Shear Murder

May 27, 2013

Excerpt from SHEAR MURDER by Nancy J. Cohen

Oh, God. She must be seeing things. But when Marla lifted the drape again, Torrie’s body lay there, unmoving, in the same spot.

Was the woman dead? Making that determination would decide her next action.

Thinking fast, she clutched her ear and said aloud to any passersby, “Oh, my, I’ve lost an earring back.” That should justify her dropping out of sight for a few seconds.

She crouched quickly, drew in a deep breath, and felt Torrie’s clammy wrist for a pulse.


She couldn’t bear to touch the woman’s neck, not with her glazed eyes half-open. Torrie’s chest—dear Lord, Marla had to force her horrified glance away from the knife—wasn’t rising, but the bile in her own throat choked her.

Coughing, she covered her mouth and stood upright. Come on, don’t throw up. Think what you should do next.

Regret swelled within her. Jill expected Torrie to watch the cake-cutting ceremony. How awful. She may not have gotten along with her sister, but this presented a horrible end to their troubled relationship.

Uncertain how to proceed, Marla nudged Torrie’s arm under the table and released the cloth so nothing showed.

Catching Dalton’s eye, she signaled frantically. He’d know what to do. When he reached her side, she sagged against him.

“Don’t look now, but there’s a dead body under the table,” she murmured under her breath.


“You heard me.” She smiled tremulously at a couple who strolled past. Could they tell she was sweating? That her face had lost its color? That she was about to lose her dinner?

Dalton half bent, his dark hair falling forward, but then he straightened with a grin. “Good one, Marla. You almost got me.”

She shuffled her feet. “I’m not kidding.” Any minute they’d call for the cake, or Jill would broaden the hunt for her sister. Chewing on her bottom lip, she lifted a portion of the drape so Vail could see for himself. Her stomach heaved as she almost stepped on a trickle of congealing blood. Forcing down the acid reflux, she grimaced.

“Holy Mother, you aren’t joking.” He gave her an incredulous glance that she read as, Not again.


SHEAR MURDER (Bad Hair Day Mystery #10) by Nancy J. Cohen
Hairstylist Marla Shore attends her friend’s wedding where she discovers the matron of honor dead under the cake table.

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