Just when she thinks she can breathe easy,
a dead body shows up
a little too close to home…
Wynona’s life is finally settling down. Her family have retreated, her friends are all free of accusations, her relationship with Rascal is stronger than ever and her business is thriving. In fact, it’s thriving so much that Wynona has hired a fairy to help her take care of customers.
When her new employee’s boyfriend shows up dead at the tea shop, Wynona is once again forced to put on her sleuthing hat. It’s a race against the clock to save her business and her waitress, when the fairy becomes the prime suspect.
Throw in magic lessons with her grandmother, a surprise from her familiar and a family member showing up at just the wrong time and Wynona knows she’ll need all the skills she’s developed, magic or otherwise, to help her make it through.
Wynona is finally interviewing help for the tea shop, unfortunately the first few haven’t been the right fit. She has one more to interview, but Violet says fairies flutter and mess the fur.
However, it’s the fairy that fills the bill and is hired. Rascal is looking forward to his first real date with Wynona, they just have to find the time for it. They’re also waiting for Celia to move in with Wynona. She has to fulfil Wynona’s request first and that’s not something that’s going to be easy for Celia. The Grimoires are locked up tight in their mother’s personal library and now Celia really needs to move in because their father has made it clear she’s of no use to him anymore.
Thallia is working out okay, she has a lot to learn though. Then her boyfriend shows up and Wynona has to lay down the law.
This is one of my favorite scenes.
The front door opened and Wynona began to make her way to the front entry. “Hello,” she said as she crossed the threshold, then came to a stop. “Oh.” Her smile was slightly confused, but she tried to stay professional.
A young man with dark gray skin and shoulder length hair, even blacker than Wynona’s, stood in the doorway. His muscles were clearly defined and he stood a full head and shoulders above Wynona as he stared her down. “Where’s Thallia?”
Wynona frowned. “I’m sorry. Who are you?”
“Dralo. Her boyfriend.”
Something about the young man rubbed Wynona the wrong way. He wasn’t threatening her, but every word held a hint of…something. Like there was a second meaning, but she couldn’t quite grasp what it was. “I’m sorry. Thallia is working right now. Perhaps you could visit her when her shift is done?”
Shaking his head, the young man walked farther in, ignoring Wynona’s demands to stop.
“Thallia!” he shouted, marching into the dining room.
Thallia was just coming out of the kitchen and her whole face lit up when she spotted who had arrived. “Dralo!” she squealed. Her wings began to flutter and she hovered off the ground, floating straight to her boyfriend.
When Dralo’s arms opened and Wynona realized she was about to have a teenage make-out session on her hands. She didn’t like it, but Wynona knew she had to intervene. Holding up her hand, she stopped Thallia mid-flight.
Thallia squeaked in shock, nearly dropping the tray she was holding.
With her other hand, Wynona took the tray and sent it to the table it belonged to. The shifter waiting for the tray didn’t even pay attention. She, like everyone else in the room, was caught up in the impending love scene.
“Hey!” Dralo shouted, turning to Wynona, his hands clenched into large fists.
Wynona had never seen a dark elf before, but from the sharply pointed ears poking through his hair, she was positive that that was exactly what she was dealing with at the moment.
“Let her go,” he growled.
“Mr. Dralo,” Wynona said in a soft, soothing tone. Dark elves weren’t exactly known for being easy to please and the fact that this one was still young wasn’t doing her any favors. “I already told you that your girlfriend is working. You are perfectly welcome to see her, but it will have to be after hours. My tea shop isn’t a place for you two to meet up or spend time together. It’s a place of business and my patrons don’t come here for drama.”
Wynona ignored the huffs that followed that statement. Elderly creatures who had nothing but time on their hands? Yeah…they definitely enjoyed a bit of drama. But they’ll have to get it at the hair salon like everyone else, Wynona thought.
Hear, hear, Violet agreed. She came racing across the room, giving the elf a wide margin before scrambling up Wynona’s leg and perching on her shoulder. Let’s show him who’s boss.
Wynona let out an internal sigh. Why her familiar was so bloodthirsty, Wynona couldn’t figure out, but there would be no fighting on her watch, if at all possible.
Dralo was breathing heavily. “I said…let her go.”
“Not until you leave,” Wynona said, her voice still calm, though her heart was nearly beating through her rib cage. She knew she had enough magic to teach this boy a lesson, but Wynona hated to use it. Protecting herself was fine, going on the offensive was entirely different.
“You don’t have the right to do that,” Dralo shouted, pointing back at a still shocked Thallia.
The fairy’s wide eyes were going back and forth between her boyfriend and her boss, and her mouth was a perfect “O”. She apparently had nothing to say for herself.
“Actually…” Wynona corrected him. “I have every right. You are in my place of business, which is my property. As with all business owners, I have the right to refuse service to any and all who enter my doors and since you aren’t here for the services I offer, I’m asking you to leave.”
The fine hairs on Wynona’s skin began to rise when it looked as if Dralo wouldn’t back down.
His nostrils flared and it looked like he was prepping for a fight before he finally calmed down. “Fine,” he ground out, looking around the room in apparent disgust. “But don’t think for a second that this is over.”
If eyes could start fires, Wynona knew she was supposed to have burst into a ball of flame, but luckily not even dark elves had that ability. Though, she couldn’t help the protective shield that rose up around her when he stalked past her toward the front door.
“Catch you after work, Thal!” he bellowed from the front door, slamming it behind him.
Wynona let go of Thallia, then rushed to the window to make sure the elf actually left. His motorcycle was loud enough to wake the dead and at complete odds with his worn T-shirt and holey jeans. The bike itself was pristine and from the hearty sound of the engine, was treated with more love than Prim gave her plants.
Guess we know where he spends his money, Violet remarked.
Wynona nodded, but didn’t respond. The young man didn’t seem like the type of elf who had grown up in a well groomed or mannered household. He was rough and tough…everything Wynona would associate with those raised in the slums of Hex Haven. But then how could he afford a bike like that?
Probably stole it.
Wynona rolled her eyes before turning back to her patrons. “The show is over, ladies.” She paused while several women groaned. “Thallia, I’d like to speak to you in my office, please.”
Without waiting for her sulking employee, Wynona walked down the hall. There was nothing pressing going on at the moment with any of her customers, so now was the perfect time to lay down some rules with the fairy.
Boyfriends were fine and good, but having them show up at work, or interfere with work, or even offer up public displays of affection? No…there was going to have to be some conditions that Thallia either abided by, or the job would be gone.
Thornton, Abigail Lynn . Chai Spice and Murder: a witchy, cozy mystery (Le Doux Mysteries Book 6) Kindle Locations (371-414). Angel Music. Kindle Edition.
The morning after that slight altercation with Dralo, Wynona arrives at the tea shop to open finding the front door open. Through their bond Rascal tells her not to move but of course Wynona doesn’t listen. Even though she doesn’t enter her office she can see the body from the door. Dralo, dead in her office, the big questions, how did he get in there and who killed him?
Thankfully Wynona has a couple of secure alibis, and with her shop not being able to open she’s definitely going to help solve this. It becomes a long and tedious quest to narrow down the suspects and even Celia helps out in more ways than one.
In between there is some laughter, flirting, romance and of course the murderer I didn’t suspect.
5 Contented Purrs for Abigail!
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Ever since I was in elementary school I have wanted to be an author. Career day was a bit rough, since there is no official uniform for this job. Pajamas and a laptop maybe? Although my clothes change from day to day, my job as a wife and mother doesn’t. My days are filled with my 5 children and enjoying time with my husband, while my evenings are filled with creative time. I live in the beautiful Pacific Northwest.