Read An Excerpt

by Dee Henderson

Genre: Romantic Suspense, Inspirational

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Paul pulled into Neva’s driveway just after five p.m. on Friday. Ann was sitting on the porch swing with her, the two ladies sipping from tall glasses of ice tea.

Ann came to meet him as he stepped out of the car. “Hi, Paul.” She gave him a hug.

“Hi, Ann.” He returned the hug and simply held her, enjoying it more than he could put into words. She stepped back. And then he saw her face. His smile faded. “What is it?”

“I’m afraid there’s been a change of plans. Let’s get you squared away here, and then we’ll walk to my place. I’ll explain on the way.”

He nodded, went and retrieved his bag, and locked his car.

“I appreciate you putting me up for a few nights, Neva.”

“It’s my pleasure, Paul.” She held out a key ring. “You’re no longer a guest. I’ve put you in the same room as before, and you can come and go as you like. Don’t worry if it’s late.”

“Thank you.” He took his bag inside, wondering at Ann’s news as he put it on the guest bed and took time to hang up his suit jacket. His plans for this weekend were changing before it had even begun.

Paul reached for Ann’s hand as they walked toward her home. “What’s wrong?”

“I need to show you a case, and I need you to get up to speed on it, to understand it in detail. And to complicate it, I can’t explain why. I just need you to work blind for the moment and trust me that there’s an important reason behind my request.”

“You’ve certainly got my interest. Do we need to travel?”

“It’s on the murder board at my place.” She eased her hand from his. “But before we get there, Paul, I need to release you from the possibility there is going to be something between us. You’ll need a distance from me.” She looked over at him. “I like you, a great deal, so I’m telling you now that I’m going to pull away for your sake. There are legal implications for me with what is coming. When you know the truth, if you want to pick something up again, then you can ask me.”

He missed her hand in his. “How serious a legal problem?”

“It will start with a lot of press. I’m expecting a few depositions before it’s all over. I kept a secret. This is the price of it.” Her phone rang. She looked at the caller ID. “I’m sorry, this one I have to take.”

She entered her security code and answered, “Hello, sir.” She glanced over. “Yes, sir, he’s right here. Hold on.” She held out the phone. “Paul Falcon, former Vice President Jim Gannett. He’d like an update on the lady shooter. He was the FBI director when she first started killing and knows the case even better than you—if that’s possible.”

He accepted the phone. “Good evening, sir.”

Ann half listened to his side of the conversation as they walked. She didn’t particularly care about the latest on the lady shooter case. She’d prepared for tonight as carefully as she could, and she still didn’t know if she’d made the right decision on how to introduce Paul to what awaited them. She’d felt queasy all day, and his arrival had only intensified that churn.