– Action Thrillers –
Why do you read action thrillers ? I am guessing the short answer is for entertainment… Maybe to escape for a few moments to live vicariously in another world full of intrigue and covert activity? Get away from the daily grind, the mundane? Or, to just to relax awhile?
Do you like to mentally escape to foreign places you’ve never been while in the company of exciting characters, both good and bad? What if the author introduced you to clandestine adventures and challenges you never considered? Adversities you never dreamed about? Exposed you to dramatized events that echo what you’ve read about in contemporary news releases?
What if the author introduced cutting-edge technology, thoughts, ideologies, and foreign geography into the text to enhance your reading experience and possibly to broaden your horizon? My hope is that you would not only be entertained, but also come away with having learned something new. Perhaps you’d learn how certain things work, or have your world view challenged, and/or maybe your mindset adjusted.
My intent is to craft “intelligent thrillers” that incorporate the ideas and questions above. The first chapter in “Killing Time” illustrates my intentions and is excerpted below.
LATE FOR THE MEETING — TEHRAN
“What was that thump?”
“Two kids on a motorbike just sideswiped our right rear fender,” replied Abdul, his limo driver.
“Look at them up the road! Still weaving in and out of traffic!”
Mostar Ahmadi Roshan was tense, apprehensive. The traffic was horrendous, worse than usual. His chauffeur and bodyguard, Abdul, was driving him to a crucial meeting at the atomic energy ministry with Ferreydoon Davanni Abbassi, the director of the AEOI.
Things had not been going well with the Iranian nuclear program lately. Ahmadinejad and his clique, SAVAMA, representatives of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards, and select mullahs expected him to get the Fordow uranium enrichment program back on track. Roshan sensed the mounting pressure. The minor scrape by the motorbike had irritated him. Normally, he would have paid it little or no notice. And the dreadful, heavy morning traffic in downtown Tehran frustrated him. He didn’t want to be late for this important conference with Abbassi. His boss did not tolerate tardiness.
A series of assassinations of three key Iranian nuclear scientists over the past two years, plus the recent devastating cyber invasion by an unknown, extremely virulent computer virus had dealt a serious setback to Iran’s nuclear ambitions. Everyone had expressed frustration, and they were all searching for a new strategy. He was the man on the spot, assuming the role of ‘lead scientist’, an expert in uranium enrichment. These political meetings hindered his task, his goal. He was a chemical engineer, not a politician. Just let him get on with his valuable work.
“Look at those kids! Western cinemas have contaminated our Islamic society, Abdul. Look at their reckless behavior! The younger generation assumes no responsibility. They will destroy our sacred Persian culture from within, long before Israel strikes a fatal blow. Recall that Rome fell from within, not to a foreign army!”
He vented his frustrations. Abdul noted Roshan’s loss of his characteristic formality and composure. He’d never seen the nuclear scientist so annoyed over such a trivial incident. The professor could be in for a long, tedious day at the AEOI ministry. The anticipation of an unpleasant, drawn-out meeting full of recriminations probably accounted for at least a part of the scientist’s aggravation.
“I agree,” he replied.
Abdul stopped the silver Peugeot at the red light in the left turn lane at the busy intersection of Kargar Avenue, allowing them to take the main city thoroughfare to the northern Amir Abad district, about twenty minutes away if the traffic abated. Heaven forbid if they were late.
“Look! There they are again, across the intersection.” Abdul cried. “About a hundred meters up? Talking on a cell phone.” He pointed in the direction of the motorbike culprits.
“Can you believe that? All that reckless driving and endangering others just to beat a street light! Now chatting casually on a cell phone, another Western invention. A perfect example of what I mean. Our society is going to the dogs!” Roshan declared emphatically.
Those would be the last words he spoke that morning on the way to the AEOI ministry.
“Dial the code now!”
“Okay, you’ve got it.” The phone’s signal immediately triggered the detonation of the magnetic car bomb attached to the scientist’s limo’s rear fender, placed in a drive-by ‘sideswipe’ just minutes earlier.
The massive explosion of C-4 rocked the intersection, blasting the limo to smithereens, and instantly killing the occupants. A dozen vehicles in a fifty-foot radius suffered serious destruction and injuries—merely collateral damage.
LANGLEY, Virginia — CIA HEADQUARTERS
“Take a glance at this classified communication just in from Tel Aviv. NSA deciphered it, Admiral.”
“Thank you, Harry.”
MISSION ACCOMPLISHED> FOUR DOWN, FIVE TO GO.
©Excerpt from Killing Time by R. Lawson.