Tuesday Tales: From the Word Arch

NEW TT BADGEWelcome to August and this week’s Tuesday Tales. I am continuing with The While Dahlia, Book Four of the Harvester Files. Some of the posts may be quite graphic and i will warn you when that’s the case.

Now that we are moving into the new story line, I’ll share the cover with you.

The White Dahlia

Here you go. Enjoy!

Six years later

Heart pounding, long legs moving like those of a speed walker in a marathon, Beth scrambled through the obstacle course that was the bullpen to get back to her small office without spilling scalding hot coffee all over herself. She arched an eyebrow. Why was it she could sit in there for hours, counting the holes in the ceiling tiles, and that damn phone never rang, but the second she left the room, the bells jangled loudly enough to wake the dead?

Weekday night shifts as Acting Supervisor in Homicide at the 73rd was supposed to be a temporary assignment until the department shrink said she could go back on the streets. But three weeks had stretched to six, then nine, now twelve. If this were a promotion, they could shove it where the sun didn’t shine.

How was she ever supposed to get back into the field? She still wasn’t sleeping—how the hell could she with her days and nights blurred like a newborn baby’s? Her bodily injuries had healed, and she had a few more scars, but it would take a long time for her head to catch up.

The phone, still three desks away, jangled once more, yanking her back to the empty bullpen, making her walk faster and pray she didn’t sprain an ankle. So far, all she’d done was assign cases, take reports, and submit paperwork, not the job she’d expected when she’d passed her sergeant’s exams. She was a detective, maybe not as hard-boiled as a few she could name, but definitely more than some damn paper pusher. Unfortunately, until the psychiatrist cleared her for full duty, this was where she had to stay. Even Beth Reynolds, who apparently had magic horseshoes up her ass, had to follow orders, whether she agreed with them or not.

Tonight had been busier than any Thursday since she’d started here—and that wasn’t a good thing. Night shift on Homicide meant eight detectives, including herself, four teams in total. Three were out on cases, while Erica, her temporary partner, had clocked out a couple of hours earlier. The last thing Beth needed at a crime scene was a new mother with stomach flu. Hopefully, the call was from one of the other teams on the way back.

Going out on a case on her own while on modified duty was a little like playing Russian Roulette.

That’s it. Stay safe and don’t forget to check out the other Tuesday Tales.

Tuesday Tales: From the Word Balloon

NEW TT BADGEWelcome to the end of July and this week’s Tuesday Tales. I’m continuing with the Prologue to The White Dahlia, my fourth Harvester Files book. Enjoy!

“Beth, calm down,” Rob stood, came around the desk, and took her hands in his to stop her rubbing. “Larson and the Reno police sent the dogs in, and they found traces of explosives in a mechanic’s locker. He’s dead.”

She swallowed. “So, we have them all?”

Rob stepped away and rubbed the back of his neck. “They’ve finished identifying the bodies in Alaska. There are three Colchesters unaccounted for—Sara, Michael, and Timothy. Give me that plane’s call numbers, and I’ll alert the airports.  It’s unlikely the girl is behind this, given where women sit in the pecking order. Besides, we’ve got eyes on every group associated with New Horizon. As for the other two, I contacted Jacob. He says they’re the youngest, only kids when he left the compound, but they were a little different, even back then.”

“Different how?” Beth frowned. As far as she was concerned that was three potential threats.

“Really quiet and shy. The boys were close in age, and Michael was sickly. Timothy was always watching out for him, protecting him from the others, although most of the time the older siblings ignored them. Who knows, someone could’ve disposed of them years ago.”

“I hate to burst your balloon, but you don’t know for sure. What does Adam have to say about them?”

“Nothing. He hasn’t said a word since we told him his father died. He didn’t even react when I mentioned the plane carrying his body had crashed. He refuses to eat. They’ve got him on a suicide watch. The man seems intent on dying any way he can.”

She frowned. “I wonder why they blew up the plane. It doesn’t make sense. It’s certainly not respectful of a man they considered almost a god.”

Rob shrugged. “It must have something to do with their burial practices. They couldn’t sanitize the body the way they usually do, and fire cleanses. I’ll run that by Lilith when I speak to her.” He grinned. “In the meantime, give yourself a pat on the back for a job well done. We’re done here. We’ll be back in Boston before the weekend.”

Beth shivered. The job done? With three of the Chosen still out there? Not by a long shot.

That’s it. Stay safe and don’t forget to check out the other Tuesday Tales.

The Blue Dragon in Fortune’s Favor is Live!


There another Authors’ Billboard box set available and it’s live today! Fortune’s Favor features my newest full-length novel, The Blue Dragon. 

The Blue Dragon is a modern historical romance, based in 2007.

True love never dies.

Badly wounded in Afghanistan, Samantha Collins returns to Canada to discover a previously unknown relative has died and made her heir to the family estate. The bequest consists of a century-old farmhouse and an orange tabby. Alone, having given up on love, marriage, and children, facing a grim future, Sam opts to move into the house until she decides what to do with it. When she opens the door, she gets more than she bargained for. Nobody mentioned Great-Aunt Esther was a hoarder.

Following his divorce, Phil Austin returns to South Creek. An architect who prefers restoring old buildings to designing new ones, he’s intrigued to learn one of the area’s century-old houses may be sold. Picturing the house converted to an inn, when Phil knocks on the door, he gets more than he expected. The new owner is the woman he loved and lost fifteen years ago.

Stunned to find the only man she ever loved on her doorstep, Sam is carried away by his ideas for the house. Torn between hope and despair, she agrees to his business proposal.

As they sift through the remains of her aunt’s estate searching for the elusive Blue Dragon, will they realize that love is the greatest treasure of all?

Here is an excerpt from the book:

Dear Samantha,

Not a Jewish name, nor a French one, but one considered the feminine version of Samuel which is. I do not suppose that mattered to your mother or grandfather, although Elizabeth was our mother’s name. Today, it does not matter to anyone. How the times have changed, but the hatred is still there, as you well know. I fear nothing will ever change that. Too many have died in the name of God or greed, humanity’s new God of choice. Perhaps someday, things will change, but not I fear in my lifetime.

Imagine my surprise at discovering I not only had a grandniece, but one who chose to follow in my beloved Ezekiel’s footsteps, although he was in the navy not the army, but service is service. When I saw you on that television program, I recognized you instantly. You resemble my mother—not completely since your complexion is darker—but enough for me to see the family connection. The private investigator confirmed my suspicions. Like myself, your life has not been an easy one, losing those you loved at a young age.

If you are reading this, it is because I never got up the nerve to contact you before my death. You see, I did not know what you might know about me or whether you would somehow blame me for your grandfather’s alienation from the family. I will admit I was angry with him for choosing an outsider over his heritage, but when I met Ezekiel, I finally understood what he meant when he said, “The heart wants what it wants, kleyne shvester.” No one, not even Charles who was a good, loyal friend, could ever replace Zeke. I have mourned him most of my life. I was thirty when his ship sank, all hands aboard lost, the bodies never recovered.

I am returning to you what should have been Ezra’s in the first place, although I have sold most of the land. I kept our special places—the woods where Zeke and I loved to walk, with the pond and the stream running through it where we used to wade after our picnics. That is where he first kissed me, where he asked me to wait for him and marry him when he came home from the war. He carved our initials in the oak tree. I visited the tree every day, until my heart started acting up. Then, I went as often as these old bones would allow until I had to stop.

Charles will have given you my ashes. I broke with tradition by requesting cremation. You would have received a lovely urn, but I have no desire to stay in a flower vase. I want you to take my ashes and return them to the earth by scattering them under a small stone cairn I built next to the tree with our initials on it. Knock down the stones, mix my ashes with the earth where I buried the lock of hair we exchanged the day he left, and let us be together at last. Do it on September third, the day he proposed. That’s all I ask of you. In exchange, I have left you all of my greatest treasures. Treat them kindly, especially the blue dragon. It’s the last thing he ever gave me.

Esther Cohen

So what exactly is the blue dragon? Find out when you read The Blue Dragon free in Fortune’s Favor, The Treasure, in Kindle Unlimited or purchase the five-novel set of only 99 cents, USD.



#1 New Release Unforgettable Sweethearts How Cool Is That?

#1 new release

That was yesterday and this morning we have another one!

US new release Maritime history and piracy

The fantastic writers of the Author’s Billboard have done it again. Unforgettable Sweethearts: Unforgettable Lovers (The Unforgettables Book 18) is available for pre-order  and will be live August 7, 2020.

Unfoirgettable Sweethearts meme 4When two people are attracted to each other, it doesn’t end there…

A commitment lit by a spark of interest can spread to a wildfire of passion, devotion to spending a life together, the desire to cherish their love forever.

Nine Award-winning, NY Times and USA Today Bestselling authors invite you to engage in their bounty of Happy Ever Afters, a box set of romance so filled with oohs, ahs, and a sniffle or two that you’ll want to read it over and over again.

Mimi Barbour: The Surrogate’s Secret – Can she give up her babies for the man she loves? NY Times and USA Today Bestselling Author

Stacy Eaton: Unexpected Trouble – NEW! – Running into his trouble-making high school sweetheart, Maggie, was the last thing Gregory excepted.

Leanne Banks: Indispensable Sweetheart – An unexpected night of passion between the millionaire and his assistant brings a surprise pregnancy. Will the CEO finally see that she is his Indispensable Sweetheart? USA Today Bestselling Author

Rebecca York: Wyatt – Will gypsies thwart a murder conviction and douse the smoldering passion between lost and found again lovers? NY Times and USA Today Bestselling Author

Patrice Wilton: Hooked On You – Will a playboy fishing boat captain be able to convince a strong, determined, and wary woman that he is ready to be caught? NY Times and USA Today Bestselling Author

Josie Riviera: Aloha To Love – A screenwriter on the edge of success. A scientist who’s a stickler for detail. Their chemistry could erupt into something special…or go up in smoke. USA Today Bestselling Author

Susanne Matthews: The Captain’s Promise – The woman he loves is in danger. He’ll risk anything to save her – his family, his crew, his ship, and his mission. Award-winning, Best-selling Author

Nancy Radke: The Bravest Woman in Town – He’s a spy, she’s a smuggler. Can love grow while they evade the army searching for them? A Civil War romance. USA Today Bestselling Author

Dani Haviland: Big Mac – Fate and science said they should never have met but after that first touch, he knew he’d stay with her forever. Would the sudden appearance of the father he never knew be their doom – and the start of a pandemic? USA Today Bestselling Author

Reserve your copy today! Only 99 cents! https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08DCM9YWR/

Passionate Protectors: Live and Available Now!

Fb size graphic PP2Have I mentioned how thrilled I am to be part of the Authors’ Billboard? The writers who are part of this incredible group leave me speechless with their fantastic talent, and their desire to offer readers top quality books at bargain basement prices. In this time of COVID 19 pandemic, many people are concerned about their safety and the safety of others around them. Information is changing daily and real life is a truly frightening experience. If you’re like me, you can escape inside a book and get a bird’s eye view of the troubles of others, root for your favorite character, and above all escape your own anxiety if only for a short time.  Passionate Protectors offers you all of that and more. Here’s what you get for 99 cents USD of free to read in Kindle Unlimited! :


When danger abounds, passionate protectors rush to the frontline to shield and defend. Homicide detectives, US marshals, and secret agents chase the guilty, thwart attacks, and endanger themselves with a zeal to protect. When love ignites and emotions run hot, these men and women put it all on the line. From New York to Chicago, Bangkok to a remote lake in Minnesota, nonstop adventure and steam sizzle when romance and suspense combust.

Patricia Rosemoor – Obsession – A driven female cop teams up with an irresistible ex-con to bring a killer to justice. Can they stop the sexual predator before he strikes again? NY Times and USA Today Bestselling Author
Rachelle Ayala – Triggered by Love – After her firefighter fiancé is shot, all Avery Cockburn has between her shattered heart and death is the cocky – and very determined – detective, Jason Burnett. USA Today Bestselling Author
Denise Devine – Small Town Girl – Annika must make a choice: Stay and break her best friend’s heart or leave ‘him’ behind. Someone must lose – will it ultimately be her? USA Today Bestselling Author
Susanne Matthews – Sworn to Protect – A secret is locked in Nancy’s mind. Can Neil protect his estranged wife from someone determined to silence her forever? Award-winning Bestselling Author
Taylor Lee – The Bangkok Affair – Going undercover in a high-end Bangkok brothel brings a feisty redhead face to face with a villain as charming as he is evil. Fortunately, her bad-ass lover doesn’t take a back seat to anyone. Sparks fly both inside and outside of the bedroom! USA Today Bestselling Author
Stacy Eaton – Second Shield –Together they will uncover the evil from within and try to deny the passions that rage between them. USA Today Bestselling Author.

So, don’t hesitate and grab your copy today!

Tuesday Tales: From the Word BRAND

NEW TT BADGEHello. I hope you’re enjoying your summer. Welcome to this week’s edition of Tuesday Tales. Once more, i share from The White Dahlia, Book Four of the Harvester Files. Today’s word is BRAND.

“I found something I didn’t expect. The bombs used to blow up the Desert Moon Motel, the ranch near Unionville, and the private jet carrying Hamilton’s body and organs for transplant were identical to the one planted in the bar in Boston last fall—same piping, fuse, and timer. The TNT in them came from a commercial brand and batch used in road construction, the same batch that supplied the explosive for the bombs used to destroy the tunnel at the White Iris Clinic.” She licked her lips, knowing he would understand what that meant as well as she had. So close. “It must’ve been someone who escaped from the training facility, because the one who designed those bombs has to have been trained by Pierce.”

“You’re sure?” Rob ran his hands through his close-cropped hair. “We found TNT in the mine. I assume it’s from the same source?”

“Yes.” She huffed out a breath. “There’s more. The bomb at the ranch had a longer time delay than the others. It was set at least forty-eight hours before it went off, meaning someone had two days to get away before we even knew about it.”

“How can you be certain?” He steepled his hands under his chin.

“The Lewiston’s daughter, Paige, arrived from Greece late yesterday afternoon while you were at the mine. I interviewed her. She and her husband manage a small hotel on Santorini. According to her, she spoke to her mother two days before the explosion, and the ME has certified that they died at least a day-day and a half before the fire. Since the woman’s body wasn’t as badly burned as the man’s, Dr. Scott was able to run a tox panel. She had scopolamine in her system. Paige claims that wouldn’t be unusual since her mother was prone to severe bouts of nausea and used a patch form of the drug prior to flying, so it probably doesn’t mean anything, but then again … When she spoke to her mother, she sounded tired, but not stressed. Her parents were selling the ranch and moving to Greece to live with them. She’s adamant there’s no way they were involved with bikers. The evidence of a bike gang showdown must’ve been planted, but I have more bad news. They had a four passenger plane, and it’s gone.”

That’s it. Stay safe and don’t forget to check out the other Tuesday Tales.

And Just When I Thought Life Couldn’t get Weirder… They changed my Sign!

Zodiac signs inside of horoscope circle. Astrology in the sky with many stars and moons  astrology and horoscopes concept

Zodiac signs inside of horoscope circle. Astrology in the sky with many stars and moons astrology and horoscopes concept

In two short weeks, I will be 70 years old. And, believe me, that’s old. My entire life, I have been a Leo, but not any more. Why? Because they’ve added a 13th sign to the zodiac calendar! That’s right. You can read it here:


What are the new dates?

  • Capricorn: January 20th to February 16th
  • Aquarius: February 16th to March 11th
  • Pisces: March 11th to April 18th
  • Aries: April 18th to May 13th
  • Taurus: May 13th to June 21st
  • Gemini: June 21st to July 20th
  • Cancer:July 20th to August 10th
  • Leo: August 10th to September 16th
  • Virgo: September 16th to October 30th
  • Libra: October 30th to November 23rd
  • Scorpio: November 23rd to November 29th
  • Ophiuchus: November 29th to December 17th
  • Sagittarius: December 17th to January 20th


Ophiuchus–that’s a mouthful to say! The 13th constellation is symbolised by a man with a snake. On a Zodiac wheel, it sits between Sagittarius and Scorpio. Apparently those born under the sign have a great sense of humour, eagerness to learn, and a strong attachment to family life.

Now the first thing that struck me is that Scorpio is now a rare breed with only a 7 day period. The second thing that struck me Is that I am now Cancer.

Strengths: Tenacious, highly imaginative, loyal, emotional, sympathetic, persuasive

Weaknesses: Moody, pessimistic, suspicious, manipulative, insecure

Cancer likes: Art, home-based hobbies, relaxing near or in water, helping loved ones, a good meal with friends

Cancer dislikes: Strangers, any criticism of Mom, revealing of personal life


For all of my life, I was Leo

Strengths: Creative, passionate, generous, warm-hearted, cheerful, humorous

Weaknesses: Arrogant, stubborn, self-centered, lazy, inflexible

Leo likes: Theater, taking holidays, being admired, expensive things, bright colors, fun with friends

Leo dislikes: Being ignored, facing difficult reality, not being treated like a king or queen

The red symbolizes traits I see in me, so I’m a little of both, I guess.

Now that I look at the two together, I see I really do have more cancer qualities than Leo ones.

If tenacious means stubborn, then that’s definitely me. As a writer I have certainly proven to be highly imaginative. I am loyal, emotional, sympathetic, but not sure how persuasive I really am. As for faults, I am definitely moody, pessimistic, suspicious, and insecure, but I don’t see me as manipulative.

What about you? Did you get to stay in the same zodiac, or have you moved as I have?


Fortune’s Favor: The Treasure Now Available for Pre-order



Hello all. In these trying times, every day is a gift and every book I complete is a pledge I’ve made to myself that I’ve been able to keep.  Being asked to join the Authors’ Billboard continues to be a wonderful experience for me, and Fortune’s Favor, The Treasure, is our latest release. This Amazon exclusive, five full-length novel set, available for only 99 cents or free in Kindle Unlimited is available for pre-order now and will be released July 24, 2020. It’s full of romance and adventure, because, who doesn’t like a treasure hunt?

Fortune favors the Bold, and bold women and men through the centuries have sought Fortune’s Favor in Life and Love.

A quest, hidden treasure, inheritance, Spanish Gold, and missing jewels inspire five riveting action adventure tales of women and men seeking redemption and rewards, searching for legacies, revealing secrets, finding romance, falling in love and winning that happily-ever-after that make all the challenges they must overcome worthwhile.

For the best Kindle Beach Read 2020, go treasure hunting with five NY Times, USA Today Bestselling, and Award-winning Authors as they seek Fortune’s Favor: The Treasure.

Joan ReevesNew York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author, reveals a story of betrayal, conspiracy, and a Quest for hidden treasure in an enemies-to-lovers story. “Kristina’s father never gave her anything but a hard time—until he died and left her a key. But what does the key unlock?”

Mona RiskNew York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author, weaves a story of hidden treasure, and romantic suspense set in France. “Are his statue and chateau worth endangering the life of the impetuous young woman who’s turned his life upside down?”

Tamara FergusonUSA Today Bestselling Author, delights with a small town romance where opposites attract, underscored by romantic suspense and an inheritance. “When a century-old family feud brings a librarian and historian together, a devious kiss of seduction reveals that fate might have other plans in store for them. Have they already discovered the missing treasure?

Nancy RadkeUSA Today Bestselling Author, thrills with a western romance set in post-Civil War Texas, starring a larger than life hero and fiery heroine, and the search for a fortune in Spanish gold. “In 1866, Cole Trahern is crossing Texas when he encounters a sandstorm, a dying man, a Spanish girl with a Kentucky rifle, a jealous suitor, a controlling grandfather, and a huge amount of Spanish gold. Can he get the woman and the gold?

Susanne MatthewsAward-winning Author, inspires us with the story of lovers reunited and embarking on a search for missing jewels and perhaps a second chance at love. “Broken, alone, her dreams shattered, Samantha looks to a dismal future until Phil steps back into her life.”

Doesn’t this set sound fantastic?

Some of you who follow this blog have already had a taste of my book, The Blue Dragon, in my Tuesday Tales posts from earlier this year. Now, the entire story is available for you to read and enjoy.

Here’s the blurb to jog your memories:

The Blue Dragon is a modern historical romance, based in 2006.

True love never dies.

Gravely wounded in Afghanistan, Samantha Collins returns to Canada to discover a previously unknown relative has died and made her heir to the family estate. The bequest consists of a century-old farmhouse and an orange tabby. Alone, having given up on love, marriage, and children, facing a grim future, Sam opts to move into the house until she decides what to do with it. When she opens the door, she gets more than she bargained for. Nobody mentioned Great-aunt Esther was a hoarder.

Following his divorce, Phil Austin returns to South Creek. An architect who prefers restoring old buildings to designing new ones, he’s intrigued to learn one of the area’s century-old houses may be sold. Picturing the house converted to an inn, when Phil knocks on the door, he gets more than he expected. The new owner is the woman he loved and lost fifteen years ago.

Stunned to find the only man she ever loved on her doorstep, Sam is carried away by his ideas for the house. Torn between hope and despair, she agrees to his business proposal. As they renew their friendship and they sift through the trash and treasures Esther Cohen left behind, can they find the courage to open their hearts to one another again?


Get your copy today. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08CTGRW8K




Tuesday Tales: From a Picture

NEW TT BADGEWelcome to this week’s Tuesday Tales, the weekly blog where a select group of authors share their works in progress with you.

Tuesday Tales is a weekly blog where a small group of writers share their works in progress with you. I will be sharing from The White Dahlia, Book four of The Harvester Files. I’d started the book last fall before my dad passed and decided to pick it up again. Given what’s been happening this year, I thought the time was right to pick up where I left off.

Since this is picture week, you get a brief look  at what’s been happening since the Prophet’s demise.


Beth Reynolds, former Boston police officer, now a member of the Harvester Taskforce’s clean-up crew, sighed and opened the door to Larson’s office. The outer room was empty. Where was Ida? She was usually at her desk by now. Maybe she was taking it easy with her boss away.

Larson was in Freemont at the White Iris Pharmaceutical site, inventorying the drugs found there. There were several unknown ones that needed to be recorded, analyzed, and destroyed. The CDC would do most of that work with help from the DEA.

She poked her head into the conference room. Nada. That meant Rob was closeted in his office. She stared at the closed door. The last thing she wanted to do was deliver more bad news, but what choice did she have? Chad Markell, the Director of the FBI, had given her a job to do, and it wasn’t in her makeup to do anything half-assed. She was thorough, and in this case, she’d repeated the analysis three times. Beth knocked on the door.

“Come in,” Rob Halliday called.

Opening the door, she smiled at her immediate supervisor.

“Beth!” He looked up at her. “I was just going to call you. The hospital sent over the toxicology report on Hamilton. With the body destroyed, they didn’t have a lot left to work with. Not sure exactly what he was being treated for, but he had topiramate, ziprasidone, alprazolam, lisinopril, among other drugs in his system, including the vaccine antibodies Julie provided. The man must’ve been a walking time bomb.”

“Speaking of bombs, I got the report on the TNT.”

“I’ve got information for you, too, but go first. Don’t leave me hanging.”

The former Boston police officer, now seconded temporarily to the FBI as she’d been, set aside the report he’d been reading to give her his full attention.

That’s it. Stay safe and don’t forget to check out the other Tuesday Tales.

Tuesday Tales: From the Word BUG

NEW TT BADGEJune slips into July and things don’t look a whole lot different, do they? Welcome to this week’s edition of Tuesday Tales, the weekly blog that lets you crawl inside my head and that of other select writers for a while.

This week, I’m posting from Buck’s Fizz, my novella. Enjoy!

Lance lifted the child up. She put her little arms around him and kissed his cheek, melting the ice around my heart. She turned toward us and smiled.

“This is my Daddy, I’m Ruby, and that’s Lila. She’s my nanny. Who are you?”

Lance laughed. “Leave it to the kid to break the ice. Lila, Ruby, meet Suzy and the Silvertones, tonight’s entertainment at the Tomcat.”

Ruby grinned and waved while the woman’s perfectly curved eyebrows disappeared under her brown bangs, her eyes open wide, but she didn’t say a thing.

Lance must’ve understood her unspoken question.

“A little going away present from Maureen.” He shook his head, indicating Ruby, still in his arms, whose interest had shifted from us to a butterfly flitting around the flowers planted in the white iron planter next to the garage door. “I’ll explain later. In the meantime, they’ll be staying in the guest wing. You don’t have to wait on them; just show them where everything is, and they can fend for themselves. This is Becky, Elise, Rachel, and Jess.”

Something about the way he said Jess bugged me, as if he really had figured out who I was and was biding his time. If that were the case, I’d better make sure not to be alone with him anytime soon.

“Welcome to Cloverdale Ranch. Mister and Mrs. Collins are in Europe for another week, visiting their daughter and their new grandson.”

Well, that confirmed it. This was my Lance—or rather Sable’s. So should I fess up to the truth or just try to bluff my way through it?

“The staff’s on holidays,” the woman continued, “but I’m sure you’ll be fine. The pool’s around back, and you look like you could use a dip. I’ll show you to your rooms, and then get everybody something cool to drink.”

“Daddy, come see me swim,” Ruby ordered, as only an indulged child can, and slithered down his body, my own heating at the thought of doing the same.

“I can only stay a short time now, pumpkin, but I’ll watch you while Lila shows our guests to their rooms.”

The emphasis on the word guest proved we were hardly that. More likely, he considered us PITA—pains in the ass—and only his daughter’s presence stopped him from saying so. He probably had a separate but equally unflattering category just for me.

That’s it. Stay safe and don’t forget to check out the other Tuesday Tales.