This Fallen Prey - Kelley Armstrong

Praise for Kelley Armstrong

“Armstrong is a talented and evocative writer who knows well how to balance the elements of good, suspenseful fiction, and her stories evoke poignancy, action, humor and suspense.”

The Globe and Mail

“[A] master of crime thrillers.”

Kirkus

“Kelley Armstrong is one of the purest storytellers Canada has produced in a long while.”

National Post

“Kelley Armstrong is one of my favorite writers.”

Karin Slaughter

“Armstrong is a talented and original writer whose inventiveness and sense of the bizarre is arresting.”

London Free Press

“Armstrong’s name is synonymous with great storytelling.”

Suspense Magazine

“Like Stephen King, who manages an under-the-covers, flashlight-in-face kind of storytelling without sounding ridiculous, Armstrong not only writes interesting page-turners, she has also achieved that unlikely goal, what all writers strive for: a genre of her own.”

The Walrus

This Fallen Prey

Kelley Armstrong

Contents

Also by Kelley Armstrong

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

About the Author

Also by Kelley Armstrong

Rockton series

City of the Lost

A Darkness Absolute

This Fallen Prey

Missing

The Masked Truth

Cainsville series

Otherworld series

Nadia Stafford trilogy

Age of Legends trilogy

Darkness Rising trilogy

Darkest Powers trilogy

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, events, or locales is purely coincidental.

No part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means, including information storage and retrieval systems, without the written permission of the Author, except by a reviewer who may quote brief passages in a review.

© 2018 KLA Fricke Inc.

All rights reserved.

-13 (print): 978-1-989046-01-2

-13 (ebook): 978-1-989046-02-9

For Jeff

1

The season may have officially started two months ago, but it isn’t truly spring in Rockton until we bury our winter dead.

Dalton and Anders are digging the shallow grave. I’m wandering, trying to calm Storm. As a future tracking dog, she needs to know the smell of death. I’ve read books that say cadaver dogs can’t do the job for long because every “success” leads to a dead body. I dismissed that as anthropomorphism until I showed Storm the corpses . . . and she promptly set about trying to wake the dead.

We’re walking in ever-growing circles around the grave. Dalton’s occasional “Casey?” warns me to stay close, while Storm’s insistent tugs beg me to let her explore and forget what she’s seen. The tugs of an eight-month-old Newfoundland are not insubstantial.

“Switch?”Anders walks over and holds out a hand.

Storm isn’t the only one who needs a break from this task. Every year, Dalton orders his deputy to stay behind. Every year Anders ignores him. As a former soldier, Anders might not need to see more death, but being a former soldier also means he refuses to grant himself that reprieve.

I give his hand a quick squeeze as I pass over the leash. “Remember, you gotta show her who’s boss.”

“Oh, she knows who’s boss.” The dog yanks, nearly toppling Anders. “And it’s not me.” He plants his feet. “Fortunately, I’m still a whole lot bigger. Go help Eric. We’ll be fine.”

I walk along a narrow caribou trail bounded by towering spruce. Green shoots have snuck up in patches of sunlight, and the air smells of a light shower, the rain already evaporating. I see no sign of Dalton. The forest here is too thick. Endless forest, the quiet broken by the scolding of