I am really pleased to be taking part in the blog tour promoting The Guernsey Novels by Anne Allen.
Today, it’s my turn to publish an excerpt from book 0ne – Dangerous Waters.
Second excerpt from chapter one
Dangerous Waters – The Guernsey Novels Book #1
But now she was back and without any known living relatives in Guernsey. Apart from the cottage, the only sign of the family’s roots here were the headstones in the graveyards. Jeanne shuddered at the thought of her loved ones lying cold and unvisited in the earth and felt the tears threatening. It wasn’t fair! She gripped the coffee cup tightly, self-pity heightened by her guilt at staying away so long. Catching sight of a young, laughing family walking past the café only made her feel even more sorry for herself. For heaven’s sake girl, get a grip! Stop being maudlin and get on with what you came to do. You owe it to the family. With this thought she straightened up and finished her coffee.
Glancing at her watch, she saw that she’d better get a move on and, after paying the bill and freshening up in the Ladies, walked the few yards to the advocate’s office.
As the receptionist led her down a corridor Jeanne glanced at the watercolours on the walls. With a pang she recognised the local bays with cabin cruisers – oh, just like Dad’s! –bobbing on the waters as families gathered on the beaches. She could almost smell the sea and the pungent tang of seaweed on the rocks. Her thoughts were interrupted by the girl opening a door and announcing, ‘Miss Le Page, Advocate.’
‘Good afternoon. How are you?’ enquired the man who came forward to shake her hand.
‘Well, thank you, Mr Marquis. I’m sorry for the delay in coming over. There’s been a lot happening recently and certain…’ she paused, ‘events have meant that I couldn’t travel. Now I’m ready to settle everything before I go back to…England.’ She had nearly said ‘home’ before remembering she no longer had one.
‘It’s quite straightforward. Your grandmother’s will leaves everything to you as her sole beneficiary. Once we’ve gone through the various papers I’ll need you to sign some forms, then you’ll be the legal owner of Le Petit Chêne as well as the money your grandmother left.’
After much reading and signing Jeanne was presented with the keys to the cottage and Mr Marquis arranged for the monies to be transferred to her bank account. Mm, didn’t realise Gran had as much as that in the bank. But she’d never been a big spender, not bothered by material things. Just her beloved cottage and garden. Especially the garden. A lump formed in her throat as Jeanne realised that Gran’s savings might come in very useful until she sold that beloved cottage.
‘Where are you staying while you’re here? In case I need to contact you.’
‘I’m staying with Molly and Peter Ogier for a few days until the cottage is more habitable.’
‘Good. I believe they were close friends of your family?’
‘Yes, I’ve known them since I was a child.’
Jeanne hesitated and then said, ‘I have to ask, Mr Marquis, have there been any… developments with the investigation? Have the police found anyone yet?’
He shook his head. ‘No, there’s been no progress at all. Technically the case is still open, but I don’t think the police have found any more evidence. It’s difficult without any witnesses and after all this time…Have you remembered any more of what happened?’
‘No, I’ve had nightmares over the years but I’ve never been sure whether they’ve been caused by actual memories. Perhaps coming back will stir things up, memory-wise.’
She bit her lips as she recalled what had happened on the ferry.
‘I don’t really want to remember any more, but if I did, perhaps we would find out who killed my parents and nearly killed me.’
There is a fantastic competition linked to the blog tour where you can have the opportunity to win a two night stay in Guernsey. More details can be found here!