I’m hard at work on my next mystery novel. I don’t even have a working title to offer you yet. But since I’m involved in The Tales from the Dark Side Of Love giveaway, I am offering this preview of the first scene from the book.
Opinions are welcome. And after reading or commenting be sure to follow the directions to enter your name for a chance to win one of the many outstanding prizes!
I’d never seen this little corner of my world looking so lovely. Jonquils were in bloom. Forsythia bushes dotted greening lawns. Lilacs showed signs of life and overhead leaves were unfurling on the trees.
So why was I driving along nearly overcome with dread? My hands trembled. My mouth felt parched. You’d have thought I was headed to a funeral rather than to a wedding.
My best friend, Cordelia Weaverton, was about to tie the knot. She’d turned the event into a family affair. Her younger sister was maid of honor. Her cousins were bridesmaids, which meant I’d been relegated to the uncomplicated role of honored guest.
All of which also suited me quite fine. I hated weddings. They gave me hives. I’d never seen one where the bride wasn’t a nervous wreck, the mother a barely functioning zombie, and the groom little more than a second thought.
But that was just me. I’d heard all the clap trap over the years and understood that almost everyone else considered their wedding day as one of the highlights of their life.
Blah, blah, blah. Bah, humbug.
If I ever married, which given my independent nature seemed most unlikely, give me a three-person ceremony before a justice of the peace.
wondered if such thinking hadn’t triggered this particular funk. Perhaps because my best friend was getting married today, I’d convinced myself something horrendous lay ahead. I gave myself a mental shake and steered my Fiesta into the church parking. Taking a moment, I pulled in several deep breaths to settle my jangled nerves.
Finally, I swung the car door open and stepped out onto the parking lot. That’s when I saw it. A trousered leg nestled among the greening rose bushes. The leg led directly to a torso which was adorned in a tuxedo and drenched in blood.
I screamed and reflexed into a crazy dance with arms flapping and knees rising nearly to my chest. Between my fits and jerks, I kept struggling to pull more air into my lungs. I don’t know how much longer I’d have kept all this up if it hadn’t been interrupted by another wedding guest.
Behind me I heard a car roll into the parking lot. Its door opened, then banged shut. “What the . . . .” The speaker never finished his sentence. By then, he’d apparently discovered what I’d found.
The fellow slipped an arm around me and pulled me to his chest. I grabbed hold of his jacket and swore I’d never let go of him.
“Who is it?” I whispered into the guy’s lapel. “Who’s been killed?”
My savior cleared his throat. “I don’t think Cordelia will be getting married today,” he said. “The groom seems to be otherwise engaged.”
I heard the news and groaned. Somehow, I just knew this was all my fault.
End of Excerpt ***
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