Few could argue that the exclusive island of San Martin is anything less than paradise. In this wealthy enclave, veterinarian Markie Cross has a thriving practice, but her almost psychic connection to animals has made human relationshipsespecially with menharder to navigate. Until mystery, murder and something unfathomable shatter her world...
People are dying strange, unexplained deaths. Island medical examiner Declan Quinn is stunned at the unearthly condition of the bodies, and he and Markie share a dark suspicion that something terrifying and impossible is at work here. Something that may not be human.
As a sinister message becomes clearer, Markie and Dec race to understand the tragic history of this island paradise and unlock the true nature of the evil now descending. Because if they can't, Markie may become the next victim....
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About the Author
Rachel Lee was hooked on writing by the age of twelve, and practiced her craft as she moved from place to place all over the United States. This New York Times bestselling author now resides in Florida and has the joy of writing full-time.
Read an Excerpt
By Rachel Lee
Wheeler PublishingCopyright © 2004 Rachel Lee
All right reserved.
Chapter OneShadow smelled it first. He lay on the living-room floor at his owner's feet, sprawled on his left side with a rawhide chew bone a whisker's length from his nose. He'd worked the knot for a while earlier, massaging his gums, as close as he was likely to get to the satisfaction of gnawing fresh, warm meat from the bones of a kill. Now the comforting scents - the half-chewed bone; the master's feet wrapped in old leather slippers; the rug still rich with the aroma of pipe tobacco, though the master had long since stopped smoking; beef and potatoes and carrots and red wine in the pot on the stove; the barest remnant of the master's wife's perfume, even though she'd gone out the door; the salt air that was ever-present; loam on the master's slippers from the garden; the varied and precious scents of Shadow's world - were displaced by something else.
He drew in the air in quick, rapid sniffs, emptying his lungs when he could hold no more, repeating the process again and again, focusing, letting his agile mind filter out the familiar to pinpoint the new odor. Cold. Earth. Must. Decay. Chill. Death. Evil.
One quick noise, as much to chase the horrid scent from his nostrils as to alert the master. But the smell would not leave. The growl grew low in his chest as he rolled onto hishaunches, not yet standing, still sampling the air.
"What's wrong, buddy?"
The master's voice, so soothing with its deep rumble, barely reached his mind. In a smooth, graceful motion, he rose and trotted to the front window, his nose still foul with the air. Couldn't the master smell it? Probably not. The master and his wife missed so much of the world.
His pupils widened as he approached the glass, beyond which lay the dark world, full of the rising scents of nighttime. But they held no interest. It was there. It was right out there.
Begone! This is my master's home! You may not enter!
If it heard him, or understood, it paid him no heed. But his friends in the other houses heard, and understood, taking up the cry.
"What, Shadow?" the master said, now at his side.
Shadow looked up at him, then out the window again, growling an angry warning as it approached.
"There's nothing there, boy! Stop that racket."
The master couldn't see it? Of course he couldn't smell it, but couldn't he see?
No! You can't have him! I will die before I let you near him! Begone! Evil! Danger!
Shadow looked up, his teeth bared, as it came through the glass - how could that be? - and leapt up at it, snarling and snapping, clawing at it and finding nothing.
"Calm down, boy!" the master said, though his scent now held the tiniest inkling of fear.
Be afraid, Master! Run!
Shadow grabbed the cuff of his master's pants and pulled.
The master reached down to push him away. Noooooo! Shadow made one last lunge, then turned to the foul horror that seemed to stab at his nostrils like the quills of a porcupine and let out a savage growl, leaping between it and the master.
But it passed right through and into the master's body, now curling and ripping inside him. The master crumpled to the floor. Shadow pushed at him with his firm nose.
He pawed the master's arm, then his face, carefully, so that only the soft hairs between the pads of his paw touched the skin.
But the awful evil would not be deterred. With a horrible, joyful cry, it tore something deep inside. Shadow heard the ripping sound and saw the light go from his master's eyes.
But the master's spirit wouldn't listen. It floated up and off, leaving nothing but the limp husk on the floor. Sated, the evil left, though Shadow was only dimly aware of its leaving.
The master's spirit was gone.
No more morning walks to talk to Shadow's neighbors.
No more of his rough hands behind Shadow's ears, working fur and skin and flesh as joy danced in Shadow's heart.
No more easing his feet into the slippers to settle in for dinner with his wife.
Shadow turned his nose to the heavens and howled at the master's soul.
Please don't leave me!
Please don't leave!
Excerpted from Something Deadly by Rachel Lee Copyright © 2004 by Rachel Lee. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I really enjoyed this book...beginning to end
Stops to rest and drink from the river. All of a sudden the queen is attacked by a large fox. It pins her down. But she shoves it off of her and faces it. All of a sudden five more foxes surround her. Surrounded she can do nothing. She faces the leader of the pack and stares at him. All of a sudden she barks like a fox. In fear the foxes run away. Cloverwhisper runs away from that spot. (20 page sixth result)
Names: Applefoot and Frostfang | Genders: Toms | Ages: 17 moons | Descriptions: Applefoot is a ginger tom with a lighter ginger spot over his eye weirdish blue eyes. Frostfang is a striking white tom with striking silver making all over his body he has long white fangs and claws he has icey blue eyes also | Personalitys: Applefoot is sweet, kind, loyal, calm, gentle, and smart. Frostfang on the other paw is completely different. Frostfang is icey cold, mean, scarring, fierce, ambitious, and stubborn | Kin: they are both littermates.
Name: snowdust Age: 27 moons Gender: she-cat Apperience: a slender and elegant long furred pure white she-cat with a muted ginger patch on her side. Eyes: a kind and gentle soft green Personality: kind bold, stuborn and energetic. She very protectve and stands for what she believes in no matter if shes the only one. Mate: none
Name:Willowpaw Rank:Apprentice Description: Small tortiseshell she cat with green eyes and white paws. Hope to be medicine cat one day.Can I join.