Friday, February 7, 2014

Meet Trent Stenson -- Excerpt of Silent Graves

The news was public now. Another woman’s life summed up in the media—missing. Trent Stenson wished he could discredit it as something menial. He was actually surprised it was worthy of the news, and the reason was likely because she was the wife of some rich businessman—Kirk Rogers of Trinity Communications—and he was worth millions. According to the newspapers, Rogers even got the FBI involved.

His superiors made Trent feel that his contributions held little value. He had the official training and three years on the job, but he didn’t rank and was kept under the label of officer. There wasn’t much room for advancement within Dumfries PD, but he could always move up to captain. That was the only downfall about a smaller department. People typically retired before they were replaced. It had him considering a move over to Prince William County PD where they had about six hundred officers to Dumfries eleven. PWPD also got involved with the complex crimes—where he saw himself.

He already had a friend there too. Lenny Hanes, a detective from the Violent Crimes Bureau. They even had beers on occasion. Trent hoped that Hanes would put in a good word and help him transfer and advance, but things hadn’t worked out that way yet. For the most part, shit floats to the top. At least, that’s how some disgruntled cops saw things.

But none of this stopped Trent from doing the job. In fact, he was determined to excel. He subscribed to the advice “anything worth doing is worth doing well.”

Amy Rogers wasn’t the only missing wife who graced the missing persons database from the area. There had been many others before her. He suspected more would follow.

He looked beyond the front desk, and out the glass doors to the parking lot. It was a quiet night. The PWPD communications center had dispatched only a couple domestics calls and one drunk and disorderly at a local bar. Officer Becky Tulson had that covered.

Yes, it was the perfect time. Management had left for the evening—it was up for debate who benefited the most from their absence. He loved being left alone to do his digging, and these missing women had his attention.

He logged onto the missing persons database and searched the area for women ages twenty-two to thirty. It didn’t seem race mattered so he let that parameter go. He searched Prince William County and surrounding areas as far as Washington on the south side.  

Thirty faces came on screen. He searched for new ones. He had the others memorized and categorized in his mind—and in his filing cabinet at home. If his sarge found out about the latter, he could lose his badge, but it was worth the risk if it meant bringing even one woman home.

Most of their faces were familiar to him. He scoured this information every day, sometimes more than once day. It had become not a fascination, but an obsession.

Who would take these women? How did the husbands lose track of their wives?

Not that Trent had any experience being married. He was only twenty-four and preferred to hold onto his single lifestyle as long as he could. He didn’t need a woman telling him how to live his life.

He dropped forward and cupped his forehead in the palm of a hand for a few seconds. His bangs brushed the back of his hand. Silly how, at a time like this, he thought of his mother and how she preferred his hair cut above his collar. He let it grow out, only trimming its length periodically. The women he took to bed liked to run their fingers through his hair.

The door opened, and a woman in her late sixties walked in. Her blue eyes stood out in stark contrast to her pale face and gray hair. Tears had dampened her cheeks.

“I should have called it in. I shouldn’t have driven all the way here.” She shook her head, and tremors ran through her body as if she fought off a chill.

Trent rounded the desk. “Ma’am. Slow down. You’re safe now.”

The radio crackled to life, and Officer Tulson confirmed she was returning to the station.

“Sorry about the interruption. Ma’am?”

In the time he listened to the transmission, the woman had collapsed to the floor. She sat there with her knees tucked into her chest.

“Ma’am. I’ll call you an ambulance. You’ll be fine.”

She reached for his hand and tugged on it. “There’s no time.” Her eyes seeped fresh tears. “It’s there…I found it. I should have called.”

LOOK >>> : ) Silent Graves is NOW available for pre-order on Apple and Kobo!
Its official release date is February 12th but for these sites you can get it delivered to your ereading device on Sunday, February 9th!