Thanks for stopping by to check out Eenie, Meanie, Minie, No! I wanted to give you a taste of the fear stalking this high school teacher, so I’ve given you snippets from different parts of the two chapters.
Nikki Sterces wonders if she will ever be free of her high school clique. If you’ve ever had the same feeling or issues with a ‘clique,’ leave a comment here or visit me at sandrakerns.com and let me know.
Nikki smiled as she passed several girls from one of her classes whispering secrets in the hallway.
“Hey, Ms. Sterces,” they said in unison.
“Have a good night, girls. Don’t forget the practice AP test tomorrow.” As she continued walking, she tried not to smirk when she heard a couple of them groan quietly before they returned to their previous conversation. When they started giggling again, she figured they were sharing the silly little secrets of teenage girls. Unfortunately, the chill that raced over her skin reminded her how wrong she could be. The secrets she and her friends shared in high school had been anything but silly and innocent.
Pushing through the exit door to the wonderful Colorado sunshine her smile returned. The school year would soon be over. She would be able to enjoy her privacy and not think about anyone’s secrets. Besides, she wasn’t a teenager anymore. No one knew her secret, not even her friends from high school. She could walk with her head held high. Her private little pep talk renewed her confidence all the way home.
When she stepped into her kitchen and saw the message light flashing, her newfound confidence all but disappeared. Feeling like the girl people yell, ‘don’t do it,’ to in a scary movie, she forced herself to push the play button. As the voice she dreaded played from the machine, terror gripped her by the throat.
“Domonique, I know you’re still at school, but I couldn’t wait to tell you. I’ll be seeing you soon.” Laughter tinged with a hint of menace followed the message, continuing until the call ended.
Fear held her motionless, twelve years of rebuilding her self-esteem shattered around her. Only one person ever called her by her full name. She’d changed her number three times in the past month, but he always got the new one. Unlike the other calls, this was the first time he’d said anything about seeing her again. Why now? She’d been back in Pinecrest for two years.....
Reaching the door, she flipped the outside light on as she peered through the small window to see Detective Richard Stiles of Pinecrest PD standing on the stoop. He’d been the one to deliver the news of her mother’s death when she was sixteen. Two and a half years ago, he’d searched her out and told her of her father’s death as well. At that point, she’d dubbed him the angel of death. With both of her parents gone, what could he possibly want with her this time?...
“Good evening, Detective Stiles,” she said then glanced toward the man with his back turned to her. The broad back looked oddly familiar, but she didn’t know any of the other detectives.
“Evening, Ms. Sterces,” Stiles said. He motioned toward the other man. “This is
The other man turned to face Nikki when Stiles said his name. Her eyes widened in shock, his narrowed slightly. Time stopped then rewound. He inclined his head and held out his hand to her. Nikki grasped it reflexively. Warmth flooded her body. “Joe, it’s good to see you again.”
“Nikki.” He shook her hand then released it.
A war of sensations clashed inside her. She hadn’t forgotten Joseph Fitzpatrick, not his dark blond hair that bleached to a ripe wheat color in the hot Colorado summer sun, or those warm whiskey eyes. Eyes that had held such hurt when, with no explanation, she’d broken up with him the last day of finals. From his professional attitude, she didn’t think he’d forgiven her. Not even --
“You two know each other?” Stiles asked.
“Used to,” Joe answered....
When he left, she released the breath she’d been holding, but didn’t relax. With every step up her front walk, the sense of someone watching her had skittered over her chilled skin. Oh, she knew Joe stared at her departing figure. She’d given him plenty of reason to wonder about her and her state of mind. It wasn’t his attention causing this fearful awareness, no, someone else was watching her. Watching them.
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