Thursday, August 10, 2017

Excerpt From Hot Water

Hot Water
Heart & Endurance, Book 3
By J.S. Marlo
Romantic Suspense
Champagne Books:

Can Agent Sullivan repress his feelings for the woman he secretly loves and use her as bait to catch a serial killer?

At the police station, the more the interview progressed, the more Maxime regretted heeding Thierry’s advice. The plain room in which she sat on an uncomfortable plastic chair was as stuffy as the officer she spoke with.

“So you had an altercation with the victim about running in the dark?” There was an unwelcome edge in the officer’s voice. “Would you call it a fight? Did you struggle with her on the bridge?”

“What?” Baffled by the ludicrous allegations, she stared in disbelief at the police officer sitting across the table. Officer Callaghan, whose last name was engraved on the tag he wore on the pocket of his light blue shirt, had twisted her words. “No!”

“No need to yell, Ms. Tremblay.” The officer tossed his pen onto the closed folder resting on the otherwise empty table. “I hear you loud and clear.”

No, you don’t. The man in uniform hadn’t written down anything of what she’d told him in the last twenty minutes. Not a single word. Nothing. “You may be listening, Officer Callaghan, but you’re not paying attention.”

As soon as the words escaped her mouth, Maxime wished she could reel them in. Her father had taught her to remain calm under any circumstances. He wouldn’t be impressed to learn frustration had hijacked her brain.

The officer’s face hardened as warning shots darted from his eyes. “If I were you, Ms. Tremblay, I’d choose my next words with extreme caution. Everything indicates the death of Ms. Santos was an accident, yet you come into the station claiming to possess valuable information. By your own account, you were alone in the woods arguing with the victim minutes before her death. So tell me, if it wasn’t an accident, who killed her? You didn’t see anyone else on the trails. You didn’t hear her scream or struggle, or did you?”

The word game the officer played sickened Maxime. Yet she held his piercing gaze, determined to set the record straight. “Someone pretending to be her coach lured Gabriella into the woods. Back home, we call that suspicious.”

The officer’s lack of interest, or concern, as he leaned back in his chair bewildered her. “Ms. Santos was on the injured list, which meant no running, right? Did it not occur to you, Ms. Tremblay, that she made up the message so you wouldn’t report her noncompliance?”

Maxime wasn’t sure what angered her more. The earlier suggestion that she was a murderer or that Gabriella was now a liar. Either way, she’d heard enough. She stood. “I can see I’m wasting my time and yours. Am I free to leave or will you read me my rights?”

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