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March 31st, 2014
Mistress of Merrivale in Photos and Words

Today is the last day for my Mistress of Merrivale blog tour, and I’m also holding a Mistress of Merrivale Facebook party. I’d love it if you could spend some time with me.

I have a guest post at Roxanne’s Realm and a book review at To Read is Divine.

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Here’s another very short and the final excerpt.

Tension eased from Jocelyn. “Yes, I’m looking forward to meeting everyone. Tell me about the village,” she prompted, eager to learn more of her new home.

Mrs. Allenby’s brow crinkled, and a heavy sigh escaped. “Normally I’d say the village is a lovely place to live, but since the murders…” She trailed off, worry making her appear much older. “I suspect you’ve heard about them.”

“A little, but I wasn’t sure if the gossip was exaggerated.”

“I’m afraid not. First poor Ursula was discovered strangled down by the river, and a few weeks ago a maid who disappeared from Hartscombe was found in the maze at Merrivale.”

“Do they have any suspects?”

Mrs. Allenby grimaced. “A lot of people are saying your husband is the murderer.”

“That’s ridiculous,” Jocelyn burst out, aghast that anyone would think Leo capable of the crime. Thoughts careened through her mind, so rapid they tripped over one another. She shook her head. “No, not Leo. I can’t believe it of him.”

Mrs. Allenby reached over to pat Jocelyn’s hand. “Of course not, but I’m afraid the facts point in his direction.”

“What is the evidence?” Jocelyn demanded, anger replacing her initial shock.

Sympathy chased across Mrs. Allenby’s face as she hesitated.

“Tell me. I’d rather hear it from you. Please, don’t let me enter a social situation unprepared.”

Mrs. Allenby gave an unhappy sigh but acquiesced with Jocelyn’s plea. “Witnesses saw Leo and Ursula fighting the evening before they discovered her body.”

“But—”

Mrs. Allenby held up her hand, and Jocelyn cut off her objection. “Captain Cartwright, the parish constable, questioned Leo. Of course, Leo denied everything. One of the shepherds saw Ursula early the following morning with two men. They never identified the men. Ursula was discovered a few hours later, and the authorities released Leo.”

Jocelyn found herself shaking her head. No, she couldn’t believe Leo was a murderer. “And the other murder?”

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One comment to “Mistress of Merrivale in Photos and Words”

  1. Great excerpt.