Cry No More
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • She finds lost children—all the while trying to outrun the brutal emotions stemming from a tragedy in her past.

Milla Edge is fueled by an obsession to fill the void in other people’s lives. Traveling to a small village in Mexico on a reliable tip, she begins to uncover the dire fate of countless children who have disappeared in the labyrinth of a sinister baby-smuggling ring. The key to nailing down the organization may rest with an elusive one-eyed man. As Milla’s search for him intensifies, the mission becomes more treacherous. For the ring is part of something far larger and more dangerous, reaching the highest echelons of power. Racing into peril, Milla suddenly finds herself the hunted—in the crosshairs of an invisible, lethal assassin who aims to silence her permanently.

Praise for Cry No More

“Linda Howard is a superbly original storyteller.”—Iris Johansen

“Intense and darkly mesmerizing from beginning to end, this gut-wrenching roller coaster of a book is incredible! The bestselling Howard delivers first-class terror and suspense.”Romantic Times

“Linda Howard meshes hot sex, emotional impact, and gripping tension.”Publishers Weekly (starred review)
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Cry No More
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • She finds lost children—all the while trying to outrun the brutal emotions stemming from a tragedy in her past.

Milla Edge is fueled by an obsession to fill the void in other people’s lives. Traveling to a small village in Mexico on a reliable tip, she begins to uncover the dire fate of countless children who have disappeared in the labyrinth of a sinister baby-smuggling ring. The key to nailing down the organization may rest with an elusive one-eyed man. As Milla’s search for him intensifies, the mission becomes more treacherous. For the ring is part of something far larger and more dangerous, reaching the highest echelons of power. Racing into peril, Milla suddenly finds herself the hunted—in the crosshairs of an invisible, lethal assassin who aims to silence her permanently.

Praise for Cry No More

“Linda Howard is a superbly original storyteller.”—Iris Johansen

“Intense and darkly mesmerizing from beginning to end, this gut-wrenching roller coaster of a book is incredible! The bestselling Howard delivers first-class terror and suspense.”Romantic Times

“Linda Howard meshes hot sex, emotional impact, and gripping tension.”Publishers Weekly (starred review)
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Cry No More

Cry No More

by Linda Howard
Cry No More

Cry No More

by Linda Howard

eBook

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Overview

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • She finds lost children—all the while trying to outrun the brutal emotions stemming from a tragedy in her past.

Milla Edge is fueled by an obsession to fill the void in other people’s lives. Traveling to a small village in Mexico on a reliable tip, she begins to uncover the dire fate of countless children who have disappeared in the labyrinth of a sinister baby-smuggling ring. The key to nailing down the organization may rest with an elusive one-eyed man. As Milla’s search for him intensifies, the mission becomes more treacherous. For the ring is part of something far larger and more dangerous, reaching the highest echelons of power. Racing into peril, Milla suddenly finds herself the hunted—in the crosshairs of an invisible, lethal assassin who aims to silence her permanently.

Praise for Cry No More

“Linda Howard is a superbly original storyteller.”—Iris Johansen

“Intense and darkly mesmerizing from beginning to end, this gut-wrenching roller coaster of a book is incredible! The bestselling Howard delivers first-class terror and suspense.”Romantic Times

“Linda Howard meshes hot sex, emotional impact, and gripping tension.”Publishers Weekly (starred review)

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780345469892
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 11/04/2003
Sold by: Random House
Format: eBook
Pages: 384
Sales rank: 39,373
File size: 4 MB

About the Author

About The Author
Linda Howard is the award-winning author of many New York Times bestsellers, including Cry No MoreDying to PleaseOpen SeasonMr. PerfectAll the Queen’s MenNow You See HerKill and Tell, and Son of the Morning. She lives in Alabama with her husband and two golden retrievers.

Read an Excerpt

1

Mexico, 1993

Milla had fallen asleep while the baby was nursing. David Boone stood over his wife and child and watched them, aware of the silly grin on his face, of the fullness in his chest. His wife. His child.

God, his world.

The old fascination, the obsession, with medicine remained, but it was tempered now by something equally as fascinating. He’d never suspected that the process of pregnancy and childbirth, of the rapid development of the infant, could be so engrossing. He’d chosen the field of surgery because of the sheer challenge of it; obstetrics, in comparison, had seemed kind of like watching grass grow. Well, sometimes things went wrong and the obstetrician had to be on top of things, but for the most part babies grew and were born, and that was that.

He’d thought that until it came to his own child. Clinically, he’d known every detail of fetal growth, but he hadn’t been prepared for the sheer emotion of watching Milla round out, of feeling the small kicks and flutters of the baby grow into stronger, more demanding ones. And if the sheer emotionalism had blindsided him, how had Milla felt? Sometimes, even during the physical misery of the last month of pregnancy, he’d caught an expression on her face, a rapt, absorbed look as she unconsciously stroked her belly, that told him she was lost in a world inhabited only by herself and the baby.

And then Justin had arrived, squalling and healthy, and David had felt light-headed with relief and euphoria. In the six weeks since, each day seemed to bring some small change as the infant grew; the dark fuzz on his head had become blond, his eyes were more blue and alert. He was noticing things, recognizing voices, waving his arms and legs in a jerky, uncoordinated rhythm as his little muscles grew in strength. He loved his bath. He had an angry cry, a hungry cry, an uncomfortable cry, and a cranky cry. Milla had been able to tell the difference within days.

The changes in his wife were fascinating, too. Milla had always had a way of holding herself apart from the world, as if she were more an observer than a participant. She’d been a challenge from the moment he’d first seen her, but he had stubbornly courted her until she couldn’t help but notice him as a person rather than a moving part of the scenery. He could remember perfectly the exact moment when he’d won: they had been at a New Year’s Eve party and in the middle of all the laughter and drinking and general silliness, Milla had looked at him and blinked, a faintly startled expression crossing her face as if he had suddenly come into focus. That was it; no hot kiss, no heartfelt exchanges in the night, just a sudden clarity in her gaze as she finally, truly saw him. Then she smiled and took his hand, and with that simple touch they were linked.

Amazing.

Okay, it was also amazing that he’d surfaced from his studies and work long enough to notice her at one of the deadly dull staff parties his professor parents often hosted, but once he had, he couldn’t get her face out of his mind. She wasn’t beautiful; maybe she barely qualified as pretty. But there was something about her, in the strong, clean lines of her face and the way she walked, an almost gliding stride that made him think maybe her feet didn’t quite touch the ground, that had kept consciousness of her nagging at him like a persistent mosquito.

Learning about her had fascinated him. He liked knowing that her favorite color was green, that she didn’t want pepperoni on her pizza, that she enjoyed action movies and, thank God, yawned at the idea of chick flicks, which was surprising because she was so essentially feminine. As she explained it, she already knew about woman stuff, so why would she want to watch more of the same? Trivial stuff, mostly. He was beguiled by her serenity; if she had a temper, he’d never seen it. She was the most evenly balanced person he’d ever met, and even after two years of marriage he still couldn’t quite believe his luck.

She yawned and stretched, the move popping her nipple out of the baby’s slack mouth, who grunted and made a few sucking motions, then was still. Fascinated, David reached out and stroked one gentle finger over the plump mound of her bare breast. He admitted it; he was delighted with the new size of her breasts. Prepregnancy, Milla’s shape had been lean, like a long-distance runner’s. Now she was rounder, softer, and the postbirth moratorium on sex was driving him crazy. He couldn’t wait until tomorrow, when she had her six-week checkup from Susanna Kosper, the team’s ob-gyn. Actually, because of a couple of emergencies that played havoc with Susanna’s schedule, it was almost seven weeks now, and he was close to howling at the moon. Jerking off relieved the tension, but was a long way from being as satisfying as making love to his wife.

She opened her eyes and drowsily smiled at him. “Hey, Doogie,” she murmured. “Thinking about tomorrow night?”

He laughed, both at the nickname and how she’d read his mind—not that reading his mind was any great feat. He’d had little else besides sex on the brain for two months now. “Nothing else.”

“Maybe Doogie Jr. will sleep all night.” She stroked a gentle hand over the baby’s fuzzy head, and he responded by making more sucking motions with his mouth. Simultaneously both adults said, “I doubt it,” and David laughed again. Justin had a voracious appetite; he wanted feeding at least every two hours. Milla had been concerned that her breast milk wasn’t rich enough, or that she didn’t have enough, but Justin was clearly thriving and Susanna said there was nothing to worry about, the baby was just a pig.

Milla yawned again, and, concerned, David touched her cheek. “Just because Susanna will give you the all-clear tomorrow doesn’t mean we have to make love. If you’re too tired, we can wait.” Susanna had made damn certain he understood how exhausted a new mother was, especially if she was breast-feeding.

Interrupted in mid-yawn, Milla glared at him. “Oh, yes, we do,” she said fiercely. “If you think I’m going to wait another minute—Justin will be lucky if I don’t leave him with Susanna while I hunt you down at the clinic.”

“Gonna hold a scalpel on me and make me strip?” he asked, grinning.

“It’s a thought.” She caught his hand and pulled it to her breast again, rubbing her nipple against his fingers. “It’s been over six weeks. We don’t have to wait for Susanna’s official okay.”

He wanted to go with that idea. It had, in fact, occurred to him before, but he hadn’t wanted Milla to think that all he cared about was sex. He was relieved she had brought up the idea first, and temptation gnawed at him. He glanced at his wristwatch and the time made him groan. “I have to be at the clinic in ten minutes.” Already people would be lining up outside the clinic doors, prepared to patiently wait for hours to see a doctor. He was the team surgeon, and in fact had a surgery scheduled in half an hour. He barely had enough time to get to the clinic, change, and get scrubbed. Not that he’d need more than ten seconds to climax, the way he felt, but Milla definitely needed more time than that.

“Tonight, then,” Milla said, turning on her side and smiling at him. “I’ll keep Justin awake as much as possible so he’ll sleep.”

“Good plan.” He stood and reached for his keys. “What are you doing today?”

“Nothing much. I’m going to the market this morning before it gets so hot.”

“Get some oranges.” He’d been on an orange kick lately, as if his body craved the vitamin C. He’d been spending long hours in surgery, so maybe he did. He leaned down and kissed Milla, then brushed his lips against Justin’s satiny cheek. “Take good care of Mommy,” he told his sleeping son, and hurried out the door.

Milla stayed in bed a few more minutes, luxuriating in the peace and quiet. Right this moment, no one was wanting anything of her. She had thought she was prepared to care for a baby, but somehow she hadn’t realized the work would be practically nonstop. When Justin wasn’t needing to be fed or changed, she was rushing around trying to keep up with all the other chores, and she was so tired that every step was like slogging through water. She hadn’t had a good night’s sleep in what felt like months. No, it had been months; about four of them, since the growing baby had gotten large enough to press on her bladder and she’d had to pee practically every half hour. She had carried him low, which Susanna said made it easier to breathe, but the trade-off was peeing a lot. Being a mother was anything but glamorous; rewarding, but definitely not glamorous.

She knew she was beaming as she examined her sleeping son. He was so gorgeous; everyone said so, exclaiming at his blond hair and blue eyes and the sweetness of his mouth. He looked like the Gerber baby, that idealized, big-eyed infant whose image graced millions of baby-care items. Milla was entranced by everything about him, from the tiny fingernails to the dimples that were forming as he gained weight. She could just sit and watch him all day long . . . if she didn’t have so much else to do.

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