It started with a note. It was taped to my car window. “We know you know. Tell us now and we won’t hurt you.”
What do I know? I had NO idea what they are talking about! No matter how hard or how long I thought about it. Zip. Nada. Nothing.
If these people wanted something from me so badly, couldn’t they be courteous enough to tell me what it is they wanted?
I crumpled the note and threw it away. It must have been a joke.
There was the note under my front door, “Tell us where the Dutchman’s lost mine is and we will leave you alone. No one else has to know. We will be at your favorite coffee shop on November 2.”
These people are crazy if they think I know where the mine is. Don’t they know that this is a book? It is just a book and I am just a publisher.
And seriously, do they have to mess with my coffee? It couldn’t be at say, the police station? That would have been more convenient.
I was up most of the night debating if I should stay or should I go. Isn’t that a song? Nevermind. I am getting side tracked.
I decided to confront them head on so I got up the next morning and put on my favorite combat boots to head out to do combat with these bozos.
I walked into that coffee shop like I wasn’t scared at all. In fact, I think it could be argued that I sailed into the coffee shop.I looked around to see if I could recognize anyone out of place. Maybe someone who looks like Indiana Jones? THAT would be helpful but nope. It was as normal as ever.
Whatever. I am not missing my coffee over these people.
I sat down, closed my eyes, and inhaled the beautiful aroma coming from my coffee cup. I brought it to my lips.
“I see you got our note”
I spewed the coffee out and opened my eyes. A scrawny man was wiping his face. He was about 50 and looked like he hadn’t seen the sun in years.
“Uh,” I looked him up and down. “You are the one trying to intimidate me.”
“Don’t underestimate me Mrs. Barela. I might not look the part but I have a lot of money and I like to spend it.” He nodded towards the door where I saw two men who looked they warped out of a 1920’s movie about Al Capone. “There are things you don’t know about. Important things at stake – Lives, Mrs. Barela. Lives are at stake. You must help me find that mine.”
“Look, mister. I wish I could.” Not really, I thought, but at least it sounded good. ” I have no idea about any mine.”
He was faster than I expected. His hand gripped my wrist. I saw desperation in his eyes and knew that he was on the edge. “You knew about the shoes. If you knew about the shoes, then you know that these things are real. Now tell me about the mine.”
Are we back to the shoes…again?
“Of course I knew about the shoes. They were my grandmothers. Have you not read the article?” I reached in my purse and slide the article over to him. “HERE. Read it”
His eyes scanned the page. His shoulders slumped.
“Look, I know Cathe Swanson talks to the author. Maybe she knows more about the mine. As far as I know it an amazing story written by an amazing author. I don’t know what else you want me to say.”
I hated putting Cathe on the spot but I knew she could handle herself. I hope she forgives me…
“Have you read the back cover of the book? Maybe that might giveaway some clues? I pinned a copy on the board by the front of the store. I know many people have been waiting for a copy.”
He got up and move to the board and began reading before walking out the door.
Whew! Hopefully it will be the last I see of him!
More about The Lost Dutchman’s Secret (as seen on the bulletin board in the coffee shop)
There’s a deadly secret in them thar hills—and gold, or so they say.
Deeply in debt to a wealthy local, Charles Sinclair, Dorothy Hodges’ father finally promises she’ll pay and in gold, no less. If only Dorothy could take to take the promises he spins out of thin air and turn them into that gold, all would be well.
With the help of a strange, rumpled man, Dorothy does manage to bring payment to one of Sinclair’s sons only to discover it won’t pay off the debt. Will the next payment be enough? The next?
When Charles Sinclair ends up dead, Dorothy is the obvious prime suspect, but Sinclair’s son isn’t so certain. Together they work to clear her name and find the real murderer of the Superstitions, but will they find the answers buried in those hills?
Find out in this next book in the Ever After Mysteries, combining beloved fairy tales and mysteries. The Lost Dutchman’s Secret offers a retelling of “Rumplestilskin” that requires more digging than a miner searching for The Lost Dutchman Mine.
Click HERE to grab your copy!