Kempher, MaryAnn: Forever Doomed
It’s not wise to wander the cruise ship Forever alone at night. You might not live to see daylight.
Detective Jack Harney agrees to do an old Army buddy a favor. Curt Noble had some personal business to attend to, he didn’t say what. What he did say was he needed someone to temporarily take over his duties as head of security on the struggling cruise ship Forever. Jack hesitates, but he owes Curt his life so agrees. He’s told the worst mischief he can expect to encounter will be the occasional shoplifter, or drunk. Instead, one week into the cruise, a beautiful red head and a member of the crew are ruthlessly murdered. Are the two murders connected? It’s up to Jack to find out. He must find the killer before the ship returns to Tampa’s port, or worse, before another dead body is found. This won’t be easy. The ship is old, it’s security systems outdated, and clues are few, or so it seems at first
It’s not just a sense of obligation that motivates Jack to agree to Curt’s request;
Jack moved thousands of miles, started over, and still can’t get Amy O’Brian out of his heart or mind. When she shows up on the ship, as part of a large wedding party, Jack must fight to stay focused. To make matters worse, Amy isn’t his only distraction; a sexy and mysterious woman has made it her mission to seduce Jack.
As the body count rises, and time slips away, Jack has to ask himself, “Did someone commit the perfect crime?”
Jack watched Marni leave, torn. Did he think she’d killed Pam? No, but she was keeping something from him, something to do with Pam’s murder. He looked down at his arm, seeing her small hand. His heart was still beating hard. It had taken real effort to hide his feelings when she’d touched him. After a few minutes, he started walking, and was soon standing outside Marni’s cabin door. He hesitated. He told himself he was just going there to talk to her, to try to make her tell him what he sensed she was holding back. But that was a lie. He reached up and knocked. She opened the door wearing a towel.
“I was about to take a shower,” she said.
Jack didn’t respond. He walked into her room, shoving the door shut behind him. He took hold of her towel and pulled her tightly against his body, his mouth covering hers, his tongue searching for hers, his hands yanking the towel off and tossing it to the floor. He easily picked up Marni and carried her to the bed. She pulled his shirt up over his head, her hands running themselves through his thick chest hair. She reached for his belt buckle, undoing it slowly, her eyes watching his. Then she pulled his pants down and gasped.
ten fun facts about maryann
I spent my honeymoon in Saudi Arabia. Someone approached our guide and offered to buy me.
I spent a year in Korea, about 90 miles from Seoul.
I’ve written two books. My first is a romance with a murder mystery, my second is a mystery with a dash of romance.
I grew up in Milwaukee Wisconsin, but moved to Reno NV when I was 15 years old.
My first job was at the Circus Circus casino in Reno. On their second floor, they have arcade games similar to a carnival, and a stage where acts are performed. I worked all the different games.
I’ve been married for 21 years.
My favorite food is spicy squid. My least favorite is cabbage.
I love to travel, but don’t get to do it as much as I’d like. My last big trip was to New York City. My last mini-trip was to St. Augustine Florida.
My first book is entered into a contest hosted by Romance Writers of America. Fingers crossed.
My favorite book is Pride and Prejudice.
She quickly opened the pantry door and stepped inside. Oh good, my cake. By the sound of the wind, rain, and even the occasional thunder, she could tell the back door had finally been opened. She cracked the pantry door an inch and peeked out. A tall, muscular man was there, he was making a sandwich. She’d wait him out. The lights in the kitchen flickered on and off, then on again. Suddenly, another man entered the kitchen. Jeez, I’m never gonna get out of here.
“What are you doing in here?” she heard him ask. His tone concerned her. He seemed annoyed, maybe even angry. At least I’m not the only person in the kitchen that’s not supposed to be here.
The other man didn’t answer. He picked up a rolling pin and hit the guy on the side of the head, hard. The man fell to the floor with a thud. His head lay outside where she was hiding. Through the crack in the door, she could see blood on the side of his head, his eyes wide open and vacant. She swallowed hard and willed herself not to freak out. She’d need all her composure so she didn’t give herself away. She watched, shocked, as the man rushed to the kitchen’s swinging doors, looked out, then quickly returned. He picked up the dead guy and walked outside.
She wasn’t thinking straight. Should she wait, see if he was coming back? Should she run like hell and hope he didn’t see? She did what any good stripper would do. She went to the other side of her cake, bent down, and with all her strength pushed that cake out of the pantry, through the kitchen, and out of the cafeteria. She pulled up the hood up on her overcoat and kept it there until she arrived at her destination.
about the author
MaryAnn Kempher loves to write mystery with a dash of romance. She spent her teen years spent living in Reno NV where her first book, Mocha, Moonlight, and Murder is set. The setting for her second book, Forever Doomed, was inspired by her love of the ocean. Her writing influences include favorite authors Agatha Christie, Jane Austen and Janet Evanovich. Her guilty pleasures include any and all sweets, including a good cup of Mocha. She is married with two children.
Instead of feeding her late-night appetite, a midnight food run nearly gets 28-year-old Katherine O’Brian killed. She’s the only person to see the man who brutally murdered a local woman, and the killer is hell-bent on making sure she doesn’t talk.
Scott Mitchell left a broken engagement behind when he moved to Reno, and the last thing he needs is more melodrama. But when he and Katherine are paired for a college project, that’s what he gets. It can be very distracting when someone is out to kill your lab partner. Together, they try to figure out what the police haven’t been able to—the identity of the murderer. Passion flares, but with Katherine’s life in danger, romance seems like more than a bad idea.
Scott and Katherine will face jealousy, misunderstandings, lust, and rivals, not to mention attempted murder—and all before their first real date