Originally posted on my Ko-fi

Feet moved in perfect time. Even if there had been no music permeating the air with a steady beat, the rhythm would have been obvious in the perfectly executed movements. However, despite the rigidity of the timing, the dance was fluid and beautiful, not even remotely strict or stiff.

One could be entranced by such a sight, thought Joan as she stood off to the side of the dancing couples, holding a drink in her hand that was as full now as it had been when she’d first gotten it over thirty minutes ago. She made it a point never to eat or drink anything while she was out during a case—it was just an invitation for someone to poison her. How many times had she thought to herself, If only James hadn’t ordered a beer that night…

Joan brought her mind back to the present, shaking her head. She hated these grand balls. They distracted her too much.

She did a quick scan of the room, but once again didn’t come up with anything remarkable. How was she supposed to spot an undercover murderer in a crowd of hundreds of people, anyway? Interview every single guest?

Joan’s fingers tightened around her glass. After two false leads, her faith in her client was beginning to dwindle. If this night out also turned into a failure, she’d walk away from the job. She’d never done so before, but there was a first time for everything.

Besides, if there was one thing she wouldn’t stand for, it was being used.

“Ms Redding?”

Joan’s deeply embedded training was the only thing that kept her from jumping at the sound of the deep voice close beside her. She forced herself to let out a long, silent exhale to calm her thumping heart and turned slowly to face a stranger.

“You have me at a disadvantage,” she said with a flirtatious smile, keeping up her persona. Although, the man before her wasn’t half-bad—tall, dusty blond hair, bright eyes, and a small, amused smile.

“I don’t think so,” he replied with a smirk. “I think you’ve been looking for me.”

Joan kept her face neutral, but her heartbeat thundered in her ears. “I don’t know anyone here.”

He shrugged, swirling his own glass of pale champagne. “It’s true we’ve never met, but I think you’d recognise my name: Damian Flint.”

Joan had already guessed, but still, her blood ran cold.

She’d come face to face with the murderer.

Happy new week, everyone! I know my posts weren’t as regular last week, but unfortunately they will probably be the same this week. I sprained my wrist (only slightly) and I’m trying to let it rest so that it doesn’t get worse.

However, the newsletter is still coming out like normal! Make sure to take a look at the signup on the sidebar (or scroll to the bottom of the page if you’re on mobile) to subscribe to my emails for weekly exclusive content!

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