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Save Her Child

A completely gripping and suspenseful crime thriller

CJ Lyons

Books by CJ Lyons

Jericho and Wright Thrillers

The Next Widow

The Drowned Woman

Save Her Child

Fatal Insomnia Medical Thrillers

Farewell to Dreams

A Raging Dawn

The Sleepless Stars

Lucy Guardino Thrillers

Snake Skin

Blood Stained

Kill Zone

After Shock

Hard Fall

Last Light

Devil Smoke

Open Grave

Gone Dark

Bitter Truth

Angels of Mercy Medical Suspense






Jericho and Wright Thrillers

The Next Widow (Available in the UK and the US)

The Drowned Woman (Available in the UK and the US)



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

Hear More from CJ

Books by CJ Lyons

A Letter from CJ

The Next Widow

The Drowned Woman


We are all in the same boat, in a stormy sea, and we owe each other a terrible loyalty.

G.K. Chesterton


She woke before dawn, screaming in pain.

No, no, no. It was too soon. The pain stole her breath until she was gasping, swallowing any air she could get, doubled over, her hands cradling her swollen belly. Not now, not here, not now; the words became a bizarre mantra.

Then the pain released its grip.

She was all alone, stranded in a wilderness—a log cabin, of all things. He’d thought it was so cute, romantic, even. Most of all, safe. Their enemies would never find her here. And he had a plan. All they needed to do was follow the plan and everything would be fine: the baby would be safe, they would be rich and, best of all, they wouldn’t need to spend the rest of their lives looking over their shoulders.

He was going to save her and the baby. He swore to it.

But he wasn’t here.

Another wave of pain left her writhing on the floor, fighting to find any position that eased the pressure building inside her. He’d said no calls, that it was too risky and the phone was only for emergencies, only if things went wrong, but they weren’t going to go wrong because he’d thought of everything and he had a plan…

Drenched with sweat, her hair falling into her face, she crawled across the cabin to the phone. She didn’t care about his damn plan; all she cared about was her baby. Because something was wrong, something was very wrong.

She reached the living area. The rustic end table shifted against her weight, so she grabbed hold of the itchy plaid couch beside it, heaving herself onto it. Panting, trying to get as much oxygen to her baby as she could, she took the cell phone from the charger. She turned the screen on, to be greeted by a red light: low battery.

Low battery? They hadn’t even used it—it was for emergencies only. Like now!

She glanced at the cord leading from the charger to the wall outlet and realized the plug wasn’t fully in the socket. The table must have wobbled sometime during the two weeks that she’d been trapped here.

Another wave of pain had her cursing, gripping the phone so tight she thought she might crush it. This time when the pain eased, it left a strange sensation in its wake. She looked down and saw a trickle of blood going down her leg.

The baby! She needed to call for help—to hell with his rules and their enemies and bloody vows of revenge—she would not allow her baby to continue to suffer, not for another moment.

She tried to dial but realized there was no signal.

She would have to go outside, leave the safety of the cabin.

She stood, blinked back the wave of red-spotted dizziness that rushed over her, and shuffled toward the door, her feet numb against the rough wood floor. Her vision swam; the door seemed so close, within reach, then impossibly far away. But she gritted her teeth and kept moving, inching toward it, holding onto the phone with one hand, the other cradling her baby inside her swollen belly.

Halfway there, just as she reached the threadbare braided rug, pain slammed into her, so fierce that she realized the first waves had been mere ripples compared to this tsunami. It threw her to her knees, then face down on the floor, convulsing through her.

She screamed. But there was no one to hear her.

And then, like a drowning person going under for the last time, the world faded away, beyond her grasp, the light surrendering to black.


Despite the August heat stifling the night, the corpse didn’t smell too bad. Not yet, anyway. Detective Naomi Harper knew that wouldn’t last long.

Avoiding broken glass and puddles of undetermined origins, Harper crouched on the pavement of a narrow alley on the east side of Cambria City’s Kingston Towers. Around her came camera flashes and the chatter of the crime scene techs as they worked the perimeter of the scene, leaving the body to the coroner’s investigator and Harper. She settled her weight on her heels as she hovered over the young woman’s body.

Maggie Chen, the death investigator, pulled back the bloody length of plastic sheeting that had been found draped over the body. Harper got her first look at the victim. Tangled cornrows, blood coating her face, bruises, swelling, and obvious broken bones combined to create a monstrous profile—Harper doubted even the girl’s own parents would be able to recognize her in her current state.

Harper’s gaze traveled down the body, noting more bruises and damage, apparently inflicted by a brutal, prolonged beating. Mostly along one side, so probably all from a single attacker, she thought. The girl was dressed in shorts and a camisole, nothing too flashy or outrageous, but there were very few reasons why a girl her age would be in this alley at night—and they all had to do with sex.

“Any phone or purse? ID?” Harper asked Maggie.

“No. Nothing.”


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