A hitman. A journalist. A family torn apart. Can he uncover the truth before it's too late?
In the dead of winter, investigative reporter Janne Vuori sets out to uncover the truth about a mining company, whose illegal activities have created an environmental disaster in a small town in Northern Finland. When the company's executives begin to die in a string of mysterious accidents, and Janne's personal life starts to unravel, past meets present in a catastrophic series of events that could cost him his life.
Finally the blood started flowing.
It rushed and flowed as the hot water caressed his body, as it pressed evenly against every inch of his skin. It was as though he'd found someone bigger than himself, someone who knew his body well, knew how to hold it, how to take it in its embrace and warm it. He stretched his short, stocky legs. The bathtub was the perfect length. He tensed his chubby thighs, his round calves, and relaxed them again. The water buoyed him up, slowed his movements. On an evening like this, after spending all day in the freezing cld, he had earned a soak in the steaming bath.Outside the wind was whipping up a flurry of snow, the January cold and the darkness swallowing all living things. A moment earlier Pirjo had packed the boys and their ice-hockey equipment into the car and left. For the first time in what seemed like an eternity, he had the house to himself.
He moved his right arm, scratched his chest.
He leaned the back of his head against the edge of the bathtub and closed his eyes.
It is an unfortunate truth that with your eyes closed you often see much more than usual. The day's people and events all flickered behind his eyelids like a confused news bulletin. A clear indication of stress.
He opened his eyes. The pressure! All the decisions that had to be made quickly and implemented regardless of whether someone disapproved. Someone always disapproved.
He wiped the sweat from his brow. The bath water was almost scalding. He glanced at the windows. They were covered in a thin layer of steam. The lights on the veranda were switched on, and through the steam he watched the whirl of the snow. There was something hypnotic about it, something relaxing.
Maybe one day some people would realise they didn't have a monopoly on being in the right; weren't the only ones possessed of ultimate truths. Maybe...
An exceptionally dense swirl of snowflakes flurried past the window and the thick ice on the window ledge crackled as though a packet of boiled sweets had been scattered on the floor.
That's a lot of snow, he thought. He turned his head and gazed at something even more relaxing than the snow: the white tiling and dark-grey grout, the purity and cleanness of the pattern, its exactitude, its repeating logic. How beautiful, how practical. One of mankind's greatest achievements.
What was it he'd been thinking about? Ah yes, decisions. Making tough decisions. People who didn't like his decisions. That's what it had come to. Whenever you wanted something and tried to get something done...
As though someone had pushed a plug into a socket.
Was there someone in the house? Surely not.
Only the moan of the wind in the chimney flue and the waves of snow washing past the window.
He lay still, and a moment later the water followed suit. This was the best thing about taking a bath: stopping, as though you have succeeded in stepping outside time itself, into its centre, a place where everything condensed. Again he closed his eyes. His breath was light and shallow. Old air out, fresh air in.
Almost as though someone was approaching.
Not quite footsteps, but something, somewhere.
He saw he bathroom's white tiled wall and through the door a strip of the bedroom. Again he heard the wind whistling through the flues. A sudden thought entered his head: something bursting into flames.
An 'electric shock' is a misleading term. The word 'shock' gives the impression that the electricity only hits you and leaves the body. That's not what happens. Electricity flows, that's what electricity does. As it courses through the body, electricity causes massive burns, interferes with the functioning of the heart, fills the lungs with water, suffocates you.
Electricity clotted his heart, burned his organs, snapped his arteries, pummelled his muscles.
He writhed and trembled. Water spluttered and splashed.
Then, a moment later, an immense calm. It was hard to establish where his body ended, where the water's surface began. Both lay utterly still, as though fused together.
A column of snow blew past the window. Snowflakes whopped against the window frame.
Want to read more? Then enter the giveaway via the Rafflecopter form below for your chance to win a copy of The Mine.
a Rafflecopter giveaway