Hi, my name’s Cate. I’m Carol Childs’ daughter. If you don’t already know who Carol Childs is, you will soon. She’s an investigative reporter for a local talk radio station in Los Angeles. And growing up the daughter of a local news personality...well, it isn’t always easy. Usually, my mom keeps a definite line between work and family. She’s always done her best to keep my brother and me out of the limelight, but recently that wasn’t possible, and I guess I’m partly to blame.
Mom, or Carol to those who listen to the radio station, has recently been covering a series of brutal murders. Young women, model types, whose bodies had been found posed and strangled. The news has everybody on edge, and when I showed up home after my first year at college with my boyfriend Pete in tow, mom was none too wild about it. I suppose it didn’t help that he was a freelance photographer. But that didn’t come into play until one morning when I snuck out to visit him at the beach, and the house where he was staying was suddenly surrounded by helicopters and a SWAT unit. Pete was arrested! And me, well, what could I do? I called my mom.
That’s how my summer break started. Me home from school with my boyfriend, and then Pete getting arrested for the very crime my mom – Carol Childs – had been investigating. Talk about a small world.
What I didn’t know was that the world was not only small but getting smaller. Not only was my mom working the very story for which my boyfriend Pete had been arrested, but unbeknownst to me, a listener had also contacted her via the radio station to say she knew who the real killer was. Good news, right?
Only it wasn’t. Turns out my mom couldn’t say anything because this woman wanted to remain anonymous. Consequently, my mom couldn’t reveal what she had learned until she could verify the information, and all the while, Pete was in jail, and the cops were preparing a case against him. Which was looking pretty strong.
Needless to say, things between my mom and me are strained. It’s one thing to have your mother not wild about your boyfriend. It’s another when she’s reporting on the murders of young models, and your boyfriend is the principal suspect, and she’s including his name in the news every day.
Thankfully, mom’s got a lot of friends around who I trust. There’s my Aunt Sheri – oh, she’s not a real aunt, but close as it comes. They’ve been friends for years, and she’s a great cook and a fabulous listener. I could tell her anything and know she’d guard it with her life. Then there’s Misty Dawn. She’s a former Hollywood psychic, and she’s been living with us until she gets on her feet again. I adore her. More than once she’s interceded on my behalf with my mom. She gets that I love Pete and unlike my mom, is convinced I couldn’t possibly be involved with someone who could have murdered anyone. And then there’s a new man in mom’s life. Not that she’d admit it, but I can tell he plans to stay around for a while. His name is Chase. He’s a private investigator. Nice looking and someone I could see my mom settling in with for a while. But for now, mom’s too busy reporting on the body of a young woman was found on the beach and trying to keep me from seeing Pete again. I hope she finds who really murdered those girls because the police are convinced Pete did it and I know he’s innocent.
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