Monday, April 1, 2013

April's Fools

My co-author and I like our mysteries with a side of humor and a small scoop of romance.  In honor of April Fools Day we thought we'd share three favorite scenes from our psychic Brianna Sullivan Mysteries series:

from I TRY NOT TO DRIVE PAST CEMETERIES

Detective Jackson didn't introduce himself. I guess he figured that if I was who I said I was, I'd know his name.

He cleared his throat.

I must have missed a question; he seemed to be waiting for an answer. Trying to be cooperative, I gave him one. "Yes."

Have you noticed that most people prefer "yes" as an answer over "no"? Of course I can imagine instances where that wouldn't hold true but I think as a general rule …Okay he's saying something again. Darn, I missed it.

I nodded. "Nods" generally work well too.

He motioned for me to precede him into a small room.

In my particular case I've found it's helpful to do what's expected. People are wary enough without me smiling inappropriately–or failing to answer a direct question in some fashion. It's no comfort to them if I explain that I was busy talking to someone else–someone they can't see.

"Have a seat." Detective Jackson pasted on a smile. I'm sure it's the same one he uses for small children and blithering idiots.

I glanced at the chairs, identical to the ones in the lobby. "Must I?"

He paused, caught half-way between standing and sitting. "Huh?"

Less than a minute and I'd screwed up. He's probably never had anyone refuse to sit–at least not someone who'd asked to meet with him. I could see his eyes change. In my mind I could see him wielding a black felt tip pen; scratching my name across a folder and the word "crazy" appearing in big block letters.

I sat down.

He sat down.

And we began.

from THE DOG DAYS OF SUMMER IN LOTTAWATAH

The corndog I'd had for lunch was just a memory by the time I locked up the sales office and got back to my motor home, I was checking out the contents of the refrigerator when Cooper came barging through the door. Apparently we were past the "knocking" stage.

"I'm not fixing you dinner." My proclamation was met with a patented Cooper smirk.

"Thanks. I appreciate that." He tossed a cream-colored square down on the counter. "I need a date for a thing this weekend."

"Did you come by to use my phone? Or do you want me to place an ad for you?" Never pays to be too available. Men take you for granted. Then they don't take you anywhere.

I pulled a single Lean Cuisine from the freezer, ripped the cardboard off, and stuck it in the microwave.

"It's my high school reunion. Starts Friday night. A weekend of all you can eat barbeque, football, and beer."

"Football? It's 100 degrees outside."

"The game probably won't last long."

"How many years?"

"Not even one – twenty minutes tops before George Willis passes out from heat stroke and the game is called."

"How many years since you graduated?"

"Twenty. Want to go with me? Jack's letting us use the old pavilion."

"Depends." The microwave dinged. I tested the rice and mystery meat dinner for doneness with my finger–desiccated on the edges and icy in the center. Kind of like my mood. The guy hadn't even picked up the phone and called me for two days and now he acts like nothing is wrong.

"On what?" He was standing behind me now, his mouth on that spot right behind my ear, his arms wrapped around my waist.

My stomach grumbled. Obviously part of me wanted to give in. If we made up now, there would still be time to go into town and have meatloaf at the diner. Or I could maintain my pride, tell him to go put his boots under someone else's bed, and leave me to eat my microwaved delicacy in peace.

Easy decision. Meatloaf tonight and I'd worry about my pride next week. Plus I really did want to go to his reunion. What better place to learn a man's deepest and darkest secrets?

from UNDYING LOVE IN LOTTAWATAH

Great Aunt MaryEllen dogged me all the way to the Soak & Spin. She ... Look, I'm just going to call her Aunt MaryEllen from now on, and you'll have to remember the great that precedes it when I mention her. Aunt MaryEllen obviously had some unfinished business that had called her back from the great beyond. The problem was before we'd gone more than a dozen yards from Matilda; she'd forgotten her reason for the visit.

Numerous questions later, I had arrived at work without any helpful information beyond the fact Aunt MaryEllen liked gin, cigarettes, and dancing. And fashionable clothes of the best quality. Nice clothes, nothing like I was wearing according to her, well except for the gloves of course. Aunt MaryEllen was not going to be my favorite relative.

"You mentioned someone called Harry Grady? Is he about to show up too?" I tried to remember anything my grandmother might have told me about Aunt MaryEllen. There was something about her leaving home under less than desirable circumstances. People of my grandmother's generation didn't speak about certain things–especially to impressionable teens.

"You're a mite slow, aren't you dear? You probably get that from your grandmother. As a child poor my poor dear sister was always talking to people who weren't there." Aunt MaryEllen crossed her arms over her chest. "Harry Grady is dead."

"So are you, but here you are." I wasn't in the mood to placate the testy old lady. She'd insulted me and my grandmother. Plus my feet were frozen.

I opened the Soak & Spin door. "If you ever remember what you wanted, I'll be here until 7 pm. If not, well, tell all the family hello from me when you get ..." I looked up, then down. I wasn't sure what direction the old lady came from.

"He broke my heart. Harry broke my heart."

Leon, Miss Pearl's elderly bulldog got up from his favorite spot near the dryers. He bared his teeth, then started barking. Not at me, we'd reached a détente a few weeks ago over a box of dog treats. He was barking at Aunt MaryEllen.

"Heart? What?" I glanced back. Aunt MaryEllen looked irritated.

"Are you deaf in addition to being slow? I said he broke my heart!"

Leon barked louder. Apparently he wasn't deaf.

Distracted, I looked at the furious dog; worried the old guy was going to give himself a heart attack. Miss Pearl, the woman signing my paycheck, doted on that slobbering, incontinent fleabag.

When I turned back to Aunt MaryEllen a few seconds later she was gone.

I sighed, not because she was gone, but because I knew she'd be back.

I didn't even have to be a psychic to figure that one out.

Rhonda
aka The Southern Half of Evelyn David

P.S. My eye problem has been cured and I'm enjoying normal vision again. Or close to it. Can't wear my contacts for another two months - but I can deal with glasses that long. Probably. Thanks for all the good wishes.

 




Brianna Sullivan Mysteries - e-book series
I Try Not to Drive Past Cemeteries- Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
The Dog Days of Summer in Lottawatah- Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
The Holiday Spirit(s) of Lottawatah- Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Undying Love in Lottawatah- Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
A Haunting in Lottawatah - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Lottawatah Twister - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Missing in Lottawatah - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Good Grief in Lottawatah - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords
Summer Lightning in Lottawatah - Kindle - Nook - Smashwords

The Ghosts of Lottawatah - trade paperback collection of the Brianna e-books
Book 1 - I Try Not to Drive Past Cemeteries (includes the first four Brianna e-books)
Book 2 - A Haunting in Lottawatah (includes the 5th, 6th, and 7th Brianna e-books)



1 comment:

  1. Hurray for working eyes without pain and infection, Rhonda! So happy for you. It's been a long haul, I know.

    ReplyDelete