Sunday, October 28, 2012

Book excerpt from The Happenstance Marshall, by Michael Ogara

Book blurb:

The small lake front City of Safe Haven Harbor is broke, but no one can figure out why. A new city manager is hired to uncover the cause, and Millie Boyd is thrown together with him. Together they search for the source of the city's financial troubles. Millie is nominated for election as city marshal, and it’s a position she needs if she is to unravel the dangerous mystery completely.

Chapter 1 – Millie

Millie screamed it, “What do you mean I don’t understand! She wasn’t just my sister-in-law; we were best friends. How dare you!”

Shamus knew he had gone too far and was flirting with danger so he hung his head, “Now, now, you know I didn’t really mean it.”

Millie was furious! She and Shamus’s wife Cathy had been so close that the pain of her death was like a knife through Millie’s heart. There was physical pain. She knew how Shamus must feel losing such a wonderful wife but that did not give him the right to bully her and she wasn’t going to have any of it.

Millie let it all go, “You are doing it again, just like when our ma died. Hiding in the bottle and getting mean is no way to grieve and it’s dangerous.”

She snatched the bottle from the table before Shamus realized what was happening and she ran out the back door into the night throwing the liquor container against the nearest tree. It didn’t break. Now all her fury was focused on that bottle. The back porch light cast on it and it glittered like a snake in the grass; it lay there mocking her.

She marched over and picked it up. It was still partially full and she swung it with all her might against the tree. The force of the impact reverberated up her arm and it hurt. It still did not break. Now she was beyond furious. She emptied the bottle on the grass and went into the garage, laid it on the concrete, grabbed a hammer and broke the bottle. She invested all her fury in the process breaking it into small pieces as the glass flew everywhere. When it was in a million little shards, she smiled with satisfaction. The satisfaction didn’t last long.

Millie heard the car throwing gravel as it tore out of the driveway. She ran to the front of the house to see the taillights of her car disappear. She knew where Shamus was heading and he was in no shape to be driving. How dare he steal her car! She started walking toward Joe’s Pool Hall.

Shamus was sitting at the bar nursing a beer chaser for the whiskey he had just downed when a determined Millie stormed in. Shamus did not notice her coming. He felt the tap on his shoulder and swiveled on the chair. Sitting there he was just the right height. She cold cocked him. The power started from Millie’s legs through her pivoting hips and the vicious right uppercut took him squarely and he dropped off the stool like an anchor dropped in the deepest part of the lake. She saw him go down as though it was in slow motion.

Millie turned to the men at the pool tables, “It seems my brother has had more to drink than he could handle. Would a couple of you stout fellows help me get him in my car?” She bent over and took her car keys from his pocket.

Everyone in town knew Millie and two volunteers carried Shamus and unceremoniously stuffed him in the back seat. Millie drove back to her place, left Shamus in her car and went inside. She flopped across her bed and cried herself to sleep.

She woke to the sun shining in her window. Coffee, she needed coffee. She made some and sat at the kitchen table savoring it. She heard the car door slam shut.

Shamus staggered through the door lamenting, “Man, I must have really tied one on last night.” He abruptly turned and ran back outside. Millie could hear him throwing up and she hoped it was on the lawn. She was not in a cleaning mood today.

She went to the bathroom and locked herself in and showered. It was a long hot shower. Her tears mixed with the shower water. She stayed under the shower head until the water started telling her the hot water tank was just about drained. She got out, dried her hair, brushed her teeth and dressed.

Outside she found her brother was asleep curled up on the porch floor. She left him there. She took the wad of one dollar bills from her pocket. She had exactly thirteen dollars left to live on until her unemployment check came. Screw it, she thought. Her car had a full tank of gas so she could get by. She drove to the Hi-Way Diner and treated herself to breakfast.

To read more of The Happenstance Mar
shall go to:

Michael Ogara has published eight novels, six of which are in the Millie Mystery Thriller series. The published eBook titles in the Millie series (in chronological order) are: The Happenstance Marshal, The Deliberate Sheriff, The Persistent Sheriff, The Windfall Sheriff, The Mogul Sheriff and The Mentor Sheriff. The seventh book "The Caring Sheriff" will be released soon.

Michael is a full time writer of mystery thrillers, thrillers, and historical action adventure novels. He lives in Missouri with his wife Ronda. 

Find Michael at: