Read an Excerpt from A Killing in The Woods

March 20, 2022

“Umm, how are you always so good at this?” Sonya Davis ran her hands up and down her lover’s back as she moved her hips up to meet his. His cock slid deep within her, and deeper still, making her juices run down and wet the place beneath her, soaking her ass in the bargain.

She’s never been this wet with anyone else, never enjoyed the pleasures that this one man can give her. Her heart cried out as her loins trembled and she begged him in hushed whispers to go deeper. He took her lips roughly, bruising them with his brute force. A force she craved, like water needed to quench a thirst.

His lips fell away from hers and made their way down to her neck where he teased her with his teeth, knowing that he didn’t dare mark her. But knowing it, the thought of doing it still, filled him with a kind of excitement that he hadn’t enjoyed in too long to remember.

She tugged his head back to hers as she felt her pussy clench in readiness and their lips came together in fiery passion as they each tried to consume the other in the heat of lust. “Fuck me lover, fuck your woman, harder, harder, fuck me harder.” She moaned the words against his mouth as he fucked into her harder at her command.

The two bodies moved wildly together on the blanket as they neared climax, neither of them giving much thought to the strands of hay that made their way through the threadbare material that had seen much better days.

Their naked bodies glistened in the bright sunlight that peeped through the lone dusty window as he pounded into her fecund flesh. This wasn’t the first time they’d been here like this, and if they had their way it wouldn’t be the last.

He pulled their lips apart when they both needed to catch their breath and she screamed out when his cock found her sweet spot. He covered her mouth with his big work roughened hand. “Shh, you’ll get us caught.”

“Then stop hitting my spot like that.” She laughed teasingly and wrapped her toned legs around his ass, pulling his pounding cock harder into her.

“Now shut up and fuck me you beast.” He replaced his hand with his lips once more, driving his tongue into her mouth in tempo with his thick long cock that reached her depths with each thrust.

She’d never been fucked so hard or so well before in her life and her heart was full to overflowing. A sexual being all her life, she reveled in the fact that she’d finally found someone who could fulfill her needs over and over again.

Always before she’d have to go away in her head, pretend to be with someone else, doing any manner of things just to get off.

But not with him. In the year and a half since they’d been fucking he never once let her down and she never wanted it to end, never wanted to be without him.

“When are you going to leave her?”
“When are you going to leave him?” The answer was never. It was just part of the game they played with each other, talking about their individual spouses while they fucked each other blind.

It added some extra spice to their passion, made it even more exciting. Added to the risk they were taking, it made for some very explosive orgasms, for him and for her. The element of the forbidden gave them both a thrill.

“Cum inside me.”
“Are you sure?” He felt his balls tighten up in preparation. She’s never let him cum in her without a condom before; every time he fucked her raw she made him pull out and cum on her ass or her flat tummy.

“Yes, I’m sure, cum in me. Let’s take the risk.” The thrill, the excitement, it was too much for her and she came screaming into his mouth as he emptied his seed inside her for the first time that day.

He stayed on top of her until he’d given her the last drop, then rolled away and reached for his discarded flannel shirt to retrieve his pack of cigarettes. “You want one?”
“You know I do.”

She only smokes at times like this, in between bouts of shared passion with him, only him. In her real life she wouldn’t dare; not the upstanding wife of one of the town’s leading citizens.

Mother, friend, confidant; member of the PTA, head of the local charity and all around good girl, here is the only place she felt free to let her hair down. Here, or any place they could find to be alone together.

“You know I’m going to fuck you again, you don’t need to be anywhere do you?”
“Nope, I have the whole day set aside just for you.” He lit one cigarette and passed it to her before lighting another for himself.

They laid in silence, blowing smoke in the air as they relaxed in the afterglow of what they’d shared. He rolled to his side facing her, his finger making a trail down her middle until it met her Mons.

“You have the prettiest pussy I’ve ever seen.” She opened her legs when his hand moved lower giving him free access to her. He dipped his finger inside as she lifted her lips to his.

The kiss was deep, soul stirring as she rolled over on top of him, making sure to keep the burning cigarette away from his eyes while reaching between them with her free hand to find his already rising cock.

With a few strokes of her hand he was stiff again as she rubbed the fat head back and forth along her slit. Each time the bulbous head of his cock touched her clit she felt a shiver run down her spine.

He moved her hand away, taking over, no longer willing to wait and forced his cock inside her. She released air from her lungs as he pulled her down on his cock until her ass hit his thighs and his balls were squeezed up tight against her ass cheeks.

They both put the cigarettes out hurriedly to avoid starting a blaze in the dry hay and she planted her hands on his chest as she rocked her hips back and forth, taking him in deep. “I want you to fuck me from behind, I love the way you do that.”

She panted out her need as she fucked herself hard up and down on his cock. He tweaked her clit between his fingers to bring her off before lifting her off of him and putting her on her hands and knees.

She screamed out in pleasure pain when he drove his cock into her without warning and this time when he covered her mouth with his hand he pulled her head back until her neck couldn’t go any further.

His hips pounded faster, harder, slapping against hers as his cock reached places inside her only this position could achieve. “Yes-yes-yes I’m cumming, I’m cumming; you make me cum so good.” Her words were muffled against his palm as her eyes rolled back in her head.

He covered her lips with his as he pounded out his lust and once again, without having to be told, washed her womb with his seed. The orgasm went on for much longer than the other, but these two insatiable lovers were not quite done with each other.

They spent the better part of the morning and into the afternoon making love until they had to get back to their lives. “I’ll see you this evening then, at dinner.” She kissed her lover one last time after rushing into her clothes and hurrying down the stairs and out of the old barn that was their favorite meeting place.

***

“Niall come on, we’ll be late.” Sonya Davis pushed the diamond stud into her ear as she looked into the mirror and shoved her foot into the high heel stiletto that matched the one she already wore.

She looked at herself one last time, running her hands smoothly down the sides of her short black silk dress that fit her curves like a glove. Niall walked up behind his wife and mirrored the action from behind, only his hands came around and up to cup her breasts as they both looked on in the mirror.

“You look lovely as usual darling. We still have a few minutes.” She knew what he was after when he started to lower the straps down her shoulders. “You’ll have to make it quick love or we’ll be late.”

She smiled into the mirror at him as he pushed her forward with her hands planted on the bureau top. He lifted her dress up gently over her ass and pushed the crotch of her panties aside with one hand while fiddling with his zipper with the other.

He led his cock into her sweet opening and slid in, taking that first few seconds to revel in the fact that his sweet young wife still had the hots for him. She never tells him no, no matter how often he asks.

And even though sometimes the stress of work takes it out of him and he’s not in the mood, he still thinks their sex life is doing better than most. They had three kids in six years to prove it.

Sonya looked into his eyes in the mirror as he fucked into her from behind, amazed that she can always tell the difference between the two men in her life, that she can keep the two separate. Niall fucks her with short quick jabs; it gets the job done. But nowhere near as well as her lover’s much longer and deeper strokes that reaches her very depths.

One supplies the mind-blowing sex and the other the money to keep her in the lifestyle she desired, and she couldn’t and wouldn’t do without either. “Cum inside me!” Her pussy juiced at the reminder that just this afternoon, a few hour ago, her lover had done the same thing.

“I’m cumming, cumming…!” Niall roared like a bull when he came inside his wife and tugged on her nipples the way he knows she likes. With her panties slipped back in place Sonya fixed herself again before heading down the hallway to say goodnight to her three little darlings, one boy and two girls.

She didn’t bother to clean up because she was already making plans for the night to come. She was barely able to contain herself as they walked out the door to the waiting car.

The thought of sitting down to dinner with others, her panties wet as his seed dripped out of her while she looked like the perfectly put together banker’s wife had her rubbing her thighs together.

“You seem happy!” Niall lifted her hand to his lips and kissed her fingers as the driver drove them through the streets to the French restaurant they and their friends were about to try for the first time.

“I’m always happy when I’m with you.” She leaned over and kissed him, taking it from zero to sixty in a second. She’d have loved to ride his cock in the backseat of their town car but her straitlaced husband would have kittens if she even suggested it.

She’s lucky he even still has sex with her after the kids; their sex life had changed drastically once she became a mother.

She’d stopped feeling desirable, stopped feeling like a sexual being and more like a feeding station after each birth. Until she caught the look in her lover’s eyes.

She’d been hitting the home gym trying to get her body back in shape and have to admit that she looked better than she did since her early twenties. With her new larger breasts and much tighter ass and neater waist, she knew she turned heads. But it never mattered more than when her lover made notice and started paying more and more attention to her.

They’d been friends for ages, ever since she met him through her best friend. She’d grown up with Valerie here in this small town of Briar Reef, the only time she’d ever been away was when she went away for school.

She’d had wild dreams of moving to the big city, getting a job in the large firm, climbing her way up. That’s when she was still the small town innocent, the girl who was willing to work her way up the ladder.

But then she met Niall at a conference her last year in college and all of that changed. He’d offered her a life she could only dream of and she’d jumped at the chance. It helped that she’d found the much older man handsome and exciting.

But all that changed after the babies came. Her exciting and lustful husband had started seeing her as more mother than wife and their love life had tapered off tremendously.

He’d started touching her differently too, and their encounters had become more and more lukewarm, lacking the heat that had been there in the beginning. But then her lover had come along and she once again had a complete and fulfilled life. The best of both worlds.

Niall patted her leg as their lips came apart and sat back in his seat ever the staunch upstanding citizen. They exchanged small talk until the car pulled up in front of the restaurant and the driver let them out.

Dinner was fun, the way it always is when they spend time with their friends. After the dishes were cleared Sonya got up from her seat to head to the lady’s room.

“Order me another one darling, I’m going to go call and check on the kids.” Two minutes after she left the table her lover’s phone rang and he too excused himself from the table.

She was at the sink washing her hands after hanging up the phone when the door squeaked open. She knew it was him when she saw his eyes. “What are you doing in the lady’s room lover?”

She walked over to him and ran her finger down his chest. He grabbed her ass in both hands and pulled her in for a tongue-twisting kiss. She pulled her panties off down her legs

“Hurry-hurry, we only have five minutes, I need it so bad.” He sat her on the sink in the lady’s bathroom and dropped his slacks releasing his cock. “No eat me first.” She put her hand on his head, pushing him down, knowing that her pussy was full of cum from earlier.

He licked into her deep loving the taste and smell of her as she held his head in place. Sonya came hard and long on his tongue before he got to his feet and slammed his cock into her.

She closed her eyes in ecstasy as he pounded away at her, her hand wrapped around his neck as they kissed, sharing her taste and his.

 

 

Chapter 2

***

“Morning Valerie.” Valerie O’Rourke  waved from her mini convertible coupe as she drove through the little village of Briar Reef, the sunlight glistening off the tresses of her golden blonde hair.

“Morning Dina!” She tooted her horn and called out to a few more people before coming to a stop in the parking lot behind her art gallery. The day promised to be a good one if the number of people she’d seen out and about in the town square was anything to go by.

Of course the holiday weekend would be coming up in a few days and those were always good for business in the past, but with the economy being what it is, there was no guarantee.

She stepped out of the BMW and fiddled with the Hermes silk scarf she had thrown carelessly around her shoulders before tugging on the hem of her skirt to get it back in place.

There were a few more calls of hello and good morning as she made her way to the shop, and her spirits were lifted. Today is going to be a good day.

***

Sonya Davis picked her way over fallen branches, twigs and mountains of dead leaves as she made her way to her secret rendezvous. Leave it to bloody lover boy to call her out here in this mess of a woods. Then again it won’t be the worst place they’d ever done it.

Her heart picked up its pace as she got deeper into the dense foliage coming closer to their meeting place. Horny bastard, didn’t we fuck just yesterday?

Not that she was going to complain, she loved the fact that her lover was as sex crazed as she was, and since she had nothing to do with her days but wait for the school bus at three, her mornings were all his.

He on the other hand was playing it close. With a business to run and a whole lot of eyes watching his every movement, they had to be careful. But still, none of that stopped her from running when he called.

She didn’t notice the climbing heat or the insects that buzzed around her as she walked. She was too busy paying attention to her every step afraid of stepping on one of the confounded traps the hunters like to leave around the place.

As far she knows they’ve never trapped any other species but man in one of the damn things and she’d have a lot of explaining to do if she got herself snagged in one of the stupid things.

With her head down she didn’t see up ahead and that’s why the fright was so palpable when she finally did. It was the suddenness you see, coming face to face with her worst nightmare out here alone in the woods.

The scream got trapped in her lungs as she turned in abject horror and ran. Her eyes wide with fright, she hardly saw what was in front of her, her mind filled with the terror behind, and so she didn’t see the obstruction that was in her way.

She went flying through the air with a loud scream just as she heard footsteps coming slowly through the brush in her direction, as if someone was coming to her rescue; but by then it was too late.

She landed in the large puddle of water face first and her screams grew more tormented until they were no more. The air was suddenly filled with the stench of burning flesh and the gurgling sound of someone in the final throes of life.

***

Barney Doss had been on one of his usual morning walks through Briar Reef woods when he heard the faint scream coming through the trees. At first he thought it was the sound of a bird, or some other wild animal, but the closer he listened the second time it came, he knew that the sound was more human.

He hasted his step as much as he could with a cane and a bum knee and came up short when he turned the corner and saw the person laying on the ground. “Hey, you okay?”

He hobbled over to the form that wasn’t moving, his heart racing in the way anyone’s would in a situation like this; alone, in the woods, with people screaming and now one lying still as death on the ground.

“Hey, you there!” There was still no movement from the person who seemed to have fallen, as Barney got closer. “Hey you!” He poked the fallen body in the shoulder with his cane and still there was not a peep.

He was beginning to think the person who he now believed to be a woman had hit her head in the fall and knocked herself unconscious.

“She’ll drown herself in that little bit of water for sure.” He couldn’t bend down because of his knee so he tried rolling her over with the cane. He pushed at her shoulder until he got her moving and stumbled back in horror at the sight that greeted him when he got her face partially lifted before dropping her again.

He fumbled around in his pocket for the mobile phone his granddaughter had got him just the month before but there was no signal. He looked around for help but knew there was none. No one else came here, only him. It had been that way for years now, having the woods all to himself.

The kids had found a better, more exciting place to carry out their misdeeds and the young couples were too busy making a living to have much time for lazy days spent foraging in the woods. While the elderly, had given up on the steep climb up the hill to reach the place.

It was only he Barney Doss who had never given up his love for the deep dark woods where he’d spent many a childhood day. And even with the pain it caused him, he never missed a day come rain or shine. Now his solitude had been disturbed and he doubted he’d ever feel the same way here again.

***

It took poor old Barney a good half an hour to make it out of the woods and down the hill and then another ten minutes before he came to the O’Rourke  farm. He was out of breath and panicked by the time he knocked on the door and then rang the bell.

The housekeeper Mrs. Cline answered on the third hurried knock. “I’m coming, I’m coming, keep your shorts on.” Her heavy New England accent came through the thick wood of the door as her footsteps clipped along the marble floor.

She flung the door open to see poor Barney looking as though he was about to keel over. “Why Barney Doss, whatever is the matter with you? Come in, come in.” She stepped back to let him enter and he held his hand up to stop her.

“Call the police Eileen, there’s a body in the woods. I think someone’s been murdered.” Her mouth fell open in surprise as she tried to make sense of his words.

“A murder? But there hasn’t been a murder here in over fifty years.” She felt the way any middle-aged woman without family would at the thought of death. A death so close.

Barney stood in the doorway lacking the strength to lift his foot over the threshold to go inside as Eileen headed for the nearest phone. “Uh police, this is Eileen Cline over at the O’Rourke  farm, I have Barney Doss here, he says there’s been a murder.”

On the other end of the line the surprised desk sergeant asked for more details, which poor Ms. Cline did not have. “Hold on a minute, I’ll let him tell you himself.” She walked back to the door where Barney was leaning and trying valiantly to catch his breath, and passed him the handheld phone.

“Yes, this is Barney Doss, I was out on one of my morning walks in the woods, looking for birds you see…”

“Yes, yes, but what is this about a murder? Did you see a body?”
“Well yes, I was just about to tell you…”

He was cut off by the sergeant once again who asked for the location of the body. It was obvious from the sergeant’s tone that he didn’t believe it, but he took down the information and went in search of the town’s only lead detective.

“Detective Sparks, there’s been a call.” He passed the paper with the notes he’d taken down to the young woman, who read the note over twice with disbelief.

“Who did you say called this in?”

“Eileen Cline down at the old O’Rourke farm, she says Barney Doss turned up on her doorstep almost half to death and blurted it out to her.”

Detective Celia Sparks got up from her chair and grabbed the jacket she’d thrown over the back of it when she came in to work earlier that morning. “Come on Pete we’ve got a live one.” She called out to her junior partner before heading for the door.

“Call the O’Rourke  farm, tell Barney Doss not to leave until I’ve spoken to him. And call the crime scene unit, tell them to meet us there.” The situation was so foreign to her that she was sure that she was forgetting something.

Outside she looked up at the sun in the sky and made note of what a perfectly bright and sunny day it was. Certainly not the kind of day one would associate with murder.

She climbed into the driver’s seat while her partner officer Bailey got in next to her and strapped in. She gave him a quick rundown and they both looked at each other skeptically neither of them believing for a second that a murder had taken place in heir picturesque little town.

“Are you sure? You know old man Doss is about a hundred if he’s a day. Maybe he saw a fallen deer in the distance, or someone taking a nap under a tree or something.”

“No one goes there anymore, not since they fixed up the park on the other side of town and I’m sure as old as he is he can tell the difference between a deer and a human.”

“Still, murder? Could it be a drunk passed out or something?”
“We’ll know when we get there I guess, I’m as flummoxed as you are at the idea.”

Detective Sparks didn’t say anything more as the car made its way through the center of town and out onto the back roads that would take them to where they were going.

It was a trek getting to the top of the hill and into the woods where they’d been directed but once there, there was no mistaking that it was indeed a murder. Either that or a very unfortunate accident.

“Can you tell who it is?” Officer Bailey asked as he covered his nose from the stench. He’d always admired his superior but had to admit that that admiration went up a notch when she knelt next to the grotesque sight, nose bare and no sign of distaste on her exceptionally beautiful face.

Detective Sparks pulled on her work gloves and tried rifling through the pockets of the deceased  but there was no wallet, nothing to give away the identity of the person who now laid at her feet without a face.

“We didn’t see a car at the bottom of the hill did we Pete?”
“No, but they could’ve come in from the other side, why don’t I go check?”
“You do that, I’ll wait here for the crime scene unit.”

Boy were they in for a surprise. There wasn’t much that she could do until they got here, and she didn’t want to disturb anything more than she already had by rifling through pockets so she stepped back making sure to avoid the bloody liquid that she could see from the fumes still rising from it held some kind of caustic agent.

She stood and looked around at her surroundings. It had been a while since she’d been here herself. Although there wasn’t much in the way of crime in the town of just a little bit over three thousand, just the occasional runaway cow, or a cat caught in a tree, she still somehow found her days very well occupied.

There were the calls from the elderly who imagined every sound, every creaking floorboard to be an intruder or a harbinger of imminent death, and those were plentiful.

Or the rare dustup between some tourist and one of the locals who took offense to what they saw as their town being disrespected. That can be for something as simple as spitting chewing gum on the sidewalk.

For all its lack of anything approaching adventure, or even a nightlife, or any of the things a young woman like herself would appreciate for that matter, she loved it here, in this little haven she’d found after working for a few years in the big city.

The move had been a bit of a culture shock for sure in the beginning, and it had taken some time getting used to the change as well as being accepted by the locals who had all been here for generations.

But in the three and a half years that she’d been here the place had grown on her and now she couldn’t imagine living anywhere else. Even if she wasn’t able to recognize her full potential, there were other things to compensate. Like the peace and quiet that couldn’t be bought.

She heard the engine of an approaching vehicle at about the same time she saw officer Bailey huffing his way back up the opposite side of the incline in her direction. “Found it; you’re not going to believe this but that’s Sonya Davis, at least it’s her car at the bottom of the hill.”

“Sonya?” She looked down at the remains and tried to picture the beautiful vivacious woman’s face superimposed over what now laid at her feet. She didn’t know the other woman personally, they didn’t move in the same circles after all. But she knew her enough to say hi in passing.

As a cop she’d been trained to disassociate herself, to separate what she thought she knew of the person from the reality of her cases, but no amount of training can prepare you for something like this. “She was so young.” She looked over as the crime scene techs trudged their way over to her side.

She exchanged greetings with Simon Porter the coroner and his crew and they stood around for the first few seconds taking in the unusual sight of a body that had not expired due to natural causes. It was easy to tell from the odd positioning of the body that it was not a natural fall, if the fumes and scent of burnt flesh didn’t already give it away.

“A murder it is then.” Detective Sparks looked at the coroner after his cryptic comment. “What do you mean?”
“Well, after I got the call and heard all the particulars I thought for sure old Barney’s cheese had fallen off his cracker.” He popped a handful of peanuts from his pocket into his mouth.

He gestured towards the body with his hand. “But that doesn’t look like an accident to me. Not unless she was running with whatever is in that liquid that’s giving off that scent and it spilled all over her.” He looked around before turning his attention back to her. “I don’t see a container.”

Detective Sparks nodded her head amazed that for someone who hadn’t handled a suspicious death before he sure seemed to be on the ball. “Well, better get to it then, the heat’s rising. It’s going to be a bitch of a day.” She snorted at his irascibleness and stepped back to let him get to work.

For a crew who didn’t see many murders, they got right to work, marking off the area, taking samples of the liquid and checking the surrounding area for anything that might shed some light on what had gone on here.

When the coroner finally turned the woman all the way over the severity of her injuries were revealed. There was a lot of indrawn breaths and mutters of disbelief.

“What do you think doc? Is this what killed her, whatever was used to do this to her face?”
“Well, it looks like some kind of acid was used. That in itself might not have killed her outright but the immediate shock to the system might’ve played a part, not to mention the fact that she was face down in about an inch of liquid.”

“This liquid, I know there’s some kind of acid in it, but is there any water?” That would mean the difference between an accidental spill of some kind that this poor woman had been unlucky enough to fall into and something more deliberate.

“No, I don’t think so. And look at this hole that it’s in. This was freshly done in the last day or so. And since we haven’t had any rain lately there was no way for water to gather in there unless someone purposely poured it in there.”

“Since she was heard screaming just before she was found I guess we can estimate time of death, but you’ll check all the same won’t you doc?” He touched the back of one of the victim’s arms, which was about the only place not affected that was naked to the eye.

“Rigor mortis hasn’t begun to set in so the timing sounds about right. Sometime in the last two hours.” He fixed his glove with a snap and went back to poking at the body.

“Hmm, okay doc, I’ll leave you to it. Get me what you can as soon as you can.” Detective Sparks did her own shaking of the bushes, going back to the car and trying to retrace the steps of the victim. Nothing made sense; there was nothing to give so much as a clue.

“Widen the search Pete, there has got to be something here.”
“Yes boss!” They went in two separate directions, taking their time as they made their way deeper into the woods.

 

 

Chapter 3

***

Every once in a while Detective Sparks would look back to where the yellow crime scene tape was still visible, trying to get an idea of where the victim had fallen from, though it didn’t look like the fall had been a long one. No broken bones that she’d noticed.

But from the way the body had landed it looked almost like she’d been dropped, or thrown through the air. It could almost be mistaken for an accident, just an accidental fall, except for the acid in the water.

Though that too could’ve been an accident, it didn’t ring true, and what are the chances? That would be one hell of a coincidence and she didn’t believe in those.

Because she was paying such close attention, looking in the brush and foliage, she didn’t miss the trip wire that someone had stretched across the path.

Thinking that this had been deliberate and seeing the evidence of it were two different kettle of fish and so it took a few seconds for her mind to process what it was that she was looking at. This didn’t belong here; it wasn’t a trap like the one you’d expect to find in the woods. The traps that are illegal for anyone to leave out here since this is public land.

She looked back once again at where the body laid, the body that was still there while the coroner did his job meticulously. She was sure as morbid as it was that he was excited to be handling his first murder.

She also had no doubt the murder will be the talk on everyone’s lips for the next little while because he tended to have loose lips. It comes with holding the position he does in the small town.

She looked back and forth between the place where she now stood and the body, guessing correctly that it was the trip wire that had sent poor Mrs. Davis hurtling through the air to land in the little puddle that someone had conveniently left there.

But why had she been coming back this way? Her car had been parked on the other side, so wouldn’t she have gone back the way she came? And what was she doing out here alone? Or had she been alone?

She kept moving forward slowly after leaving a little flag to mark the spot where she’d found the wire, eyes peeled to the ground as she heard her partner on the other side of the thick brush across from her, moving through the bushes like a bull in a China shop. She hadn’t gone far when she saw the incomprehensible sight of a clown that someone had left nailed to a tree.

At first glance the dummy appeared real, eyes staring straight ahead with what could only be termed as a spooky grin on its face. It was only her training that kept her from crying out or taking a quick step back.

As it is she swallowed deeply and forced herself to keep going before calling out to the others to follow her and warning them to watch their step where she’d left the marker.

“We’ll have to take this in as well along with the wire.” She ordered the members of the crime scene unit who answered her call.

They both studied the clown dummy looking for any more traps or tricks before it was removed and bagged as evidence, then she checked the surrounding area once again but came up empty.

There was nothing more than the disturbed bushes, no footprints, no snagged pieces of clothing, nothing at all other than the clown and the body to show that anyone other than the victim had been here. Oh and of course the wire.

Could it have been kids fooling around? Had they left the clown here? But why the wire and why the acid in the water? That was taking a joke too far and she didn’t know any kid in the area who would do such a thing.

Though she had to look at all the angles she was already quite certain that this was exactly what it looked like, a murder. A very well thought out one too from the looks of it.

Even though she hadn’t found anything on her face search she knew it would be careless not to keep looking. In brush this thick there were plenty places to hide stuff. Like the container the acid had come in for instance; that would be helpful. A nice container with lost of fingerprints. If only the murderer would be that accommodating.

They were there for hours cleaning up the scene and making sure they hadn’t overlooked anything. The sun was high in the sky by the time she walked back to the car with Officer Bailey at her side.

“What do you make of this? Was it a joke that went too far? Was someone trying to play one of those pranks you see on television or something do you think?”
“I don’t think so Pete, this looks to me like a calculated attack. The only thing I can’t figure is what she was doing out here alone.”

She could hear the bleating of sheep and the bellowing of cattle off in the distance as they drove back down the hill and along the boundary of the O’Rourke farm, which was the closest home this side of the woods.

She did a quick run through in her head of all the hands who worked there, wondering if it could’ve been one of them. The problem was at this point it could be anyone.

They were all local boys, men she’d known in one capacity or another since moving here. And though she couldn’t picture any one of them being responsible, she knew better than to make that call lightly.

She stopped off at the O’Rourke  farm where poor Mr. Doss had been waiting all this time. She knocked as she wiped her feet on the old rustic heavy-duty mat outside the backdoor.

Dogs barked in the distance and the sweet scent of freshly baked pie made its way through the open kitchen window even as the sound of farm machinery reached her ears.

She looked around as far as the eye could see, back up to the woods that bordered one side of the farmland. She’d always liked this place, always found it to be charmingly welcoming. In her mind it was everything that a farm in a small town should be.

The large Grecian columns that lined the front with the extra long porch, black shuttered windows against the starling white of the house, the black roof with three chimneys that she could imagine smoke puffing out of on cold winter nights and the stately trees that graced the huge front lawn. All sat perfectly in the middle of green-green grass.

The place reminded her of the ranch in one of the old nighttime soap opera reruns her grandmother used to watch, Dallas she thinks it was called, but she was too young to remember.

The miles of white ranch fencing, horses grazing off in the distance and the cattle even farther away gave one a feeling of calm and home sweet home. The O’Rourkes owned about five thousand acres of prime land all be told, the richest landowners in town and for miles around.

As large as it was, everything about the place felt cozy, like home. Even the beautifully designed gardens, that ran from beneath the front windows and down the sides of the old Georgian styled house.

And the swing that sat on the marble porch, gave her ideas of idyllic mornings spent wiling away the time in the early sunlight as she drank a cup of coffee and read the paper. Fanciful!

But those were the kind of thoughts that ran through her head whenever she saw the place or came anywhere near it. And no matter how often she saw it, it was always the same.

Though she’d only ever seen it from a distance, or in the magazine she still had at home in her bedside table from the time two years ago when one of the leading house design magazines had done a spread about the place.

Her face heated with a blush when the thought of the owner; Mr. Riley O’Rourke. His family had owned the farm for generations, and he was the first to add onto it, the first to turn it into the moneymaker that it was today.

Just like that soap opera that she could barely remember, he’d found oil, which had immediately taken him from firmly upper middle class to very, very wealthy. So not only was he the best looking man for miles around, he was now the wealthiest, and at one time the most sought after.

This had all been before her time, before she’d moved here. By then he was already married to the beautiful Valerie Troy, the very fashionable, very well learned and well travelled Valerie Troy with her degree in fine arts and elegant airs.

They’d been high school sweethearts, who as the story goes, everyone was sure, would marry and settle down here together. He’d gone to one of the major Ivy League schools as well for his degree in business as was to be expected for someone with his background.

They’ve been married ten years now, but still no children as yet. Detective Sparks remembered the first time she’d ever laid eyes on Riley O’Rourke in the flesh, the way her heart had skipped a beat; and then the embarrassment when he’d barely spared her a glance.

It was no wonder, even as beautiful as everyone was always telling her she was, she was nowhere near as beautiful as his wife, not even close. And she was lacking all the sophistication of the well-educated cultured girl who’d obviously caught his heart when they were young and still held it in the palm of her hand.

Not that she would’ve done anything untoward with a married man. She’s not that kind of woman; but funny enough, his reaction had made her like him even more. In a town were the whispers about what goes on behind closed doors abound, it was nice to know that there was at least one man who didn’t play the field.

The door opened at her third knock, interrupting her thoughts and Eileen Cline, the housekeeper invited her in. “Come in please Detective. Since you’re here after all this time I’m guessing old Barney was right, you’ve found a body. Is it murder then?”

“Thank you Ms. Cline, and yes, there is a body, but the case is still in its early stages yet so we won’t know more until we’ve done a thorough investigation.” And if I tell you any more than that I’m sure the whole town will know have heard every word of it before I’ve driven away from this place.

She was till getting used to the way things worked here in Briar Reef. The grapevine in a small town was almost as effective as the Internet and moved at just about the same speed. And with news of this magnitude she had no doubt that it would be making the rounds long before she got a handle on what was going on herself.

She saw Mr. Doss sitting on a chair at the old woodblock table in the kitchen and made her way over to him. Poor old guy, to think that he’d seen what she had; he must’ve been horrified to come across a thing like that out there on his own as he was.

“Mr. Doss, I’m going to have an officer take you down to the station to answer some questions, will that be okay?” She wasn’t comfortable questioning her only witness here. Unprofessional it may be but she didn’t want to be here if Riley O’Rourke or his wife came home.

“But I have to get home, I’ve been here all morning and…” He sounded a bit flustered and it was obvious that the morning had taken its toll. He was getting up there in age and the sight had been a dreadful one even for someone as seasoned as her.

“I understand that but you’re the only witness to a crime.
“But I didn’t see anything…” She held up her hand and turned her attention to Ms. Cline who was busy puttering around the kitchen. Not that she wasn’t certain the older woman had already dragged every detail out of him in the time he’d been sitting here waiting.

But there was no help for it, the force was bare skin and bones and she’d needed every hand on the scene, so there was no one to run him down to the station before she could get to him. At least she’d made him stay put until she arrived.

“I’m sorry to impose on you any further Ms. Cline but is it possible we can have somewhere private and out of the way to talk, if you don’t mind? I won’t be long.” The older woman dried her hands on a kitchen towel and smiled at her warmly.

“Why yes of course, come on through here.” They followed her into the parlor where Detective Sparks stayed standing while Mr. Doss took a seat in one of the overstuffed chairs.

“Now, Mr. Doss,” she pulled the notes the desk sergeant had taken earlier from her pocket. “It says here that you heard the victim scream.”

“I did yes, but by the time I got there she was already face down in the little puddle of water.”

“What time was this do you remember?” According to the coroner she hadn’t been dead for more than an hour by the time we got the first call. But it helped that the old guy was actually there on sight when it happened. Makes things a lot easier.

“I’m not sure,” he looked at his watch now as if that would help.

“What time did you leave your house to go on your walk Mr. Doss?”
“Why the same time I leave every morning, a little before eight o’clock. I find that the day isn’t as hot at that time.”

She looked at the cane he had resting on the chair arm. “You have problems with your legs Mr. Doss?” He rubbed his knee and nodded.
“Been giving me hell for near ten years now give or take. The doctor said a nice walk every so often helps, keeps it from seizing up on me.”

“And do you walk there every morning?”
“Just about.”

“Do you always take the same path?” He nodded his head as she took down notes. Adding up the time in her head. With his bum knee she figured it would’ve taken him some time to get over the incline and then into the woods.

“Which side did you come in on?” He gave her the location and she figured she might not be able to get the time exact, but at least she was close enough and his answers jived with what the coroner had said.

“And did you touch the body?”
“Well, I was trying to get her face out of the water there because it looked like she’d knocked herself plumb out, so I poked her with my cane when she didn’t answer.” He swallowed hard and his hands started to tremble as he remembered what he’d seen.

“And then I saw…what happened to that poor woman? It is a woman isn’t it?” Just then Ms. Cline entered the parlor with a tray laden with a pitcher of lemonade, three glasses and a plate of freshly baked cookies.

“How about some nice ice cold lemonade?”
“None for me thanks.” Detective Sparks refused. Officer Bailey who had stood quietly by looked at the condensation on the glass jug and swallowed deeply. “I wouldn’t mind a glass of that.”

She poured him a glass and one for Barney as well and passed out little saucers of cookies. Detective Sparks waited until the room was clear again to continue her questioning, but it didn’t take long to figure out she’d gotten all she was going to out of the old man.

“Thank you very much Mr. Doss, if you remember anything else please give me a call. Do you need a lift back to your home?”

“I’d be much obliged young lady.” He placed his half empty glass on the side table and wrapped the cookies in a napkin, stuffing them in his pocket.

Officer Bailey wolfed his last one down and emptied his glass while Detective Sparks shook her head. He has the eating habits of a five year old.

“What? I haven’t eaten since that egg and cheese sandwich at the station this morning and that was hours ago.”

Detective Sparks walked towards the door hurriedly, now in a rush to get away since her job here was done. She’d forgotten about the O’Rourkes while questioning the old man but now she wanted to be gone from her as soon as possible.

She dropped old Mr. Doss off at his door and waited until the old guy made it inside. She’d already put in a full day’s work but it was still far from over. Now comes the hard part she thought. Telling the husband that his wife wouldn’t be coming home again ever.

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Meet Jordan

Jordan Silver is the author of more than 150 romance novels and novellas featuring over-the-top alpha males and the women who love them. She also writes young adult and new adult fiction under the pen name Cami York, BDSM Romance under Jasmine Starr, and Polyamorous romance under Tiffany Lordes.

 

 

 

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