The Greenhouse Murders Part Seven By: L.M. Mercer


The Greenhouse Murders
Part 7
By: L.M. Mercer

(Editor's Note: If you have not yet read "Part One - Six", please go to the Horror Archive and read those stories, first. Thank you, TDS.)

A short time later, Justin emerged from the bathroom amid a cloud of steam with a towel wrapped snuggly around his hips. Walking into the bedroom he saw Susan, leaning over making their bed, and the sketch of her entering the library was sitting on the night-table uncrumpled and smoothed out. Shaking his head, he walked to the wardrobe and began removing clean clothes, so he could get dressed.

Hearing noises behind her, Susan looked over her shoulder and saw him. "Feeling more human now?"

"Yeah, much better," he said and turned to face her while snapping his jeans, "Hey, I, ah, I'm really sorry about this morning."

"For?" she asked, fluffing pillows and leaning them against the headboard. "I need a little more information."

"Well, to begin with, for snapping at you," came his muffled reply, as he pulled a T-shirt over his head, "and for not telling you about the latest threat." When Susan looked as if she was going to speak, he rushed on, "But, I did have good intentions. I didn't wake you up last night because you needed the sleep, and, well, I didn't want to dump too much on you all at once this morning."

"Okay," she said, walking across the room to stand in front of him. Looking up into his eyes, she wrapped her arms around his waist. "You are forgiven for biting my head off, because to be completely honest, I did sort of deserve it,” she said with a wicked smile. “So you didn’t need to apologize for that. Now, about the note,” she said, pushing away from him. “I understand why you did it; you wanted to protect me, but I just wish you had told me intentionally, instead of after a slip of the tongue. Next time, don't try to hide things from me,” she told him and punched him lightly in the shoulder, “because we're in this mess together, remember?"

Justin drew his finger across his heart, outlining an X, and said, "Cross my heart." He leaned down and kissed her forehead. "So, do you want to hear how I spent the rest of the night?"

"Of course I would, but it can wait for a little while, if you need some sleep," Susan said.

"I'm okay. The hot shower really woke me up and I’ve gotten my second wind, now." He saw the laptop on the floor, leaned over and grabbed it up. "Let's go downstairs and I'll show you all that I learned in the wee hours of the night, when most sane people are sleeping."

Justin followed Susan out of the room and down the stairs to the parlour. "Grab a chair from the kitchen and we'll use it as a desk," he told her, sitting down on the sofa and opening the laptop case. He chuckled softly as she went into the kitchen, mumbling complaints about being ordered around. "After everything Archibald showed me last night,” Justin said, “I knew that I wouldn't be able to sleep, but I couldn't leave you alone, either, so I sat in the corner and did some more research."

"Did you find anything new?" she asked, as she returned carrying a wooden chair.

"Yup, I found people," Justin stated cryptically, booting up the computer.

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About the Author

An avid reader from a young age, L.M. Mercer developed an addiction to books in her childhood that has intensified into an obsession that is getting more expensive by the day.

Although L.M. Mercer draws the inspiration for her poetry mostly from her life and those lives around her, her stories are influenced by her favorite authors. She draws on her love of the works of Edgar Alan Poe to add a touch of morose to her work and multiple romance novelists for that spark of romance.

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