Thursday, November 13, 2014

Cinderella, P. I. and Other Fairy Tale Mystery Stories by Juliet Kincaid Excerpt

Cinderella, P. I. and Other Fairy Tale Mystery Stories by Juliet Kincaid
$2.99 or FREE for Prime Members

Together at last, your favorites like “Cinderella, P. I.” and “Cinderella, Undercover” along with SIX NEW STORIES. Join our clever detective as she tracks a missing child into the deep, dark woods in "Cinderella, Sleuth." Travel far and wide with Cinderella and her fairy godmother on the trail of the magic wand (missing again!) in “Cinderella and the Usual Suspects.” Take a wild ride or two with Cinderella and Prince Charming in “The Prince C Letters.” All twelve stories, new and old, have the wit and humor you've come to expect from Cinderella, P. I. And they give peeks into her life twenty years, three kids and a few extra pounds after the ball.



So that morning, as usual, I was out on the balcony on the treadmill, trying to run off a few extra pounds put on by twenty years, three kids, and none of the servants in the castle letting me do housework. (I don’t mind housework, you understand, as long as I can shower later.) Another factor in my weight gain was not enough dancing. You see, after my mother-in-law, the Queen, such a dish, ran away with a guy named Spoon, the King didn’t much feel like socializing, so he didn’t throw gala events like balls much anymore.
Getting in my miles, I was reading one of those flipped versions of my story. You know the kind. I play the shifty-eyed heavy, always sneaking around stealing stuff. Meanwhile my long-suffering, put-upon stepmother is just trying to raise her two innocent, sweet-tempered girls, unjustly ignored by the fairy godmother that I trick into helping me.
So anyway, I was jogging and sweating and huffing and puffing just a little when this girl burst through the door. “Oh, Thinderella, you gotta help me.” She wrung her hands.
“It’s Princess Ella, dear.” Not that I care one way or the other, but even before Prince C and I announced the engagement, the King and the Queen insisted I drop the “Cinder” bit due to my about-to-be-radically improved social status. And yes, I know correcting people is rude, but after twenty years the correction automatically slips between my lips and out into the world.
So, once I took a good look at her shaved head, the studs up and down her ears, her totally black wardrobe, from the clodhopper shoes through a sleeveless, shapeless shift, I thought, If ever a girl needs a fairy godmother, it’s this damsel in distress.
I jumped off the treadmill and grabbed a towel. “Why me, dear?” I asked, wiping my brow. “Shouldn’t you wish upon a star and all that jazz, so your fairy godmother will come?”
When she threw herself on the chair and rested her head on the little table we kept out there, she began to boohoo, and I noticed a spider web tattooed on her neck. “I called her, Printheth Ella,” the girl said. “And the did thow up.”
She did show up, the girl meant. (I’ll omit the lisp from here on.)
“Of course she did,” I said. “Fairy godmothers pride themselves on their professionalism. Who was it, by the way, my pal Tammy?”
“How did you know?”
“Her specialty is helping girls like you.” And once upon a time, like me. “So what happened?”
“Well, after Tammy showed up, she disappeared again.”
I sat down in the other chair, poured two glasses of iced tea, and pushed one across the table toward the girl. “That’s normal, dear. When Tammy’s done, she moves on to the next maiden in need.” Tammy’s technique is slipping if she let the girl get away from her looking like this, I thought.
“That’s just it. She wasn’t done.” As the girl wiped her nose with a black hanky, I realized the dirt on it was actually an onyx stud in it. “So I need you to investigate.”
(Now, right here I should explain that I’m not just another pampered princess lounging around the castle all day reading the latest fashion magazine and eating bonbons. Well, just one bonbon now and then. No, indeed. I have my causes like the Retired Fairy Godmothers League and the Cherish Our Trees Foundation. Also over the years I’ve gained a reputation around the kingdom as an investigator. Mostly pro bono, of course, though if the client is well heeled, like my stepmother and stepsisters, a. k. a. the Steps, for instance, I charge them big time though of course I have them make out the check to their favorite cause.)
“Why don’t you start at the beginning, dear? By the way, what’s your name?” I sipped the tea, herbal, of course, because anything with caffeine just makes me want to eat.
“Annie,” she sniffed. “My stepbrother calls me Cinderannie. I don’t know why.” She waved the black hanky.
Let me guess, I thought. Then noticing she had an onyx stud in the tip of her tongue (which explained the lisp), I choked on my tea. After I got over it, I said, “Okay, dear, let’s get on with your story.”
She crunched her cheek against her left shoulder and gazed at me with big blue eyes so I could see why Tammy took the case. The girl had real potential. “There’s this guy,” she said.
There usually is, I thought. “Uh huh.”
“He’s so cute. I met him at the mall. Well, that’s where I saw him, but he never looked my way.”
“The fool.”
“So I thought if I had the fairy godmother’s help, I’d look good and he’d notice me.”
“Very sensible.”
“But then she disappeared. Oh please, Princess Ella, she’s your friend. Say you’ll help me find her.”
And so, though later I wished I’d found out a teensy bit more about the boy the girl was in love with, I said, “Just let me freshen up some and we’ll get going.”

1 comment:

  1. i really like the concept of this one, i might actually make time to read it :)


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