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Immortality Gene

ohn and Sheila Chapman have asserted their right under theCopyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as theauthors of this workThis book is a work of fiction and, except in the case ofhistorical fact, any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead,Copyright @2010, 2013 John Shelia Chapmanrights reserved under Interational and Pan-Americanaper copy IsBN1-456-300180/EAN-139781456300180ur grateful thanks go to Connie Deavers, Brenda sand our son Adam for all their help and patience

Donna! Forrest snapped " Accidents happen all the timewould be tragic if any of those accidents' should befalI'm sure you can figure it out if you try hard enoughDonna leaned across the desk and stared daggers at ForrestI'm not scared of your money I,'m not scared of yoesources, and mostyou

Y ou re justa wrinkly old bag of hot air Forrest She jerked thForrests mouth and stubbed it out in hleaving before I say something I might regret Donna turnedFShe paused briefly The only response Forrest got fromDonna was a turned-up middle finger behind her back, and a

Chapter 2hn sherriff drove while richard sat in the back seat withDonna holding her, trying to comfort her Donna wasn't thinkirclearly She was still in shock that Jared had left her becausegs from him, butr, as well She felt sick, every time she thought about Kim andJared together She didn 't want to believe ForrestRichard and john ta lked and discussed what they planned todo when they got back to Shreveport, but Donna had saidlittle on the two hornbeck when shethe three of them were parked in front ofthe two-story brick houseFloods of meDonna like a tidal wavewallowed hard, pushing the threatening pa in back, tryinmember what Nadme, Jareds mot her, had taught her aboutDonna had been doing thatthat was old pain

This was fresh, and despite how thingslooked on the surface donna still felt its stiShe rested her head against Richard's shoulder He wrappedPet, "he whispered "ar g his cheek on the top of her headhis arms around hegoingyes glossed, and it lookeif the datburst; then like a light, she just shut it ofShe smiled softly and nodded"Im finealked away from himDonna wait! John said "Stay here with ricky until Imake sure the house isdThat depends on whether or not Forrest was making emptythreatsKCFine -here- you'll need this, " she said, handingfront door key

massyard He remembered theirnot as unforgiving as theotedwnstairs windows had been broken hethe shards as he crossed the creaky front porDonnas eyes glossed, aga in "I should haysooner but the memoriemarkable how much a house can golong has it beJohn he l the handle and lined the key up w ith the lock Hfroze wihand, he cautiously drefrom theoulder holster under his jacket He turned his head, heldfinger to his lips and pointed to the car richard took Donnashand and started pulling her toward the open gate "What isDonnas eyes widened

Her mouth went dry The memof her and Jared being chased flashed through her mindRichard opened the passenger door, put her in and then gotbehind the wheel The door locks snapped He put in hisBluetooth ear bud and tapped it " What is it John?pry bar " The door has beerichard and Donna watched him disappeShe held her finger to her lips and pointed While John wasthe front part of the house, they hurried down thand crouched behind a thick briar patch She bit her lip as theoody talons tore into her forearm "Youre bleedingfrowned "I,m fine, she forced through her teethg the sting as she freed her arm " I've had far worse

head They cautious lybetween the three strands of barbed wire and hopped in thewaiting jeeped in the glove box Keeping an eye onthe back of theand wiped the scratch "Put this over it, "she saidalling a face, he covered the scratch with a band-Aid andswallowed hard She softly smiled He frowned "whatyShe shook her head "Nothing As soon as theyre gonewere leaving We can' t do this againA few minutes later, John ducked his head and stepped out frornder the porch, beckoning toward the casaid“ We canow

"He rested a palm at the smll ofback and guided her back through the opened gateYou didn 't find anything?Nothing but a few mice and some black widowsrespondedDonna shivered and rubbed her arm A voiding someboards, they cautious ly crossed theThis wonlong, she said as they stepped through thorwayapproached the stairs Dust particles danced in the beam ofnlight as she touched the handrailRichard squinted his eyes, jerking his folded handkerchiefket“ Achoo!Thereverberated"Gesundheit Donna softly smiled "DusRichard furrowed his brow and nodded why arensneezing? "he asked, wiping his twitching nose I thought youw Donna grinned ""My bedroom was at the end of the hallre allergic to breathingfloor and approached another door " I need to go in here firstThis was my grandparents roomShe opened the closet door, squealed and jumped back intoichards arms "Guess we still have to work on that phobia

can thinkould he lpRichard glared at John "Get rid of that thinghns eyebrows shot up ""Me?" He coaxed the brownechuse into an empty jar and closed the lid You knowmetimes you abuse your authority, around meonna suppressed a grin " Afraid of spiders, John?No- but I dont keep them as pets I'll take this outs ided wait for you in the car, "he said, examining the trappedachnid, through thepint jar "Ricky, we need to finishlis and get back to Shreveporg until I,'ve bet"What dod out of the closet? Richard asked " IncyWincy might have had a familyhe three boxes on the floorThe sealed onesYeah, she sighed

I dont know which one, thoughAfter Granny's funeral, I started boxing things away I wasoing to label them and give them to the Salvation Army, but Iouldn't finish It was too soon I never came back to theRichard peeled off the silver duct tape " This ones filled with clothes "He started laying e alreadyebed“ Starth thattsJohn is right We need to hurry What are youOld photo albums and aker box my grandmothered to store important documentsmething so lid in the bott om of this oneI found the pictures, Donna commented, thumbircame across someher and Gary, taken when they were children Her eyes blurreI'm looking forward to seeing Gary again, she musedRichard pia ta

ne n sge thea bed through a few erose sae s and frownedraising an eyebrow "Some of the pictures are missing, sheIredThere was a pop in the loft Richard started, examining thehalf-lit room w ith wary eyes Donna grinned"It's just thehouse Richard, she chuckled, Havent you ever heard woodpopping when it cools down?Houses in the uk are made of stone or brick, apart from aBring those two boxes

If you're afraid of spirits shehook her headgo wait in the car with John, sheke thewatchedDonna rolled her eyes " It's probably just bats, RichardRichards eyes widened ""Bats?

Chapter 3the main gate to Prewitt ChapeCemetery They visited the graves of Donnas parents anddparents Feeling rather helpless, they watched and listenedas she said goodbye to them Donna still hadnt decided to stayin the UK, but she didn 't expect to be back in Louisiana, for avery long timeand stood under a tamagnolia tree at theentrance"Sheds me of Jared the night he left, John commentedRichard folded hishis chest and watched as shemindlessly taptspent blossom with her toe "Yeah, hesighed "Strong on the surface, but soft in the centre, like shetotally lostDo you think she 'll change?Who knows? " Richard responded

"Maybe shell be betterwhen we get back to the UKDonna pushed away from the tree and wandered through somethe other grave sites, cklinkingto lie among the deadThe final solace of the cold ground was an enticing solution Shethought about Sarabeth, Jared's daughterherself Donna closed her eyes She could almosel the little girls warmth in her arms She thought aboutMyra jaredand Tom and nadinehe thought about Jared It hurt so badly she could barelynow, She couldnt face Jared, notwhat Forrest had toldher An

d, even if it had all been lies, Jared didn't want herHed left her she had to live with that fac

The Earth does not belong to man; man belongs to the EarthAll things are connected like the blood which unites oneWhatever befalls the farth befalls the sons of the earthMan did not weave the web of life: heWhatever he does to the web he does to himselfWords by Ted Perry, attributed to Chief Seattle

Chapter 16-onna picked up the two steaming mugs of coffee, one withmate andcoffee table She glanced at her watch and grinned Richard waslate, but he was often late She was quite fond of richard,Gary was right Richard had a problem with punctualSitting cross-legged on her sofa, Donna reached for themart Tv seleshe started skype and waited for gary Since she and Jared hadparted ways, Donna had moved back into her apartment,She, Richard, and Gary had formed a habit ofanding cup of coffee together

Early morning forRichard and Donna turned out to be early afternoon for GaryNo matter how manyhe reminded them: neither Richardnderstand Gary needed somethingcalled sleep The six hour time difference between the US andthe uK always caught him out They called him at all hours oDonna was in deep concentration, thumbing through herok a sip of her coffee and yawnedWake up! " Gary shoutedStartled, Donna jerked the hand holding her coffee mugThat was mean! " she grumbled "Now see what you madedo? ive been wait inis letter for the last threeffee allDonnas face beamed ""Probably a letter telling me I've goter hegetsmiled

knockd”shesaid, "Thats probably my breakfast She unlocked the dodand narrowed her eyes " You're late! " she teasedwasnin a better mood tocDonna took the brown paper bag from him " Yes I am Myletter came Looks like I'm headed for the big applStill going to let me fly you there if you get the job?Gary spoke up "Shell chicken out likeRichard closed the door and followed donna to the livingroom"Nobody asked for your two cents, Mr Nosey, " Donnaaid as she headed“ Where2 ?"Gary asked "I don't hatthis

Some of us poor folks have to work for a livingTo getrs and paper towels, " she repliedRichardthe sofa and grabbed his coffee mug " Goodmorning, Richard, "Gary said, "Are you enjoying your time"Good afternoon, Gary, "Richard smirked and s ipped hisoffee "I certanly am I have something much better to look atd richard his breakfastpicked up her coffee stained-letter "Well, go on Richard"Dear Dr RideThankhead of our cardiacsearch centre blahthrough the rest She tightened her jaw; her eyes danced withfury " Thea bitc*whatDShe shoved the letter at Richard

froemployer, G Wof Forrest Enterprises, who stated thatbriefly, Richardsorry to inform you, but the pos ition has now been filledHe exhaled and tossed the letter on the coffee table "Dadcould probably fix this for you if you want the job that badDonna shook her head "No, I dont want you gettingea wRichard chuckled "Pet Ive been involved with G wAccording to my calculations, I had less than a month toy contract Bthe new building -herself in the process- I have no facilityork in, no hope of having one, for who knowsForrest is still waitintheir investigation before they 'll give him Jaredsto completmoney, she paused and swallowed the lump in her throatbuilding anotherWho knows?Does he need jared,'s money to do this- no! Thats itmdone! I can't take it anymore Donna bolted off the sofaow, where are you going? ""Gary askedTo change

I'm going to see the bastard I've had mysignature, she threw over her shoulder and turned the corneher bedroomGary and Richard shared a worried look " If she goes in hfice with her gung-ho attitudeGary broke offthink you'd better talk to Dad We may have to make aswitched her cell phone to silent mode She took arfrom thepped into the room Forranother U-turn on her A thick, hazy cloud of cigar smoke

hovered over her head "When did you pick up the habit againThose things will kill you-and everybody else around youOld habits die hard Donna We all die sooner or latertioned her to a seat "I'm a little disappointedDespite all I' ve done for youDonna held up a hand“… All you' ve done for me?changed your work schedule, gave you fewer hoursincreased your salary i built you a brand new state-of-the-artsearch facility While it was under constructand Dr Walton time off with pay You were ill, and I gave youextra time off to recover from your appendectomy -when yoully didnqllydying?Donnas mouth dropped open

"Dying? " she gasped " WImakes you think I'm dyinghed an eyebrow "My doctor took a bloode if he could figure out why you collapsed YourmaL Donna You havea rare blood disease According to his findings, you' ve got sixmonths-a year at the most - if you're lucky and can get abone marrow transplant Unfortunately, since you're an onlyYou took blood from me that day?figured you knewMr forrestnot dy ing I don'that your doctortold you Hes either one hell of a quack or has hist dying, and even if I were, I didnForrest put his che corner of his mouth andexamined his fingernails Then what did you come to discussDonna? How yolied for another job while you were stnder contracout ofding that Kim gentry blewup? Or how you secretly tried to get rid of me?

were crazy She cocked her head to the side Mr Forrestw would jared and I cheWe had nothing to do with the construction of that buildingForrest sneered, pulled hard on his cigar and rested it in thecrystal ashtray, exha ling directly in front of Donna He pushedan investment contract across the desk to her "Pick it up andread it Day close attention to the signatureDonna sighed and quickly scanned through theA lump formed in her throat She blinked a few times andyou didn 't know Jared had boughonstructionnt into thebuilding?”Donna slow ly shook her head "No

I didnKim Gentry and Jared Thundercloud were as thickIdnt be surprised if Jared hadnt killed Kimhimself because she planned to tell you about their affairDonna tightened her jaw and clenched her fist "You'relying! Jared didn 't murder Kim, and he wasn't having an affairith her and heup yourgForrestthfinger and lodged it in the corner of his mouth ""Be that as itback the way they were, DDonna narrowed her eves "You mean you'reback tobeing the arrogant prick we all love? she scoffedForrest attempted to stare her down Donna heldThats it! I,'m through be ing reasonable Im through trying teexpect you back at wethe morning Ywill do as you' re told regardless of how you may feel aboutDonna furrowed her brow and pursed herwhat equipment doexpect me to use? Everything Ivedone since i came here is gone i have nothing to show You

never efirst place, despite themore important to the wethis company, don' t you think you at least owe me some kindof explanation?”we you nothing, Donna! I own this compan employee Are we clear?Donna stood *Oh, were clear all right!envelope in front of forrest and smirkedwithout opening it, Forrest picked up the enve lope and sentit straight through the shreddedleaned across the desk howed his eyes to a tinywill destroy you if you attempt to leave thisDonna's eyebrows rose in disbelief And just how do youhope to achieve that Mr Forrest?'Easy! For the duration of your contract, you and yourearch are the property of forrest EnterprisesDonna laughed "I guess you didn 't know about my contractdon't plan onWhat a shame you over looked this, Yought have had me over a barrel

Youve been buriedKim Gentry you didnn think aboutontract Oh well I'm sure you'l find somebody outthats willing to kiss your ass, but it won't beey is not the only resouyou leave this company now, you leave with nothing, and Iurt for breach of contract in facthinking ofcharging both you and Jared with murder and destruction ofa laughed "You arrogant SOcaving now For your information, I expectedy I mailed your head ofpersonnel copies of the letter you just shredded You think youcan take me to court? Fine-bring it on