Christmas is Coming

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Trimble’s Christmas

Trimble’s Gift: Christmas Miracles (Christmas Love Book 1) – Kindle edition by Mary A Russell. Literature & Fiction Kindle eBoo

Trimble's Gift: Christmas Miracles (Christmas Love Book 1) by [Mary A Russell]

This heartwarming tale of Christmas, love, mystery, miracles and romance, portrays a relationship between a sensitive loving father and a hurting child. Trimble works his way into your heart and leaves you smiling in the end.

Five star review from a reader:

5.0 out of 5 stars The Spirit of Christmas Love Reviewed in the United States on March 22, 2020 Verified Purchase A heart warming quick read with so much heart. Recommended feel good book. Pick up this holiday book any time if the year!

Cover of Darkness, part 10

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Edward jumped from his chair moving swiftly from the library and out the front door. He stepped onto the porch, raising his voice, “Wait a minute, you two.”

John and Preston stopped and turned around.Eugenia watched from the library window as her husband approached them.Preston twisted his lips, “Great, now what?”

Their voices were loud enough that the kids could hear every word.

Edward was soon in front of them. He looked down at Preston showing the whites of his eyes, “What were you two doing here?”John spoke while Preston grinned, “I don’t think it’s any of your business, we were here to see Opal not you.” He held Edwards stare.

Edward grabbed Preston by the shoulder, and at the same time pulled back his fist. Preston shook free of his hold, stepped back a couple paces at the same time reaching inside his coat.

Cassie sucked in her breath, “Oh…no!” She stood screaming as the shot rang out echoing in Fisher’s ears.

Surprised, the men jerked their heads toward the bushes where the kids were now standing.

Edward lay crumbled on the ground, holding his side, moaning, writhing in pain.

“You shouldn’t mess with me Edward,” Preston shouted, running toward the car. They hopped in and sped down the driveway.

Fisher was running, screaming, “Dad, Dad.”

“No no!” Eugenia put her hand over her mouth frantically running from the room and down the steps screaming, “Edward, Edward.” Rushing down the walk she feel on her knees next to him, tears streaming like a river down her cheeks.

Cassie and Lulu ran to Mrs. Fentwood, putting their arms around her trying to comfort her.As blood gushed from his side, Eugenia placed her hand on the wound.

Edward opened and closed his eyes, rolling his head from side to side, trying to breathe while Fisher cradled him in his arms.

“Fisher I’ll get your sister.” In the house Clint raced toward the library yelling, “Opal! Opal,” he picked up the phone next to Edwards leather chair and dialed 911.

Opal rushed into the room, “What are you yelling about Clint?”

“Your dad, is out there laying on the sidewalk, your mom and Fisher are with him.”

Opal bolted for the door. Running toward her mom holding her dad’s hand.

A pool of blood was forming around Edwards back and side, it was starting to run down the side walk. Fisher held his dad, “Dad, you’re going to be okay.”

By this time Fishers jeans were becoming soaked with blood.

Edward moaned, “Eugenia I love you,” moving his head from side to side, opening and closing his eyes.

Eugenia, patted his hand, “I will always love you Edward,” looking down at him with her best smile.

Fisher pressed his hand on top of his mom’s trying to stop the bleeding. Tears ran down his cheeks and dropped onto his dad’s shirt sleeve. “I love you Dad.”

Clint raced passed Opal as he bounded down the steps yelling, “The ambulance and police are almost here.”

Opal suddenly slowed within a few feet of them. She couldn’t believe her eyes, Cassie and Lulu were huddled around her mother and brother who were on their knees trying to comfort her father. She glanced up to see the car at the end of the driveway turn right. Just as the ambulance and police sirens with lights blaring turned into the drive and sped toward the house.Opal elbowed her way between Cassie and Lulu, kneeling down, she put her arm around her mom, “What in the world happened?”

Fisher raised his head staring at her through blinding tears. His hate filled blue eyes gave her a chill, “Your friends shot Dad, that’s what happened.”

Opal sucked in a hard breath casting her eyes away from Fisher, “Mother, Dad will be okay.”

Eugenia holding Edwards hand glanced at Opal and back to Edward, “I know dear, I keep telling him that.”

For a brief second their attention was on the ambulance and police car pulling up to the sidewalk. The medics jumped out leaving the doors open, one ran to the scene while the other one opened the back doors and pulled the gurney out.

Cassie and Lulu moved back to let them work on Mr. Fentwood, they stared in silence. Clint walked over to Fisher who stood to let the medics work on his dad. “Your dad will be alright.”Fisher wiped the tears edging from his eyes with his jacket sleeve, “I hope so.” He reached down trying to brush the blood from his jeans.

The policemen rushed in, “What happened here?”

After Fisher related the story to them they put out an APB on Preston and John, then sealed off the scene.

The medic glanced up at Eugenia, “We’re going to rush him to the hospital.” They loaded him onto the stretcher and into the ambulance, sirens blaring as they pulled away.

Opal pulled up in her car, “Everyone get in, I’ll drive us to the emergency room,” she barked at the kids. She got out and ran around the car opening the front passenger door, “Here Mother let me help you.”

“Thank you dear.”

Setting in the back seat of Opal’s expensive car the teens were silent until Opal made eye contact with her brother in the rear view mirror, “Fisher, what were you guys doing outside? I thought you were downtown studying at Muzzey’s?”

“We were just coming home from town when we saw Dad and the two men talking out front so we stopped behind the bushes to listen.”

Cassie and Lulu made eye contact, with Clint who shrugged.

They pulled up behind the ambulance at the hospital and bailed out of the car following the stretcher wheeling Edward into a room, the nurse stopped them, and pulled the certain closed.

“You’ll have to stay out here in the waiting room. We will call you when we know anything.” The nurse gave them a sympathetic smile.

The waiting-room was empty, Fisher was glad for that.

Opal took a seat next to her mom. She reached over and took her mother’s hand rubbing it, trying to comfort her, “Dad will be alright, he’s been through worse than this before,” knowing in her heart that he wasn’t going to be.

Fisher, Lulu, Clint and Cassie sat on the bench staring at the curtain, waiting for someone to come out and tell them he would be as good as new in no time. But Fisher knew deep down in his soul that things just weren’t right.

They sat in silence. Waiting…….

Months later.

Mrs.Fentwood encouraged Fisher, who was broken hearted at the loss of his father, to go off to Yale at the beginning of the Fall season. Clint went to Princeton and Cassie and Lulu went on to Harvard.

The End, or maybe just the beginning of a new mystery novel, coming soon.

Thank you for traveling with me.

 

 

 

Cover of Darkness, part 9

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Fisher, Clint, Cassie and Lulu in unison stepped half in and half out of the shadow of the house, they didn’t want to miss one word. They were all in shock and unbelief at what they were seeing and hearing. Preston looked like a nasty cartoon character and then watching Opal facing down long tall John.

Cassie whispered in Clint’s ear, “This is almost like watching a movie.”

Clint put his arm around her, “Yes, a scary movie. But I’ll keep you safe.”

John shoved the envelope in Preston’s directions, “Put this in your valise where it will be safe,” and at the same time he held up his brief case in front of Opal. “It’s all in there, count it.”

She jerked the case from John’s hand, setting it down so hard on the table, the thud rattled the coffee cups. She snapped the latches and lifted the top. Her eyes lit up, “Wow, nice.” She started to count the stacks of green bills.

John stared at her while she counted the money. “Is this coffee for us?”

“Help yourself,” Opal quipped as she counted. She didn’t look up as John poured a cup.

“Preston,” John said with a sly grin, “We are going to be rich by midnight tonight.”

A nasty look filled Preston’s face, while he placed the envelope in the satchel he was holding. “It’s safe with me.” He rolled his frog eyes in Opal’s direction nodding while chewing gum. Each time he swallowed his protruding Adam’s apple moved up and down his long neck like a yo-yo.

Opal glanced up at him and shivered, then cleared her throat, “It’s all here,” she snapped the latches closed, and patted the top of the case. “I guess our business is concluded, so, good-bye gentlemen.” She pointed to the door.

“Not so fast Opal,” John wagged his finger at her, “Opal, Opal…it wouldn’t be healthy for you to have said anything to your dad.”

“My dad knows nothing about this.” She put her hands on her hips. “Now it’s time for you two, to leave.”

Preston looked in her direction, “You’re in it too deep now Opal. You can’t get out. At least not alive. He fingered his gun. So if you want to see the ripe old age of twenty-nine I would advise you to keep your mouth.”

The kids jerked their heads away from the window and moved back into the shadows as the men turned in their direction. Henry leaped down on the ground landing at the kids feet. Pulling deeper into the shadows, the kids held their breath, and remained motionless.

Froggy raced toward the window, “Did you see that? It looked like someone was out there.” His head bobbed from side to side, he strained to see into the night.

Opal moved close to the window, “Henry jumped down when you two turned around, that is probably what you saw.”

“I hope that is it and not your nosey brother and his friends snooping around.” The malicious tone in Preston’s voice was chilling.

A shiver shook Opal’s body, “I’m sure Fisher and his little friends are doing their home-work downtown at Muzzey’s.

Preston spun around and headed toward the door, “Come on John I’ve had enough of this.”

Edward who was listening through the crack in the door, spotted Preston advancing toward him, whirled around and headed in the direction of the library.

“Follow me guys,” Fisher whispered, “We need to get out of hear.”

Crouching, the teens waddled like ducks behind the bushes, stopping at the front corner of the house shielded by an overgrown juniper pine, where they had a good view of the black car parked in front of the house. The two men rushed out the front door crossed the porch and down the steps.

They were almost to the car when Edward stepped out the front door, raising his voice, “Wait a minute, you two.” John and Preston stopped and turned.

To be continued: Thank you for traveling with me.

Cover of Darkness, part 8

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Nodding with a half-smile, “I’m all for getting down to business.” Opal took two steps back. A cold stare filled her eyes, as she turned with a nod, “Preston. I’m glad to see you.”

His froggy eyes looked beyond her to the window, “I see you still have that strange cat. Why would you be glad to see me?” He bobbed his head.

Opal raised an eyebrow and crossed her arms, “Why Preston, you know the old saying, keep your friends close and your enemies closer. By the way Henry’s not strange, he just senses when certain people aren’t to be trusted.”

Preston didn’t try to hide the leer filling his face as he stared her down. “At least you know where you stand with me.”

Opal turned handing John the envelope she had retrieved from the safe just before they arrived. “Here is what you paid for.”

The white haired man slipped it from her fingers. Pulling the top open he stared down inside at the contents, motionless and silent for a few seconds. The incredulous tone in his voice caught Opal’s attention. He glanced over at her, “This is it?” His disbelief filled the room.

Opal moved closer to John, “Yes, everything is there, all twelve pieces.”

He jerked his head up in a stark stare, “I thought we were to get twenty, not twelve.”

Her eyes grew large, “Twelve pieces is all we agreed to. I have the letter in my desk that you signed. Do you need to see it again?”

Preston slid his hand inside his coat and pulled out a gun, “I say we just kill her and take what we want. Then I’ll kill that stupid looking cat once and for all.”

The kids sucked in their breath and took a step closer to the window.

John moved between Opal and Preston, “That’s enough Preston, put that thing away.”

Preston grimaced and slid the gun back inside his coat at the same time rolling his eyes in the direction of the cat.

John’s voice softened as he turned, “Opal, we are paying you a lot of money. I think you should just put in eight extra pieces for old times’ sake.”

In one swift movement Opal was on her toes, nose to nose, with John, standing resolute and unswerving, “Now you listen real good John, twelve is all you’re getting, and I want all the credit for the inventions of this weapon. I’m not sharing the lime light with my father.”

Preston’s face hardened, “Don’t push your luck Opal.”

John held her gaze, “So you want us to tell Wy Ling at the Chinese consulate, that you are the inventor and the one selling them?”

Opal blurted out, “You wouldn’t dare.”

“Oh…wouldn’t I? Opal, I think the word for it is treason,” John raided an eyebrow, “You’re the one who set this in motion, now we are fulfilling our part. You will have to protect yourself, somehow.”

“Treason.” Fisher mouthed the words, in Clint’s direction.

To be continued: Thanks for traveling with me.

Cover of Darkness, part 7

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Opal’s mother was fussing in the library, “Edward I’m so glad you could spend the day with me it was an enjoyable time. Going out to eat at my favorite breakfast spot. Then the long walk in the park. Yes, it was a perfect day. And now to spend the evening together. What more could I ask for?” A smile of satisfaction lit up her face. Eugenia in her late forties petite and regal, with feline honey eyes, quiet, discreet and soft spoken had met Edward while working as a core intelligence collection analyst for the CIA, after they married she quit working, and stayed home to keep house and raise children. Opal came first, then ten years later Fisher surprised them.

Closing the book he was reading he glanced up from his scarred leather chair positioned in front of the oversized fireplace. He watched as the flames crackled and hissed, dancing around and consuming the logs, radiating heat that warmed all the nooks and crannies of their large library, chasing away the dampness of a frigid day. A pleasant smile brightened his eyes, he pulled the pipe from his lips and held it in his hand, “Ah…Eugenia it was a fun day, relaxing for a change.” Edward a tall good looking man, caught Eugenia’s eye the first time she passed him in the hallway of the building they were working in. He nodded and smiled as they walked in opposite directions. The rest is history.

Eugenia strolled around the floor-to-ceiling thirty year collection of books, many of them first editions, that filled the oak shelves of their spacious reading room as she called it. Closing her eyes, she breathed deep, filling her lungs with the smell of cherry tobacco from his meerschaum pipe. The two of them relished their alone time, quietly appreciating the presence of each other in the same room. At the fireplace she repositioned the intricately carved ivory box occupying the center spot on the wide mantle. “Edward, does Fisher use this anymore?”

He glanced up to see what she was referring to, “Once in a while when he thinks no one is looking, I’ll see him put stamps and papers in it.”

“Good. I’m glad he makes use of it.” She moved to the window over-looking the winding driveway and stared out, it was almost night.

“Eugenia, why don’t you pull a good book off one of those shelves, and I’ll slide a chair next to mine, so we can enjoy the fire together while reading?” He stood to retrieve a chair from across the room.

In a pleasant, dismissive voice, “I promised Opal I would watch for John and Preston to come, and let them in and bring them back to the laboratory.” Her raised eyebrows said it all to Edward.

He flashed her a dark scowl as he sat back down, “If only she wasn’t dealing with those two, they’re dangerous men. They would sell their own souls for the right amount of money, and they wouldn’t care who they put in danger doing it.”

A sweet confidence filled her voice, “Edward. Opal has worked many hours to finish this project, and for her it’s been a long time coming. Now she is anxious to be paid for all her hard work.”

Dismayed that Eugenia hid that piece of information. “Oh…and how do you know that? She didn’t say anything to me about a private plan she was working on. It’s hard to believe she would jeopardize her job that way.” Eugenia and Opal were not aware that he had accidently over-heard Opal talking to John on the phone about the project and what it involved.

She looked away, “I think I’ve said too much, you will have to talk to Opal.”

He stood pacing back and forth in front of the fireplace as he spoke, “You can bet I will. Later tonight her and I will have a little talk. This is an untenable situation.”

In the sweetest voice she could muster, “Now, Edward, just calm down, it can’t be all that bad.”

He resented her comment, “With John and Preston involved in this project it’s a sure sign there’s going to be trouble. Opal knows the CIA will fire her if she’s caught selling anything she created. There policy is and always has been everything you invent or create while you are working for them belongs to them, whether you make it on your own time or there time.

Her voice grew defensive, “What do you mean trouble, they seem like such nice young men, a little different than most people, but they seem nice enough.”

A thick crease shaped his eyebrows, “Seem, is the important word Eugenia. Didn’t you ever notice Preston’s froggy eyes, and John’s overly pale skin. They work for people who have shady backgrounds. Those two are not nice they would sell their own mothers for a couple of dollars, but I doubt that Preston ever had a mother, I think he was hatched.”

“Now Edward, that’s not a nice thing to say, everyone has a mother.”

He mumbled to himself as he sat down and turned back to his book, “No, it’s not nice, but it’s true.”

Eugenia waved him off with a sigh and continued to stand watch. Every now and again she cocked her head like a watchful sparrow, and glanced out the windows. Then about the time the street lights started to flip on one by one up broad street hill halting at Windermere Lane, she spotted headlights turning into the driveway. “Oh, dear,” She mumbled, rushing to the laboratory she poked her head around the door, “Opal, there coming up the drive now.”

Turning from the window Opal walked toward the table, “Thanks Mother, will you let them in and bring them back here?”

“Yes dear.” As Eugenia strolled down the hall the door-bell sounded.

Hearing the chimes Fisher whispered, “Heads up guys, sounds like Opal’s visitors have arrived.” In unison they inched closer to the window to watch, while staying in the shadows. Fisher was forever hanging around Opal trying her patience, hunting a good mystery for his gang, The Bow Street Runners, (a famous group of young people in London, England in the seventeen hundreds, who worked as amateur detectives doing the investigating for the police before Scotland Yard was created) to solve. Opal waving her arms shoo, shooing him away when she’d catch him listening in on her phone calls and while she was meeting with clients. Opal, considered Fisher a kid who was too young to understand the importance of the work she was doing.

“Opal is in here,” Eugenia waved the two men through the door.

The teens moved again into the shadows just far enough not to be seen, but close enough to see and hear everything going on in the room. Henry’s large body helped conceal them.

“Thank you mother,” Opal smiled, nodding at her guests.

“You’re welcome dear, your father and I will be in the library if you need anything.” Eugenia pulled the doors half closed and scurried down the hall.

John gave Opal a questioning look.

Caught off guard, “Why the look?” Opal held his stare.

“You told me not to worry, your father would be out of town. That he would never know we had been here.” His pink eyes held her intense stare as his thick fingers rubbed his face. “Anyway, let’s get down to business and forget the small talk.”

To be continued: Thank you for traveling with me.

Cover of Darkness, part 6

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“Listen,” Turning Fisher held a finger to his lips, as voices drifted out into the night air. The kids ducked down a front of the window to hear, the cat helped shield them from view.

“You see miss it’s like this. I have a family waiting for me, supper to fix and kids that need attention. I have a life other than this.” Wringing her hands Elena shuffled her feet, staring into Opals dark eyes.

“Enough of this Elena…” Opal waved her hand in the air, “When you’ve finished setting up the coffee you may leave.”

“Thank you Miss.” Elena turned and swaggered in the direction of the kitchen chattering to herself in French.

Lulu giggled, Fisher gently placed his hand over her mouth then shot a stern gaze at Clint and Cassie who were trying to contain their laughter, he whispered, “You guys…stop it, if Opal hears us we will be in big trouble.”

Wide eyed, Clint threw a snappy salute at Fisher.

The young detectives grew quiet, waiting for something to happen, their ears strained to hear the activity in the house, voices blended together, muffled by Henry’s purring.

Their backs pressed hard against the brick wall they warmed their bodies on the heat oozing through the bricks. They stood in silence staring at the lights of the small town in the broad valley below. The Fentwood property stretched for a mile behind the mansion bumping up against the borders of the forgotten sleepy town. Windermere, the palatial, twenty-thousand square foot estate, surrounded by one hundred and twenty-seven acres of gardens, pools and walkways showcased by the painstaking craftsmanship of the period. The manor stood like a sentinel watching over the old canal that has since become a small stream meandering through the little hamlet. Businesses died away and the once bustling center of commerce had fallen asleep, waiting to become busy again. It grew into a thriving bedroom community, pushing the city limits that stopped at Windermere.

Opal and her father were research scientists, they invented gadgets for agents to use in the world of spies. Opal’s newest weapon was the invention of micro-chip invisibility. It will put the CIA light years ahead in the spy world. Years ago the government built a laboratory onto the back of their house so Edward and now Opal could work from home on the beginning developing stages of an idea, and then the completion stage had to be done at the headquarters in Washington, D.C. The CIA didn’t trust anyone, not even their own employees.

“Now where did I have them?” Opal made a frantic search around the room. Inspecting all the areas where she worked on them. Panic filled her voice. “Oh, good,” she whispered, “I’ve covered my tracks, no one will know.” She knew the trouble she would be in if her dad learned what she was doing.

But all she really cared about was the money and fame that would come to her for what was probably the most valuable thing she had ever invented. As she brushed her dark hair out of her grey flecked eyes and scanned the room one more time, the sounds of Elena spewing out a string of complaints and the tap, tap of her shoes echoed as she stomped down the long hallway, her matronly hips moved her stubbly legs in short rhythmic steps.

Opal hurried to clear a spot on the table.

As Elena brushed into the room.

Opal turned sweeping her arm, “Set the tray down here.”

“Yes, Miss,” She huffed, then slid the heavy tray onto the table.

Opal stood with her hand on her hip watching Elena, “Is Mother finished in the library? What is Father doing?”

Looking past Opal, “I don’t know Miss, but this I know, my arm is sore from carrying that heavy tray. May I go now?”

“Yes, Elena, thank you for staying, you’ve been a big help.”

“Oh, Miss would you like me to close that window before I go, there’s a lot of cold air coming in?”

“I’ll close it late, Henry likes to spread out on the sill, purr and watch the moon. Go figure he’s a crazy cat.”

“Good night then Miss,” The tap, tapping faded down the hall in the direction of the kitchen.

Twenty-eight year old Opal was taller than her mother with short dark hair and a beautifully chiseled face. She stood in front of the window, stroking Henry’s full coat and running her fingers along his fluffy tail. She puzzled over the reflection in the plate glass window. The beautiful face of her mom gazed back at her. “My buyers should be arriving in ten minutes.” She whispered.

To be continued: Thank you for traveling with me.

Cover of Darkness, part 5

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That evening, the premonition shook him to his core.

“Wait up, for heaven’s sake Fisher, don’t walk so fast,” Lulu’s bubbly personality was turning huffy. Tall and slender she was slipping and sliding, trying to avoid a nasty fall on the corn stubble standing up like knives waiting for a victim.

Whispering through his teeth with forced restraint, “Lulu stop complaining, you said you could keep up, give me your hand.” In frustration he grabbed her hand and gently helped her navigate the icy field.

With a tight grip on her thin fingers, “I’ll steady you just hang on to me Lulu,” they advanced up the steep hillside toward the back of the mansion looming large just a few feet away, the stately structure was surrounded by an eerie glow in the lit of the full moon. The eighteen year old used the power of his six foot three inch muscular body to help Lulu navigate the treacherous field. Fisher wanted to work for the CIA like his dad and sister Opal. He spent most of his free time in the library studying and the rest with Lulu, Clint and Cassie at Muzzey’s Tavern and Coffee Shop across the street from the old theater.

Fisher halted in his tracks glancing in all directions, he squeezed Lulu’s hand extra hard. “What’s wrong Fisher why did you stop like that? Why are you looking like that? You’re hurting my hand.”

“Sorry I didn’t mean to hurt you. I don’t know I can’t shake this sudden feeling that something is wrong. It’s giving me the chills.” He shuttered all over, trying desperately to shake whatever it was out of his mind and body.

“Wow Fisher, that’s not good. Probably just the excitement of seeing what Opal is up to.” Patting his arm she gave him a gentle hug. “It’s going to be okay.”

No amount of preparation would be enough to prepare him for what was waiting a few feet away in the shadows of time.

He shook off the feeling of dread, “Okay let’s get moving Clint and Cassie are going to wonder what we’re doing.” He hurried up the field again, guiding Lulu through the field.

Following close behind them Clint held Cassie’s hand helping her weave around the corn stubble, raising his voice, “Slow down Fisher,” Clint scowled at him, “What’s your hurry?”

Fisher gave Clint a hard smile. “What’s wrong with you guys? I don’t want to miss the people coming to see Opal.”

Clint halted, “Fisher the girls are having a hard time walking, show a little consideration to them.”

Fisher stopped and turned around showing the whites of his eyes, “Okay, okay just keep up if you can.”

Clint tossed a wink at Cassie accompanied by a grin.

She mouthed the words, “Thank you.” Lanky and slender Cassie’s alluring good looks complemented her bewitching personality. She had a following of guys at school who tried to date her, but she only had eyes for Clint. She was the leader of the Bow Street Runners, their exclusive super sleuthing club the four of them started.

He slipped his around her thin waist, pulling her against him, almost carrying her up the hill. He was a couple incher shorter than Fisher, his unruly brown hair blowing in the wind. He was the senior class flirt, winking at all the girls, telling them how pretty they were. The girls all knew it was a line, but they liked the attention from a good looking guy who was also the star on the basketball team. He took great pleasure in teasing Fisher telling him, “I can play sports and get good grades.” He proved it, being the president of the national honor society.

They were the local amateur detectives. Fisher, Clint, Lulu and Cassie would spend their time studying when they weren’t solving local mysteries at the school and around their neighborhood. Working toward the day they would graduate high school in the spring, then after four years of college, move into the jobs of their dreams.

They were twenty five feet away from the open laboratory window. The dark shadow of Henry’s Angora body stretched across the wide sill, his ears perked up when he heard them coming knowing it was Fisher and his friends, he didn’t give them away. Instead his steady gaze followed them tracking them as they approached the window. Women’s voices drifted outside through the open window. He stopped and held up his hand. The rest of them paused behind him. “Listen. That’s Opal and Elena the maid.” The voices were louder than normal and they appeared to be arguing about something.

To be continued: Thank you for traveling with me.

Cover of Darkness, part 4

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Edward turned his car through the opened chain-link gates that were protecting the large parking lot. He pulled into an empty space between two postal trucks.

Exiting the car he paused, his middle aged eyes scanned the old red brick building with the large loading dock attached to the back of the post-office. He hurried up the cement steps and through the opened door. Inside the aroma of fresh brewed coffee teased his nose. Standing in the center of the room he spied the post-master positioning a ladder into an opening where a ceiling tile used to be. “Hello, Roger, how are you.”

A tall, well built thirty-year old man stopped and placed his foot on a rung of the ladder, “Hey Edward, glad you made it. I’m anxious to get this project over with.”

The frustration in his friends voice echoed in Edwards ears. “Well, in that case show me what needs to be done.”

He raised his arm pointing, “I set a ladder up for you over there. We need to be able to see what goes on in the whole building.”

Edward moved to the other side of the room and started to climb, “I’ll take a look at this job.”

Roger climbed his, they stood on the top rung shoulders above the rafters. “It would be pretty dark up here if it wasn’t for the light shining up through where the ceiling tiles where.” Roger leaned his elbow on a rafter. As he watched Edward. “What are doing over there?”

“Darn things,” Edward swatted at cobwebs, wiping them from around his area and pulling the sticky, white silk from his face. In one quick movement he brushed his hand off on his pants leg. Then fished around in his jacket pocket for the flashlight. He touched the envelope, “Oh yeah,” he slid it out and placed it on top of a piece of insulation laying between the rafters. Then he reached back in and pulled out the light, flipped it on waving it around the dark area. “That’s much better.” Using it as a pointer, “You’ll need at least three camera’s to cover the entire floor area.” He paused, then swatted at a spider crawling on his sleeve. “Darn things.”

“I wasn’t planning on three, but the new district manger wants them so I’m sure he’ll pay for them.”

Edward shifted his feet, looking over at Roger, “Do you know the reason they are having camera’s put in here, when all they do in this building is sort and case mail?”

“You know Edward, I wish I knew,” He paused putting his hand on his hip, “But I get paid to do what I’m told.” Raising his eyebrow and a half smile, “Don’t know why.”

They climbed down the ladders. “I’ll send my techs out tomorrow morning to get the job done. It should only take a couple of hours. Do you want me to help you put the ladders away?”

“Thanks but I can take care of it. I should have everything ready for your people by seven in the morning.” As he talked Roger brushed the insulation and cobwebs from his shirt and hair. “It will be nice to put this job behind me so I don’t have to think about it anymore. Help yourself to a cup of coffee and a donut on the table over there.” He point toward the far wall.

Edward turned, “Thanks Roger, I think I will, it’s been a long morning so far.” They walked to the table. “This is quite a spread.” Edward poured a cup of coffee and picked up a chocolate cream stick, “My favorite,” he licked his lips before taking a bite. “They are so good with coffee,” he took a couple drinks from the paper cup. “Thanks again.” He placed the cup down on the table and shook Roger’s hand, “Thanks for the chance to do this job, my little company needs the work. Thanks to friends like you, it will keep growing.”

“You’re right Edward that’s what friends are for, glad I could help you get started.”

Edward hurried out the door anxious to spend the rest of his day off relaxing at home with Eugenia.

To be continued: Thank you for traveling with me.

Cover of Darkness, part 3

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Quiet as an apparition he made his retreat, halting long enough to glance in Henry’s direction as a crisp fall breeze ruffled his fur.

Shaking his head he knew in his heart that he was doing the best thing, and now he would have to live with the consequences of his actions.

Scampering down the hallway he forced his mind to think of business as usual. He hesitated at the front door with his hand on the knob, and then out he went.

Back in the laboratory Opal heard the front door close as she stepped out of the bathroom. Strolling across the room she stopped in front of Henry and absentmindedly started to stroke his long fluffy fur, “Dad must have an early morning appointment in town.” Henry purred as her hand moved in gentle strokes across his body.

As Edward, stepped onto the front porch, a pungent odor assaulted his nose. He waved his hand in front of his face as he bounded down the steps and into his car. On the first turn of the key the motor roared to life, he kept his foot on the brake allowing the black and white critter to waddle across the driveway followed by three little ones. Staring at them he fought back feelings of remorse creeping into his mind. He shook his head trying to concentrate on the job waiting for him down the street. He watched as they all disappeared into the bushes at the side of the house.

He pulled down the visor to shield his eyes from the blinding, white light splintering through the tree tops announcing a new day. Then pressing the gas pedal the car eased down the driveway, coming to a rolling stop at the end and a quick right turn as he sped off toward town to keep an appointment with the first client of his new start up business.

To be continued:

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Cover of Darkness, part 8

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Nodding with a half-smile, “I’m all for getting down to business.” Opal took two steps back. A cold stare filled her eyes, as she turned with a nod, “Preston. I’m glad to see you.”

His froggy eyes looked beyond her to the window, “I see you still have that strange cat. Why would you be glad to see me?” He bobbed his head.

Opal raised an eyebrow and crossed her arms, “Why Preston, you know the old saying, keep your friends close and your enemies closer. By the way Henry’s not strange, he just senses when certain people aren’t to be trusted.”

Preston didn’t try to hide the leer filling his face as he stared her down. “At least you know where you stand with me.”

Opal turned handing John the envelope she had retrieved from the safe just before they arrived. “Here is what you paid for.”

The white…

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