Well, it took me long enough, I know. But I'm happy to say BELL, BOOK AND SCANDAL (Bedknobs and Broomsticks 3) is now available pretty much everywhere (or soon will be).
Black Cats. Black Arts. Black. Mail.
Must a witch break one set of vows to keep another?
Cosmo Saville has never been happier. His adored police commissioner husband has finally—mostly— accepted his witchy ways. And in return, Cosmo has promised to stay out of police business. It seems their Happily Ever After has come at last, until Cos discovers John’s sister might be a pawn in a dangerous game of blackmail…
Commissioner Galbraith is relieved the lies and secrets are over and his marriage is back on track. Especially since he has his hands full with a high-profile suicide and rumors of a citywide extortion ring. So when John realizes his own slightly wicked witch is using magic to play sleuth, all his old fears and doubts return to haunt him.
With the commissioner’s badge and family in jeopardy, Cosmo feels he has no choice but to use every power in…his power. Even if that dark decision costs him everything he cares about most.
A giant blue rabbit was strolling into the Classical Revival mansion on Yerba Buena Island when John and I arrived at the mayor’s Halloween party.
“Werewolves of London” floated on the night breeze, and grinning jack-o’-lanterns lined the brick steps as we went inside. The smell of recent rain, candles, and burning pumpkin filled the damp night air.
Mrs. Stevens—call me Sukie—greeted us at the door. She wore a tight black dress, scarlet-lined black cape, and a witch’s hat.
“Commissioner! We’re so delighted you could join us. And darling Cosmo!”
I’m not sure when Sukie and I got on darling terms, but I leaned in to kiss her and noticed she was wearing a silver inverted pentagram on a chain.
Now the upside-down pentagram is not exclusively Satanic. There are even Wiccan covens that have adopted the symbol to designate ranking. Not many. Craft does not use it, and Sukie was definitely not Craft. I wouldn’t have guessed she was Wiccan. And maybe she wasn’t. This was a Halloween party, and half the women in the room were dressed like sexy witches. The necklace looked old and expensive, but appearances can be deceptive. No one knows that better than those of us within the Craft.
If I hadn’t already been on edge, I don’t think I’d have made anything of the amulet. But after the day I’d had, I was seeing potential trouble everywhere.
Sukie led us through the giant cobweb of orange and black streamers, introducing us to people as we went. John was commandeered almost at once by Deputy Police Chief Danville and Mayor Stevens. He tried to delay the inevitable by telling them he was on his way to the bar, but Danville pointed out they were already in line at the bar, and Sukie stepped in, linking her arm in mine and telling John shop talk was so boring and she would take care of me.
I couldn’t help wondering if, after the contretemps at the last party at our house—the party where I’d tried to redirect the police investigation into the Witch Killer murders—the mayor had asked his wife to keep me out of the way.
John threw me a look of apology. I tugged on my deerstalker in my best, All right, guv’nor.
“You two are so adorable,” Sukie said, towing me along through the vampires and witches and clowns. “He’s absolutely besotted with you.”
“He’s not really the besotted kind,” I felt it necessary to observe.
“He’s besotted with you.”
We ran into Mrs. Danville—It’s Alice, remember?—who was also dressed like a witch. Her flirty little cape was lined with orange. Her sparkly earrings were inverted pentagrams.
“Oh my God. Sherlock Holmes. That’s adorable!” crowed Alice.
“He needs a drink,” Sukie said, trying to draw me on.
Alice had hold of my other arm, and she held me in place. “Has he met—?”
“That’s next on the agenda.” Sukie and Alice exchanged meaningful looks, which made me more uneasy.
We chitchatted for a few minutes—I couldn’t say about what if my life had depended on it—and then we were joined by Ann Morrisey, wife of Police Chief Morrisey.
Ann was also dressed like a witch—purple-lined flirty cape, inverted pentagram ring—and my heart sank.
Ann asked if I still enjoyed married life and whether Sergeant Bergamasco was a regular fixture in my household. I replied yes to the former and no to the latter. She asked if I had been worried to learn that Ciara Reitherman was out on bail, and I said no. I didn’t think Ciara posed a danger to me or John. She asked what I had heard about Chris Huntingdon, and I said I had heard nothing. As far as I knew, he was still rooming at Atascadero State Hospital.
Ann said to Sukie, “Has Cosmo met—?”
Sukie said, “Great minds think alike!”
By now I was pretty sure who the mysterious someone the First Wives Club wanted me to meet was, and far from being pleased at the opportunity to meet SFPD’s occult expert, I could feel my tension mounting by the moment.
“Are you talking about Solomon Shimon?”
Their faces lit up. “Then you’ve heard of Solomon?” Sukie said.
“John mentioned that SFPD has its own occult expert.”
They chorused, “Yes!”
Ann said, “But he’s so much more than that.”
That was what I was afraid of.
You can still purchase at the preorder price
iBooks (April 9)
iBooks (April 9)