First of a series of Sunday excerpts from the thriller COLD FEAR, by Brandon Webb and John David Mann, this passage is the prologue that opens the book.

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A deserted city street. The distant ruckus of drunken revelers, laughter, Christmas carol fragments. Under the faint glow of street lights a flurry of snowflakes drifts to the frigid cobblestone surface, then swirls aside as a girl sprints past. 

Bare feet. No coat. Mid-twenties.