Short Stories

The short story "Rust" appeared in AT THE SCENE OF THE CRIME, eited by Dana Stabenow; ISBN 978-0-7867-2055-2.
Of the many short stories presented in 2008, "Rust" has also been chosen to be published in two other anthologies:
BETWEEN THE DARK AND THE DAYLIGHT, edited by Ed Gorman and Martin H. Greenberg, ISBN 978-0-9825209-5-6, and
THE BEST AMERICAM MYSTERY STORIES 2009, edited by Jeffery Deaver and Otto Penzler; ISBN 978-0-547-23750-3.

= = = = Plot Line = = = =

Lofty personal aspirations often have a way of moving to the edge of the heavenly shelf and then, jittered by bumps and earthly vibrations, falling over.  Pennsylvania Trooper Justin Eberhardt encounters just such a challenge to his ideals after meeting the beautiful Trooper Erin Flannery.

= = = = Excerpt = = = =

She lived just a few miles away, near a Moravian cemetery.  “I go there sometimes and just wander down the lanes.  All the headstones lie flat to show that everyone is equal in the sight of God.  Rich next to poor, whites next to blacks next to Mohican Indians.”

“I didn’t know that,” I said.  “I’m from Montana.  We stuff ’em and put ’em in museums.”  She gave a soft laugh.  Her eyes were closed and her head was back on the seat as I’d instructed.  It’s where my own should have been.  I could feel the hot drink still in my veins, the sweet burn that beckons so many, the frayed ends strangely comforting.

“All but the women,” Erin said.  “The women are buried in their own section.  Separate.  Inside the church, too.”

Her lips shone pink in the boomeranged light.  I wanted to kiss her there, then.  Instead, I turned the key in the ignition and pulled out onto the road, driving well within the speed limit, sight often flicking to the mirrors.  I disdained the fact that Trooper Flannery would let herself get blotto even off duty, but the truth was I also knew in saner times I would not get behind the wheel either.  She did it again, that woman.  Getting men to tread over boundaries.