Friday, July 26, 2013

Excerpt from No Dog Left Behind by Elliott Garber


An Army Ranger dies and his courageous canine partner goes missing during what should have been a routine night raid in the mountains of Afghanistan.

Special Forces veterinarian Cole McBride joins a hardened group of spies and soldiers as they confront a terrible dilemma.

Will the strike team save themselves and escape from the tightening noose of enemy forces while they still have time? Or will they stay and fight to rescue the military working dog whose spirited heroism has already saved so many lives?

From U.S. Army veterinarian Elliott Garber comes a thrilling short story that illustrates the unique role of canine warriors as they work side by side with elite Special Operations troops to keep us safe.

This compelling tale of a military dog and his veterinarian is the perfect length for a lunchtime read or literary nightcap and will leave you begging for more.

Dr. Garber examines a patient
Today I'm pleased to announce that my friend and fellow scientist/author has just made his debut as the latter. You have just read the back cover blurb for No Dog Left Behind, a short story by active duty Army veterinarian Elliott Garber now available.

Purchase No Dog Left Behind for Kindle 

For more about Elliott's interesting life, click here. To the left is a photograph of his day job. 

Now: want to know more about the story? Below is an excerpt from this thrilling debut.


No Dog Left Behind
Cole woke with a start and reached for the Beretta M9 hanging in its shoulder holster from his cot. Funny how that motion could become so instinctual after a few short weeks.
Someone was pounding on the door. 
“Sir, the boss needs you in the TOC now!” The shouted message was followed by another round of pounding. Captain Cole McBride recognized the voice of his tech. He sounded worried.
“I hear ya, hang on.” Cole jumped out of bed and cracked the door. It was freezing out there. “Thanks Ben. Be there in two minutes tops. Let ‘em know for me?”
“I’m on it. I’ll be setting up at the clinic. Sounds like our dog team might be in trouble.”
“Crap, okay. This is what we train for, right?”
“Roger, sir.” Sergeant Ben Barrows gave him a quick nod. “We got this. See you in a few.”
Cole watched the seasoned veterinary technician take off running across the brightly lit compound. Ben had been attached to the 10th Special Forces Group for three years now and already had two deployments under his belt. He made it look easy. Everyone has to start somewhere, though. This is my time, Cole thought.
The veterinarian threw on his MultiCams, buckled up the kevlar helmet, and snugged into his bulky body armor. The Special Forces guys didn’t have to go all out in full battle rattle around the compound like this, but Cole didn’t care. He was still too cautious to care very much about looking like a badass just to make the regular Army guys jealous. They had taken way too many rockets that night already. He glanced at the soft blue glow from his travel alarm. 0217. Must be a snatch-and-go gone wrong.
Cole checked his weapon, strapped on the holster, and left the heated comfort of his wooden barracks room for the bitter Afghan night.

***

The tactical operations center was alive with nervous tension. Cole entered without a word and found a spot against the back wall.
He turned to the stocky man in jeans and a black fleece beside him. “Must be someone important?” he whispered.
“Yup. Senior Taliban type. Shit’s hit the fan, though.” Captain Dan Knight was a physician’s assistant who started out in the Ranger Regiment as a medic years ago before going back to school. He had welcomed Cole and Ben to the compound yesterday and introduced them to the command team. The Ranger veterinarian wasn’t due in Afghanistan for another month, so Cole was looking out for their dogs as well as his own from 10th Group.
Three large flat screen monitors hung at the front of the room. One revealed a detailed satellite map of the surrounding mountainous region along the northeast border of the country. On the map were icons and numbers showing all U.S. and known enemy forces in the area. The second screen was a live aerial feed focused on a typical Afghan concrete compound. Spotlights from a hovering Blackhawk gave it a ghostly appearance.
It was the third that kept Cole’s attention. The screen showed a dark room, thick with smoke. Something was burning in one corner. The view turned slowly to scan along one wall and then stopped. A human form in black fatigues lay crumpled on the floor in a sickeningly unnatural position. Cole grimaced as the feed jumped forward and blurred momentarily. The guy with the camera on his helmet was now kneeling over the body, and all Cole could see were his hands reaching forward, checking wrists and then neck for a pulse. The camera began shaking as the hand jerked back and was thrust into a headlamp’s halogen beam. It was covered in bright red blood.

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