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A Blue Cove Mystery
Trouble rears its head once again in Blue Cove and dashes straight into Jessie’s store in the person of a battered young woman fleeing her abusive spouse. Jessie finds herself pulled into another case as a body is discovered in the church dumpster, and the dead woman's ghost takes up a vigil in Jessie’s place of business.
Is the dead woman connected to the frightened and battered girl who took refuge in the store? Matt and Jessie’s search for the killer leads them to their victim’s family, members of a strange religious group that lives off the grid outside of town. Add to the mix a crypt in the woods on a foggy night, Jessie’s abduction, a couple of angry and abusive husbands, and the resident ghost, and they will have their hands full solving this crime.
Will Matt and Jessie's love for each other keep them grounded until justice can be served?
Page Count: 352
Word Count: 90613
It had all started out innocently enough. They kept a nice pace, conserving their energy and within sight of each other. The closer they got to the property line the more apprehension Jessie felt. A huge light marked the corner of the property. A chainlink fence with barbwire at the top ran the length and width of the land as far as her eyes could see. Jessie nearly lost it when a huge, ferocious dog hit the fence, growling and baring his teeth. The dog ran the fence line with them, growling the whole way. When the path veered away, she was happy, but it was short-lived. The sound of shots exploded in the dense air, and the bullet scuffed the ground in front of them. Matt grabbed her hand, pulling her off the path and through the trees with Dylan running beside them. The next bullet splintered bark on a tree to the right of them, sending it flying in their direction. Jessie kept her head down and ran as fast as she could. Matt let go of her hand for a moment to draw his gun. Dylan shot out the light. In all of the confusion, she thought he told her to keep running. She did, and now she was lost. The barking dog sounded like he was getting closer. Was she running toward him or had he jumped over the fence? She paused, bending over to hold her sides and suck in air. It was hard to hear anything in the thick, dense fog. The sound of Matt’s voice or Dylan’s would be nice about now. Keep moving, she told herself.
She pulled out her phone. Blast, no bars, no service, how would she ever find Matt in this murkiness? Hold on, she could see the outline of something ahead. Her eyes focused on a small structure in the midst of the trees. Its outline emerged through the spooky mist as she ran closer. What she saw stopped her in her tracks. Sinister in appearance, gothic in nature, its small spires and gargoyles stood watch and seemed to be staring at her. Creepy, and the fog didn’t help. The gate creaked as she opened it to go inside. The building was smaller than it looked from a distance. Was it a small chapel? It didn’t feel like any church she had ever been in. Maybe it was someone’s tomb. She shivered. A strange odor met her when she opened the door. Incense, perhaps. The light from her headlamp told an eerie story as it danced on the walls. It settled on a strange stone slab in the center of the aisle, which had something smeared all over it. Oh, this was worse than she had thought. She slumped to the floor. She had stumbled into something awful and didn’t want to be trapped here. Where were the dog and the person who had fired the shots? “Get hold of yourself, Jessie,” she whispered. A quick check of her phone told her she still had no service. Run, get out of here, her mind screamed. Matt would want to see the place, and she had no idea how to tell him where it was located. Back outside, she took a deep breath, gasping for air. She couldn’t believe this place was actually here in the middle of the woods. She checked her phone again. Please let this work. She held it up to snap a picture, then slipped out the gate and ran. The spots from the flash blinded her for a moment as she ran through the thick vapor.
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