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The Deadly Series Book 4
BY KATE PARKER
Everyone hides secrets. Some provoke murder.
Olivia Denis discovers her father kneeling over the body of a man…a man who supposedly drowned in the Channel years before. Olivia wants to ring for help, her father wants to hide the body, but a mysterious phone call brings Scotland Yard to the murder scene.
Olivia can’t stand by and let her maddening, disapproving father hang. To prove his innocence – and learn his secrets – she must work with a master spy. The search for clues takes Olivia to the continent and the Kent countryside, Hastings and London, pushing her deeper into the world of danger and deception.
As war between Germany and Britain stalks closer, the hunt for a Nazi collaborator intensifies. With a mounting death toll, Olivia knows she must unmask the killer or be the next to die.
I tried to make out what I was seeing in the branches. “What is it? A vine?” It didn’t look quite like one I’d seen before.
“A large antenna. The kind they use for shortwave.”
“Well, we now know Monsieur Eliot was a shortwave radio enthusiast.”
Adam walked forward, past the cottage and into the woods. The antenna was close to the house and rose a little above the tops of the trees. Even with the leaves off the trees, the silvery wire was hard to spot.
Using my boot to shove aside the unraked leaves, I found a cable that ran from the antenna, down a tree, and across a short distance to the cottage.
Adam returned and gestured toward the front door with his head. “Shall we?”
He didn’t need to ask me twice. My goal had always been the cottage. If Adam hadn’t spotted it, I would have missed the antenna. I walked up and knocked on the dark-stained door, relieved that I didn’t see any smoke coming from the chimney.
I waited on the single step, hoping no one would open the door while Adam walked around the side of the cottage.
When no one answered, I knocked a second time, and a third. As much as I wished to discover what Elise could tell me, I wanted to explore the house on my own. I was looking for a way to break in when the door opened.
I nearly fell off the step.
Adam stood in the doorway. “The back door was unlocked. No one is home.”
It took me a moment to slow my heartbeat and find my voice. “You scared the life out of me.”
He bared his teeth in a playfully fierce smile and stepped back into the house. I followed, shutting the front door behind me.
The old cottage had exposed beams and white plaster walls. The ground floor consisted of a small living room, a kitchen crowded by a scarred, solidly built table and chairs made by a farmer long ago, and a bedroom with a double bed covered by a colorful quilt. A fireplace between the drawing room and kitchen, cold and swept, was the only heat source.
I sniffed the air, but the only smell was the lingering odor of a horrible French pipe tobacco, a familiar stench. A brand favored by John Kenseth for all the years I knew him.
We walked up the steep, narrow stairs to the upper story tucked under the eaves. A large shortwave radio sat on a sturdy table like the one in the kitchen. Stacks of papers with notes surrounded the machine, and a bookcase nearby held maps and charts and more stacks of papers. I started to look over the papers and found sketches and maps drawn in a familiar hand. John Kenseth’s.
Just inside the window facing the sea was a large telescope. An oil lamp sat behind the only chair on a small table all its own.
An oil lamp. Then how…
As if Adam read my mind, he said, “There’s a small generator out back. The only thing it seems to run is the radio. A tidy, compact system. Was John Kenseth mechanically inclined?”
I ran my mind over the memories of a man I’d known since childhood but hadn’t really thought about. “Yes, I suppose he was.”
“And being a sailor, he’d have been able to read these charts.” Adam peered through the telescope. “Great view of the ships in the Channel. Come and look.”
I peered into the telescope, but all I focused on was the white cliffs across the Channel. Britain. Home. Where my father was missing.
Then I realized some of the papers spread out on the table were maritime charts, but I couldn’t tell exactly which part of the Channel they mapped.
Adam looked over the papers I’d spread on the table and said, “He had a lot of artistic talent, too. Look at these maps he drew.”
“He used to draw silly things that made me laugh. Since I liked to draw, too, I recognized how much talent he had. My father shrugged off his drawings, and mine, as foolish.”
At that moment, we heard someone come in the front door. Adam put a finger to his lips. I shifted my weight and a board squeaked, giving us away. Light footsteps ran up the stairs. “Gaspard? Is it really you?”
Kate Parker grew up in Washington, D C, spent several years along the Carolina coast, and now finds herself in the Colorado front range. All the time, she has been busy plotting to spend more time in her favorite city, London, where her books are set. So far, she hasn’t been able to build a time machine, so she has to visit historical sites and books to immerse herself in the details of life in bygone days.
2019 will see the publication of her fourth Deadly Series book, Deadly Deception, as well as a novella, The Mystery at Chadwick House. Chadwick House will both be for sale at the usual retailers plus given away to the readers of her newsletter. It is her first contemporary mystery. Later in the year, Kate plans on publishing the second Milliner Mystery. Her daughter has informed her this year she will also become the servant of a large, exuberant dog.
Links to Kate’s website, blog, books, etc.
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