“One more and I’m done. I swear it this time.”
I stood near my battered ride, staring at the stately spread before me. I wanted to retire, but this abode was too exquisite to overlook. I keyed the code and slipped to the side entrance.
“Hey!” A brisk barking voice approached from the right.
A sob escaped my throat. “Oh!” I wailed. “Help me!”
The naive boy saw my face, anger morphing to tender concern. “Ma’am? Has someone hurt you? Please, come and get warm.”
As he led me indoors, a faint smile crossed my lips. All part of the plan.