Home > Bones Don't Lie (Morgan Dane #3)(5)

Bones Don't Lie (Morgan Dane #3)(5)
Author: Melinda Leigh

Even if she didn’t, Morgan never would have turned them down. Lance was a lucky, lucky man.

He crossed the room and took her face in his hands. “Maybe I can find some way to repay you for your kindness.”

She tossed the paper towel in the trash. “What did you have in mind?”

He kissed her, pulling her close and wrapping his arms around her. “You were a total badass today.” He leaned back. Enjoying the blush that stained her cheeks, he teased her a bit more. “I wanted to kiss you earlier, when we walked Eric out of that courthouse. But I know how prissy you are about PDAs when you’re working.”

“Prissy?” The corner of her lovely mouth turned up. “You call wanting to remain professional prissy?”

“Just a little. But I like it when you’re strict. Makes me feel like a bad boy.” Lance kissed her again and felt her laughter against his mouth.

“I hate to tell you, but you’re more Boy Scout than bad boy. You always do the right thing.”

“Oh, really?” He cupped the back of her head and angled for better access. Her bun got in the way, so he removed the hairpins and let her long black hair tumble to her shoulders.

“You’re always doing that.”

“I like it down.” More accurately, he liked being the one to take it down. He cruised from her mouth to the side of her neck. He would never get enough of the taste of her.

She responded with a low moan, pressing against him. She was tall, and her body lined up with his perfectly.

“Well this Boy Scout is ready to blow off work.” He checked the time on the wall clock. “Fifteen minutes early. Any chance you can stop at my place before you head home?”

“Fifteen whole minutes early?” She arched backward, her eyes shining. “I don’t know if I can be with such a rule breaker.”

“I’ll make it worth your while.” He slid a hand to the small of her back and pulled her hips tighter against his.

A spark of heat lit her eyes as she shook her head. “I don’t have much time. I should be home for dinner. Stella is babysitting my grandfather today. Why don’t you come with me instead?”

Morgan lived with her grandfather, who had broken his leg badly in a fall the previous month. Her sister, Stella, and Stella’s boyfriend were pitching in to help care for him.

“I can work with a short time frame.” He wrapped his arms around her waist, linking his hands behind her back. “I know where all the important buttons are.”

She grinned. “You certainly do.”

Between her recuperating grandfather, her three kids, and his mother’s mental illness, their alone-time was limited. He’d take whatever moments he could get with her.

She pressed her hands flat against his chest. “Let me change my clothes. I don’t know what I got on my skirt, but I need to drop it at the cleaners on my way home.”

He watched her walk away, enjoying the view. Her fitted cobalt-blue suit played up her black hair, fair skin, and blue eyes, and the matching heels showed off a gorgeous pair of legs. “Need help taking it off?”

She glanced over her shoulder. One eyebrow arched in mock reprimand. “Behave. We’re still in the office.”

“Then be quick about it. We’re on the clock.” He crossed his arms over his chest and leaned against the counter.

The quickening of her step made him ridiculously happy.

She made him ridiculously happy.

On the counter, his phone buzzed. He reached for it. “Hey, Sharp.”

“Where have you been?” Sharp asked. “I’ve been trying to get hold of you for an hour.”

“No time for work now, Sharp. I’m on my way out.” Lance picked up his keys.


“Come on, Sharp. It’s the end of the day. Can’t it wait until tomorrow?”

“No.” Sharp’s tone was uncharacteristically grim and brought Lance to full attention.

“What happened?” he asked.

Morgan appeared in the doorway, wearing jeans and a thick wool sweater, her suit draped over one arm. Her brow furrowed. “Is something wrong?”

Over the phone, Sharp took a deep breath, his exhale audible over the sound of voices and wind. Where was he? “It’s about your father.”

The simple statement took the steam out of Lance. He eased into a chair.

“At lunch, one of my buddies told me that the sheriff’s department pulled a 1984 Buick Century out of Grey Lake,” Sharp said. “I’m sorry, Lance. It’s your dad’s car.”

Morgan walked to his side. She bent down and wrapped an arm around his shoulders. She must have heard what Sharp had said.

Lance closed his eyes and leaned into her. The bright kitchen light colored the backs of his lids blood red. Even as he asked the question, he knew the answer. Sharp wouldn’t have sounded so glum if the vehicle had been empty. “Was he in it?”

Sharp’s next breath rattled. “Remains were found in the trunk.”

Shock washed over Lance, leaving him numb.

The trunk?

His father had been murdered.

“I don’t know why I’m surprised,” he said. “I always knew he wouldn’t have left us.”

A flood of memories washed over him: his dad teaching him to catch a ball, mowing the lawn, driving him to hockey practice. He’d been a good man, a kind man. Who would have killed him? And why? Bitterness rose into Lance’s throat.

After he’d processed Sharp’s news, Lance had one overwhelming concern. “How am I going to tell my mother?”

Morgan’s arms tightened around him. He squeezed her hand.

“I asked the sheriff to keep your dad’s identity out of the news until we could notify her,” Sharp said. “He agreed, but that’s not going to buy us much time. The license plate on the car was still clear enough to read. It won’t take the media long to find out who it was registered to.”

“This is going to devastate her.” Lance rubbed a hand down his face. “She’s been doing so well lately.”

His mother had a sort-of boyfriend. Except for their weekly group therapy sessions, she and her new man communicated entirely online. But it was the first relationship of any kind she’d welcomed in decades. She was also doing computer background checks and searches for Sharp Investigations. She seemed happy to be useful and enjoyed the investigation aspect. In short, she’d made huge strides forward in the past few months.

“This is going to bring everything back to her,” Sharp agreed.

And it would likely cause a huge setback to her fragile mental health, and selfishly, upend Lance’s life again, just when happiness felt like a real possibility.

“If you want to see the car, you need to get your butt out here,” Sharp said.

“I’m on my way.” Lance ended the call.

Morgan was on her cell phone.

He rummaged through another drawer for a portable phone charger and switched his phone to it. “I need to get out to the lake. I’ll see you tomorrow.”

She lowered her phone and slipped it into her pocket. “I’m coming with you.”

“But you need to get home.” The last thing he wanted was for his problems to negatively affect Morgan’s three little girls.

“I’m coming with you,” Morgan said again, enunciating the words just a little more clearly. “I called Stella and let her know I’ll be late. She’s going to stay until I get home.”

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