I Shall Not Want: The Psalm 23 Mysteries #2 [NOOK Book]

Overview

Charity work can be murder!


 


It’s Thanksgiving and Joseph Tyler, one of the members of Cindy’s church, has organized a new charity that provides homeless people with rescue dogs to love and care for. But one by one, the homeless recipients are being murdered and their dogs stolen. Could an overly competitive millionaire with his prize-winning pooches and a grudge be behind the crimes? Or could it be someone much closer to Joseph who has...

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I Shall Not Want: The Psalm 23 Mysteries #2

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Overview

Charity work can be murder!


 


It’s Thanksgiving and Joseph Tyler, one of the members of Cindy’s church, has organized a new charity that provides homeless people with rescue dogs to love and care for. But one by one, the homeless recipients are being murdered and their dogs stolen. Could an overly competitive millionaire with his prize-winning pooches and a grudge be behind the crimes? Or could it be someone much closer to Joseph who has something sinister to hide? Cindy and Jeremiah must rush to find a killer before he strikes again.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781426716096
  • Publisher: Abingdon Press
  • Publication date: 7/1/2010
  • Series: Psalm 23 Mysteries , #2
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 224,015
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Debbie Viguié is the New York Times bestselling author of more than two dozen novels. Debbie writes dark fantasy, mysteries, and thrillers including The Psalm 23 Mysteries and the Kiss trilogy. When Debbie isn’t busy writing she enjoys spending time with her husband, Scott, visiting theme parks. They live near Orlando, Florida with their cat, Schrödinger.

 

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Read an Excerpt

I Shall Not Want

The Psalm 23 Mysteries


By Debbie Viguié

Abingdon Press

Copyright © 2010 Debbie Viguié
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-4267-1609-6


CHAPTER 1

Cindy Preston loved Fridays. Anything-can-happen Fridays was how she liked to think of them. As they neared the holidays and First Shepherd church became a center of activity, Fridays became even more deserving of their name. Being a secretary at a church was a far more chaotic job than most people imagined.

For Cindy, the job had turned even more exciting several months earlier when she had stumbled across a dead body in the church sanctuary. The week that followed had seen many people murdered by a serial killer, one whom Cindy had helped stop.

For a couple of months afterward, the church had seen a large swell in attendance as people wanted to come gawk at the woman who had survived attack by the Passion Week killer and had helped the police turn the tables on him.

Their interest had gradually waned, and aside from three new members who had actually joined the church, things had pretty much returned to normal.

The one unfortunate thing was that her friendship forged in shared danger with Jeremiah, the rabbi at the synagogue next door, slowly faded as well. They still exchanged pleasantries over the shrub hedge that separated the parking lots of the church and the synagogue, but not much else. It made sense, really. They had nothing in common.

At first the return to normalcy had been a relief, a sanctuary from the days of terror she had lived through. Lately, though, she had felt a growing restlessness. In a fit of what could only have been insanity she had actually decided to do something daring with her weekend.

Of course, as daring went, participating in a speed-dating event would rank low on most people's scales. To Cindy, though, it seemed bold and risky. She was always so selective about who she dated, thoroughly getting to know a guy before even considering spending time alone with him. Many people had told her she was paranoid, but it wasn't like she didn't have a reason. After all, the last man she ate dinner alone with turned out to be the very same one who killed the man whose body she found. A girl didn't get over that quickly.

No, anything-can-happen Fridays constituted her idea of big excitement. The most risk she normally wanted to take was showing up for work that day.

It was the week before Thanksgiving, and people were starting to get that crazed look in their eyes that said Christmas was coming.

Poor Thanksgiving had been relegated to the position as herald of Christmas—not even allowed to stand on its own as a holiday. What a shame. It was such an American custom, and in a world that seemed on the verge of constant chaos, people needed that oasis of time to contemplate what had gone before and to be grateful for having survived it one more year.

Geanie, the church's graphic artist, flopped down in the chair next to Cindy's desk. Her red leather mini-skirt and black silk blouse might have looked odd on someone else, but on Geanie the look was almost elegant. By contrast, dressed in a long black skirt, white sweater, and sensible shoes, Cindy felt boring.

The front door to the church opened, and Joseph, one of the church's most prominent members and Pine Spring's most eligible bachelors, walked in. Clarice, a large white poodle, paced beside him. Joseph walked right up to her desk without hesitation and sank into the chair across from her. The dog lay down next to her master.

"How's it going?" Cindy asked.

Joseph looked bone-tired but smiled in that way people did when the answer was "crappy" but they were too polite to say so.

"Fine."

"Are you all set for the big event?"

He nodded and closed his eyes. "You're still coming tonight, right?"

"I wouldn't miss it," Cindy said. "This is huge, and I want to support it."

"I knew you wouldn't let me down."

In addition to all of his church activities and owning his own media empire, Joseph kept himself busy with charity work. His latest project, targeted at helping the homeless improve their lives and find the inspiration and help to get back on their feet, was ambitious. Many critics said he was crazy, but Cindy believed in his idea. The church, along with all the others in the area, supported a local homeless shelter, and Cindy had frequent dealings with several of its regulars. After weeks of preparation, the program would be launched that evening on the lawn outside of Joseph's family mansion.

"How's it going, Clarice?" Cindy said to the poodle. "I haven't seen you since you had your puppies."

Clarice looked at her and gave a slight shake of the head, rattling her dog tags.

"She needed a break, so I brought her with me. Seven poodle puppies are enough to drive anyone insane. They're fast and clever. She and I have been chasing them all over the house this morning trying to corral them into one room."

Cindy bit her lip to keep from laughing out loud at the image. Instead she changed the subject back to the event. "Six o'clock, right?"

"It starts at six. Please tell me you'll be there before that."

"I'll head straight to your house from work. It should only take me about ten minutes."

"You're an angel," Joseph said.

"Do you need me to bring anything?"

"A sense of humor. Somebody needs one tonight, or this could get depressing really fast."

She couldn't help but laugh. "I'll do my best."

He stood abruptly. "That's all anyone can ask. Thanks, Cindy."

"You're welcome."

He waved to Geanie and then left the office.

"You should totally go out with him," Geanie said.

"Not my type."

"Yes, because tall, dark, and rich are sooo unattractive."

"Why don't you go out with him? You're not seeing anyone, right?"

Geanie made a face, and Cindy bit her lip. The younger woman was once again between boyfriends and didn't like it one bit.

* * *

When five o'clock rolled around, Cindy chased everyone out of the office, locked the door, and headed for her car. Ten minutes later she was driving up the hill to Joseph's house.

She rounded a curve and was surprised to see a dozen people lined up on either side of the road holding up signs.


Pets Deserve Safe Homes.

Keep Dogs Safe.

Don't Jeopardize Lives For Your Ego.

Stop Being Part of the Problem.

Born Free, Live Free.

Collars Are Cruel.

Free All Captive Animals!


A homeless man who wore a ripped coat and sported dreadlocks jumped in front of her car waving a sign that read Food, Not Frivolity! Cindy slammed on her brakes. He pounded on the hood of her car before a private security officer dragged him away.

Shaken, Cindy cautiously edged the car forward, eyes darting right and left and wondering who else would try and stop her. If the road had been wide enough, she would have turned around and fled. It wasn't, though, so she kept inching forward until she made it to the designated parking lot. She wedged her car in between a Humane Society vehicle and a news van, and turned off the ignition.

Odds were good that once the event ended, the protestors would leave. After they left, she'd leave. Until then she was sure Joseph would need a hand cleaning up his mansion.

Reluctantly, she slid out of her car. She spotted more people milling about, but none of them held up signs, although quite a few of them appeared homeless. Half a dozen large tents, illuminated by outdoor lights, had been erected on the lawn. Several small paddocks, surrounded by portable wire fences, held a variety of dogs that napped, ate, or played with each other.

Joseph stood on the lawn with Clarice beside him. Cindy walked up and tried not to interrupt as he issued orders to a caterer. After the woman hurried off, Cindy asked, "How are you holding up?"

Joseph turned and hugged her impulsively. Surprised, Cindy hugged him back but pulled away when she saw a flash from someone's digital camera.

"What do you need?" she asked. "I'm your go-to girl just so long as it has nothing to do with protestors."

"Agreed. Actually, if you could go inside and tell my assistant, Derek, to bring out Buford Augustus Reginald the III, that would be great."

"Who?" Cindy asked.

"It's a puppy."

"Oh. Buford ... August—"

Joseph stopped her with a raised hand. "Just ask him to bring out Buff."

"Okay, I think I can handle that," Cindy said. "Any idea where I can find Derek?"

"No, I've called his cell twice, but he's not picking up. His car's here, though, and he's not outside, so he must be in the house. Try my office—second floor, third door on the right."

"Got it." Cindy headed for the house.

She knew the massive mansion had been built by Joseph's grandparents. She had been in it twice before for church functions. The foyer was empty.

"Derek?" Cindy called. It wasn't dignified, but it would be a lot faster than searching the house. She headed up the stairs, listening.

"Derek!" she called again as she reached the landing.

Suddenly, she heard the sound of smashing glass, like somebody had dropped a water goblet. It came from the right side of the hallway. She walked down its long length, hoping she hadn't startled Derek into dropping something.

The third door on the right stood ajar.

"Sorry to startle you," she said, swinging the door open. The room was empty. "Derek!"

Then she saw a cell phone on the desk and wondered if it was the assistant's. Joseph had worn his on his belt, and he had said he'd been trying to call Derek. She moved toward the desk to grab the phone and then turned. Her shoe crunched on broken glass that had been scattered to the left of the desk. Some shards had landed several feet in all directions.

Behind the desk that stood in front of a balcony, the sheers fluttered in the breeze. Cindy walked around to the right of the desk and sucked in her breath.

Derek. He was lying on his back, a pool of blood beneath his head, and his eyes fixed at the ceiling in a death stare. In his fist he clutched a dog's leash.

Cindy screamed and leaped backward. She dropped the cell phone on the floor, dug through her purse, and hit the speed dial button on her own cell that still had Detective Mark Walters's phone number programmed into it.

"It's Cindy Preston," she said as he answered the phone.

"Cindy? What's up?"

"I'm at Joseph's house. Remember? The guy who lives on the hill who loves dogs? Someone's been murdered."

"I'm on my way. I'll call it in. Make sure nobody touches anything."

"I will."

She heard footsteps racing up the stairs and down the hall. "Are you okay?" a familiar voice asked behind her. She spun around and stared at Jeremiah in shock. "What are you doing here?"

"The charity event. The synagogue is supporting it. What are you doing here?"

"So is First Shepherd. Joseph asked me to come."

Jeremiah moved slowly into the room, his eyes roving over the scene. "Did you scream?"

"Yes," she said, coming to her senses after the surprise of seeing him there.

"What happened?"

"Well, it seems you've come to my rescue again," she said, her voice starting to quiver.

"I don't follow."

She nodded to the floor behind the desk, and he moved closer. He stopped and she watched him as he looked the body over. At last he turned his eyes back to her. "You just found him?"

She nodded.

"You've got to be kidding me."

She shrugged her shoulders as tears spilled down her cheeks. "It's anything-can-happen Friday."

* * *

Jeremiah stared at her and fought the urge to laugh. It wasn't funny—none of it. Not the dead body, not Cindy's tears, not the fact that the police would be there any minute. So much for keeping a low profile. He'd worked hard to not draw too much attention to himself during the whole Passion Week killer fiasco.

"Have you called the police?" he asked.

"Yes. I called Mark."

Great. He moved toward her as he thought about how much better she was handling the situation compared to the last time she found a body.

He got a good look at the corpse: late twenties, blonde with a goatee, blue eyes. Broken glass mixed with the blood that pooled around his head.

Glass and blood sprayed out for a couple of feet. A cell phone lay on the floor next to the man's foot. In his hand he held a red leash, but there was no sign of a dog or a collar.

Jeremiah's eyes were drawn to the balcony.

"I heard the glass breaking when I was in the hall," Cindy said.

"And no one ran past you?"

"No."

Jeremiah approached the balcony, crouching down slightly. The sheers were moving gently, and he could feel a breeze. Wait for the police, he urged himself. But he knew there might not be time for that.

He pushed aside the flimsy material and saw a large, half-circle balcony that held a small wrought-iron chair and table. He stepped outside and looked around, and then he walked to the edge and looked down. It was about a ten-foot drop to the lawn on the side of the building facing away from the area where the festivities would be held.

He turned back and saw Cindy staring at him with wide eyes. "Is it possible it was an accident?" she asked.

"Not likely since those aren't mine," he said, directing her eyes down to the bloody footsteps on the balcony.

She sucked in her breath.

Jeremiah took one last look at the balcony and also turned to look at the face of the building to make sure there wasn't a window the killer could have reached. Convinced that the killer had jumped, he turned and walked back inside, careful not to step in the blood.

He crouched down and stared intently at the body. "Do you know who he is?"

"Derek Anderson. He's Joseph's personal assistant."

Jeremiah heard footsteps in the hall. He stood and took a step back.

"You've got to be kidding me," a familiar voice groaned.

Jeremiah turned and saw Mark standing in the doorway. The detective stared from him to Cindy and back again.

"Detective," Jeremiah acknowledged him.

"Samaritan," Mark baited him.

Jeremiah refused to let the man get to him. He had been referencing Jeremiah as a good Samaritan since their first meeting, despite Jeremiah's protests and despite the fact that he was Jewish.

Mark's partner, Paul, followed him into the room and behind him was Joseph, worry filling his eyes.

"What is going on here?" Joseph said.

"He's over here," Cindy said, gesturing to Mark.

The three men moved closer, and Jeremiah stepped back to give them room.

"Would someone please tell me what this is all—" Joseph stopped in mid-sentence. He gasped and swayed for a moment, grabbing the edge of the desk for support.

"I'm sorry, Joseph, I should have called you right after I called the police," Cindy said, flushing. "I found Derek." She took a deep breath. "Someone killed him."

"Why?" Joseph asked.

* * *

Cindy's heart ached for Joseph as he turned his pain-filled eyes on her. She wished she knew what to say. She reached out and took his hand and gave it a squeeze.

"That's what the police are going to figure out," she said.

Mark cleared his throat. "I need you to all move away from the crime scene. Is there a room nearby where we can talk?"

Joseph nodded woodenly. "Across the hall is a guest room."

He turned to lead the way, then stopped and twisted back, eyes locking on the body. "Where's Buff ?"

"Who?" Mark asked.

"A puppy," Cindy said. "I came up here to tell Derek to bring him outside. I haven't seen him. There was no puppy in the room when I came in."

"That's his leash," Joseph said.

"Don't you have several dogs?" Mark asked.

Joseph nodded.

"Then how can you tell whose leash that is?"

"It was specially made for him—for today," Joseph said, his voice catching. "See the white lettering?"

Cindy and the others looked more closely. There on the leash, just above Derek's hand, white letters spelled out HOPE.

"Hope?" Jeremiah asked.

Joseph nodded. "That's what he's supposed to represent."

"Okay, we'll look for the puppy too," Mark said. "Now let's get you out of this room."

Cindy found herself in the next room a minute later, seated in a chair between Joseph and Jeremiah. Mark pulled up a chair across from them as more officers arrived and his partner took charge of the crime scene.

As guest rooms went it was huge. It felt bigger than her whole house. It probably wasn't, but it was impressive. A huge canopy bed stood against the far wall. They were clustered around a mahogany table that could easily sit six.

Being a guest in Joseph's castle had to be a lot better than being king of your own. His family was old money, and despite the fact that he was her age, he didn't need to work. His two dominating passions, which took up much of his time, were dogs and charity work. She knew how special the day was for him because it would be the first time he could really combine his two loves.

Mark flipped open a notepad and jotted a couple of things in silence. It was funny. She hadn't seen or talked to Mark once since the events of Easter. Half a dozen times she had meant to take his cell phone out of her speed dial, but each time she didn't really have anyone she wanted to replace him with.

Cindy looked at Joseph, who shook slightly. Tears shimmered in his eyes. She glanced at Jeremiah, who sat still, quietly observing everyone with guarded eyes.

She reached into her purse and grabbed a deck of cards that she shuffled one-handed as she waited. It was a habit that always calmed her nerves.

Finally, Mark seemed ready to talk. "There's a big event here today, it looks like."

"It's a charity event," Joseph said.

"And you're here ...?" Mark asked Cindy.

"As a friend and a representative of First Shepherd."


(Continues...)

Excerpted from I Shall Not Want by Debbie Viguié. Copyright © 2010 Debbie Viguié. Excerpted by permission of Abingdon Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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First Chapter

I Shall Not Want - The Psalm 23 Mysteries #2


By Debbie Viguie

Abingdon Press

Copyright © 2010 The United Methodist Publishing House
All right reserved.

ISBN: 978-1-4267-0190-0


Chapter One

Cindy Preston loved Fridays. Anything-can-happen Fridays was how she liked to think of them. As they neared the holidays and First Shepherd church became a center of activity, Fridays became even more deserving of their name. Being a secretary at a church was a far more chaotic job than most people imagined.

For Cindy, the job had turned even more exciting several months earlier when she had stumbled across a dead body in the church sanctuary. The week that followed had seen many people murdered by a serial killer, one whom Cindy had helped stop.

For a couple of months afterward, the church had seen a large swell in attendance as people wanted to come gawk at the woman who had survived attack by the Passion Week killer and had helped the police turn the tables on him.

Their interest had gradually waned, and aside from three new members who had actually joined the church, things had pretty much returned to normal.

The one unfortunate thing was that her friendship forged in shared danger with Jeremiah, the rabbi at the synagogue next door, slowly faded as well. They still exchanged pleasantries over the shrub hedge that separated the parking lots of the church and the synagogue, but not much else. It made sense, really. They had nothing in common.

At first the return to normalcy had been a relief, a sanctuary from the days of terror she had lived through. Lately, though, she had felt a growing restlessness. In a fit of what could only have been insanity she had actually decided to do something daring with her weekend.

Of course, as daring went, participating in a speed-dating event would rank low on most people's scales. To Cindy, though, it seemed bold and risky. She was always so selective about who she dated, thoroughly getting to know a guy before even considering spending time alone with him. Many people had told her she was paranoid, but it wasn't like she didn't have a reason. After all, the last man she ate dinner alone with turned out to be the very same one who killed the man whose body she found. A girl didn't get over that quickly.

No, anything-can-happen Fridays constituted her idea of big excitement. The most risk she normally wanted to take was showing up for work that day.

It was the week before Thanksgiving, and people were starting to get that crazed look in their eyes that said Christmas was coming.

Poor Thanksgiving had been relegated to the position as herald of Christmas—not even allowed to stand on its own as a holiday. What a shame. It was such an American custom, and in a world that seemed on the verge of constant chaos, people needed that oasis of time to contemplate what had gone before and to be grateful for having survived it one more year.

Geanie, the church's graphic artist, flopped down in the chair next to Cindy's desk. Her red leather mini-skirt and black silk blouse might have looked odd on someone else, but on Geanie the look was almost elegant. By contrast, dressed in a long black skirt, white sweater, and sensible shoes, Cindy felt boring.

The front door to the church opened, and Joseph, one of the church's most prominent members and Pine Spring's most eligible bachelors, walked in. Clarice, a large white poodle, paced beside him. Joseph walked right up to her desk without hesitation and sank into the chair across from her. The dog lay down next to her master.

"How's it going?" Cindy asked.

Joseph looked bone-tired but smiled in that way people did when the answer was "crappy" but they were too polite to say so.

"Fine."

"Are you all set for the big event?"

He nodded and closed his eyes. "You're still coming tonight, right?"

"I wouldn't miss it," Cindy said. "This is huge, and I want to support it."

"I knew you wouldn't let me down."

In addition to all of his church activities and owning his own media empire, Joseph kept himself busy with charity work. His latest project, targeted at helping the homeless improve their lives and find the inspiration and help to get back on their feet, was ambitious. Many critics said he was crazy, but Cindy believed in his idea. The church, along with all the others in the area, supported a local homeless shelter, and Cindy had frequent dealings with several of its regulars. After weeks of preparation, the program would be launched that evening on the lawn outside of Joseph's family mansion.

"How's it going, Clarice?" Cindy said to the poodle. "I haven't seen you since you had your puppies."

Clarice looked at her and gave a slight shake of the head, rattling her dog tags.

"She needed a break, so I brought her with me. Seven poodle puppies are enough to drive anyone insane. They're fast and clever. She and I have been chasing them all over the house this morning trying to corral them into one room."

Cindy bit her lip to keep from laughing out loud at the image. Instead she changed the subject back to the event. "Six o'clock, right?"

"It starts at six. Please tell me you'll be there before that." "I'll head straight to your house from work. It should only take me about ten minutes."

"You're an angel," Joseph said.

"Do you need me to bring anything?"

"A sense of humor. Somebody needs one tonight, or this could get depressing really fast."

She couldn't help but laugh. "I'll do my best."

He stood abruptly. "That's all anyone can ask. Thanks, Cindy."

"You're welcome."

He waved to Geanie and then left the office.

"You should totally go out with him," Geanie said.

"Not my type."

"Yes, because tall, dark, and rich are sooo unattractive."

"Why don't you go out with him? You're not seeing anyone, right?"

Geanie made a face, and Cindy bit her lip. The younger woman was once again between boyfriends and didn't like it one bit.

* * *

When five o'clock rolled around, Cindy chased everyone out of the office, locked the door, and headed for her car. Ten minutes later she was driving up the hill to Joseph's house.

She rounded a curve and was surprised to see a dozen people lined up on either side of the road holding up signs.

Pets Deserve Safe Homes.

Keep Dogs Safe.

Don't Jeopardize Lives for Your Ego.

Stop Being Part of the Problem.

Born Free, Live Free.

Collars Are Cruel.

Free All Captive Animals!

A homeless man who wore a ripped coat and sported dreadlocks jumped in front of her car waving a sign that read Food, NOT Frivolity! Cindy slammed on her brakes. He pounded on the hood of her car before a private security officer dragged him away.

Shaken, Cindy cautiously edged the car forward, eyes darting right and left and wondering who else would try and stop her. If the road had been wide enough, she would have turned around and fled. It wasn't, though, so she kept inching forward until she made it to the designated parking lot. She wedged her car in between a Humane Society vehicle and a news van, and turned off the ignition.

Odds were good that once the event ended, the protestors would leave. After they left, she'd leave. Until then she was sure Joseph would need a hand cleaning up his mansion.

Reluctantly, she slid out of her car. She spotted more people milling about, but none of them held up signs, although quite a few of them appeared homeless. Half a dozen large tents, illuminated by outdoor lights, had been erected on the lawn. Several small paddocks, surrounded by portable wire fences, held a variety of dogs that napped, ate, or played with each other.

Joseph stood on the lawn with Clarice beside him. Cindy walked up and tried not to interrupt as he issued orders to a caterer. After the woman hurried off, Cindy asked, "How are you holding up?"

Joseph turned and hugged her impulsively. Surprised, Cindy hugged him back but pulled away when she saw a flash from someone's digital camera.

"What do you need?" she asked. "I'm your go-to girl just so long as it has nothing to do with protestors."

"Agreed. Actually, if you could go inside and tell my assistant, Derek, to bring out Buford Augustus Reginald the III, that would be great."

"Who?" Cindy asked.

"It's a puppy."

"Oh. Buford ... August—"

Joseph stopped her with a raised hand. "Just ask him to bring out Buff."

"Okay, I think I can handle that," Cindy said. "Any idea where I can find Derek?"

"No, I've called his cell twice, but he's not picking up. His car's here, though, and he's not outside, so he must be in the house. Try my office—second floor, third door on the right."

"Got it." Cindy headed for the house.

She knew the massive mansion had been built by Joseph's grandparents. She had been in it twice before for church functions. The foyer was empty.

"Derek?" Cindy called. It wasn't dignified, but it would be a lot faster than searching the house. She headed up the stairs, listening.

"Derek!" she called again as she reached the landing.

Suddenly, she heard the sound of smashing glass, like somebody had dropped a water goblet. It came from the right side of the hallway. She walked down its long length, hoping she hadn't startled Derek into dropping something.

The third door on the right stood ajar.

"Sorry to startle you," she said, swinging the door open. The room was empty. "Derek!"

Then she saw a cell phone on the desk and wondered if it was the assistant's. Joseph had worn his on his belt, and he had said he'd been trying to call Derek. She moved toward the desk to grab the phone and then turned. Her shoe crunched on broken glass that had been scattered to the left of the desk. Some shards had landed several feet in all directions.

Behind the desk that stood in front of a balcony, the sheers fluttered in the breeze. Cindy walked around to the right of the desk and sucked in her breath.

Derek. He was lying on his back, a pool of blood beneath his head, and his eyes fixed at the ceiling in a death stare. In his fist he clutched a dog's leash.

Cindy screamed and leaped backward. She dropped the cell phone on the floor, dug through her purse, and hit the speed dial button on her own cell that still had Detective Mark Walters's phone number programmed into it.

"It's Cindy Preston," she said as he answered the phone.

"Cindy? What's up?"

"I'm at Joseph's house. Remember? The guy who lives on the hill who loves dogs? Someone's been murdered."

"I'm on my way. I'll call it in. Make sure nobody touches anything."

"I will."

She heard footsteps racing up the stairs and down the hall. "Are you okay?" a familiar voice asked behind her. She spun around and stared at Jeremiah in shock. "What are you doing here?"

"The charity event. The synagogue is supporting it. What are you doing here?"

"So is First Shepherd. Joseph asked me to come."

Jeremiah moved slowly into the room, his eyes roving over the scene. "Did you scream?"

"Yes," she said, coming to her senses after the surprise of seeing him there.

"What happened?"

"Well, it seems you've come to my rescue again," she said, her voice starting to quiver.

"I don't follow."

She nodded to the floor behind the desk, and he moved closer. He stopped and she watched him as he looked the body over. At last he turned his eyes back to her. "You just found him?"

She nodded.

"You've got to be kidding me."

She shrugged her shoulders as tears spilled down her cheeks. "It's anything-can-happen Friday."

* * *

Jeremiah stared at her and fought the urge to laugh. It wasn't funny—none of it. Not the dead body, not Cindy's tears, not the fact that the police would be there any minute. So much for keeping a low profile. He'd worked hard to not draw too much attention to himself during the whole Passion Week killer fiasco.

"Have you called the police?" he asked.

"Yes. I called Mark."

Great. He moved toward her as he thought about how much better she was handling the situation compared to the last time she found a body.

He got a good look at the corpse: late twenties, blonde with a goatee, blue eyes. Broken glass mixed with the blood that pooled around his head.

Glass and blood sprayed out for a couple of feet. A cell phone lay on the floor next to the man's foot. In his hand he held a red leash, but there was no sign of a dog or a collar.

Jeremiah's eyes were drawn to the balcony.

"I heard the glass breaking when I was in the hall," Cindy said.

"And no one ran past you?"

"No."

Jeremiah approached the balcony, crouching down slightly. The sheers were moving gently, and he could feel a breeze. Wait for the police, he urged himself. But he knew there might not be time for that.

He pushed aside the flimsy material and saw a large, half-circle balcony that held a small wrought-iron chair and table. He stepped outside and looked around, and then he walked to the edge and looked down. It was about a ten-foot drop to the lawn on the side of the building facing away from the area where the festivities would be held.

He turned back and saw Cindy staring at him with wide eyes. "Is it possible it was an accident?" she asked.

"Not likely since those aren't mine," he said, directing her eyes down to the bloody footsteps on the balcony.

She sucked in her breath.

Jeremiah took one last look at the balcony and also turned to look at the face of the building to make sure there wasn't a window the killer could have reached. Convinced that the killer had jumped, he turned and walked back inside, careful not to step in the blood.

He crouched down and stared intently at the body. "Do you know who he is?"

"Derek Anderson. He's Joseph's personal assistant."

Jeremiah heard footsteps in the hall. He stood and took a step back.

"You've got to be kidding me," a familiar voice groaned.

Jeremiah turned and saw Mark standing in the doorway. The detective stared from him to Cindy and back again.

"Detective," Jeremiah acknowledged him.

"Samaritan," Mark baited him.

Jeremiah refused to let the man get to him. He had been referencing Jeremiah as a good Samaritan since their first meeting, despite Jeremiah's protests and despite the fact that he was Jewish.

Mark's partner, Paul, followed him into the room and behind him was Joseph, worry filling his eyes.

"What is going on here?" Joseph said.

"He's over here," Cindy said, gesturing to Mark.

The three men moved closer, and Jeremiah stepped back to give them room.

"Would someone please tell me what this is all—" Joseph stopped in mid-sentence. He gasped and swayed for a moment, grabbing the edge of the desk for support.

"I'm sorry, Joseph, I should have called you right after I called the police," Cindy said, flushing. "I found Derek." She took a deep breath. "Someone killed him."

"Why?" Joseph asked.

* * *

Cindy's heart ached for Joseph as he turned his pain-filled eyes on her. She wished she knew what to say. She reached out and took his hand and gave it a squeeze.

"That's what the police are going to figure out," she said.

Mark cleared his throat. "I need you to all move away from the crime scene. Is there a room nearby where we can talk?"

Joseph nodded woodenly. "Across the hall is a guest room."

He turned to lead the way, then stopped and twisted back, eyes locking on the body. "Where's Buff?"

(Continues...)



Excerpted from I Shall Not Want - The Psalm 23 Mysteries #2 by Debbie Viguie Copyright © 2010 by The United Methodist Publishing House. Excerpted by permission of Abingdon Press. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 62 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(22)

4 Star

(24)

3 Star

(11)

2 Star

(2)

1 Star

(3)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 62 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 5, 2011

    slow start

    I almost stopped reading after the first couple chapters. The writing got better and it ended up a pleasant read.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 15, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Ridiculous!

    It's a wonder there is anyone else left in town alive. Too many dead bodies one right after another, characters that are flat. Foreshadowing that goes no where. Save your time and read something else.

    3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 17, 2012

    Great Mystery!

    This is the second installment in this mystery series and I really enjoyed it. The action is fast paced, and the character development is is very good. I am getting very attached to some of the returning characters and many new characters are introduced in this volume. Also, there is an underlying theme in this book. It's not just a who done it! It really gets you thinking about how we treat people that are different from us. (In this case the homeless.) And how we may take a quick look at them, but we don't "see them" as truly seeing them would make us uncomfortable. I am looking forward to the third installment.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 1, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Light reading

    Fun and fluffy if a bit unbelievable at times. If you're looking for something that you don't have to think about too hard, this is excellent. Moves along pretty quickly.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 29, 2012

    A fun light murder mystery

    This is an enjoyable series for 'just for fun' reading...enjoyed book #1 and now #2.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 22, 2013

    Ally

    It sounds like a good book i will read it if u guys like it

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted April 1, 2013

    Very enjoyable

    Being a Christian, and an avid reader I am always looking for books written by authors who have an intelligence level that allows them to write something entertaining without dumbing it down with several pages worth of cuss words in order to get the book to their desirable length, and this one does that. Not the greatest book I have ever read, but it kept me entertained. I will definitely read more by this author. Not a preachy book for those who will not read Christian authors for that reason alone, but just a plain and simple, very enjoyable mystery without all the foul language. Thank you Ms. vigulé.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2013

    fun read

    Fast paced and enjoyble.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 19, 2013

    I like the story line it was a good read.

    I like the story line it was a good read.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 12, 2013

    Great read

    Very interesting plot that keeps you wanting more.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 5, 2012

    Interesting story.

    Made me wish I had read the first book in the series since they referenced the events multiple times.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 21, 2012

    Alphapaw

    Where is the dark forest?

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 21, 2012

    Bluestar

    I dont know.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 21, 2012

    Raintail

    Pads over to blue star just calm down

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 17, 2012

    Better than the first

    I thought the first book in this series was pretty good and cute. I enjoyed this second book even more, maybe because I am becoming more invested in the characters. I really want to learn more about Jeremiah especially as I find him to be the most interresting character in the series. A fun little mystery.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted June 1, 2012

    Not quite as good as the first one

    On the plus side: Pleasant characters, some intrigue, no offensive language or sex. On the down side: Same characters and situations as the first book, only the name of the murder victims changed. At times I felt like I was reading the first book all over again. I wasn't tempted to stop reading, but at times I was wishing it would move a little faster. Not a bad book, just not a terrific one. If you didn't read the first in the series you might enjoy this one.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 31, 2012

    Really Liked This

    I got this when it was free for my Nook, and I read it over a long weekend. I've read quite a few books lately that were, in my opinion, "R" rated. This was such a nice change. I like the interaction between the characters and the Christian values. There is just enough of a religious feel without getting preachy. Great book for anyone that needs a break from some of the heavier mysteries out there. I will definately catch up on the series.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 23, 2012

    Worth downloading

    I really liked the book. Cute mystery, likeable characters, plot that moves along and has some twists. It motivated me to check out the first book in the series. Good discussion questions at end for a book club discussion or personal reflection. The main character is a church secretary but the book doesn't get preachy. Good read for younger mystery fans as well -no R rated sex scenes or profanity.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 30, 2012

    Highly Recommended

    I would highly recommend this read. This was a terrific,well written book. It was full of excitement. It kept you guessing , trying to figure out who was actually the bad guy.
    Overall, AWESOME BOOK.

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  • Posted April 23, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    I liked this book, though not quite as much as the first in the

    I liked this book, though not quite as much as the first in the series. I like the interactions between Cindy and Jeremiah, and this didn't have quite as many. Also, I might be slightly biased, as I had absolutely no expectations for The Lord Is My Shepherd, but having read that one I did have some expectations of this book. Still, it was a good book, though I didn't really buy into why the responsible parties would want to transfer information like they did.

    The eBook was formatted fine with only 1 misspelling.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 62 Customer Reviews

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