The incident was not particularly gruesome or harrowing, compared to most. It was a brief, solitary encounter, one that ended with Travis Kelly still alive and his enemy counterpart, an NVA officer, dead on a trail near the Cambodian border. It was the aftermath - as chilling as it was distressing - that stays with Travis, now a retired tool and die operator and part-time farmer in North Carolina.
Just feet away from the slain officer lay a young boy, no more than ten, trembling and hiding in the underbrush. Travis made a decision to leave the boy. It was that or turn him over to the South Vietnamese regulars, notorious for their corruption and cruelty. Forty years later, Travis is shocked to read an internet article about Nguyen Li Minh, a Vietnamese man who claims to be the son of the slain NVA officer as well as the grandson of none other than Ho Chi Minh himself.
Unsure how to proceed, Travis contacts Walt Bradley, his former company commander and now an Under sectary with the Department of Homeland Security. But when Walt is assassinated outside his home, Travis finds himself embroiled in a lethal international incident. Agents from Homeland Security and the FBI whisk Travis, considered a suspect, off to DC, where he is interviewed and asked to cooperate with the investigation. Things quickly go sideways when Nguyen Li Minh brazenly kidnaps Travis's widowed daughter and her four children and takes them back to Vietnam, where they are to be held as ransom.
©2013 Michael K. McMahan (P)2013 Michael K. McMahan