Book Omens

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Or I was just desperate to believe it. CHAPTER TWENTY-NINE When I rang Rosalyns bell at six there was a car parked in front of her house. A little old lady opened the door, and I extended my hand to introduce myself, but she walked right past me, her gaze distant, lips moving, as if talking to herself. She carried on down the walk and climbed into the passenger seat of the old Buick. After a moment, she got out and went around to the drivers door. Okay, I murmured. Thats not a good sign. A grumble sounded behind me.more...

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She turned back to me. Yes, I have something specific for them. The murder of Peter Evans and Jan Gunderson. Niles Gundersons daughter. An image of the old man flashed in my memory, his eyes wild with crazed grief. She continued. Theres a reason we couldnt have done it, which was overruled because of the other evidence that tied the cases together. It goes both ways, though.more...

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Im not proud of what I did. I was young and I naively thought I was helping my country. As soon as I began to doubt that, I left. So why would Gabriel frame you? You could do the same to him. I dont know what his endgame is. Perhaps simply blackmail. Ive heard hes fond of that.more...

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What rituals did they think were being performed with the murders? No two experts could agree. In the end, they decided they were chasing a classification where none existed. If you read the accounts of so-called occult murders, youll find that in most cases, the killers were following no recognized branch of anything. They pulled in aspects from old books and modern movies and everything in between. In other words, they made it up.more...

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Killing the object of your desire might seem crazy, but it was, sadly, not that unusual with truly obsessed stalkers. As the meeting seemed to be winding down, I said, You said I could ask you questions. About the Larsens. About serial killers. Do you have time for that now? Of course. He leaned back. From the phrasing of that question, I presume that you havent ruled out the possibility your parents did commit murder. I cant.more...

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I was heading to the elevators and saw a sign for the bar. I didnt know if it would be open, but I considered checking. Ive never drunk for the sake of getting drunk, but theres a first time for everything. There was just one problemI didnt know how much alcohol it would take to pass out. Thats what I wanted really. Oblivion.more...

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Not what I wanted. Ah. Another nod. We stood there for a minute, then I said, She thinks you ruined her appeal chances on purpose, doesnt she? Yes. Did you? That wouldnt be in my best interests.more...

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I swallowed. Who are my birth parents? Howard watched my mother for a moment, silently pleading with her to answer. When she didnt, he cleared his throat. Pamela and Todd Larsen. The names will likely mean nothing to you I know who they are.more...

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There were no indications that Pamela and Todd Larsen were fringe nut jobs. Shed admitted to being a practicing Wiccan, but everything the police found in that chest was evidence of the benign, Earth-mother-worshipping form embraced by college students everywhere. The experts Gabriel hired hadnt been able to identify most of the ritualistic elements in the murders. There were no pentacles drawn in blood. No black candles. No dead animals. In the end, both experts decided the Larsens had made up their own ceremony. One was convinced they were secret occultists who believed their self-made ritual would grant them some boon. The other thought theyd simply invented it to throw the police off the trail.more...

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I said. Hed rolled back onto his side, hands clenched, ready to leap up swinging. For a second, he stared up, as if wondering where the groan came from. Then he looked down and saw me on the floor. Olivia? As I rose, he took in my nightshirt, then glanced down at himself, bare chested, legs wrapped in a sheet.more...

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