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Jeannine D. Van Eperen
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Believing her fiancé is untrustworthy, Deanna flees only to find that running away creates a greater danger. People are not always what they seem, are they?
At twelve-thirty, she donned her coat and rushed to the elevator, glancing out of the window only momentarily to see if it were still raining. Not watching where she was going, she bumped into a tall man who stood waiting. “Sorry,” she murmured, not looking up. Both pushed into the already crowded elevator.
She ran into the drug store on the first floor and pushed some coins into the sandwich machine. She looked with distaste at the soggy, cold ham and cheese in its wax paper wrapper as she ran outside into the drizzle and tried to flag a cab.
A taxi finally pulled near the curb, and after jumping over a puddle to the vehicle, she was jostled by a tall male form. “You again,” he said, chuckling. “First at the elevator and now again. I’m off to City Hall. How about you?”
“Come on, hop in, Miss Layne.”
She glanced at him, surprised that he knew her name, and took a good look at him for the first time. He looked vaguely familiar but she was certain they had never met. She’d remember meeting him. Tall. Dark. Handsome. The three adjectives most women dream about. “Thank you,” she stammered and scooted across the seat as he climbed in after her.
He looked at the sandwich, still unwrapped, in her hand. “You won’t need that. We can grab a bite after the conference.”
Well, who are you?
As if reading her thoughts, he held out his hand to her. “I’m Robert Hughes, Miss Layne.”
Her eyes opened wide. Robert Hughes, the new correspondent! She had heard of him, as had almost everyone who knew anything about news correspondents. It had been quite a feather in the News’ cap to land him. Everyone was after him. He had broken last year’s big Washington scandal. She had wondered how the paper she worked for had managed to hire him. She was sure he had plenty of offers. Why pick the News? “You’re covering this story?” she finally asked.
He laughed and gave her an impish grin. “Not really. I just want to get acquainted with what’s going on around here. I believe Keith Duncan’s covering it.”
“Do you know everybody’s name on the paper?”
“No, only those I need to know.” He raised an expressive eyebrow. “And those people who interest me.”
Dee felt her face begin to blush and she looked away from him and glanced out of the cab’s window. Did he mean that she interested him? She knew it was foolish for her to suddenly feel coy, have her mouth go dry, and her temperature rise. She turned her thoughts away from him to the press conference, but she found it hard to concentrate.
“This isn’t your usual either, is it?”
“My what?” Her thoughts were jumbled and she wasn’t sure to what he referred.
“Oh. No,” her voice was soft when she replied to what she thought had been his question. She didn’t embellish her answer.
The cab pulled up to City Hall. “Thanks for the lift,” Dee said.
“Not at all. It was really your taxi, you know.”
Deanna ran into the building and was separated from Robert as she entered one elevator and he another.
“Hey, Dee.” Keith Duncan sidled up to her as they rode upward. “What’s the hot shot doing here?” She shrugged. “Weren’t you in the same cab with him?”
Before she could answer she was pushed forward out of the elevator and into the conference room. She sat down in the first empty seat she came to, looked around briefly, then steered her thoughts to forming an appropriate question, should she get a chance to ask one.
Fifteen mayors from the major cities of America entered the room and took places at the front of the room facing the reporters. Chicago’s mayor was the last to enter; with him was the U.S. Secretary of State. Wow! Maybe I’ll get to ask her a question. Deanna’s mind whirled trying to think of something to ask.
Multi-published author, Jeannine Van Eperen, currently resides in Wisconsin, the state of her birth, but she calls New Mexico home, having lived there the greater part of her life. When not writing, she enjoys reading, needlework, playing euchre with her friends, and traveling. She and husband, Lou, have visited all fifty states, most Canadian provinces, Puerto Rico, and thirty-six foreign countries. She has a son, Daniel McGrew, a stepson, Ray, and grandchildren.
Book Publisher: Wings ePress
No. of Pages: 274
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