Tag Archives: mystery

Catherine’s Rose…

Monday evening when Catherine arrived home she found a single deep red rose lying by her apartment door.  Delighted, she picked it up and unlocked her door, glancing around for a card she might have missed.  Nope, nothing.

She texted her date from Saturday to thank him, but it soon became embarrassingly obvious he hadn’t sent it.  Awkward!   If not a florist, how had someone gotten inside the gated apartment complex?   How odd.   She thought of her neighbors and how little she knew them.

Ouch!  She had been clutching the stem too tightly and now there was blood on her hands…

Catherine pondered the question of who the rose was from all evening.  She couldn’t shake the sense of someone having been in her apartment, but knew she was being ridiculous. The gentleman from the security company that managed her building had reassured her that no one would be able to get in or out unless they had a pass code or key.

Thoughts of calling the police flitted briefly through her mind, but what would she tell them? That the innocent blood-red rose on her kitchen counter somehow meant something sinister? Right, she could see the police officers’ smiles already.  She double checked her door and window locks before turning out the lights and drawing the blinds.

There, off in the distance, did she see a pinprick of light from a match or lighter? But there was no following glow of a cigarette. Still, she stepped quickly aside as she continued to peer out an opening, glad that the wooden blinds hid her shape from outside view.  Nothing.  Really, what was wrong with her overactive imagination?  She needed a good night’s sleep and things would look better in the morning.

In the distance, a tall man cupped his hand around the match as it caught and turned away from the building to light his cigarette, shielding the flame from the night breeze. Nothing seemed amiss in the area, so he got into the van and started his drive home.

Mitch hoped he’d found the right girl after all this time.  His little sister would be about 27 or so now, if his memory was right.  By the time he’d driven home, he convinced himself that maybe Catherine Delaney deserved to be left alone to live her life in peace.  But other than his wife, Sam, he had no other family and it would be nice to think that someone cared about him.  And that he had someone to care for, too.

He pulled into the garage and parked the van, closing the door after him against the dark and dampness and prying eyes.  Sammy was waiting dinner for him, he knew, and she smiled that sweet and tentative smile that he loved as soon as she saw him.

“Honey, how was your day?” he enfolded her in a big hug and held on tightly.  “Mitch, I’m good, so good,” she said excitedly.  “I made a celebration dinner for us.”

“Wow, just because I got home on time today?” he laughed, taking off his gun walking into the living room to secure it in the safe.  She knew how uncertain his schedule could be and he was surprised she’d make a special dinner without letting him know about it first.

“Come on, babe, sit down and I’ll dish everything up.”  Sammy was already hurrying into the kitchen and he saw that she had, indeed, made a big pan of lasagna and her lasagna was one of his favorite things.  There was salad and she was just lifting perfectly toasted garlic bread out of the oven.

“My, God, honey, that smells so good,” he almost felt as though he was drooling and picked up his napkin quickly to check.  Nope, just starting to salivate over that wonderful tomato and garlic and melted cheese aroma.

Sammy sat down beside him and picked up her wineglass, which seemed to hold something other than the red wine he had in his.  “To family,” she said.

Mitch clung to his wineglass with difficulty.  Had she suspected he was looking for his long-lost sister?  He knew he should have talked to her about this sooner…

“—in about the middle of December!” she finished, looking so thoroughly pleased with herself that he felt bad he’d missed the beginning.  “Mitch, you’re all right, aren’t you?  I know we hadn’t really talked about me getting pregnant right now, but these things happen –“  Her face fell as she realized he wasn’t even paying attention to what she was saying.  Oh, no, he looked – disappointed.

 

 

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#atozchallenge, R is for Rose…

Monday evening when Randi arrived home she found a single deep red rose lying by her apartment door.  Delighted, she picked it up and unlocked her door, glancing around for a card she might have missed.  Nope, nothing.

She texted her date from Saturday to thank him, but it became embarrassingly obvious he hadn’t sent it.  Awkward!   If not a florist, how had someone gotten inside the gated apartment complex?   How odd.   She thought of her neighbors and how little she knew them.

Ouch!  She had been clutching the stem too tightly and now there was blood on her hands…

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My theme this year is 100 word fiction.  (So, no, don’t count this line!)

#atozchallenge, Q is for Quilt…

Olivia was mystified after finding a cyanide capsule inside the opal ring she’d inherited from her beloved French grandmother.  But when a letter arrived from another law firm stating Bridgette had left a package that she must travel to France to claim, Liv was downright perplexed.  And excited to travel abroad!

The package containing an heirloom quilt was indeed a surprise, though not nearly as much as the deed to property in Vichy sewn into a seam, along with what appeared to be her grandmother’s French marriage certificate to someone when she was 17 — six years before she’d met Olivia’s Grandpa…

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My theme this year is 100 word fiction.  (So, no, don’t count this line!)  This is a continuation of O is for Opal which you can find here.

#atozchallenge, K is for Key…

The firefighters stood, covered in grime and sweat, watching as the abandoned old home burned to the ground.  It would be tomorrow before they could sift through the now smoldering debris for anything worth saving.

One man turned, saw something moving and watched in amazement as a cat crept through charred rubble, then sat, delicately licking its paws.

“Here, kitty, kitty,” he called softly.  The cat came close enough and Kevin scooped it up, stroking the soft soot-covered fur.

“What the hell?” he muttered, feeling a small key dangling from the cat’s collar.  “Hey, guys, take a look at this!”

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My theme this year is 100 word fiction.  (So, no, don’t count this line!)  This is a story I’d previously had on my blog, with some minor modifications.  Sorry, but it’s getting harder to come up with new stuff everyday!!

5 Publishers that Accept Unagented Romance & Other Genre Novels

Looking for places to submit your manuscripts?

Cindy Fazzi

Fiction Sign-CindyFazziPicThere’s a reason genre fiction is called popular fiction. Those who love genre fiction, from thriller to romance to horror and fantasy, are among the most loyal and voracious readers. If you are a genre novelist without a literary agent, check out the following small presses that welcome unagented submissions.

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