Thursday, April 14, 2022

Read an Excerpt from In Her Dreams by Linda Wisdom




Love didn't affect Maggie Turner in the usual way. Instead of getting starry-eyed, Maggie got psychic static.

No sooner had Dr. Ethan Baxter moved into her Monterey, California guest house than her long-dormant psychic gift ran riot. She was tantalized by glimpses of a blissful future. And terrorized by recurrent nightmares.

Having denied her gift for so long, Maggie feared she'd never interpret the conflicting images of danger and desire.



April, New London, Connecticut


She looked up into his mad unseeing eyes and felt his hands circling her throat in a mock lover's clasp. She knew she was about to die.

"I can't allow you to return to him, my darling," he told her in the soft voice that was at odds with the implied violence in his touch. "You can understand that, can't you? He doesn't love you as much as I do. He never can. He rejected you before and he'd only do it again. You must remain mine forever."

She could say nothing. She was having enough trouble trying to breathe, with the heel of his hand pressed so insistently on her trachea. She was still reeling from the shock of commenting that a male co-worker had taken her out to lunch for her birthday and he suddenly turned into a maniac, accusing her of the most obscene things. Her vision blurred, then turned black as she heard his soft voice caressing her like a poisonous fog.

"This is only for your protection, Jessica." His lips were curved into a gentle smile.' "He'll only hurt you. He doesn't know how to cherish and love you the way I do."

The last thing she remembered was wanting to explain to him that her name wasn't Jessica but Denise.

"ETHAN, I CAN'T BELIEVE you're really doing this." The man dressed in Navy whites leaned against the doorway, watching his friend fill a suitcase with neatly folded clothing. "Hell, old buddy, you're too young to retire. How can you do this to me? What am I going to do if you're not around to keep me out of trouble?"

A faint smile graced Ethan's austere features. "The last person I would be concerned about would be you. It's me, Dave. I've put in m twenty-odd years and now I'm looking for something new," Ethan replied, looking around until his eyes spied his shaving kit, which he fitted in a corner of the suitcase.

"But the Navy's all you've ever known," he argued still bewildered by his friend's decision. When Ethan had talked to him several months ago about his determination to retire, Dave dismissed it as nothing more than the beginning of midlife crisis and bluntly informed Ethan he couldn't retire. Just yet. Since then hadn't said anything more, Dave thought he had forgotten all about it. But Dave should have remembered just how determined his friend was. "What the hell are you going to do once you're out of here? You’re too, young to sit in a rocking chair on some porch watching the flowers grow."

Ethan looked up and grinned. '''I don't know--It sure sounds good to me."

Dave shook his head. "Uh-uh you may look like a sloth, but your personality is as far from lazy as it can get. You're a damn good doctor, Ethan. You can't mean to throw it all away."

"I don't intend to. When I find the right place, I plan to setup a private practice. I've been following rules and regulations for too many years. It's time to make a few of my own."

Dave pursed his lips. "You're not doing this because of Denise's death, are you?"

Ethan shook his head. "No, Denise has nothing to do with this. Oh, I admit her death was a shock. It was a shock to everyone on the floor. She was an excellent nurse and a lovely lady. No one should die the way she did." He looked somber. "But we certainly hadn't dated enough to call what we had the grand passion. I think my ex-wife took care of any ideas in the direction of a full-blown love waiting out there for me. I simply feel the need to break away from the navy's apron strings and do something on my own." He silently begged his friend to understand. He didn't want to admit that he felt a little unsure about going out into the wild world on his own, but a restless spirit urged him to at least try.

Dave sighed. "Okay, I guess you can't fight it, but if you ever need anything, I'm here."

The two men shared an awkward hug.

Dave picked up one of the suitcases. "I'll help you carry these out. And you better keep in touch when you finally settle down."

The sharp angles of Ethan's lean face relaxed in a smile.

"Don't worry, I will. Who knows, maybe you'll decide to kick the traces and join me. Although let me warn you I intend to settle down as far away from the sea as I can get. I've had enough of the ocean to last me a lifetime. Right now the Midwest looks really good to me."

"I just might take you up on that offer. But if you do decide that living by the ocean wouldn't be so bad, after all, try Monterey, California. The town can't be all bad if it could produce me," he joked. "Who knows, maybe some good looking lady will snap you up."

Ethan shook his head, remembering the bitterness at the end of his marriage that had spilled over into the divorce. "No, I think I'll remain a crusty old bachelor. It's much safer."


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