Pat finished the story. We’d love to hear how you would have finished it had you been spot #4!!
“Have you ever helped someone hide?” she asked, testing him.
“Sure, that’s basic stuff. Who are you hiding from? Police?”
She shook her head.
“FBI? CIA? Homeland Security?” her head continued to shake as he quizzed her.
“The Amish?” he asked, with a grin.
She smiled back. “Thank you,” she said. “I haven’t smiled in weeks.”
“So, Miss Ninja, tell me your story,” he said as he stood and walked across the room to a mini fridge. “How about a bottle of water?”
“I’d rather have caffeine if you have it.”
He pulled out two Cokes and opened hers before handing it to her. “I have a feeling I’m going to like this story.”
She didn’t know where to begin. It probably didn’t matter. She just needed to keep hiding. How they figured out who she was baffled her.
“Do you know who I am?” She asked.
“Professor Weingarten, instructor of Religious Studies, English Lit, and Non-Fiction Composition,” he answered.
“True. That’s true for the past two years.”
“Before that you taught English and Shakespeare at a small Christian College in the Midwest for five years, before that a myriad of subjects at a Christian high school in the Northwest, and a youth minister at a large non-denominational church.” He grinned as he looked up from his phone screen.
“All true,” she said. “That’s me. Cathy Weingarten.”
“Oh, and an author,” he continued. “Of fifteen books?”
“Yes. Fifteen books on prayer and studying your Bible and recovering from a loss; you know, normal subjects.”
“Wow. Impressive,” he said, putting his phone down and focusing on her.
“Well, I wrote a different kind of book a few years back. Then two years ago I met this incredibly handsome man who I thought was interested in me,” her face reddened at the confession. “But the truth was a supposed friend of mine had told him about this crazy hobby I had and he wanted to publish my book. My friend – and I use that term loosely – had stolen my computer file and shared it with him.”
“Somehow this is not sounding worthy of the beating I just took,” answered Con.
“I know. I wish now he had stolen my work and committed plagiarism,” she said. “My life would be much easier.”
“Ok, Professor …”
“Please, call me Cathy.”
“Ok, Cathy, so you met this guy you found good looking, he wasn’t interested in you, but he was interested in your book. The problem is quite obvious.”
“It is?” she asked.
“No, it is NOT! Would you please explain for us lame, technical geniuses?”
She smiled again. Wow, another smile. Good job, Connan, she thought.
“Ok, well, I’m a minister, teacher of religious studies, and all around good girl; but I wrote a vampire novel. A really bloody, gory, gross vampire novel.”
“So, it is not me. Really, it isn’t,” she said strongly enough to try to convince him – or herself.
“So, I used a pseudo name and let him publish it thinking it was a stupid book and it would just be for fun. I didn’t think anyone would actually read it.”
“So, it is a New York Times Best Seller! And they want me to do a book tour and interviews and sequels and …”
“HA!!!” Connan exploded. “You are hiding from your publisher?”
“Yes. He just texted me that he knew where I was and that I was to keep quiet. Not sure what that meant.”
“HA!!! You’re rich and famous?”
“Richard Castle rich.”
“Could I have read it?”
“You probably did. If you like vampire books, anyway.”
“My girlfriend is going to freak.”
“I thought you were going to help me.”
“HA! This is the best day ever.” Connan said, grabbing his phone and flipping it sideways taking her picture before she knew what was happening.
“What are you doing?” She yelled, jumping from her seat sending her ice pack flying.
“Don’t worry,” he said calmly. “It’s just my prize for helping you.”
She returned to her seat concerned she had made a critical error being honest with her tech savvy Sherlock Holmes.
“I’ll help you. It won’t be difficult. You just didn’t do this smartly. You need to be using a new name for your non-fiction life as well as your fiction life.”
“I decided to write one silly book to try something new and for that I have to give up my identity?” She demanded.
“You wouldn’t have to if you hadn’t written it so well,” he quipped.
She stared at him, letting the reality of what he was saying register.
He scrolled through his phone for a couple of minutes. He found what he was looking for and tapped the screen a couple of times. Then he turned his phone around so she could see the cover of one of her books entitled Truth = Freedom.
“Or you could just tell the truth.”