ALIEN SHIFTER ROMANCE: Alien Tigers - The Complete Series (Alien Invasion Abduction Shapeshifter Romance) (Paranormal Science Fiction Fantasy Anthologies & Short reads) (197 page)

BOOK: ALIEN SHIFTER ROMANCE: Alien Tigers - The Complete Series (Alien Invasion Abduction Shapeshifter Romance) (Paranormal Science Fiction Fantasy Anthologies & Short reads)
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Chapter 16

 

While Mike went to visit with Rollie Parker, Stina locked up her business and took Gloria to her home, where she told her friend to bolt the door. Then she went to the newspaper office to visit with Moya in the hope that she could get him to admit that Lars had attacked him.

Once she was in his office, Stina sat down in the chair beside his desk to talk to him.


Vat
can I do for you, Stina,” he asked.

“You’re like a brother to me, Moya,” she started off, “so I hope you’ll understand what I’m going to do. When you were injured and came to our house so Elise could take care of you, I heard you talking one night. I know that Lars is the one who attacked you with the limb, but I don’t understand why. Was it just because you wanted to court Elise?”

For several seconds, Moya simply stared at her. Then apparently realizing there was no need to lie, he said, “
Dat vas
a big part of it. He
vanted
me
avay
from her. But I know
someting
else, too.”

“What? That he beat up Gloria Scott? Or is it something else?”

“He’s
de von
who did
dat
? No, it
vas
someting
else. He is getting paid to cause the lumber business trouble. It isn’t
yust
accidents. It’s
udder tings
, too. Tools missing, trees falling
de
wrong
vay
,
tings
like
dat
. If anybody tells him they’re going to tell
Yared
Coleman,
dey
have an accident.”

“Is that what happened with you? Did you want to tell Jared?”


Ja
.”

“I’m going to tell Mike. Bridget is going to print an article someday without him knowing when, and she’s going to let all of this come out. Mike says that Lars won’t be able to do anything about it, because everybody will know it was him.”

***

That night, Mike took Stina with him to the doctor’s office, where he lived in the back.

“Could we talk to you, Dr. Frey?” Mike asked politely as they stood outside the door to his office.

“Come in,” Dr. Frey replied, stepping out of the way so Stina then Mike could enter. “Come. We’ll sit in my parlor.”

They wandered into the back of the office, and Stina marveled at the elaborate Victorian furniture. She didn’t have time to dwell on it, however, because Mike led her to the brocade-covered sofa and sat down with her before he began his conversation with the doctor.

“I know that you don’t believe Rollie Parker had an accident. Can you tell me why?”

“Besides the nature of his injuries, he was quite evasive when I questioned him about how he got hurt. He also refused to tell me why he was working at the lumberyard alone. Why would he do that if he wasn’t protecting somebody? Everybody knows that Harris insists that at least two people work together in case there’s an accident.”

“I didn’t know that,” Mike said. “We suspect Lars Olson of having a hand in all of the injuries sustained here lately. He’s been threatening us, and we’re trying to put him behind bars. Would you collaborate with us on talking to the sheriff?”

“I will absolutely collaborate with you, because he’s the only person who was around after all of the so-called accidents. Just let me know when you’re going to see Douglas, and I’ll join you. I can’t wait to get that man in jail for murder.”

“Murder?” Stina repeated, stunned by his statement.

“Yes,” the doctor explained. “Gunther Jansen died this afternoon. He lost a lot of blood, but the worst thing was the infection that set in. Douglas will
have
to listen to us now. If he doesn’t, I’m sure the regional marshal will be interested in all of this.”

“We can’t let any of this information come out yet,” Mike warned. “It all has to remain with the three of us and Bridget until tomorrow morning. Harris is in town right now, and I have every intention of bringing
him
to justice, too. He’s as corrupt as they come. In fact, I have good information that he was behind everything Lars did. I want this town out of Harris’ hands and in the hands of the workers. Let
them
own the town, just like
I
plan to own the newspaper.”

***

Early the next morning Moya, Rollie Parker, Gloria Scott, Mike, Stina, Bridget and Dr. Frey went one or two at a time into the sheriff’s office and waited until all of them had assembled.

Although Sheriff Douglas tried to get Stina and Gloria to tell him why they were there, they refused. His questions became more desperate with each person who entered the building, until all seven of them stood before the sheriff’s face told Stina everything she needed to know. He knew why they were there, and everything that had happened was about to come to light.

“What’s going on here?” he demanded.

“I think you know,” Mike said. “We’re here to get justice. You need to go arrest Lars Olson.”

“For what?”

“For the murder of Gunther Jansen to begin with,” Dr. Frey said. “I’m here on his behalf.”

Sheriff Douglas’ mouth dropped open as though he was going to speak, but Moya stopped him, saying, “And I’m here to press charges against him for assault.”

“I am, too,” Rollie said.

The sheriff’s face paled when Gloria added, “Me, too. And because
you
are forcing the hookers to pay you money to work here.”

“Why are the rest of you here?” Sheriff Douglas asked.

“Bridget is here to take notes for an article in the newspaper,” Mike explained. Stina’s here because she heard Elise and Moya talking about what happened to Moya. I’m here because I want the newspaper. Two more people should be here in a few minutes. It was just taking them a little longer than they thought.”

“We’re here now,” Jared said as he and Harris walked into the building.

“What is this?” Harris wanted to know.

“You’re going to fire your sheriff and hire me as sheriff,” Jared replied.

“Why would I do that?”

“Because,” Mike announced, “we all know that you’re behind the injuries, deaths and other things going on around here. We know that you hired Lars Olson to do your dirty work. One of two things is going to happen. Either you’re going to make Jared the sheriff and turn the town over to its citizens, or we’re going to the regional marshal. It’s your choice.”

“That’s blackmail.”

“No, it’s a choice you get to make. Blackmail would be my telling you to hand over the newspaper to me without any reimbursement from me, or I’ll send you to jail for corruption. I’m not going to do that, though. I’m going to pay you for the newspaper.”

“All right, all right. Douglas,” Harris said, “take off your badge and give it to Coleman.” He turned toward Mike. “Are you happy now?”

No one spoke again until after Jared pinned on the badge and put Douglas in a cell for his role in everything. Then Jared said, “My second act as sheriff is to deputize Mike. Make sure everybody stays here, Mike. I’m going to get Olson.”

They all sat in the sheriff’s office, silent or talking quietly among themselves until Jared returned about a half an hour later with Lars in handcuffs.

When Lars saw everyone sitting there, his face paled.


You
!” he shouted at Mike as Jared put him in a separate cell than Douglas. “This is
your
fault.”

“No,” Mike replied, “it’s your fault. Jansen didn’t make it, and your story didn’t hold up. We have witnesses to attest to it, too.”

“By the way, Harris,” Jared said, grabbing the smaller, bald man’s upper arm, “you’re under arrest for corruption.”

Epilogue

 

Jared went to the marshal’s office and brought the man back to Forestville. Once all legal proceedings were started, Mike went to San Francisco to purchase the newspaper from Harris’ wife.

Finally, a month later, Mike sat down with Stina in her living room and said, “I have something to read to you, sweetheart. With Elise’s help, I wrote to your father a while back. This is the letter I received back from him. Elise translated it for me and wrote it down.

“Thank you for contacting me about your intentions. I never would have thought a man would go to such lengths given the distance between us. Yes, Mr. O’Riley. You have my blessing, and my wife’s, too.”

Tears already clouded Stina’s vision. This was it. She could hardly wait, but she knew she must be patient.

Mike dropped to his knee before her and took her hand in his. “That letter is why I didn’t ask you when I mentioned marriage the first time. I wanted a reply first. Now that I have it, I have to know.
Jag älskar dig
, Stina
Bengtson
,
Vill du gifta dig med mig
?”

The tears no longer stayed in her eyes. They streamed down her cheeks. Mike was wonderful. He had taken the time to learn how to say
I love you
and
Will you marry me
in Swedish. And he’d pronounced her last name correctly. That, more than anything else, showed her how much he loved her.

Barely able to get the words out, she croaked, “I love you, too, Mike. And, yes, I will absolutely marry you.”

THE END

 

BOOK: ALIEN SHIFTER ROMANCE: Alien Tigers - The Complete Series (Alien Invasion Abduction Shapeshifter Romance) (Paranormal Science Fiction Fantasy Anthologies & Short reads)
12.71Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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