Manchester Ménage 01 - Saving Samuel

BOOK: Manchester Ménage 01 - Saving Samuel
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Saving Samuel

 

Nicole Colville

 

Manchester Ménage Collection – Book One

 

Dedication

 

I would like to thank my friend Kirsty for inspiring this book. Without her staying for tea and gossip after we’ve dropped our children off at school, Saving Samuel and the two books I have planned after this wouldn’t be here for you all to read. Her idea about a fireman and a police officer caught my attention and I gave it a nice ménage twist by finding the perfect person to join them.

I’d like to thank my brilliant beta readers, Emma, Louise and Carol for taking time out of their busy lives to make sure Samuel’s book was awesome.

My editor, teacher, and friend, Jessica McKenna. Thank you for having so much patience with me while I grow and learn with you. I’m always amazed how far I’ve come since I met you.

www.facebook.com/JessicaMcKennaLiteraryEditor?fref=ts

Finally, my cover designer and friend Kellie Dennis. I think by now everyone knows Kellie and my love of her work. I have an addiction. I know I always say each cover I get is my favorite, but with Saving Samuel’s cover she really outdid herself. This is now my all time favorite cover. I recommend her to everyone, so go check out her website.

www.bookcoverbydesign.co.uk/

www.facebook.com/bookcoverbydesign

 

I hope you all fall in love with these three new men just like I did. Enjoy the book!!

Lots of love,

Nicole xxx

Chapter
1

 

D
aniel looked around, taking in the activity around him. Since he’d first become a fireman six years ago, he’d not been involved in such a big fire. When they’d received the call to join up with two other fire stations to help fight the blaze in an old warehouse on the outskirts of the city, Daniel thought they were just being over cautious, but as soon they drove up to the site, he knew it was serious.

They’d been briefed on the way there, and Daniel knew what he had to do, knew it would be dangerous, but this was his job.

As he was checking his equipment, he saw a few men from the other station helping a couple of people out from the burning building in front of him. A few homeless people had made this place their home for the colder months—that’s probably how the fire started in the first place, one of them trying to keep the cold out.

One fireman had an older woman in his arms, and Daniel waved over a paramedic, helping her gently from the other guy’s arms and settling her on the stretcher waiting for her. She looked up into his eyes, skin coated with ash and dust, smudges running down her cheeks from the tears she was shedding, and grabbed Daniel’s arm.

“There’s a girl… out back.” She pointed to the side of the large building. “She sleeps alone in there.” The old woman coughed violently, but pushed away the paramedic’s hand and the oxygen mask he was trying to put on her face. “She’s only a young thing.”

Daniel shared a look with the guy who’d pulled her from the fire.

“We’ve only just searched the first few rooms,” he said quickly.

They stared at the flames licking the night sky, both of them knowing there was no way through the blaze.

“I could take someone. Go round the back, try to gain entry that way,” Daniel suggested.

“Make sure the captain knows.” The guy said before he nodded, turning back and making his way toward the flames and heat, leaving Daniel with the woman.

“You’ll try to get her, right? She’s only…” The woman broke off, coughing again.

“I’ll do my best to get to her. I promise.” Daniel smiled softly, and then took off for his captain.

Steve wasn’t too happy about more people being caught up in the blaze. It was bad enough they might’ve started the whole inferno, now they had to rescue them too. Daniel didn’t care how it started. He wasn’t about to just leave some young girl in there to die.

“We have to try, you know we do,” Daniel said as calmly as he could. “Give me another man as back up and I’ll get in through the rear. There could be more people in there with her.” Daniel stood his ground in front of the imposing figure of Captain Steve Howarth, squaring up his six foot frame to the other guy’s six three. Daniel may not be as big as some of the guys he worked with, or have the age and experience, but he knew his job, knew what was right and wrong and how far to push himself.

Steve tossed his arms in the air and growled. “Fine, Harris. You and Collins take what equipment you can and go round, check it out. Report back to me before you gain entry.”

Daniel nodded, already leaving to get his friend and head off when Steve grabbed his arm and stopped him.

“Don’t you dare put yourself and Collins in danger like last time, Harris. I mean it. You take risks and I don’t want to lose anyone tonight.”

“Neither do I. That’s why I’m going in.” Daniel held the cold glare he was getting until Steve turned from him with a grunt.

Daniel jogged to where his friend Simon Collins was helping pull more of the hose out and shook him. “We’ve got people trapped in the back of the place. You’re with me. Get your stuff and start running.” Daniel was already off, following the building’s small pathways, keeping away from the heat and flames.

“Hey, slow down.”

Daniel smirked a little, looking over his shoulder at Simon. “Keep up, old man. We’ve not got long until this is out of control and no one’s going in there.”

“There’d better not be people in there.” Simon huffed as they turned the corner.

The heat wasn’t so bad, the hoses and water were holding it back for now, but they both knew it wouldn’t last. They had to rush. Daniel called in their position on the radio, reporting what they could see and the state of the situation. When they got the all clear, they shared a look, pulled on their breathing masks, then opened what was left of a door.

It was mainly glass round the back. The moon and the flames were the only light and both of them switched on their torches, sweeping the area for any signs of life.

Daniel could see someone was living there. A small section in the open plan, bare room had a couple of bags and a makeshift cot made up in the corner. Daniel headed that way, searching through the area before turning back to Simon. The sound of the building creaking and groaning around them became louder as the flames heated up. Daniel didn’t have to see what the rest of his crew was doing outside to know what was happening. They were losing control of the situation. Soon they would start shifting their attention on to stopping the fire from spreading to the other buildings and land nearby. This was just a husk of a place, not worth risking lives for, empty of equipment and not used for years.

Daniel started to move faster, opening doors and calling out. After the fifth door, his radio crackled into life and the captain’s voice shouted out at him. Daniel was right, it had spread out of control and the beams at the front had given way, blocking entry. Everyone was out except them, but Daniel wasn’t ready to give up just yet.

“One more look, please, Simon.” Daniel knew he couldn’t leave without one last check.

“One more
quick
look and then we’re out of here.”

Daniel made his way back to the little area where the girl had been sleeping, looking for any sign she left before the fire, but then homeless people had few belongings, so the fact she left and didn’t take her stuff with her didn’t sit well with Daniel. The smoke was getting thicker, the heat closer. Daniel was running out of time.

He lifted his head and saw a small metal door hidden in the corner. It was close enough for her to take shelter in from the smoke. He tried the door, finding it stuck, so he pulled harder. He frowned when it didn’t budge, and then put every bit of his strength into the next pull, almost falling backwards when it eventually gave way with a loud bang. Daniel shook his head. She couldn’t be in there, not with the door so jammed shut. Whoever shut this door had just as much strength as him, or there were two of them forcing it closed.

He was about to turn away when something caught his eye in the back of the small, dark room. He walked closer, the torch suddenly seeming brighter now he was in the enclosed room, and he spotted a bundle of clothes in the corner. He reached out and slipped the blanket off the top and saw a shock of dirty blonde, long hair.

“Hey.” Daniel knelt down, tilting back the head of the young girl and finding her semi-conscious. “Hey, can you hear me?” He shook her gently, smiling when two bright blue eyes met his. She was afraid, shaking under his touch. “I’m here to help you.”

“Daniel! We gotta go. The frame’s buckling.” Simon shot the girl a look, then motioned for them to get going.

“We’re getting out of here.” Daniel moved the girl from the floor, holding her slender frame in his arms, her big blue eyes scanning his face.

“Promise?”

“I promise, Sweetheart.” Daniel lifted her and placed her over his shoulder. “Let’s go, Simon.”

“My bags!” The girl shifted on his shoulder and Daniel bent down, grabbing the two rucksacks on the floor as he ran past them.

“Got them.”

They ran through the thick smoke filling the building, searching for the door they came in, then Simon shouted out, pointing where they needed to head for. Daniel clung on tightly to the girl, breathing hard, and wiping the dust and ash from his mask. The bright light blinded him as Simon opened the door, but he kept going, not stopping until he found himself in the yard outside. They rushed as quickly as they could to the front of the building, where Daniel lifted his mask off and looked around for the nearest available ambulance to leave the girl with. He waved to one of the paramedics, who got out another stretcher as he continued running to them.

Daniel gently slid her from his shoulder, laying her on the white sheet and brushing her long hair from her face. She still had her eyes partially opened, but they were dazed, and he quickly grabbed the oxygen mask from the paramedic and held it over her mouth.

“I found her hiding in a small room. I think she kept away from most of the smoke, but she’s in pretty bad shape.” Daniel glanced over the slight frame of the girl lying in front of him. No curves at all. The large sweater she had on hung around her tall frame, but Daniel couldn’t see the swell of any breasts or hips there. “God knows how long since she last ate.” She looked young, maybe eighteen, nineteen. “Where are you taking her?”

“Manchester General.” The paramedic was checking her vital signs when the girl reached out and grabbed Daniel’s hand which was holding the mask against her lips and pulled it down.

“Sweetheart, you need to keep this on for now, okay?” Daniel smiled down at her.

“Thank you.”

Daniel could barely hear her throaty whisper, so he leaned down and smiled again. “It’s okay. Just keep this on. They’ll take good care of you at the hospital.”

“No…” Her big eyes opened wider, the fear in them growing. “I can’t…” She broke off, coughing loudly, and Daniel took hold of her hand in his. “Don’t leave me, please.”

Daniel felt his heart miss a beat. “I want to stay, but I…” He looked back at the fire. “I have to help put this out. I’ll come find you. Make sure you’re okay. Hey—” Daniel held her down, stopping her from trying to get up. “You can’t go anywhere.”

“I can’t stay. I have to go. They’ll find me again.” Her blue eyes were wild and out of focus as she sat up, swinging her legs off the stretcher.

The paramedic was watching them as he prepared a shot of something. Daniel held the girl to his chest, her arms quickly wrapping around his neck and holding him to her.

“It’s okay. I won’t let anything bad happen to you, but these guys need to help you, so be a good girl for me and let them, huh?” The paramedic was gently rubbing her arm, placing the tip of the needle against her skin. “He’s going to give you something to help you. Just hold on and take a deep breath.”

She dug her face into his neck when it pierced her skin, a low little whine escaping her lips. “They’ll find me. Don’t let them find me,” she whispered again. Her low, husky voice vibrated against Daniel’s neck.

“I won’t.” Daniel felt her grip loosen, her head lolling backwards, and he stared into her eyes as her lids slowly drooped. She was pretty, even covered in soot and grime. If she had a bath and a few good meals down her, she’d be a real princess. “What’s your name, Sweetheart?”

She held his gaze, a soft smile playing on her lips. “Sam.”

“Hi, Sam. I’m Daniel.” He smiled down at her, stroking a smudge from her nose. “You’re going to be okay, beautiful.”

“Promise?”

“I promise, and I never break my promises.” Daniel pinched her nose and watched her smile again.

He stood up when her eyes fell shut, her body relaxing against the stretcher. Daniel ran his fingers through the mess of short, brown hair on his head while he thought hard. He’d rescued people before, and he’d always taken an interest in how they got along afterwards. Sam would be one he’d look up later. Maybe he’d even speak to the police about what she told him. The thought of someone doing anything to her made the protective streak in him come to the surface. In fact, everything about her screamed
look after me, protect me, don’t leave me.

“Who’s she talking about?” The paramedic helped lay her down and cover her up. The mask was now back on her face and his partner was helping lift the stretcher into the ambulance. “Who’s going to find her?”

“I don’t know.” Daniel sighed heavily. “Maybe it’s just the drugs.” Daniel bit his lip. The girl was petrified. “Make sure she’s not left alone, huh? She’s a runner, and she needs to keep still so someone can help her. I’ve got to get back, but I’ll check on her later.”

Daniel watched the doors slam shut behind her, keeping his eyes on the back of the ambulance until it turned the corner and disappeared from view. He couldn’t think about her right now. He had a job to finish off, but something inside him knew she wouldn’t be far from his thoughts. It wasn’t often he felt such a strong pull to another person like this, not even after rescuing them.

She sang to him. The memory of her was a sweet melody which played over and over in his head, her image repeating on a constant loop in front of his eyes, and her words…
Don’t let them find me
… They struck his chest like a mallet.

Who was she?

BOOK: Manchester Ménage 01 - Saving Samuel
5.51Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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