And now Dear Readers, it’s time for another installment of Fiction Relay… The Continuing Saga of Suzi. To see where we last left Suzi and Sam, go to Deliah’s Blog and catch up.
And now, back to the story…
“We need you.”
Their fear permeated the room, and slammed into Ephraim like a freight train full of bad memories. He had not dreamt of this meeting, in fact had not thought of them for some time… until tonight… and sure as hell did not need to ask how they had found him. They had that ability, as did some of the others.
This was not the assured Daniel he remembered, now holding out the photograph with a tremble. And little Suzi, well she wasn’t little anymore.
“Take it, please. They’re coming.”
Ephraim knew the photo was taken at the orphanage Mr. Sanders had founded in Kentucky. One look and the past flooded out of the image. The five pals growing up together. Raised in the restaurant, then split up to work in different areas of the business. Some climbed the corporate ladder, while others like Raj still tended the fryers.
He was correct in his investigation of the crime scene at the diner. It made perfect sense now. Melissa had been in Research and Development at the time. News of the theft had been suppressed those many years ago. They had all suspected, as she would have had access to it, and then she disappeared.
The gristly murder of a little known short order cook had taken a familiar turn when Ephraim found out that Gino had been turning out fantastic tasting, although familiar, fried chicken. A taste of herbs and spices spilled on the counter confirmed it. But, how had a nondescript diner like Maisy’s landed such a talent? The answer hit home like a 100 pound bag of flour when he discovered the identity of the owner. Melissa. She held the secret to Gino’s success with the bird, a secret stolen years ago, and just now surfacing. But where was she? The outline on the floor, was that her? He knew it wasn’t Suzi, for she was standing here before him. With Daniel. Surveillance photos, taken by Corporate, had placed Suzi as a waitress and Daniel, now called Sam, as a much too frequent diner at Maisy’s. Ephraim suspected Sam had been enlisted to track down the stolen secret recipe. So who had it? Melissa, Suzi or Sam? And what of Raj, could he be far behind? These questions raced threw his head as he looked at the photo.
A quiet knock at the door.
In case you would like to start Suzi’s story at the beginning… The Fiction Relay Homepage
Noted romance novelist Dawn is up next…