Read an Excerpt
My name is Allegra Fairweather and I'm a paranormal investigator. Do you have trouble with ghosts? Witches? Shapeshifters? I'm the woman to call. Just don't call me a Ghostbuster. The last guy who did that ended up flat on his back with my boot at his throat. Okay, I overreacted, but I'm tired of my profession being confused with a movieand a comedy at that. Real paranormal investigation is a serious and dangerous business.
I had recently traveled from my home in San Diego to the chilly shore of Scotland's Loch Furness. Usually I don't travel halfway across the world on a whim, but Douglas MacGregor had a rather intriguing problem and I couldn't resist poking my nose into his business. My first grade teacher told me no good ever came from being nosy. She was wrong. I've made a nice career out of it, thank you very much.
After parking my rental car, I did a quick reconnoiter. Loch Road ran the length of the village, curved right and then followed the shore of the loch like a lazy snake. My eyes were drawn to the broad expanse of water that nestled between the surrounding hills. Today it was calm. The entire sceneglassy loch, quaint villages and the few isolated cottages that lined the shorewas as pretty and peaceful as a postcard.
Turning my back on the scenic splendor, I took a brisk walk up Loch Road. The village of Furness boasted a general store, a post office, a greengrocer, a butcher and no less than three pubs. I guessed there wasn't much to do here but drink, which wasn't a happy thought considering most paranormal activity is reported by drunks. That's a statistical fact, by the way.
Hoping Douglas MacGregor wasn't having a love affair with the bottle, I continued down Loch Road until I came to the address he had given me. My heart sank. Mac's, Loch Road, Furness, was the address of the largest pub in the village.
Centuries old, its facade had the kind of dark glamour that would not have been out of place in a novel by Charlotte Bronte. I, however, was no Jane Eyre. Feeling more like Wyatt Earp, I pushed open the doors and strode inside.
The tables and chairs were empty but the old wood gleamed a welcome. I could imagine this place full and noisy. Especially when I caught sight of the bar.
Everything from the enameled handles for pulling beer to the wooden shelves lined with bottles and glasses made me feel as though I had taken a step into Scottish history. The bartender was the sole incongruity.
Caught in the act of polishing beer glasses, he looked like the worst kind of Wild West cliché. Or so I thought until he raised his head and turned my way.
In a heartbeat I registered his dark hair, electric blue eyes, and the hint of a fine body beneath his sweater. It was a tasty package. Moving right up to the bar, I held out my hand and introduced myself. He responded in an accent that was as thick as it was sexy.
"Pleased to meet you, Allegra. I'm Douglas McGregor."
Looking into his sober blue eyes I sensed that alcohol had nothing to do with the paranormal activity he had witnessed. He might serve alcohol but I guessed he didn't imbibe too much.