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Authors: Vanessa Devereaux

Last First Kiss

BOOK: Last First Kiss
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Evernight Publishing

 

www.evernightpublishing.com

 

 

 

Copyright© 2012 Vanessa Devereaux

 

 

ISBN: 978-1-77130-025-4

 

Cover Artist: Sour Cherry Designs

 

Editor: Karyn White

 

 

 

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

 

 

WARNING: The unauthorized reproduction or distribution of this copyrighted work is illegal.  No part of this book may be used or reproduced electronically or in print without written permission, except in the case of brief quotations embodied in reviews.

 

This is a work of fiction. All names, characters, and places are fictitious. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, organizations, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

 

 

 

DEDICATION

 

For Auntie Eileen

 

I’d also like to say a thank you to Sue, my critique partner, for her help with this story.

 

 

 

LAST FIRST KISS

 

Vanessa Devereaux

 

Copyright © 2012

 

 

 

Prologue

 

Greenville
 

Two Weeks
Ago

 

He spotted the son of a bitch through the gap where the lace curtains didn’t quite meet. He tapped the steering wheel waiting for the sun to go down when he’d be less noticeable. It was all her fault that they were in this predicament. As always, he was the one having to put the matter right
. She never got her nose dirty
,
and he doubted she’d approve of what he was about to do
;
but neither of them had a choice.

He lit a ciga
rette and inhaled hoping the nicotine
,
as always
,
would calm him
.

He’d done a lot of crappy and illegal things in hi
s life before
,
but killing a man was a first. Shit, he’d never thought about resorting to that no matter how tempting it had sometimes
be
en. He inhaled again, seeing his soon to be victim
walk to the window and look out
,
almost as if he knew so
meone was outside lurking.

Not that he’d give him credit for being clairvoyant or anything. When you blackmailed people you could
n’t
expect them
not to get pissed off with
you.

He stubbed out the cigarette and took a deep breath while glancing at the passenger seat.
As dusk set in,
t
he light in the parking lot of the motel came on  and illuminated the knife.
He pulled on the latex gloves he’d taken from the salon
,
so
there’d
be
no
trace of his fingerprints in the room or on the weapon
. He snapped them over his wrist, grabbed
the knife and kept it well hidden inside his
jacket. He got out of the car and
made his way to room thirty-one
.

He looked around to m
ake su
re no one could recognize him being at the
s
cene of the crime. He knocked on the door.

“So you finally decided to
pay up,” he said opening
it
. “You’d better come in.”

He turned
,
and he followed him inside the room where NCIS Los A
ngeles was playing on the TV. A
bucket of fried chicken sat on the table next to a bottle of unopened beer. 

“I hope you got the amount I asked for.

“Oh yeah,” he said
,
pulling out th
e knife. “I think you’ll find this is everything you deserve.”

Before he could turn
,
he slammed the knife into his back watching him slump to the ground. Son of a bitch got exactly what he was asking for.

He
grabbed both the bucket of chicken and bottle of beer and headed outside.

Someone would
take the blame for this
,
but wh
o cared as long a
s it wasn’t him.

 

 

 

Chapter One

 

“Emily Richardson, you’re under arrest for the murder of Michael Ambrose. You
have the right to remain silent
,
and
you have the right…”

Bile rose from Wade’s stomach
up into
the back of his throat where
he truly believe
d
it would choke him. He coughed
,
hoping that would c
lear it
,
but instead
more hot acid invaded
his mouth
.

This can’t
possibly be happening
.
I must be dreamin
g…or worse yet, having a
nightmare. 

Wade wanted to
punch the police officer in the jaw for even suggesting this s
weet seventy-
two-year-
old was guilty of anything more than…No,
there was nothing that Emily could be
guilt
y of other than maybe leaving
her
car runn
ing in the no park zone
while she
hopped out to return
her library books
. She’d always been a pillar of
the
Greenville
community
,
and Wade still believed
to this day that was true. Even though he’d been away for close to eight years and hadn’t seen her for a
while, he knew deep in his heart she was a good person incapable of hurting anyone
.
However, as a
former co
p himself, Wade knew Officer Albright
was just
following orders and
doing his job.

“Could I take
two pies out of the oven before we leave?” Emily’s request had
jarred Wade
out of his current train of tho
ught. Albright
sm
ile
d
and then looked over at him
before raising
his eyebrows.
It was almost as if he was asking Wade’s opinion about whether or not he should
let her go about he
r busines
s
before formally taking her in.

Wade tilted his head forward.
Not
quite a nod
,
but an
almost
secret code between a form
er and current lawman. He guessed Albright
was finding this whole situation
just as uncomfortable and bizarre as he was.

“Okay, Emily
,
you go ahead
and do what you have to. We
have plenty of ti
m
e, so don’t go rushing
around working
yourself and have a stroke or something,”
said A
lbright. He took off his hat,
scratched his head
,
and glanced over at Wade again.

“Thank you so much,” sa
id Emily. She took
a pair of oven mitts
off the hook by
the
window
and walked o
ver to the oven while she pulled open the door.

Wade had smelled those huckleberry pies baking the minute he’d stepped through the door of the
bed and breakfast. The aroma had brought back a flood of happy memories
from
his childhood
. Now actually seeing Emily get
the
m from the oven a
nd place the two
plates
on the cou
ntertop made his mouth water
.

“They always were your favorites, weren’t they
,
Wade?”
asked Emily.

Had she seen him take a deep breath to take in more of that wond
erful sme
ll? Had he without realizing it also licked his lips
?

“They sure were
. A
long with the c
ream from the Nickelsons

farm. You could stand a spoon upright in that because it was so thick,”
said Wade.

“If they weren’t for the guests I’d let you have a slice
,
both of you boys,” said Emil
y pointing toward Wade and then Albright.

When
you were as old as Emily you got to call guys their
age
b
oys.

“I might have to come back and eat here with my wife because
they s
mell and look mighty fine,” said Albright taking a few steps forward to take a closer look.

“They’re the best in
Wyoming
,” said Wade. “All Emily’s c
ooking makes a man’s legs weak. She could have any man
she wanted just by cooking him one of her
meal
s
.”

Wade winked at her.
She winked back.

“He’s always had a wonderful appetite
ever
since he was a young boy. He used to sit over on
that table and eat a dozen chocolate chip
cookies at a time,” Emily told Albright.

Wade felt himself blush
ing
. Yeah, he’d been a gr
eedy little bugger
back then.


Now if I could just let Julie
who works at reception know what’s happening and that I’ll be leaving soon, we’ll be all set,” said Emily. She took her apron off and hung it on a peg by the door.

Both Wade and Albright
followed her out of the kitchen and into the reception area. This was Wade’s first time back at
the Mountainview B and B since
he’d returned from
Cheyenne
six
months ago. He’d stopped by
once
to le
t Emily know that he
was
back living in
Greenville
,
and
to tell her
that he’d come by again
and have dinner with her one night. He
hadn’t actually
got
ten
around to it
,
which suddenly made him feel
guilty that it
hadn’t been a priority. After all, the lady was almost like family to him and his dad.

BOOK: Last First Kiss
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