The Third Victim [Quincy/Rainie Series Book 2] [Secure eReader (recommended)/Microsoft Reader/Adobe PDF]
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by Lisa Gardner
Category: Suspense/Thriller/Science Fiction
Description: The past isn't over.... An unspeakable act has ripped apart the idyllic town of Bakersville, Oregon, and its once-peaceful residents are demanding quick justice. But though a boy has confessed to the horrific crime, evidence shows he may not be guilty. Officer Rainie Conner, leading her first homicide investigation, stands at the center of the controversy. It's hitting too close to home, bringing back her worst nightmares, threatening to expose her secret sins. But with the boy's life at stake, she won't let anything stop her from finding the real killer. With the help of FBI profiler Pierce Quincy, Rainie comes closer to a deadly truth than she can imagine. Because out there in the shadows a man watches her and plots his next move. He knows her secrets. He kills for sport. He's already brought death to Bakersville and forever shattered the community. But what he has really come for is Rainie--and he won't leave until he has destroyed her....
eBook Publisher: Random House, Inc./Bantam,
EPIC eBookstore Release Date: October 2004
45 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats [Secure eReader (recommended)/Microsoft Reader/Adobe PDF - What's this?]: SECURE MICROSOFT READER FORMAT [494 KB] - Requires Microsoft Reader 2.1.1 for PCs, SECURE EREADER (RECOMMENDED) FORMAT [315 KB], SECURE ADOBE PDF FORMAT [1.5 MB]
All formats: Printing DISABLED, Read-aloud DISABLED
GEOGRAPHIC RESTRICTIONS: Available to customers in: US, PR, VI, UM What's this
"A suspenseful, curl-up winter read, this thriller teems with crisp, realistic dialogue and engaging characters." -- Publishers Weekly, starred review
"Riveting, hold-your-breath suspense." -- Iris Johansen
The Perfect Husband
"A dark, powerful tale of nerve-shattering suspense." -- Tami Hoag
The Other Daughter
"Sheer terror...a great read." -- Iris Johansen
Tuesday, May 15, 1:25 P.M.
OFFICER LORRAINE CONNER was sitting in a red vinyl booth at Martha's Diner, picking at her tuna salad and listening to Frank and Doug gossip, when the call first came in. She was sitting alone in the booth, eating salad because she'd just turned thirty-one and was beginning to notice that the pounds didn't magically melt away the way they had when she was twenty-one, or hell, even twenty-seven. She could still run a six-minute mile and slip into a size 8, but thirty-one was fundamentally different from thirty. She spent more time arranging her long chestnut hair to earn those second glances. And for lunches, she traded in cheeseburgers for tuna salad, five days a week.
Rainie's partner that day was twenty-two-year-old volunteer police officer Charles Cunningham, aka Chuckie. Known in the lingo of the tiny police department of Bakersville, Oregon, as a "green rookie," Chuckie hadn't yet gone to the nine-month-long training school. That meant he was allowed to look but not touch. Full authority would come when he completed the required academy courses and received his certificate. In the meantime, he got to gain experience by going on patrols and writing up reports. He also got to wear the standard tan uniform and carry a gun. Chuckie was a pretty happy guy.
Before the call came in, he was up at the lunch counter, trying to work some magic on a leggy blond waitress named Cindy. He had his chest puffed out, his knee crooked forward, and his hand resting lightly on his sidearm. Cindy, on the other hand, was trying to serve up slices of Martha's homemade blueberry pie to six farmers at once. One cantankerous old man muttered at the rookie to get out of the way. Chuckie grinned harder.
In the booth behind Rainie, retired dairymen Doug Atkens and Frank Winslow started placing their bets.
"Ten dollars says she caves," Doug announced, slapping a crumpled bill on the pink Formica table.
"Twenty says she dumps a glass of ice water over Romeo's head," Frank countered, reaching for his wallet. "I know for a fact that Cindy would rather earn good tips than Clark Gable's heart."
Rainie gave up on her salad and turned around to face the two men. It was a slow afternoon and she had nothing better to do with her time, so she said, "I'll take a piece of that."
"Hello there, Rainie." Frank and Doug, friends for nearly fifty years, smiled as a single unit. Frank had bluer eyes in his sun-weathered face, but Doug had more hair. Both men wore red-checked western shirts with pearl snaps—their official dress shirts for an afternoon spent out on the town. In the winter, they topped their shirts with brown suede blazers and cream-colored cowboy hats. Rainie once accused them of trying to impersonate the Marlboro Man. At their ages, they took that as a compliment.
"Slow day?" Doug asked.
"Slow month. It's May. The sun is out. Everyone is too damn happy to fight."
"Ahh, no juicy domestic disputes?"
"Not even a quibble over whose dog is depositing what souvenirs in whose yard. If this good weather continues, I'm gonna be out of a job."
"A beautiful woman like you doesn't need a job," Frank said. "You need a man."
"Yeah? And after thirty seconds, what would I do?"
Frank and Doug chortled; Rainie winked. She liked Frank and Doug. Every Tuesday for as long as she could remember, she would find them sitting at that booth in this diner at precisely one P.M. The sun rose, the sun set. Frank and Doug ate Martha's Tuesday meatloaf special. It worked.
Now Rainie tossed ten bucks into the pot in Chuckie's favor. She'd seen the young Don Juan in action before, and Bakersville's young ladies simply loved his dimpled smile.
"So what d'you think of the new volunteer?" Doug asked, jerking his head toward the lunch counter.
"What's there to think? Writing traffic tickets isn't brain surgery."
"Heard you two had a little encounter with a German shepherd last week," Frank said.
Rainie grimaced. "Rabies. Damn fine animal too."
"Did he really charge Romeo?"
"All ninety pounds."
"We heard Chuckie 'bout peed his pants."
"I don't think Chuckie likes dogs."
"Walt said you took the shepherd out. Clean shot to the head."
"That's why they pay me the big bucks—so I can counsel drunks and shoot household pets."
"Come on, Rainie. Walt said it was a tough shot. Those dogs move fast. Chuckie indebted to you now?"
Rainie eyed the rookie, still puffed up like a rooster at the lunch counter. She said, "I think Chuckie's scared shitless of me now."
Frank and Doug laughed again. Then Frank leaned forward, a gleam in his old blue eyes as he started fishing for real gossip.
"Shep must like having more help," he said meaningfully.
Copyright © 2001 by Lisa Baumgartner