Saturday, June 22, 2013

F.M. Meredith's Excerpt from Dangerous Impulses


An attractive new-hire captivates Officer Gordon Butler, Officer Felix Zachary’s wife Wendy is befuddled by her new baby, Ryan and Barbara Strickland receive unsettling news about her pregnancy, while the bloody murder of a mother and her son and an unidentified drug that sickens teenaged partiers jolts the Rocky Bluff P.D.

Officer Gordon Butler couldn’t believe his good luck. First, because he’d been assigned the new hire, even though he knew everyone else on the Rocky Bluff P.D. thought Chief McKenzie had lost his mind for making such a decision. Second, Officer Lizette Gibbs was gorgeous. Though still suffering from a broken heart, Gordon thought his chances for healing had finally improved. He stole a side glance at her. Shiny black, chin-length hair framed her golden-skinned profile. High cheekbones and full lips glowed with natural color. Her name gave no clue to her ethnic background, but she was some kind of mix. Gordon couldn’t tell how much might be Hispanic, Native American, Far-Eastern or Anglo. Whatever, she was flat-out gorgeous.

She must’ve felt his scrutiny because she glanced over from her place in the shot-gun seat. “Is it always this quiet during the day shift?”
“To be perfectly honest, ninety-percent of the time, yes.” 
“How do you keep from getting bored?” 
“I hand out lots of traffic tickets.” Gordon laughed. “Once in a while something more interesting happens.”         

“I wanted to work in a bigger city.” Lizette peered out the window at the rows of orange trees. “I applied to about twenty places, but when I got called for the interview here I thought being between two fairly large cities like Ventura and Santa Barbara, there could be the possibility for some action. Finding out Rocky Bluff is a beach town influenced me too. I love the ocean.”          

While Gordon drove, he pointed out all the various neighborhoods. The mostly dilapidated rentals on the beachfront, the downtown area that ended on the north side at the undeveloped area by the creek near the bluff. They traveled to the south side with the upscale seafood restaurant at the far end. He showed her the older neighborhoods that climbed the hillsides, and the orange groves and ranches on the eastside of the101 that nearly covered the foothills.

He’d turned toward the more populated sections. “I’ll show you the ritziest part of town next, up on the bluff. He passed the freeway exit and entrance. “I manage to catch quite a few speeders here.”  
“I hope to do more than hand out speeding tickets.”  Lizette sounded disappointed.
“I think Stacey Wil . . . I mean Milligan, has her eye on you.” Gordon still forgot to call Stacey by her married name, as did many of her other co-workers. 
“Why? I couldn’t quite figure out what her job is. Sometimes she wears a uniform and sometimes she doesn’t.”
“She covers all the vice crimes. Being the only female officer we’ve had for a while, she’s kept pretty busy.”
“That would be okay. I wouldn’t mind helping her out. Do you think I ought to talk to her?”
Before he could answer, the dispatcher’s voice came over the radio, “See the man concerning a missing teen.”


F.M. is also known as Marilyn Meredith, the author of the Deputy Tempe Crabtree series. She first became interested in writing about law enforcement when she lived in a neighborhood filled with police officers and their families. The interest was fanned when her daughter married a police officer and the tradition has continued with a grandson and grandson-in-law who are deputies. She’s also serves on the board of the Public Safety Writers Association, and has many friends in different law enforcement fields. For twenty plus years, she and her husband lived in a small beach community located in Southern California much like the fictional Rocky Bluff. She is a member of three chapters of Sisters in Crime, Epic, and Mystery Writers of America.


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