Dying for a Date

Dying for a Date by Cindy Sample

Book: Dying for a Date by Cindy Sample Read Free Book Online
Authors: Cindy Sample
restaurant before anything happened. He could be totally unaware of the incident. This topic needed to be discussed with Detective Hunter.
    I gazed at the clock. Not enough time. The detective would have to be contacted later. It was almost eleven-thirty and I still hadn't made it into the shower. That meant arriving at the restaurant with no makeup and bed hair. I flew up the stairs into my bedroom, slipped on a pair of khaki slacks and a coral blouse that bore two tiny spots on the front, both of which my mother would undoubtedly notice.
    My hair resembled Ben's, but with an additional twenty cowlicks. The silver hairs threading their way through my copper mop seemed to be cloning one another. I reached into my closet and smashed an ivory straw hat on my head. My flat hat hair couldn't be helped.
    If our pastor was his usual loquacious self the service would run over. My mother normally stayed afterwards to glean any new gossip such as job transfers, which could mean a potential listing. With a little luck, I would get to the Cozy Apple Cafe before she did.
    As luck or my lack of it would have it, I hit every red light on the drive to the Apple Hill area east of Placerville. Evidently God was not happy about my missing church this morning and was punishing me accordingly. My mother's white Chrysler Le Baron, a testament to her fastidiousness, gleamed in the parking lot. I pulled into the slot next to her car.
    I jogged across the asphalt parking lot and entered the restaurant. Mother was seated in a cracked red naugahyde booth not far from the cash register, dressed in a rose knit suit that complemented her platinum coloring. I smiled as I watched her pore over every inch of the large glossy menu, matching rose-colored reading glasses balanced on her straight nose. She was undeniably the most annoying woman on earth but...she was my mother.
    "Church must have gotten out early.” I air kissed her cheek then slid into the opposite side of the booth.
    She looked up from the menu and frowned. “What's the matter with your hair?"
    Well hello to you too. I chose to ignore her comment. A bad hair day was the least of my concerns.
    "How was the service? Did you hear any good gossip?” That should occupy her until I decided what to order from the extensive menu. Almost twenty-four hours had passed since anything substantial entered and remained in my stomach.
    Should I continue to watch my diet or just say screw it? The cafe specialized in six different versions of eggs benedict and my favorite was a poached egg sitting on a slice of tomato perched on a crab cake, drenched with a creamy Bearnaise sauce. Breakfast didn't come much more fattening than that, unless I added bacon and fried potatoes on the side.
    Engrossed in the bounty of benedicts, I missed her next question.
    "Laurel, did you hear me?” Her glare was magnified fourfold by the reading glasses.
    "Sorry.” I slapped the menu shut. “What did you say?"
    "All the talk at church today was about the accident at the River Inn last night. They said a man fell in the river but he had drowned by the time the rescue workers could pull him out. The Parkers were dining there and saw the whole thing. Hugh Parker said the police roped off the patio with crime scene tape. Did you hear or see something while you were there?"
    She looked at me with anticipation, probably hoping I would have first hand knowledge she could share with her cronies.
    Once she heard my “up close and personal” first hand information, I doubted she would want to share it with anyone. Fortunately our conversation was interrupted by the arrival of the waitress with a pot of coffee. More caffeine was needed before I could deal with my mother's questions. I dumped in one packet of sugar then grabbed a second one. This breakfast required extra carbs to get me through the impending inquisition.
    "Didn't you notice anything at all? And you haven't even mentioned how your date went."
    I gazed at the six-tier

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