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PROLOGUE


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The surfer sat upright on his board, blue eyes intensely focused as he scanned the action at the breakers. Rising and falling with the ocean swells, he was poised to spring into action when the moment came, completely oblivious to the drama being played out below him.

Driven by mounting hunger, the shark needed to feed, and it prowled the coastline on a lethal mission. Fathomless black eyes scanned the water for prey, and its muscular tail lashed back and forth rhythmically. Once it had made its choice the outcome was a foregone conclusion; the animal was an efficient eating machine, emotionless and methodical.

Certain death swimming.

She followed along behind it, gliding with effortless grace. The hungry predator didn’t realize that it was being stalked, shadowed by a creature far more ancient and powerful than itself. She wasn’t going to allow it to hunt in her territory. Its intended victims were her charges, and she felt a kinship to them. Watching and waiting, she trailed at a distance, a protective force of nature.

The big fish slowed and began to circle, and she knew from experience that it had selected a target. Looking up, she could see a surfboard floating on the surface, flanked by the legs of a wave rider. The hungry predator began its final rush towards what it thought was a sea lion. Eyes rolled back for protection, it became a deadly missile, a terrible surge of gray slicing though the water like a knife. Massive jaws opened to reveal row upon row of serrated teeth, ready to bite down at exactly the right moment.

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