Who is She? No one knows that the past is a strange country more than Scottish sleuth Viv Fraser. In this, the fifth Mystery, Viv is compelled to investigate a series of misadventures that are too close to home. Unravelling a veil of deception she discovers just how much of her past is in the present. No stranger to a challenge, she risks more than her pride hunting down the people who have threatened her family. Mac is on hand to help but will she let him?
Viv sighed and reminded herself that when people revelled in tiny victories it indicated their actual insecurity. But that didn’t justify inappropriate behaviour. You just had to look at the legacy of Hitler or Stalin to witness what insecure people were capable of. Viv was convinced that her mum was unhappy with the way she was treated by this woman but she had too little proof. Once or twice recently when Viv had said she’d ‘get the warden onto it’ her mum had made excuses so that Viv wouldn’t take action. Viv’s mum was no shrinking violet yet this warden had some sort of power over her. Viv glanced round the small tidy room. A box of tissues disguised under a satin and lace cover crouched on the window sill, a bookcase with a few ‘how to’ books sat beneath a framed certificate on the wall stating that the woman had ‘attended’ a course on communication with the elderly. The warden caught her reading it and glared. The place smelled of mock lavender, definitely more chemical than organic and barely masking another stale smell, which Viv recognised as overfull vacuum cleaner.
The call took two minutes. The warden conceded and turned her computer screen round so that Viv could view it. A few clicks later she watched the film that Mand had talked about. There definitely was a man going directly up a ladder to her mum’s first floor windows. Why would he do that if he was there to do the whole building? Surely he’d start at the top and work down? She stared at the paltry attempt he’d made at cleaning the window. There was more looking in than cleaning. What was he up to? Viv zoomed in to look for a logo on his clothing but she couldn’t see anything. The company that the housing association employed had to wear uniforms.
The warden said, ‘He’s definitely not one of the usual men. They’re all vetted and I haven’t seen him before. Also, they’re not allowed to work without uniforms and ID cards.’ There was a knock at the office door. A resident wanted help to open the clothes drier. Reluctantly the warden went with the woman, which left Viv free to download the footage onto a USB stick. It was possible that she’d find the man on another database but not one that she would access easily from a public network computer.
She left the office without saying goodbye and nipped upstairs to her mum’s flat. There was no answer when she knocked. She went back downstairs to the public rooms and through a window in the top of the door she saw her mum with a group of men and women concentrating on a watercolour class. Best leave her to it. She jogged home.
Thank you, Vicki Clifford and Love Books Group Tours.
About the author
Vicki Clifford was born in Edinburgh and until recently taught Religious Studies at the University of Stirling. She has an unusual background as a freelance hairdresser with a Ph.D on psychoanalysis from the University of Edinburgh. She had her first book, Freud’s Converts, published in 2007. She lives in Perthshire, Scotland. When she isn’t writing she’s cutting hair, walking her dogs or making unorthodox tray bakes. She is currently working on book 5.
Beyond Cutting was shortlisted for the Rainbow Awards 2014
Digging up the Dead received an Honourable mention in the Rainbow Awards 2016
The Viv Fraser Mysteries were shortlisted for a Diva Literary Award 2017.
May 30th 2018 Vicki appears on LJRoss’s blog spot. Read it here: https://lovesuspense.com/