease. 
 
And now that fear has come home. 
 
A Special Forces soldier is killed on an operation in Afghanistan, and complicit in the attack is a government official of an allied nation. While the US administration wants to forget the casualty, one Taskforce member will not. When he sets out to avenge his brother's death, his actions threaten to not only expose the Taskforce's activities, but also destroy a web of alliances against a greater evil. Pike Logan understands the desire, but also the danger. Brought in to eliminate the risk, he's now forced to choose between his friend and the administration he's sworn to protect, while unbeknownst to either of them, the soldier's death is only the beginning...

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

About the Author:

BRAD TAYLOR is the author of the New York Times bestselling Pike Logan series. He served for more than twenty years in the U.S. Army, including eight years in 1st Special Forces Operational Detachment–Delta, commonly known as Delta Force. He retired as a Special Forces lieutenant colonel and now lives in Charleston, South Carolina.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Also by Brad Taylor

Title Page

Copyright

Dedication

Epigraph

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Chapter 17

Chapter 18

Chapter 19

Chapter 20

Chapter 21

Chapter 22

Chapter 23

Chapter 24

Chapter 25

Chapter 26

Chapter 27

Chapter 28

Chapter 29

Chapter 30

Chapter 31

Chapter 32

Chapter 33

Chapter 34

Chapter 35

Chapter 36

Chapter 37

Chapter 38

Chapter 39

Chapter 40

Chapter 41

Chapter 42

Chapter 43

Chapter 44

Chapter 45

Chapter 46

Chapter 47

Chapter 48

Chapter 49

Chapter 50

Chapter 51

Chapter 52

Chapter 53

Chapter 54

Chapter 55

Chapter 56

Chapter 57

Chapter 58

Chapter 59

Chapter 60

Chapter 61

Chapter 62

Chapter 63

Chapter 64

Chapter 65

Chapter 66

Chapter 67

Chapter 68

Chapter 69

Chapter 70

Chapter 71

Chapter 72

Chapter 73

Chapter 74

Chapter 75

Chapter 76

Chapter 77

Chapter 78

Chapter 79

Chapter 80

Chapter 81

Chapter 82

Chapter 83

Chapter 84

Chapter 85

Chapter 86

Chapter 87

Chapter 88

Chapter 89

Chapter 90

Acknowledgments

About the Author

1

The box arrived at the front door like any other delivery. It had nothing on the outside detailing what it held. Nothing to show that what was inside was anything other than an online order. Just a FedEx label on brown cardboard. Maybe a fantasy kit inspired by Fifty Shades of Grey. Or maybe not. Treating this like every other delivery, the FedEx driver ringing the bell had no idea that what it contained were the final vestiges of a man who’d given his life fighting in a land far, far away. A land that most of America had forgotten, precisely because the sacrifices represented by the contents of the box allowed them to do so.

Putting on a plain oxford shirt, Guy George heard the bell and was surprised. He wasn’t expecting anyone, and he was more worried about a meeting he had to attend in forty-five minutes. A meeting he knew would be crucial to his future. He didn’t have time for someone selling Girl Scout cookies.

Tucking in his shirt, he padded to the front door in his socks, a little bewildered that someone would bother him here—in his condominium, behind the gate of security at the building’s entrance. He put his eye to the peephole, expecting to see a mother who lived in his tower, a child in tow, exploiting her ability to penetrate security to sell raffle tickets or something else. What he saw was a FedEx man, and he felt his stomach clench.

He knew what the man held. It had arrived days earlier than he expected, but he knew.

Usually, FedEx deliveries were dropped off downstairs, but he’d told the management of the tower he lived in that this box was special and that he would sign for it personally. It wasn’t outside of the ordinary, given his job. At least, given the job the management thought he held. There had been more than one box that came to his door, all having to be signed for personally. It came with the territory, so much so that he knew the FedEx man by name.

He opened the door and said, “Hey, Carl.”

“Got another one for you. You must have some pull. You’re the only apartment they let me up for.”

Guy smiled, feeling ill, and said, “Not really. That’s for me?”

“Yeah. I haven’t had a delivery for your roommate in over a year. He must be on the shit list.”

Carl grinned at his joke, and Guy felt like punching him for no reason whatsoever. It wasn’t Carl’s fault. He couldn’t possibly understand the sore he was poking with that statement, especially today. Truthfully, Guy should have moved out a year ago, precisely to prevent such questions, because Guy’s roommate was dead. Just like the man represented by the contents of the box Carl held.

Carl sensed a shift and said, “Welp, just sign here and it’s yours. Not nearly as heavy as some other stuff I’ve delivered.”

Guy thought about signing his brother’s name. Just as a memory. But didn’t.

Guy waved at Carl and shut the door, grasping the box in his hands as if it held a secret truth. He knew that was stupid. He’d done inventories for the very reasons this box held, more times than he wanted to remember. He just didn’t know, in this case, that the box did hold a truth, and it was dark.

He went back into the living room, glancing at the other bedroom. The empty one. He remembered inventorying everything in it as if he’d done it yesterday. The pictures and notes. The flotsam and jetsam accumulated in life that seemed like trash but took on a special meaning when the person they were attached to never returned.

Putting them all in a box like the one in his hands.

He placed the package reverently on the floor, then glanced at his watch, one eye on the cardboard as if it would do something. He was running out of time, and the boss didn’t take kindly to subordinates being late. But he might for this.

He pulled out an auto-opening knife from the inside of his waistband and flicked it, the black steel of the blade looking for something to bite, the weapon a stark contrast to his business-casual dress. He took a knee. He sliced the tape, the blade moving as easily as if it were touching air. He methodically went through every joint the tape touched, not pulling. Only slicing. Delaying the inevitable. Eventually, there was nothing left to cut.

He sat for a moment, then opened the box.

The first thing he saw was a sterile US Army bureaucratic inventory sheet detailing what was inside. He knew it wouldn’t be accurate, because he’d made a call. He set it aside and saw the MultiCam uniform. He pulled it out and took in the damage. The ragged tears and burned edges. The blood.

He squeezed his eyes shut, fighting for control, wondering if he’d made a mistake in his request.

His brother, Sergeant First Class Timothy George, had been killed in a mechanical ambush in Afghanistan. Hunting a new threat of the Islamic State infiltrating the area, he’d located the leader of the nascent movement and had gained a hard-fought concurrence for a unilateral US mission. Such things were no longer allowed in the Graveyard of Empires, but this threat had been deemed worthy. The Taliban was an Afghan Army mission, but this was something else.

And he’d died, along with most of his team.

When Guy heard of the casualties, he’d made some calls to friends in Special Operations. Telling them, first, not to mail the box to his parents. To mail it to him. And second, not to sterilize the contents. Give him everything.

Ordinarily, when a service member died, the inventory was conducted with one thing in mind: Protect the memory for a grieving family. Give the family everything they deserved, but remove anything that would be embarrassing. Porno magazines, unmailed letters of hatred, evidence of infidelity, or anything else that would cause the family grief was destroyed. First on the list was the uniform the deceased wore the night he died. That was usually burned.

But not this time. And Guy was regretting it.

He put the uniform aside and found his brother’s cell phone. The one Tim had used Apple iMessage to text while he’d been deployed. The same one he’d used to send a last message, talking about his final mission. No specifics, just that he was doing good work and taking it to the enemy.

Only the enemy took it to him.

Guy turned the phone on, surprised to see it had a charge. The screen appeared and he saw the Pandora app. He clicked on it, not wanting to, but wanting to. He found the channel his brother had talked about the night he died, telling him it was the perfect one for the warrior. Kidding him about how Guy’s music tastes had shifted since he’d left the Special Mission Unit. Ribbing Guy for no longer being in the fight.

But his brother didn’t know what Guy did now.

The app engaged and the music softly floated out. Guy shut it off, staring at the screen. Wondering if Pandora understood the significance of a music channel from beyond the grave, his brother working laboriously to thumbs-up and thumbs-down songs until he thought it was perfect.

He put the phone aside and pulled out an armband, not unlike what NFL quarterbacks wore detailing plays. About four inches long, with Velcro straps to cinch it to the forearm, it was the last target his brother had chased. A bit of history that nobody outside of Afghanistan should see.

Four pictures with Arabic names were under the plastic, followed by radio callsigns, medevac frequencies, and other coordination measures. Guy was surprised it had been included. He wanted the essence of his brother, but not what his brother was chasing. He understood operational security. Understood that his brother’s target wasn’t in the equation. Soldiers died all the time. Some valiantly, others because they happened to drive down the wrong road at the wrong time.

And then he found himself staring at the pictures on the armband. Thinking. Wondering.

Hating.

2

Even though he was late, Guy chose to walk the short distance to his office. Inside a building a block long, the only thing indicating what was within was a small brass plaque proclaiming Blaisdell Consulting. Behind those doors was anything but a consulting firm.

He could have driven, as his office building had an underground garage, but that would have taken just as long, if not longer, and he wanted the time to think.

He put in his earbuds and brought up his Pandora app, signing in as his brother. He’d managed to manipulate the login on his brother’s phone and now could listen to the channel on his own device. The music came through, and he began rehearsing his speech. The one he was going to use on his boss.

The meeting was supposed to be for coordination about some ridiculous award he was getting for his actions on a target in Dubrovnik, Croatia, but the request had been a little odd. The boss didn’t usually schedule premeetings for awardees in his office. Everyone knew the awards were bullshit anyway, given out to keep them competitive with their military peers. Men who weren’t buried in an organization so secret it didn’t even have a name.

Guy, like everyone he worked with, lived a dual life. While showing up at Blaisdell Consulting for his real work, he was also, ostensibly, one more military cog in one of Fort Myer’s motor pools, just off Arlington Cemetery in Washington, DC. Which, given he hadn’t served a day there, would be odd if you asked for a reference from the men and women who actually turned wrenches on Fort Myer. Stranger still, his rank was sergeant major. Not really cog material anymore, but he had to be sheep-dipped somewhere, and Fort Myer worked. To maintain the facade, his military records had to show progress, so every once in a while, he—like every other member of the Taskforce—was thrown the bone of an award.

None of the men gave a crap about them, and they understood that—while the Oversight Council presented them proudly—they were really used just to maintain the cover. But Colonel Kurt Hale, the commander of the Taskforce, understood this as well, which made the scheduled meeting odd.

Guy hit Arlington Boulevard in the shadow of the Iwo Jima memorial, the green carpet of Arlington directly behind, speckled with white dots. In the distance he saw a blip of brown against the green, upturned earth from a burial, and recognized it as Section 60, an area of Arlington he knew well. The Global War on Terrorism section. It was where his brother would earn his own pile of brown. The thought brought him up short.

He ignored the honking horns and speeding Washington lobbyists on Arlington Boulevard, all of whom drove by this national treasure every single day, completely oblivious to the sacrifices it held. He fixated on the piece of brown desecrating the expanse of green. He felt a darkness cloak him. A blackness blanketing his soul, and it was unsettling. He’d known many men who were killed in combat, but this was different. This was his blood.

He cranked the volume on his iPhone and began speed-walking down the sidewalk, rehearsing his speech.

3

Clearly irritated, Colonel Kurt Hale looked at his watch and said, “Where the hell is he?”

Johnny, Guy’s team leader, said, “He’s on the way. He just texted.”

Kurt shook his head. “This isn’t helping his case.”

Johnny said, “Sir, he got the box today. Just now. Give him a break.”

Kurt leaned back, taking in the words. “Bad timing. I don’t think it’s a discussion anymore. I no longer want to feel him out. I want him on ice, for at least a month. Get him involved in something operational, here in headquarters, but he’s not deploying with you.”

Axe, the second-in-command of the team, said, “Sir, wait a minute. We need him. We can’t deploy without a teammate. We run bare bones as it is. Just take a look when he gets here.”

Kurt said nothing. Johnny chimed in, “Sir, really, you can’t give him an award and then tell him he’s on ice. What signal is that sending?”

“Spare me. You and I both know how much this award means to him. Jack squat. I can’t have a guy on the edge. Especially where you’re going.”

George Wolffe, Kurt’s deputy commander and an old CIA hand, said, “We all know the stakes, but a blanket statement is a little much. We’ve all lost someone along the way, and we kept fighting. We aren’t talking about a Pike situation here. Let’s feel him out before making a decision.”

Johnny nodded in appreciation. Kurt scowled at his deputy and started to respond, when a shadow passed in the hallway. Guy leaned in, lightly knocking on the doorjamb.

He took in the audience and said, “Hey, sorry I’m late.”

Kurt saw the emotions flit across his face, recognizing who was in the room, and knew Guy understood this was more than a coordination meeting. He said, “Come on in, Guy. Have a seat.”

Guy did so, glancing at his team leader, then at his 2IC. “What’s up? I know this isn’t about some bullshit ceremony. If you thought I was going to embarrass the Taskforce, you wouldn’t have sent me to Croatia to begin with.”

Kurt said, “Yes. It isn’t about the ceremony. You’re due to deploy tomorrow with your team, but I’m not sure you should. Make no mistake, this is my call. The men in this room feel otherwise.”

He saw Guy relax, realizing it wasn’t an ambush.

Guy said, “I’m good. I can operate. I’m on my game.”

Despite what he’d said earlier, George Wolffe went into attack mode. “Good? You took Decoy’s death last year pretty damn hard. You hit the bottle. Don’t tell me you didn’t. You were on the edge then, and you barely pulled out. You’...

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9780525954910: The Forgotten Soldier (A Pike Logan Thriller)

Featured Edition

ISBN 10:  0525954910 ISBN 13:  9780525954910
Publisher: Dutton, 2015
Hardcover

9781410485397: The Forgotten Soldier (A Pike Logan Thriller)

Thornd..., 2016
Hardcover

Top Search Results from the AbeBooks Marketplace

1.

Brad Taylor
Published by Penguin Putnam Inc, United States (2015)
ISBN 10: 1101985038 ISBN 13: 9781101985038
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
The Book Depository
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Penguin Putnam Inc, United States, 2015. Paperback. Condition: New. UK ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book. In this heart-stopping thriller from New York Times bestselling author Brad Taylor, Pike Logan returns with his most dangerous and personal threat yet: a Taskforce Operator gone rogue. For years, the extralegal counterterrorist unit known as the Taskforce has worked in the shadows, anticipating and preventing attacks around the globe. Created to deal with a terrorist threat that shuns the civilized rule of law, it abandoned the same, operating outside of the US Constitution. Though wildly successful, it was rooted in a fear that the cure could be worse than the disease.    And now that fear has come home.    A Special Forces soldier is killed on an operation in Afghanistan, and complicit in the attack is a government official of an allied nation. While the US administration wants to forget the casualty, one Taskforce member will not. When he sets out to avenge his brother s death, his actions threaten to not only expose the Taskforce s activities, but also destroy a web of alliances against a greater evil. Pike Logan understands the desire, but also the danger. Brought in to eliminate the risk, he s now forced to choose between his friend and the administration he s sworn to protect, while unbeknownst to either of them, the soldier s death is only the beginning. Seller Inventory # AAT9781101985038

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 16.90
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

2.

Brad Taylor
Published by Penguin Putnam Inc
ISBN 10: 1101985038 ISBN 13: 9781101985038
New Paperback Quantity Available: 2
Seller:
THE SAINT BOOKSTORE
(Southport, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Penguin Putnam Inc. Paperback. Condition: New. New copy - Usually dispatched within 2 working days. Seller Inventory # B9781101985038

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 11.66
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 9.32
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

3.

Brad Taylor
Published by Penguin Putnam Inc, United States (2015)
ISBN 10: 1101985038 ISBN 13: 9781101985038
New Paperback Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Book Depository International
(London, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Penguin Putnam Inc, United States, 2015. Paperback. Condition: New. UK ed.. Language: English . Brand New Book. In this heart-stopping thriller from New York Times bestselling author Brad Taylor, Pike Logan returns with his most dangerous and personal threat yet: a Taskforce Operator gone rogue. For years, the extralegal counterterrorist unit known as the Taskforce has worked in the shadows, anticipating and preventing attacks around the globe. Created to deal with a terrorist threat that shuns the civilized rule of law, it abandoned the same, operating outside of the US Constitution. Though wildly successful, it was rooted in a fear that the cure could be worse than the disease.    And now that fear has come home.    A Special Forces soldier is killed on an operation in Afghanistan, and complicit in the attack is a government official of an allied nation. While the US administration wants to forget the casualty, one Taskforce member will not. When he sets out to avenge his brother s death, his actions threaten to not only expose the Taskforce s activities, but also destroy a web of alliances against a greater evil. Pike Logan understands the desire, but also the danger. Brought in to eliminate the risk, he s now forced to choose between his friend and the administration he s sworn to protect, while unbeknownst to either of them, the soldier s death is only the beginning. Seller Inventory # AAT9781101985038

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 21.03
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

4.

Brad Taylor
Published by Penguin Putnam Inc (2015)
ISBN 10: 1101985038 ISBN 13: 9781101985038
New Quantity Available: 2
Seller:
Books2Anywhere
(Fairford, GLOS, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Penguin Putnam Inc, 2015. PAP. Condition: New. New Book. Shipped from UK in 4 to 14 days. Established seller since 2000. Seller Inventory # EB-9781101985038

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 11.13
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 12.09
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

5.

Taylor, Brad
Published by Tundra Books (2015)
ISBN 10: 1101985038 ISBN 13: 9781101985038
New Paperback Quantity Available: 2
Seller:
Revaluation Books
(Exeter, United Kingdom)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Tundra Books, 2015. Paperback. Condition: Brand New. 432 pages. In Stock. Seller Inventory # __1101985038

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 15.31
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: US$ 8.06
From United Kingdom to U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

6.

Brad Taylor
Published by Tundra Books (2015)
ISBN 10: 1101985038 ISBN 13: 9781101985038
New Paperback Quantity Available: 2
Seller:
Murray Media
(North Miami Beach, FL, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Tundra Books, 2015. Paperback. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P111101985038

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 44.55
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds

7.

Published by Tundra Books
ISBN 10: 1101985038 ISBN 13: 9781101985038
New Softcover Quantity Available: 1
Seller:
Irish Booksellers
(Portland, ME, U.S.A.)
Rating
[?]

Book Description Tundra Books. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M1101985038

More information about this seller | Contact this seller

Buy New
US$ 66.70
Convert Currency

Add to Basket

Shipping: FREE
Within U.S.A.
Destination, Rates & Speeds