Mistress of Death: Death Hunter Series Book 4
Mistress of Death: Death Hunter Series Book 4
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A deadly homecoming awaits...
Ghost hunter Shane Ryan has returned to 125 Berkley Street, his home in Nashua, New Hampshire. Working with old friends and new allies, he continues his investigation of the robberies and deaths involving haunted items, hellbent on discovering who’s responsible for these sinister crimes.
But his investigation turns up more than he bargained for when he discovers a sinister presence lurking near a crime scene. Miriam Shaw, the ghost of a woman murdered by her lover, has been unleashed. Once a beautiful, free-spirited woman, Miriam still exerts a seductive power over weak-willed men…
As this vengeful wraith and her followers spill innocent blood in Nashua, Shane finds himself locked in a deadly game of cat and mouse with a shadowy enemy. The man behind the robberies is determined to put an end to Shane’s meddling, by any means necessary.
Forced to battle an army of killers, Shane must draw upon every shred of courage and skill he possesses. But even if he can survive this all-out assault, will he be strong enough to resist the lure of Miriam, and her siren-song?
Chapter 1: On the Slab
The body on the slab was cold.
Ed White rubbed his eyes, yawned, and wondered why he had to be on the weekend shift.
Because I’m the low man on the totem pole, that’s why, he answered himself. He glanced at the victim, a young Latino man of around twenty years of age. There was no identification sent along with the body; at least, none that Ed knew of.
Why would the cops want to make my life easier? Of course, they wouldn’t.
He shook his head. “What’s your name, my friend?”
The corpse, not surprisingly, didn’t answer.
Ed walked over to the body and glanced down at it. There were three bullet holes in the chest, all in the area of the heart. “Looks like you died quick. Good for you. Not many people are that lucky. Tell me, were you robbed? Is that why your ID isn’t here? Hm?”
Ed shook his head, turned, and went back to the items that had been sent along by the police.
Some spare change, a comb, a prophylactic, a love note in Spanish, and a small lunch bag.
“What, were you on your way to work?” Ed asked over his shoulder. “What’d you pack tonight, huh?”
Unzipping the bag, Ed smelled fried rice and saw a package of chocolate Hostess cupcakes, a bottle of water, and a pair of sunglasses.
Ed frowned. The sunglasses were a pale green, and they looked vintage, the kind that his girlfriend liked to wear when she dragged him out of the house on his one day off. “Buddy, I’m not judging or anything, but these are women’s sunglasses. Did you know that?”
Ed shrugged, reached in, picked the glasses up, and was surprised at how cold they were. He set them down on the counter then took out the other items, none of which were as cold as the glasses.
His attention kept returning to the sunglasses, and after a few minutes of trying to catalog the various items, Ed gave up the effort.
Instead, he focused his attention solely upon the glasses. He reached out and touched them. A shiver raced through him, and he smiled. There was an almost sensuous nature to the sunglasses. He closed his eyes and enjoyed the cold radiating from them.
“You should take them home.”
Ed’s eyes snapped open, and he looked around.
It had been a woman’s voice he had heard, but despite that obvious fact, he still looked down at the corpse on the slab, his heart pounding with abject fear.
Ed licked his lips nervously and glanced around. The sunglasses almost throbbed in his hands. He went to set them back down, but as his hand drew near to the surface of the counter, he stopped.
Why? he asked himself, staring at the sunglasses. I don’t need to put them down. What’s going to happen to them, huh? They’ll be put in storage with the rest of his effects until a relative or friend comes to pick them up. And what then? Off they go with no one to care for them.
Ed blinked and looked down at the sunglasses in his hands.
“With no one to care for them,” he murmured aloud. “What if no one claims them?” He already knew the answer. “Then they get auctioned off. Or destroyed. But that takes years. Too long. I can’t wait.”
“No,” the female voice whispered. “No, you can’t wait.”
He shook his head and carried the sunglasses away from the corpse. Ed went into the small office that he shared with everyone else who worked at the coroner’s office and dug his lunchbox out of a cubbyhole. Despite no one being with him, Ed still gave a furtive glance around the morgue, just to be absolutely positive.
He hadn’t stolen anything before because getting caught meant automatic termination. No questions asked.
And there wasn’t anything to steal before, he thought, placing the sunglasses gently into the lunchbox. No, not a damned thing to steal at all.
Ed smiled, zipped the lunchbox closed, and returned to the body on the slab.
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