Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Deadly Arrows (A Fay Cunningham Mystery-Book 2)-$2.99
Fay Cunningham, publisher of a small-town Pennsylvania newspaper, is in big trouble again. She's thrown into the investigation of an archery murder and must convince a young whippersnapper police officer the arrow that smacked into a tree next to her didn't come from a hunter who mistook her for a deer. Fay must prove it with lightning speed before the next arrow lands her six feet under.
Here's an excerpt:
My boots dug into the crusted snow as I swung my bow forward. A twig snapped nearby and I jerked my head around fearing a hunter. I listened. Silence. I ordered myself to remain focused.
The postal truck rounded the curve and slid to a stop alongside a rotted two-by-four supporting the mailbox. The driver reached out the window and stuffed a bundle of envelopes into the rusty box. Then the vehicle’s rear tires spun on a patch of ice before it launched forward and disappeared around the bend in the road.
Just like clockwork, she appeared at the cabin door. Wearing only a tee shirt and jeans, she dashed for the mailbox. As she came around to the front of the box, I pulled back on the string, hesitated, then released.
The arrow hurtled between the trees. The direct hit sent a spine-tingling thud through the forest. I sucked in a breath of frigid air as I watched her crumple to the ground.
It was done. Time to go.
Something moved across my back.
Shoving the quilt off my head, I not only heard Kitty’s angry meow and hiss, but a persistent buzzing. When I reached for the alarm clock on the nightstand, my cherished calico sprang off the bed, obviously peeved. As my fingers fumbled for the off button, my eyes focused on the red glow of the numbers. It read a little after three in the morning. Then it dawned on me, the annoying buzz was coming from my front door.
Sliding out of bed, I shivered from the cold and shrugged into my furry robe and slid my feet into my slippers. I made my way out into the hallway and down the open staircase.
What sensible person calls at such an ungodly hour? It had to be Mitch.
I flipped on the porch light, but my fingers fumbled with the door lock.
“Open the door, Fay. It’s cold out here.”
When I swung the door open, Mitch, a gentleman when it suits him, took off his Stetson, exposing a mass of graying waves. However, the gentleman didn’t bother to wipe the snow from his cowboy boots before entering my house.
I followed him toward the kitchen, deciding which question to ask first. When he opened the upper cupboard door, where I keep the hard liquor, I gritted my teeth.
“Don’t do it, Mitch.”
An invisible line of tension stretched between us for a long minute. His fingers pressed into the cupboard door handle.
“I’ll make coffee.” I padded around him and my shoulder lightly brushed the arm of his sheepskin coat. “Take a load off till it’s ready.” While running water into the pot, I heard him scoot out a chair. As I turned around, he slumped in the seat. His hat fell from his fingers and landed on the floor under the table.
Our eyes met.
“I want you to stay out of this, Fay.”
I sat down at the table across from him. “So you got my message?”
“Climbed back into my truck as soon as I heard it on the answerin’ machine.” He stared into my eyes. “Fay, I’m serious. I don’t have a problem with you checkin’ with the police on the progress of the case for your newspaper. But that’s as far as it’s gonna go.”
Because I believed the man heartbroken by the news of his niece’s murder hours earlier, I nodded in agreement, closing my lips tightly so the words I wanted to say wouldn’t come barreling out.
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