Skip to main content

"DIGGIN' UP DIRT" by Heather

     Amy Reynolds set the box of canned goods on the kitchen counter. She caught her breath and stared through the doorway into their empty dining room. Hundreds of boxes still needed unpacking. She brushed away loose strands of her auburn hair that had escaped from her ponytail. A dog barked in the distance, and her small Jack Russell terrier, Darby, raced through the downstairs and stood with her paws on the windowsill to survey her new territory and see what she was missing.
Amy gently tapped on the window, sending Darby off to check the view from the living room. Something looked odd to Amy under the window. Leaning over, she ran her hand across the painted baseboard. One end jutted out too far from the wall. She sighed. Another thing in this house that would need to be fixed.
Amy pushed the baseboard back in place, and the wood shifted. She tugged at the corner, and it separated easily from the wall. Flipping it over in her hand, she noticed there were no nails or tacks. Darby must have knocked it loose when she jumped up to see out the window.
     Spotting something stuffed in the crack between the wall and the floor, Amy freed several envelopes rubber-banded together. She sat on the floor and thumbed through her find. The envelopes, postmarked in 2012 and 2013 from Richmond, showed a return address for Scott M. Zachman. The first contained a birthday card signed with, “Unending Love, Scott.” Behind it were two, one-page letters on yellow lined paper, both addressed to Roni. The tight cursive was hard to read, but the gist was that Scott loved her more than life and couldn’t wait to spend time with her. He counted the moments until they could be together. He said his love was more vast than the stars in the heavens and the raindrops in a summer shower. He promised to fulfill her wildest dreams and professed that only she could make him happy and whole. And he wanted to spend the rest of his life with her. The letters were signed, “Love Always, Scott.”
Amy smiled at the sappy clichés in the notes. The last item in the stack was a creased white envelope. She felt something other than paper inside. She tipped the envelope, and a gold locket and a chain slid out on her palm. The back had “S+R 4EVER” inscribed in loopy script. Amy turned it over and opened the charm. Sand spilled into her hand. She brushed it back in the envelope and dropped the locket inside. What did the sand signify? Some exotic beach trip? She tossed the packet on the counter with the piece of wood. She’d have to remember to tell Kevin about them when he got home from work.
Amy returned to unpacking the stacks of boxes in the kitchen while Darby kept watch in the front room for joggers, squirrels, or anything that moved within a hundred feet of the front door.

BUY YOUR COPY OF TO FETCH A THIEF TO FIND OTHER SECRETS ARE WAITING TO BE FOUND IN AMY AND HER DOG DARBY'S NEW HOME! 

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

INTERVIEW WITH RICHARD VERLANDER By Rosie Shomaker

The Rest of the World Could Learn a lot  From a Day in Elementary School

Rosie: Hello, Richard. You and your wife Kathy have traveled the road from your roles as rural Virginia parents to that of parents of two professional baseball athletes. Your older son Justin plans to continue his MLB career once we reach our “new normal” in dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic. Your first book, Rocks Across the Pond (2012), is a beautiful, grand book. I say grand because it is large, like a coffee table book. The subtitle says it all: “Lessons Learned. Stories Told.” Dogs seem to be part of those lessons. The Mutt Mysteries authors learned you were authors and dog lovers. You’ve met other RVA writers on your trips to talk to children at schools. It’s through one such author that I connected with you, and we are grateful that you and Kathy wrote the foreword to the newest Mutt Mysteries book, To Fetch a Scoundrel. Your first book gave readers a look at your lives. Your second book, The Shelter Gang a…

IN THE NAME OF RESEARCH by Rosemary

I composed this blog while on the road to an emergency management Mass Care Symposium. Sound intriguing? Let’s begin with the definition of “mass care.” It’s the capability to provide immediate shelter, feeding centers, basic first aid, bulk distribution of needed items, and related services to persons affected by a large-scale incident. You may be comforted to know that the Federal Emergency Management Administration — FEMA — has a mass care strategy, and that FEMA, along with the American Red Cross formed a National Mass Care Council around 2010/2011. That council is co-chaired by the American Red Cross, FEMA, the National Emergency Management Association (NEMA), and the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (National VOAD), and is comprised of members from Big City Emergency Managers ( bigcityem.org), federal Department of Health and Human Services, Feeding America ( feedingamerica.org), North American Mission Board–Southern Baptist Convention (with their Southern Bap…

UNLEASH THE MUTTS featuring "Ruff Goodbye" by Rosemary Shomaker

Dogs yearn to run free! Our story mutts are no exception! They will be unleashed on March 3 when To Fetch a Scoundrel hits the sales floor. This week we're offering “treats” to the reader, in the form of insights into why the author chose a particular setting, and a brief excerpt of the story.
Today’s feature: “RUFF GOODBYE” by Rosemary Shomaker
We asked Rosemary why she chose to set her story where she did: What prompted me to set “Ruff Goodbye" in a bar and a funeral home? I set the story in a bar and a funeral home because the contrast in settings interested me. When I think of funeral homes, I think of decorum, seriousness, and containment. As the ashes or body of the deceased are “contained” in an urn or a casket, so are the grief and emotions of funeral home visitors contained—until, for some, the bareness of death causes true feelings and honesty to leak or flare. We’ve all seen it. The sobs, outburst, or physical crumpling of one attendee dissolves the composure of other…