“So… You are here asking about The Nutcracker. Sit down, I will tell you all about it.” I motioned to the chair across from me.
I really need to find a new coffee shop. This is happening all to frequently.
The large man that looked like he could run with Al Capone sat across from me (yes, I know I used Capone in my last story but, hey, I am not well-versed in my mob bosses).
I took a sip of my coffee to ready myself to tell the story.
“It was bright and shiny. It stood regal amongst my Christmas decorations.
When I say it stood regal among my Christmas decorations, you must understand that I put it somewhere I knew it would be safe. It was high on the bookshelf. Everyone could see it there. In fact, I would call it a focal point. Yet it was high enough that no child could reach it. Even an adult would have to stretch to reach it. Look but no touchy as my husband would say.
All this to say….I took precautions to protect this decoration. It was special and I knew it.
I have to say my annual Christmas Tea was a smashing success. We had so many people we had to add an extra table. Everyone enjoyed homemade scones with clotted cream and lemon curd, tea sandwiches, cookies, tea cakes, and more. Chautona gave a wonderful devotional. We took pictures in the photo booth. We sang carols, We played reindeer games…er…Christmas games. SO much fun.
And so many people commented on the Nutcracker. How much they loved how it looked. How beautiful it was. I would even say it was the highlight of the event. One of the ladies even asked if she could borrow it to check it out. It was hard but I had to say no.
It happened after the tea. We were cleaning up and our dogs had been upstairs with my husband the whole time so they needed to…um…they needed a potty break. My husband opened the door and down they came. Delilah was in front, then Ebony pushed her way forward. It was a race to see who could get to the door first. Karma, not to be outdone, ran to catch up. Ebony tried to keep her spot at the front so she swerved to the right and that was it .She bumped the bookshelf. It was like it happened in slow motion. The Nutcracker moved – I thought it was going to be safe at first. It wobbled, then steadied. Then it started wobbling some more and started to move forward.
Down, down, down, it went.
My husband dove for it. I ran reaching. Jim tipped it and it came toward me. I leapt and stretched. It touched the tip of my fingers….Then landed with a thud on the floor.
I gasped. Not the Nutcracker!
Ebony was sniffing it. Karma was cowering on the couch. Delilah was the first to the backdoor.
I slowly walked over. I picked it up. I turned it over. The book didn’t have a scratch on it! Whew. I was so thankful!”
“Book! What book! You are supposed to be telling me about the Nutcracker!” He reached towards me.
“I was telling you about The Nutcracker. Weren’t you asking about The Nutcracker’s Suite? The book just released by Chautona Havig?”
“Don’t be smart with me. You know exactly what I am talking about. The nutcracker from the toy store.”
“Ohhhhh” I reached for my coffee mug. “You want to know about the REAL nutcracker.”
He stared at me with what I guessed to be his most intimidating stare. It was pretty intimidating.
“I heard you broke the nutcracker and I want to know how it happened. If you know what is good for you, you will start telling me what happened.”
“Me? I didn’t break the nutcracker. I never even had it. I am not into nutcrackers as Christmas decorations. Ask Liz Tolsma. She knows. I collect stories. You know…like books? I publish them. For decorations, I like snowmen. I have a whole collection of them not nutcrackers. They have always kind of freaked me out.”
He waited. And waited.
“Look, like I said. I would check with Liz. She can vouch for me. I also hear she really likes nutcrackers. She might be able to help you out. You can find her…” I searched through my backpack and slid a paper toward him. “You can find her HERE”
More about the Nutcracker’s Story:
The Nutcracker’s Suite by Chautona Havig
“Time to dance, sugarplum.”
A painter at the Meyer’s Toys factory, Clarice Stahl, knows something is
strange about the way so many men come and go through Mr. Meyer’s
office, especially one in particular.
Then murder strikes a little too close to home and uncorks a barrel of
When mob king, Mario Topo’s, enforcer goes missing the race is on to
prove he’s behind the murder. Police and mobsters alike are after Milo
Natale, and he who finds Milo first might determine the enforcer’s fate.
A race through the city, a new friend… or more… a new life in the
offing. Milo and Clarice must find who killed Topo’s man and why before
the police arrest him for murder or Topo’s men bump him and Clarice off,
This next book in the Ever After Mysteries combines “The Nutcracker
Suite” with a murder mystery set in the heart of 1920s Rockland.
Get your copy HERE