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    Excerpt from ....
                                FOUR WHITE ROSES


Rich leaned against a post and reread the letter, then stared off to the
distant hills fading away as gray dusk turned to darkness. One more thing to
add to his long list of things to do. Renovate the outdated monstrosity of a
house. Find a buyer at a worthy price. Go on a wild goose chase to locate a
half-sister he didn’t even know existed. And last, unearth century-old jewels
from Austria—rubies to be exact—that no one else in over a hundred years
could locate. Rich sighed. What a fine cactus patch he fell into! Now his plan
to blow into town, sell the house, and make a quick exit within the month was
shot to hell.
       “Did I throw you for a loop, Richard Lee Junior?” a scratchy voice asked.
Rich jumped and looked around. From the farthest corner of the porch, a
rocking chair moved slowly back and forth. Back and forth. But there was no
one sitting on it. The night was still and tranquil without a hint of a breeze.
      Rich set the letter on the railing and rubbed his tired face with his hands.
“It’s been a long day,” he muttered to himself, “and now I’m hallucinating. I
swear I’m hearing a voice sounding like Grandmother Gertie’s.” His gaze
traveled to the moving rocker, and he gave it a quizzical look.
      “You are hearing me, young man,” the voice said. “Hallucinating, my
      Rich continued to peer at the rocker, now rocking at a faster pace.
      “Grandmother? Gertie? Aren’t you supposed to be dead?”
      “I am dead.”

Judy Ann Davis
Author and Writer