On Target - By Mark Greaney Page 0,1

New York 10014.

JOVE® is a registered trademark of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

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For my aunt,

Dorothy Greaney.

Thank you for a lifetime of love and support

(and sorry about all the bad words).


Much thanks and appreciation to Karen Mayer, John and Wanda Anderson, Devin Greaney, Mireya Ledezma, Trey and Kristin Greaney, John and Carrie Echols, Nichole Roberts, David and Suzanne Leslie, Chris and Michelle Burcky, Bob Hetherington, April Adams, Dana and Nancy Adams, Jeff and Stephanie Stovall, Keith Cleghorn, and Jenny Kraft.

Thanks also to Svetlana Ganea, Gavin Smith, James and Rebecca Yeager, Jay Gibson, Alan Webb, Paul Gomez, and the rest of the cadre and support staff at Tactical Response in Camden, Tennessee. To ALL the guys and girls on getoffthex: you’ve taught me more than you’ll ever know, and have helped me more than I’ll ever admit.

I’d also like to thank my badass editor, Tom Colgan, and my kickass agent, Scott Miller. You guys are the best.



Dark clouds hung low above the Irish Sea, fat in the moist morning air, and tracked slowly over the assassin as he stood on the wooden foredeck of the fishing boat. A few screeching herring gulls had encircled the vessel while it was still miles offshore; now that it had entered the harbor channel, a flock one dozen strong swarmed above and around, churning the mist with their white wings.

The seabirds shrieked at the vessel, bleated warnings to the Irish coast of the arrival of a killer to its shores.

But their warnings were lost in the vapor.

The boat docked in its harbor slip just before eight a.m. The assassin climbed off the deck and onto the quay without a glance at the two crewmembers. Not a single word had been exchanged in the three hours since the forty-foot Lochin had picked its passenger up from a Lithuanian freighter in international waters. He remained on the deck, moving fore and aft, vigilantly scanning the roiling sea around him, his black hooded raincoat protecting him from the salty spray and the occasional shower, as well as the curious eyes of the father and son who operated the boat. The crew remained in the wheelhouse during the journey, following strict instructions. They had been told to pick up a passenger and then keep away from him, to return with him to Howth Harbor, just north of Dublin. After delivering this odd catch of the day, they were to enjoy their payment and hold their bloody tongues.

The assassin walked through the seaside village to the tiny train depot and bought a ticket to Connolly Station in central Dublin. With half an hour to kill, he stepped down the station steps and into the basement pub. The Bloody Scream served a full Irish breakfast for the fishermen in the harbor; the long narrow room was more than half-full of men wolfing down plates of eggs and sausage and baked beans, washing it all down with pints of ink-dark foamy Guinness Stout. The assassin knew how to assimilate in unfamiliar surroundings; he grunted and gestured to hide his foreign accent, and ordered the same as those around him. He dug into his plate and drained his beer before leaving the Bloody Scream to catch his train.

A half hour later he trudged through Dublin. He wore his brown beard thick and a blue watch cap down over his ears and forehead, a scarf tight around his neck, and a dark blue peacoat into which his gloved hands dug deep to hide from the frigid air. Hanging over a shoulder, a small canvas bag swung with his footsteps. He headed south away from the train station, then turned right at the quay of the River Liffey and followed it as chilled rain began to fall.

The assassin walked on.

He looked forward to getting this errand behind him. He had not been comfortable at sea, nor was he comfortable now in the morning crowd growing around him as he neared O’Connell Street.

But there was a man here in Dublin who, it had been decided by someone with money and influence, should cease to exist.

And Court Gentry had come to see to that.


At a pharmacy he bought a pack of acetaminophen tablets and a bottled water. He’d been injured a few months back, a bullet through the thigh and a knife blade into his gut. The pain had lessened by the week. The body had incredible power to heal, so much greater than that of the mind. Court