Barnes & Noble
Published by: 82 Mercer Publishing
Release Date: July 1, 2021
Hollywood Detective Pat Norelli is solving cases at breakneck speed, but there's one murderer that still haunts her sleep, the serial killer known as the Poser.
When a close friend of Norelli turns up dead, it's thought to be a heart attack. Then, to the detective's horror, new evidence comes to light that she may have been involved in her friend's murder. A devastated Norelli knows she is being set up by the Poser, and now it's only a matter of time before Internal Affairs brings her in as a suspect.
Norelli has to act fast, and with the help of some unexpected allies, she quickly finds herself in an international manhunt. In a race against the clock and driven to clear her name, Norelli must break more than a few rules in order to bring the true killer to justice.
Can Detective Norelli finally bring the Poser in - dead or alive, saving her career and reputation? Or will this psychopath continue to taunt the detective as he revels in her downfall?Add on Goodreads
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Excerpt - CHAPTER ONE
Norelli’s eyes flicker back and forth beneath closed lids. Pinched in a permanent frown, her forehead is dotted with beads of sweat. Erratic breathing and twitches punctuate her tanned face. Struggling to get free, she twists in one direction, then the other.
Her mind pushes aside a myriad of haunting images when her eyes suddenly snap open.
The only light in the dark room comes from a bluish glow illuminating a familiar face.
“More bad dreams, Patricia?”
She remains motionless, wondering if she is lost in a nightmare or awaking to another one.
Still disoriented, she is blinded momentarily by a sudden flash.
“Nice,” the low voice whispers. “Another trophy for my collection.”
She slowly reaches under her pillow.
Struggling to gain her bearings, she works at slowing her breath, then stretches toward the bedside lamp. Her finger finds the switch. With a turn, she lights the room.
“Morning, love,” Darius smiles, squinting at the light.
Dressed in black from head to toe, he looks calm and resembles a burglar—but he is neither. His nervous eyes belie his steady demeanor.
Looking down at her feet, she sees familiar strips of silk cloth binding her ankles to the footboard. Her sweat-covered naked body lures him to sneak glimpses.
“Dreams still tormenting you?”
“What are you doing here?” She asks, scanning the room.
His eyes follow.
“Just tying up loose ends,” he says, tightening his grip on her ankles with his left hand while sliding the smartphone into his back pocket with his right hand.
She writhes to get loose, but his grip is a vise.
Her eyes widen as he removes a syringe from his jacket pocket—a shock wave of fear shoots through her body.
Removing a plastic cap from the end of the needle with his teeth, he spits it on the floor. “One could say I’m putting a period at the end of a long sentence.”
“You’re insane, Darius!”
“And why in the hell risk your freedom for—”
“Hah,” he blurts. “What freedom? You’ll likely never stop chasing me.”
She is losing circulation and patience. “Not likely,” she says, glaring at him. “Certain.”
“Riiiiiight,” he says, pointing the syringe between her first and second toes. “When they find you, they’ll assume you had a heart attack. That will be correct because your heart will suffer enough drugs to drop a charging bull—or a raging Bobby,” he cackles.
With each passing moment, her fear increases.
His staring eyes are glowing. “You wouldn’t believe how much I shot into that neanderthal. But then again, you saw the results, didn’t you?”
As she tries to sit up, he yanks at her bonds. “Stop! You should know by now fighting me will only make it worse.”
Frozen in place, Norelli hears her pounding heartbeat.
“Play along,” he growls, “and in moments you’ll return to your fitful slumber.”
Stuck between terror and bravery, she doesn’t see a way out.
“Darius, please, I won’t follow you,” she whimpers. “I promise. And I can forget you— like it never happened. Seriously.”
Sympathy dissolves from his face as he tightens his grip and inserts the needle. When the plunger reaches the bottom, a wave of nauseous heat instantly courses through her legs, racing upwards toward her torso, igniting every vein in her body.
As the drug hits her beating heart, it explodes.
Want more? Click to: Read Chapters 1 & 2