This is the third installment of the story, Murder on Main Street. This installments is by Gloria Harchar. I have posted her bio then the story.
Gloria Harchar's bio:
Happily married to her husband who was her first date ever, she lives in a beautiful 1936 circa home. She has two Bachelors' of Science degrees: One in education and the other in accounting. She's had diverse jobs such as a neuropsychopharmacology lab technician, a Government Liaison Representative, an Internal Auditor, an English, Social Studies and Computer teacher for middle school students at an at-risk school in north Tulsa. All of her on-the-job experiences and life in general are great fodder for ideas! She loves to hike and to experience America from the back of a bicycle, and is hoping to cycle through Europe some day. Her philosophy is to listen, watch and live life to its fullest. You can find out more about her by visiting www.gloriaharchar.com.
Murder on Main Street-part 3
Tory sighed, glad to flip the welcome sign to Closed. It had been a long day.
As she tidied up, she glanced out the window. Several ladies were across the street with their heads together. Two glanced toward Tory's shop with a frown. It wasn't hard to guess they had her tried and found guilty. If it was up to them, she would be in the Oklahoma State Penitentiary.
Funny how many people had dropped by the teashop, folks who hadn’t visited until today. Not to buy, but to gawk at the primary suspect. Tory. The trouble had started with that obnoxious Detective Jamison. To think she had considered him cute!
The longer she stewed on Jamison and his veiled accusation, the angrier she became. Well, she wouldn’t depend on him to clear her name. She would do her own sleuthing. To find out how, she would visit The Book Worm. After locking the teashop, she walked toward the quaint establishment.
Fred Crawley, the bookstore owner, smiled when he saw her. "Hello, Miss Tory. Anything I can help you with?"
Releasing her breath, she relaxed, realizing he must not have heard the news. "Do you have any books on solving crimes?"
"You bet I do." He pointed Tory down an aisle. “Take your time. I’ll be in the back. Give a holler if you need help.”
“Thanks, Fred.“ She flipped through the pages of several volumes. Awhile later, just as she reached for another book, she heard the sound of shoe leather scraping against the wooden floor.
“Hello?” she called. Silence greeted her. Fine hairs on the nape of her neck rose. She looked, but didn’t see anybody.
Shrugging, she decided on The Detective’s Handbook.
The bookcase gave an ominous crack. Instinctively, she hurled out of the way of the teetering monstrosity. The seven-foot, half-ton bookcase fell with a crash, shaking the old oak floor.
The dust settled. A cold knot twisted in Tory's stomach. If she hadn't moved, she would be dead.
Mr. Crawley rushed toward her, his face pale. “Are you all right?”
“A little shaken, but I’m okay.”
“I’m so sorry. The wood rotted and I put a wedge under that leg to make the bookcase more level, but it must have wiggled loose.”
“Did you see anyone else come inside?”
“Nooo,” Fred said, rubbing his bald spot. “The bell rings when somebody comes in.”
Then she must have imagined hearing someone nearby. “I’ll buy this book, then call it a day.”
“I don’t blame you. You look plum wore out,” Fred replied.
Forget going to the movies with Barry. As she walked to her car, her knees wobbled. No, she would spend a quiet night reading -- which she did. In fact, she thoroughly enjoyed her studies.
The next morning, with the book's tips in mind, she decided to practice her sleuthing by scoping out the yard, then her neighborhood. After snooping around looking for footprints, she felt a little silly, though. She didn’t even know where to start with this investigating business. With a sigh, she slid into her car. An ominous jangle broke the silence, and for a second, Tory thought it was a baby‘s rattle. Then she glanced down at the floorboard. A rattlesnake.
The diamond-shaped head bobbed at her, forked tongue flicking. As the deadly reptile prepared to stick its fangs into her tender skin, she realized Mr. Richards had never been the target.
No. Somebody wanted to murder her.
The next installment of this six part story will be posted next Saturday so stay tuned.