Excerpt from Dr. Gabrielle Graham’s personal journal, Monday evening, 10:40 PM

Once upon a time a man appeared in my living room.

He was six foot tall, dark hair with blue eyes and a strong jaw. He was broad-shouldered, 180 pounds or so, fit, and wearing black jeans, a gray t-shirt, and well-worn, expensive hiking boots. Good looking without being a pretty boy.

Scared the living crap out of me …

I was sitting at the kitchen table studying the ledger that had smashed my foot that afternoon, doodling as I always do when I’m thinking. The entries just weren’t making sense, where would the shopkeeper get bok choy in April? Rocky Bar is high in Idaho’s mountains, above five thousand feet, the sun wouldn’t even reach it that early. Snow would still be a foot thick, covering the frozen ground. And in 1882 it would take several days travel from Boise.

“Who are you?” A man’s voice came from behind me.

I spun around to face him, ready to kick some ass but all I could do was stare into the cutest blue eyes I’d ever seen. He seemed shocked for some reason. I don’t know if he expected the apartment to be empty or what. How had he gotten into my locked apartment, anyway?

He shook his head and held out his empty hands and said, “Sorry. I’ve never done this before.”

Which is a strange thing for a burglar to say, even if it is his first job. ‘Never admit you don’t know what you’re doing’, one of the rules that grandpa taught me and dad reinforced. Grandma always winked at me during their lectures.

Next he said, “I thought I was dreaming, but you’re real.”

Duh. For a microsecond I thought he must be high or delusional but I couldn’t risk dropping my guard. I needed to take him down, then ask questions. I gathered myself, ready to leap across the room and tackle him …

That’s when things got interesting.


rocky bar 4 narrow


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