I love clickbait titles. I usually don’t click on them, but I love making up wiseass responses. Like, “Oh, I bet he said ‘prune juice.'”
Sometimes I crack me up.
ANYWAY, here is a scene from my paranormal suspense book set in 1968. The elderly Miss Hardesty has gone to the local children’s home and hired 17-year-old Mitch to work for her. She tells him to call her Aunt Missy, and he is charmed. As he drives her home, she tells him she wants him to be a bodyguard for her dogs. Somebody is trying to murder them.
She Asks For Help
excerpt from A DEAD GUY AT THE SUMMERHOUSE
by Marian Allen
We drove in silence until I made the turn onto State Road 62. All the time, I could feel Aunt Missy’s — Miss Hardesty’s — eyes on me.
“You don’t believe me.” She sounded a little disappointed, but it was mostly just a statement. “You think I’m insane, or at least irrational, but I’m not. Truly, I’m not.”
“No, I don’t.” And I didn’t, exactly.
“Dotty, then.” Well, yeah, that was more like it. “That’s what they all think: everybody at home.”
So this wasn’t something she’d just come out with for my benefit. That helped, somehow. If they knew about this delusion at home and put up with it, it must not be too bad.
Miss Hardesty watched the highway for a while. “Next road on the right,” she said, absently. “It’s unmarked.”
I slowed and made the turn onto the one-lane blacktop that curved back and forth up the hill to Willowbrook.
“Naturally, you don’t believe me. Why should you? You don’t know me, and you don’t know that household. But would you do this for me?” She put a hand on my shoulder. I could feel its icy trembling through my shirt and tee. “Would you just reserve judgment until you’ve been with us for a few days? Can you do that for me, dear?”
Now, how could I resist an appeal like that? Needed. Trusted. Wanted. It made me light-headed, and it didn’t matter that the appeal came from somebody who might be a little bit wacko. After all, who but a wacko would have chosen me?
“Okay, Aunt Missy. I will.”
“Will you? Grand! Thank you!” She clasped her hands. “Now I don’t care what anyone says!” She sat back, head raised and shoulders squared.
In many formats from Untreed Reads
From an independent bookseller through Indiebound
Paperback and for Kindle at Amazon
In audiobook at Audible
A WRITING PROMPT FOR YOU: Someone makes an irresistible appeal.