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Authors: Tonya Kappes

Tags: #Literature & Fiction, #Humor & Satire, #Humorous, #Mystery; Thriller & Suspense, #Mystery, #Cozy, #Supernatural, #Women Sleuths, #General Humor

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An Olivia Davis Paranormal Mystery

Book One

Tonya Kappes

Also by Tonya Kappes


Carpe Bead ‘em

Something Spooky This Way Comes

Believe Christmas Anthology

The Tricked-Out Toolbox~Promotional and Marketing Tools Every Writer Needs


Grandberry Falls Series

The Ladybug Jinx

Happy New Life (fall 2011)

Never Tell Your Dreams Before Breakfast (spring 2012)


Olivia Davis Paranormal Mystery Series



This book is dedicated to my boys, Eddy, Jack, Austin, Brady,

Charlie and Scooter.



To all my readers, you keep me going with all your reader mail, Twittering, and Facebook Messages. Without you, my dreams would’ve never come true. Thank you!

This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events, locales, or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental. All rights reserved. No part of this publication can be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, without the permission in writing from the author or publisher.

Edition: August 2011

Copyright © 2011 by Tonya Kappes

All rights reserved.

Cover art designed by Laura Morrigan


What the critics are saying about Tonya Kappes’ books:

“Humorous, fresh and fun, Carpe Bead ‘Em is not to be missed!” Bestselling author, Jane Porter. Author of Lifetime movie, Flirting With Forty

“Carpe Bead 'Em delivers!   Tonya Kappes strings together the perfect blend of family, friends, and fun.” Author Misa Ramirez, Lola Cruz Mysteries

“Fun, fresh, and flirty, Carpe Bead ’Em is the perfect read on a hot summer day. Tonya Kappes’ voice shines in her debut novel.” Author Heather Webber, Nina Quinn Mysteries

Fun and fresh, this novel is a great read about finding what's important and hanging onto it. With witty dialogue and a fast-paced storyline involving unique characters, it will keep you turning the pages for more.”

I really enjoyed this book. I even stayed up way past my bedtime to finish it. It was a well written book with an interesting story line. Looved Hallie, Aunt Grace and all of Hallie's friends. Having been transplanted from Chicago to a much smaller town not knowing anyone I could totally relate.”

“Carpe Bead'em is fun with a capital F. It's sad, funny, inspiring, quirky, and great chick lit! It shows that you never know what's round the corner, and anything's possible if you just take a chance on life! Perfect summer reading.”

“Ms Kappes pulls some of the best elements of women's fiction and chick-lit and yes, there are quirky characters, lessons to be learned, lots of laughs, and few tears.”

“I don't write many reviews but some books are so outstanding I just have to. This is one of them. Tonya Kappes is one of the freshest new voices in women's fiction, and I can't wait to read more from her.”

“There's a new Queen of Quirky-Crazy, High-Class Hillbilly Characters...and it's Tonya Kappes.”

“In The Ladybug Jinx, Tonya Kappes has created a fictional town you'll want to visit again and again.”

“WOW! Tonya Kappes is my new favorite author! I can’t wait to read her paranormal series!!”






An Olivia Davis Paranormal Mystery

Book One

Tonya Kappes


“Is Brittany there?” I question the quiet voice who answers my call. The quiet voice whose heart is about to get run over by a Mac truck. A Mac truck driven by me.

“Yes, this is her.” Brittany confirms while I’m uploading her picture sent to me by Terry, her soon to be ex-boyfriend.

“I’m Jenn from,” I say going into my spiel, “and I’m calling on behalf of Terry who wants to break up with you.”

Brittany’s picture pops up on the screen. My heart bleeds for the smiling twenty something year old gal staring back at me. Her straight red hair is cut in a blunt bob, not a strand out of place. Glistening white teeth come off whiter up against her perfectly belted black cardigan.

Let me backtrack a minute. started a couple of years ago when a friend wanted to dump her boyfriend. She was a big chicken, so I did it for her. Called his ass up, broke the news and was born.

Here’s how it works. Clients contact me through the online form where they give their name, email address, working phone number, reason for dumping, a few details of their relationship, and a picture of the victim and, this is the most important part, payment in full. The reason for the cashola up front is in case the dump is a joke. In that case, they deserve to lose their money for being an ass and I deserve to keep it for having to deal with them.

I offer three “Break Up” packages. The cheapest and most popular is “the general break-up” for a low price of fifty dollars. “The engagement break-up” is a little steeper at one hundred dollars. It totally should be more because I can’t imagine being in the fiancé’s shoes on this one. And the worst and most expensive break-up of all is “the divorce break-up” setting up the big jerk back a mere two hundred dollars.

 I know, it sounds heartless, but really, I’m helping people who are in loveless relationships be free. Like the girl on my computer who’s staring back at me. Sometimes, no matter how badly a person wants out, they just can’t pull the trigger., which means me, does it instead. Sometimes it’s not easy, but it’s my job so I don’t let my emotions into the equation. 

Right on cue, she says, “Terry hired you?” Brittany is starting the first stage in “The Process.”

And the panic button is being pushed.

“The Process” is a list I’ve carefully crafted over the course of breaking up for people. No

 matter what the circumstances of the dump, the process is still the same.

The Process

Panic (This is the first emotion when they hear the words break-up.)
Disbelief (They think I’m playing a joke on them.)
Defensive (After they realize I’m not joking, they want to explain their side.)
Explanation (They want me to explain the situation all over.)
Denial (This is where they take it out on me and deny my existence.)
Anger (Awww…where my ear drum becomes busted.)
Acceptance (Finally! They have to acknowledge the break-up and I can end the call.)

“Yes Terry hired me to break-up with you. Your obsessive habits drive him crazy.” I only state the facts in the beginning because I know she’s only taking in one word at a time. And if I get soft, the whole call will go to hell. I show my weakness and it’s over.

“How do you know Terry?” Her voice is beginning to escalate. “Is he cheating on me with you?”

Ahh…here goes number two in “the process.” She wants to cross-examine me on how I know Terry.

I take a deep breath and keep going. One thing’s for sure, this job is not easy. “No, Brit. Can I call you Brit?” I don’t wait for her answer. “He hired me to dump you because your OCD is getting in the way of your relationship.” I look at the sweet picture of Brittany that Terry sent me. I can image the fear in her eyes, especially if she’s OCD.

“I’m sorry?” She questions me like she doesn’t understand English.

“Terry emailed my online break-up service, He hired me to break up with you for him because your OCD is getting in the way of the relationship.” I practically repeat myself, but it’s usually necessary. Breakup services, after all, aren’t common like matchmaking websites. I’m one of a kind.

“Okay. Let me get this straight, Terry wants to dump me because I’m OCD?” She starts to laugh. “This is a joke right?” Brittany is trying to play nice, but the quiver in her voice cues me in on the beginning of step three in “the process.”

I lean back in my chair and roll my eyes. This is definitely going to be one of those calls. Anytime there is a medical reason involved, it takes so much more explaining. It’s not like Brittany can help her OCD.

I peel the already chipped paint off my desk to let out my energy. When I started I wanted my office to be homey since I would be spending a lot of time in here. I found the coolest farm table that someone had painted white, along with these white bookshelves on the side of a country road just north of town. I took my Aunt Matilda’s truck and hauled it off. It fit perfect in the room. I cleaned it all up and added baskets to the shelves to make it cozy. I even added a pink rug and pink curtains.

I felt like I hit the jackpot when I went back to the same house a couple weeks later to find a wicker chaise lounge and crystal chandelier. That time I called my aunt to come get it because I wasn’t in her truck and I didn’t want someone coming by to pick up

I did have to purchase the cushion for the chaise, but the room is entirely perfect and goes with the rest of my cottage style home.

“No Brittany, this is not a joke.” I use my flat break-up voice. The harshness in my voice always takes me off guard. It isn’t the same as my everyday voice. It’s uncaring and monotone. Even though I sympathize with the break up victim, I can’t show any emotions when I work. “Terry hired me because he is tired of spending his entire paycheck on hand sanitizers, watching you freak out in public places, not using public restrooms and not having sex unless there is a clean towel under you.” It has to be done this way. It’s like ripping off a Band-Aid. The quicker you do it, the less pain in the end.

She moves right into stage four of “the process.” Her side of the story.

“First off the clean towel is because I don’t want to get anything on my bed and secondly haven’t you ever heard of Swine Flu?” She begins to talk so fast I can hardly keep up.

“I don’t care why he is breaking up with you. I just have to tell you the reasons he’s listed.” She does have a point about the towel and the bed. I’m just saying. 

She doesn’t say anything. 

“Do you understand why I am calling? A “yes” is all I need.

Give me the “yes” Brittany, I silently beg, still looking at her picture staring back at me.

“Wait.” She pauses for a second to gather her thoughts. Which, at this point, are swirling around her little brain. “He
you to break up with me?”

Damn! She’s not caving easy. “Yes he did.” I confirm. From her picture I thought I’d be able to skip part of “The Process” because she looks like the type that’ll break down in tears and be accepting of the fact she’s getting dumped.

“Seriously?” I can hear water running in the background. “The Swine Flu can kill you.” She says, “Don’t you know that?”

Stage Five. She’s in denial and wants me to side with her.

“I don’t know about the Swine Flu. I am not a doctor. Are you washing your hands?” I know she is.

“How do you know?” She’s getting angrier by the minute.

“I can hear water running and this is the exact reason Terry is breaking up with you. He’s tired of your scaly, dried up hands touching his penis.” I only state the obvious.

“Yeah, well he doesn’t seem to mind it when we are, you know...” Brittany’s high-class demeanor is diminishing quickly.

“I am a person who is hired to break-up with people and Terry has broken up with you. Do you understand?”

“So he paid you to do this?” She says it again, this time with venom in her voice.

 Full-blown stage six of “the process.”

“With what? He has no money,” she says.

I click on my PayPal to make sure the dump was paid for. “Yep, he paid.” I confirm.

Soon I know this call is going to be over. At this point, the dumpee usually rants about what they don’t like about the client. They usually say a few colorful words about me and my job. I have touched on some hot buttons and she doesn’t like Terry right about now. Or me for that matter.

Unfortunately, this particular client is paying me extra to record the call and I have to get stage seven on the recording.

“You can tell him to kiss my ass!” she shouts through the phone.

“Such bad language coming from a pristine young woman.” I love how I can draw the best out of someone. “Brittany, I can’t tell Terry to kiss your, well anyways, I won’t be talking to him.” I never talk to clients on the phone in fear they may know me. Strictly email, that’s my motto. “Do you understand that you and Terry are broken up?” I say slowly.

“Yes.” The quiet Brittany is back and is holding her heart in tiny pieces. She’s resigned to the fact her relationship has ended.

Stage seven of “the process.” And happy to be here. “Thank you for using” I quickly hang up the phone before Brittany can ask any more questions. I take a few seconds to breathe and let Jenn from morph back into Olivia, and then I attach the recording to Terry’s email, and hit send. It’s crucial that I get to him before Brittany does. And believe you me, she will contact him – immediately.

I often wonder what happens to these people after I hang up. In this case, I can picture the perfect Brittany losing it on Terry and still not getting a hair out of place. Sort of like Bree Van deCamp from Desperate Housewives. The epitome of anal retentiveness.

“Poor Terry.” I shake my head and type a note in his file: dumped. I’m actually worried for him. Usually it’s the other way around, but I sense there’s another layer to Brittany.

I’m exhausted and already need another cup of coffee. I didn’t sleep well last night. I do this every once in awhile. I wake up after I dream something and usually jot it down. I’m fascinated by dreams and what they can mean. And in my world, when I have a dream, that usually means there’s a storm coming. Well, a storm in my life that will uproot all that has been neatly planted.

My butcher block counter is my favorite part of the kitchen. It ties in so well with my black distressed cabinets. It feels like home in my kitchen.

“Hmm.” Even more exhausting is looking for a clean mug. My house is really cute when it’s clean, but unfortunately, it’s not high on my to-do list these days.

Carefully I sit my filled to the rim mug on my desk and pull up the file of my next victim. It’s from a girl who’s sick of watching her two-bit loser boyfriend play video games. He is constantly neglecting her, inviting his friends over to play, and spending all their money on games when he should be out working.

I make the call. “Hi, is James there?”

“This is him.”

I can tell by James’ deep voice (and by the picture that’s now on my computer screen) that he’s a big man and definitely not someone I want to cross in a dark alley. This is the very reason I never tell anyone what I do. When people ask, my standard reply is, “dot com nerd.” There are so many dot com jobs, usually people accept my answer and move on. I’ll say it again. I just can’t take a chance on someone I know recognizing me by my voice or by the website. Anonymity is crucial. I mean, if a dumpee found out that I am the person behind the dumping, well, my life could get a little dangerous. I’ve pissed off a lot of people in the name of ending love.

“My name is Jenn from,” I say, and James, the Neanderthal, actually grunts at me. “I’m calling because Candy is breaking up with you.”

“Who…who are you?” James demands.

I tap my fingers on “the process” list and begin all over,

“I’m Jenn and Candy has paid me to give you the boot.” I have to use a blunt tone with James. “She says you’re a bum who plays video games all day when you need to get off your ass and get a job to help her pay for the bills.”

James laughs.

Ah James, I rub my finger over his big ego picture, let’s see who gets the last laugh. I grin knowing I always win in this particular game. I’m on Candy’s side in this break up.

He’s obviously a body builder that could snap me in two or maybe a few more pieces. I can see he’s going to make our little cat and mouse game fun. Breaking up is never easy, don’t get me wrong, but it’s a good thing when the dumpee is a jerk.

“Who’re the victims today?” Aunt Matilda whispers as she creeps around the corner of my office. I smile admiring her new headscarf with dangling bells.

I tap on the computer screen at James’s picture and she moves like she has a pee shiver-you know when a kid shivers from head to toe when they have to pee.

James is ranting. I cover up the microphone and snort. The bells dance around the scarf as she shakes.

My Aunt Matilda raised me, and living with her was nothing short of fun. She’s a retired palm reader who was never closed for business. I’ve seen it all. From 2 A.M. drunks, which were usually flighty sorority girls, to people trying to connect with their loved ones that have moved onto the other side. Our home was a revolving door.

My home is still a revolving door since she has a key and she comes and goes as she pleases.

“Is this Sabrina?” James questions if I’m one of Candy’s friends. My attention snaps back to my job. “I know Candy put you up to this.” James’s voice is as confident as his mind and ego.

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