Diana Orgain | Diana Orgain - Part 2

Double Trouble (Maternal Instincts Mystery Series: Book Twelve) Sneak Peek – Chapter One pt 2

Did you miss Chapter One part One? From Double Trouble  Chapter One Continued… I frowned. “It was in dire need of organization. I think it hadn’t been done in a whole year.” “A year,” said Paula, overenunciating the words. “What happened a year ago?” Oooooooh. I pushed the cart forward a few steps, feeling sheepish. “Okay, so maybe I go into nesting mode in the last month of a pregnancy. Is that a crime? Should we call a detective?” Paula’s serious expression wavered, and she suppressed a giggle. “You are a detective. Wait—you don’t have any cases on your plate right now, do you?” I shook my head. “No. No way. The next few months are going to be crazy busy, and I can’t take on any new cases. I told Galigani that already. He agrees.  I deserve a little maternity leave.” Paula stood in front of the cart, her arms crossed. “Exactly! That’s what I’m saying. You don’t need to vacuum again—give yourself a break. Remember how you ended up on bedrest for the last week of your pregnancy with Laurie?” With a scowl, I protested, “That was preeclampsia! It had absolutely nothing to do with overexerting myself nesting.” She studied me skeptically. “In fact,” I added, “Dr. Greene told me that staying active might even help me avoid preeclampsia bedrest.” “You and your facts.” She turned away from me to riffle through another rack of clearance items. “But I’m still not going to let you cut short our girls’ day so you can go vacuum. We have a party to plan!” I fell silent, glancing up at...

4 Sleuths & A Bachelorette ~ A Killer Foursome Mystery ~ Preview of Chapter Four Continued!

From 4 Sleuths & a Bachelorette  Did you miss Chapter One? Did you miss Chapter Two? Did you miss Chapter Three? Did you miss part one of Chapter Four? Chapter Four Continued…      “Too bad. With your Sophia Loren looks and height, I could make you a star—your very own baloney commercial.”      “Baloney?” Rock boomed before I had time to process the processed meat offer. “You been holding out on me, Zelda?”      “Like I told you, Rock, the Oscar Mayer gig doesn’t showcase all of your talents.”      “Does too. I went to Higgly Piggly and saw Babette passing out wieners with her hands.”      “Sure, and those wieners are heated. You wanna get a burn?” She blew out a mouthful of smoke to emphasize her point.      Rock retracted his hands in horror, then slipped his glove back on.      Zelda pointed her cigarette at him. “I didn’t think so. Now, I didn’t tell you this before because I didn’t want to get your hopes up, but I’m trying to negotiate you a deal with Ball Park Franks. They sell ’em cold in the package, so there’s no risk to your hands. And the best part is, you can flex your biceps when you tell customers the slogan about how they plump when you cook ’em.”      Rock’s eyes gleamed like the sheen on a hot dog fresh off the grill. “Heeeyyy, I see where you’re going with this. I could piggyback off the franks deal to break into bicep modeling.”      I smirked. Based on Rock’s...

4 Sleuths & A Bachelorette ~ A Killer Foursome Mystery ~ Preview of Chapter Four!

From 4 Sleuths & a Bachelorette  Did you miss Chapter One? Did you miss Chapter Two? Did you miss part one of Chapter Three? Chapter Four Franki      “Here we are, lady.” The cab driver eyed me in the rearview mirror. “It ain’t the Ritz.”      I could see that. The hotel was maybe a half a Trip Advisor star above the level of rooms by the hour. I climbed from the backseat with my charcoal overnight bag and handed the driver two twenties. “Keep the change.”      “Thanks.” He removed the cigar from his mouth. “Now I got a tip for you—don’t spend the night in this dump.” The tires squealed as he peeled out of the lot.      “And people say New Yorkers aren’t friendly.” I pulled up the handle of my bag and wheeled it into the lobby, which reeked of cheap cologne and pepperoni. As I approached the reception desk, a fifty-something male with thinning hair and a name tag that said Mo put a half-eaten Hot Pocket on the counter and wiped tomato sauce on his gray uniform.      “I’m Franki Amato. I’ve got a reservation for the weekend.”      He eyed the computer. “I don’t got anyone by that name. You sure you’re in the right place?”      I’d been asking myself that very thing since the cab sped off. “Our research assistant at Private Chicks made the reservation, so it could be under my full name, Francesca Lucia Amato.”      “Private Chicks?” His gaze meandered from my face to my chest. “That a men’s...

4 Sleuths & A Bachelorette ~ A Killer Foursome Mystery ~ Preview of Chapter Three Continued!

From 4 Sleuths & a Bachelorette  Did you miss Chapter One? Did you miss Chapter Two? Did you miss part one of Chapter Three? Chapter Three Continued…      “Anyway…” Chelsea ignored my question. It was very difficult having a conversation where you were being ignored. “Take a look at the food. The cake is a scream. Babette will love it,” she said in a voice that implied that she didn’t love it. “And those balloons are so…so fun.”      I spoke up in support of whoever brought them because they seemed like a kindred spirit. “I like the balloons and cake.”      The woman continued to act as if I hadn’t spoken. “I’m sure you all did the best you could on such short notice.” She patted my arm. “Anyway, Charlie…the groom, is around here somewhere. I should introduce you to my family to make you feel more welcome.” She stared into the dim recesses and pointed out a woman reading. “That’s my sister.”      The woman seemed to know we were talking about her and looked up in annoyance. She had thick, black-framed glasses and a hairstyle that screamed Velma from Scooby-Doo. An angry Velma, it appeared, as she scowled before turning back to the book. Now I knew the names of three people—Chelsea, Charlie, and their sister, Charlene—whose name I recalled from the guest list. It seemed like a win, but I kept it to myself.      “And who are the others…” I looked around, but Chelsea had left me for the bar.      What just happened? Chelsea had passive-aggressive down...

4 Sleuths & A Bachelorette ~ A Killer Foursome Mystery ~ Preview of Chapter Three!

From 4 Sleuths & a Bachelorette  Did you miss Chapter One? Did you miss Chapter Two? Chapter Three Merry      I’d seen nicer places in third-world countries. The hotel’s party room looked like it was designed by an unhinged decorator who thought despair was a solid color scheme for a room that hosted happy events like wedding receptions.      The biggest difference between this place and the Chechen dive I frequented back in my spy days was that the furniture was largely intact, and it wasn’t being run by goats. Although I must say that I did know one or two competent goats back in the day, including Baaaaart, who could make a pretty mean mai tai—as long as you didn’t mind that instead of the usual umbrella with a cherry, you got a spent bullet casing on a twig.      I was still wandering around the dim, smelly room, repeatedly adjusting a fake fireplace that sagged against a wall and consulting my clipboard with the guest list without the faintest idea what I was supposed to be doing.      Why was I handling the guest list? I should’ve been the last person to pick. Even I wouldn’t have picked me. I could organize a camping checklist and, back in the day, a spreadsheet of hidden nukes in Moldova. But a list of women I’d never met for a bachelorette party where I had a passing friendship with the bride-to-be?      Okay, I did know her a bit better than that. Babette and I had worked together. My name is Merry Wrath, and I’m...