Cause for Murder [Hawkman Series Book 7] [MultiFormat]
Click on image to enlarge.
eBook by Betty Sullivan La Pierre
eBook Category: Mystery/Crime
eBook Description: When it's discovered Burke Parker might have been poisoned, the suspicion of guilt falls on his wife, his daughter, and Maduk, the Indian who is his daughter's biological father. Hawkman finds the investigation leading him in all directions as he deals with an Indian man who's killed once before, and an abused daughter and wife, all who have excellent motives for murder.
eBook Publisher: SynergEbooks, Published: SynergEbooks, 2005
Fictionwise Release Date: September 2005
This eBook is part of the following series:
23 Reader Ratings:
"Murders are often committed in the name of love. Sometimes they truly seem to be justified. Betty Sullivan LaPierre's newest installment in the beloved Hawkman series may be such a case."--Kate Ayers
Hawkman sat in the living room in one of the swivel chairs overlooking Copco Lake. His legs were stretched out on the ottoman as he tried to read the paper, but Jennifer kept running the vacuum around him, making him move. "Honey, for crying out loud, it's only Sam, not the president coming home. Like most kids, he won't hang around long enough to notice whether the place is clean or not."
She shut off the noise maker and put a hand on her hip. "Hawkman, if it weren't for women, men would live in pigsties. And not only that, there wouldn't be any birthday celebrations, no Easter bunny, no tooth fairies and probably no Christmas if it were left up to the male population."
He looked at her with furrowed brows. "What brought that on? I didn't say anything about holidays. I just wanted to read the morning paper in peace."
She waved her hand and flipped on the vacuum. Hawkman finally exited to the deck. He'd no more gotten comfortable on a lounge chair than Pretty Girl let out several loud squawks from the aviary.
Hawkman glanced at the falcon. "Good Lord, what's with you females today? Can't a man have a little peace and quiet?"
The bird finally fluffed her wings and settled on the perch. Hawkman continued to read the local news, and spotted an article about a Mr. Burke Parker from Yreka found dead in a motel room. An autopsy would be performed.
The name rang a bell and Hawkman rubbed his chin. Reading down a few paragraphs, he spotted the list of survivors and it brought the name into focus. Parker's daughter, Maryann, was one of Sam's high school classmates and they now attended the same university. He raised his gaze to the lake and speculated on why Parker would be in a motel room. If he remembered correctly, they had a home in Yreka and he'd not heard mention of the Parkers separating. He scratched his sideburn. Have to ask Jennifer about that one. She knew more about Sam's friends than he did and might have heard some scuttlebutt.
When Hawkman didn't hear the vacuum for several minutes, he took a chance, ventured inside and sat down in his chair. Jennifer marched from the back of the house, rearranging strands of hair that had slipped out of her pony tail.
He smiled. "You sure look cute when you're frustrated."
She shot him a grim stare. "Hawkman, don't mess with me right now. I'm not in the mood to fool with your remarks. I'm worried about Sam. He should have called by now."
He put up his hands in defense. "Okay. I'll be good. Did he say he'd call?"
Her shoulders slumped. "Well, no, but he should."
"Come on, honey. He's a grown man. Men don't call their moms every time they head home."
"That's why I bought him the cell phone, so he'd keep in touch."
"Maybe he's got a buddy with him. But if it bothers you, call him."
"I tried. But I can't seem to get through. I keep reaching his voice mail."
"Maybe he lost it, or packed it away."
She threw up her hands in disgust. "You're probably right. Kids drive you nuts."
"Now, getting off that subject, can I ask you a question?"
"I read in the paper where a Burke Parker from Yreka died. The survivors listed are Lillian Parker and his daughter, Maryann. Do you know his wife and didn't Sam go to school with the girl?"
Jennifer flopped down on the couch and wrinkled her forehead. "That's sad. I don't think I ever met Burke and Lilly personally, but I do remember seeing Maryann at the high school on a few occasions. A beautiful girl, but very quiet and reserved. I believe Sam took her out a couple of times. I recall a big stink arose about Lilly and Burke last summer."
"Oh yeah, what about?"
"I gathered he drank a lot and they fought constantly. I heard he came home one night roaring drunk, staggered into Maryann's room and tried to rape her. When she let out a terrifying scream, her mother came running with a gun in her hand. Lilly chased Burke outside and shot at him, wounding him in the leg." She shrugged. "Of course, it's all gossip, so who knows the truth."
Hawkman flipped open the paper to the article and handed it to her. "Well, there might be some veracity to it. Your story certainly explains why they found his body in a motel and not at home."
Jennifer read the article and shook her head. "Poor Maryann. That's all she needs to have happen now. At least school is out for the summer. It will give her time to recover from the loss of her father." * * * *
Sam packed what he needed and said goodbye to Dan, the fellow who'd sublet his apartment for the next three months. Sam decided he didn't want to go to summer school this year. After three years of college and constant studying, he needed a rest. Jennifer and Hawkman agreed. A few months at home sounded great. His last chance to relax before he conquered the world.
He loaded his stuff into the Toyota pickup his parents had given him as a reward for making the Dean's Honor Roll last year. The thought of fishing and riding his motorcycle in the hills around Copco Lake, with the wind whipping through his hair, made him feel good all over.
He'd contacted Richard, his close friend, at his university to find out when he'd be home. Even though they were the same age, Richard had just finished his sophomore year. Being deaf made it difficult for him to carry a full load. And his Uncle Joe didn't want him to get burned out on school, so he wouldn't allow him to attend the summer sessions. Even though Richard had a scholarship, he insisted on working for his spending money while he had this time off. Sam admired the guy's stamina and liked him a lot. He hoped they'd be able to get together and do some bike riding.
As he covered and tied down his belongings in the pickup bed, he spotted a figure approaching out of the corner of his eye. He recognized the female before she got close enough to speak. Her tall frame, skin tight Levi's, and cowboy boots with little conchos tied to the pull tabs gave her away. She lived in the next door apartment complex. How he wished he'd left fifteen minutes earlier. This woman had a big attitude problem.
She strolled up beside him and placed a hand on his shoulder. "Hi, Sam, when are you leaving?"
"In just a few minutes."
"Can I hitch a ride? I'll pay for half the gas."
"Sure, Maryann. But there's no charge. I don't think an extra person will make much difference in the mileage."
"Thanks. Let me grab my bag and I'll be right out."
When she got out of ear shot, Sam sighed. Maryann was quite pretty, sported a great figure and must have American Indian blood in her veins, as she had high cheek bones, olive skin and long black hair accenting dark brown eyes. But she had a negative approach about life and never appeared happy. He just didn't care to be around her.
They'd gone through high school together and dated a couple of times. He felt sorry for the girl as her family didn't have much money; only meager funds her grandmother had left for college expenses. Maryann worked at the university cafeteria and took any extra jobs she could find to supplement the school cost. He had to admire her. At least, she didn't have a lazy bone in her body. And to top it off, she had brains and made excellent grades. He resigned himself to the fact it might be nice to have company on the long ride home, and since she lived in Yreka, it wouldn't be out of his way to drop her off.