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Penny froze.

“What?” she whispered. Surely she had misheard. “What did you say?”

“You heard me right, Penny. I’m gonna kill you, and you won’t even know when. You won’t even know why. Wait for me. I’m coming.”

Penny snapped her phone shut and dropped it onto the sand as if it were on fire. She jumped out of her seat and swung around to search the beach, keeping her back to the sea. Who would call her and say such a thing? She scanned the faces on the beach--the couples who strolled arm in arm, too busy to carry a phone, the children who chased the waves, too little to carry a phone. She wrapped her arms tightly around her body, suddenly cold. No one knew her here. She’d hardly met anyone in the two months she’d been in Gulf Shores.

She stared down at the offending phone half buried in the sand. Caller ID. She bent and picked up the phone with the tips of her fingers, gingerly opening the face. A push of a button revealed an area code from her home state of Michigan. She sank to her knees. Who would call her from Michigan with such horrible words? None of her clients were violent or inclined toward making threats. She’d been lucky that way.

She eyed the number and took a deep breath. With a knot in her stomach, she pushed the button to call. Her hand shook slightly as she held the phone to her ear. It rang.

A Penny for Your Thoughts


Bess McBride

This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales, is entirely coincidental.

A Penny for Your Thoughts 

COPYRIGHT 2012 by Bess McBride

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