I'm sharing another snippet from the 2nd Alex O'Hara mystery novel, The Case of the Fabulous Fiancé. Alex is a P.I. in the small Lake Michigan resort town near Grand Rapids. Last time, the missing Nick (whom we've heard about since the beginning) has returned after 2 months. Alex is proud of herself for not yelling at him.
Some changes were made to the original.
Be cool now, I reminded myself.
“How the hell did you get in?” someone yelled. I guess it was me since Nick’s mouth didn’t move, and the office was deserted. I slammed my fist on the desk. “Where the hell have you been?”
He started to grin, that sexy, turn-my-insides-to-mush grin. “Careful now, Lexie, you’ll break your baby finger.” Like you did last time. He had the good grace, and sense of self-preservation, not to say that out loud. But I knew what he was thinking.
And now a bit more:
I jumped to my feet, knocking my padded leather chair into the barrister’s bookcase. He straightened away from the doorway and sauntered into my office, my sanctuary. It was after seven. Pete had left at five as usual. Darkness had descended long ago. Even though my office had no windows, from where I sat with the door open I could see through the outer office with its window to the outside. Though the blinds were closed, the streetlight shone through. I always hated February. Even though it was the shortest month, it was also the dreariest and the darkest. And it looked like March was starting out the same.
I should have seen Nick walk in. Or at least heard him open the outside door. He always did have the ability to move quietly—silently, in fact. And he knew the security code. I didn’t change it after he left in the hope that he’d see it as a welcome. Fool. I’d made it too easy for him.
The bigger question, rather than how he got in, was why. Why now, after so much time had passed?
She’s at it again. Alex O’Hara just can’t say no to a new investigation. What do a 45-year-old boyfriend, a deadbeat dad, and a teenage runaway have in common? All new cases. With no receptionist, phone and internet problems, and her own boyfriend in the wind, Alex has no idea how she’ll manage. But the question for the past three months is why did Nick disappear. Is this the end of O’Hara & Palzetti?