We continue our Valentine mystery round robin with Part 4 of Her Fatal Valentine by Jean Harrington
“I didn’t kill your wife. Why won’t you believe me? The jury said I was innocent. Even the media came to my defense.” Lauren’s lips quivered and her eyes filled. “But not you, the one person who matters most.”
Detective John Carter peered down at her.
“Why should I believe you? You’re a liar. You killed Caroline.” He jerked his chin at Kyle’s remains. “And now this guy. Why?”
Lauren shook her head, shaking the tears loose. “What you can’t believe is the truth. It’s too painful.”
She swiped at her tears with the back of a hand, and angry at showing weakness in front of John Carter, she shut her eyes, blocking out his angry image. Instead, the memory of that fatal Valentine’s night two years ago flooded her mind. She had been so ready for Mike, his warmth, his kisses, his loving—his proposal. She’d set the table with candles and flowers, had two perfect filets ready for grilling, champagne on ice and strawberries. She’d even bought new sheets.
Lauren smiled, remembering. Mike had been so eager to embrace her he’d left the apartment door open. Deep in his kiss, she was startled out of his arms by stiletto heels clicking on her foyer tiles…
The harsh voice of John Carter broke into her reverie. “Well, what’s your answer?”
“I asked you a question. Why did you kill again?”
Lauren looked up, straight into the detective’s hostile blue gaze. Cell phone in hand, he was ready to trigger the alarm and call in his troops.
“Before I answer, I have a question of my own. What did you do with Mike’s body?”
Carter’s fingers hovered over the cell.
“Detectives aren’t first responders,” she said. “But you were first on the scene the night Caroline died. And again tonight. That’s very strange.”
“Yeah?” He squinted at her and pocketed his phone.
“Yes, it is. So who’s the liar, Detective Carter? You or me?”
Why does Detective Carter accuse Lauren of lying? Worse, why does he believe she’s committed multiple murders? Is it strange that he’s so quick to respond to the scenes of carnage? Or not? And finally, what did happen to Mike? Check back for Part 5 by Kathy Ivan on Wednesday, February 13.