Nick Carter Excerpts — Strike Force Terror

Nick Carter #70, Strike Force Terror,
Award Books, 1973
 
The short man studied my face carefully. “It is unfortunate that you remain stubborn.”
“I wish to know who you are and what organi­zation you work for,” he said briskly, as if it were all business at this point.
“I can’t tell you,” I said
He motioned and one of the guards came over and struck me across the face with the muzzle of his revolver. The blow hit me on the jaw and cheek and knocked me down. I stayed down on one knee, feeling a trickle of blood move down along my cheekbone. I gritted my teeth with the pain. “You bloody barbarian!” Heather said loudly.

The guard who had hit me turned me around and cuffed my hands behind me, a precaution they had not bothered to take until that moment. Yenilik faced me as the guard handed him a length of what looked like hard rubber. It was about ten inches long and fit nicely into his hand as a club.
“Now we will begin again,” he said smoothly.
There was a small laugh from the guard.
“What is your name?”
I looked at the length of hard rubber. “Celik Se­zak,” I said.
He brought the club down hard across the side of my head, and I could feel it cut into the flesh of my ear and neck. I saw bright lights in my skull and thudded hard onto the floor on my side, rock­ets of pain radiating from the place where I had been hit.
“You work for the American CIA, don’t you?” the voice came.
But I quit listening to it. I coiled tight inside
 
With a small spasmodic jerk I regained consciousness. The first thought that entered me was that the beating had stopped. It was only some time later that I remembered being thrown into the stinking cell and hearing the door clang shut.
I lay there with my eyes still closed, feeling the pain. There was a lot of it. Slowly the memory of the episode began eating its way into my con­sciousness like acid. Yenilik had used the club over and over again. And there had been other little ni­ceties.
My eyes fluttered open but there was still dark­ness. I frowned and focused. As my eyes adjusted slowly, I could see the floor and walls. I was in a solitary cell.
I examined myself. They had left my street clothes on for the time being. My shirt was torn and bloody and they had removed the belt from my trousers. Everything had been taken from my pockets, but I still had my shoes.
I tried to move and needles of pain jabbed into my back and side. When I grimaced, my face felt as if it just might fall off like the Sezak mask had.
I touched my cheek and it felt like a beat-up medi­cine ball, or a worn-out leather cushion. There were several encrusted rivulets of blood.
“Jesus,” I muttered, feeling a little sorry for myself.
How, as a matter of fact, did I expect to survive the next hour? The pain was bad.
The swelling was almost gone from my face, but it would be some time before the bruises and cuts healed. Yenilik had worked me over hard.
 

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