Tuesday, May 27, 2014
The Girl of My Dreams
When Erin Murphy moved back to Jewel Bay, her Montana hometown, a year ago, I knew it was fate.
She was not convinced. To be honest, I don’t think she remembered me.
Though I had all but drooled on my hiking boots every time she walked by in college—her roommate dated mine—she had barely noticed me. My roommate thought she was a snob—cute, and smart, but a snob. Her roommate insisted no snob. Just pre-occupied with school, a few friends, and her own grief after losing her father to a hit-and-run accident a few months earlier.
I contented myself to watch from a distance, an awkward, outdoorsy guy more comfortable in a tent than an office, and focused on my own classes and on getting to know the mountains and valleys of Western Montana. It helped to know she wasn’t involved with anyone else. Maybe I was a fool, not going after her then. I thought she’d stick around and we’d have a chance. But after graduation, poof—she was gone. To Seattle, I heard. Working for some big corporation in the food business.
I tried to forget her. The girl who got away. I took a job in Glacier National Park—Glacier, or just The Park around here. Ran outdoor programs for kids and adults. Took a job in Jewel Bay, helping manage the Athletic Club and run summer wilderness camps. Completely forgot this was Erin’s hometown until one day, making my rounds of the village merchants, soliciting contributions, I walked into the Merc. And there she was.
She thinks I don't know she was dating another guy. But I didn’t care. It didn’t look like true love to me, and like I said, I knew we were meant to be together.
But she’s got this one habit I’m not sure how to handle. She finds dead bodies and gets involved in murder investigations. No point telling her to butt out—she wouldn’t, because she cares too much about the victims. About finding the truth, and clearing innocent people from suspicion. And I love that about her—even though it means she sometimes puts herself in danger.
When the girl of your dreams walks back into your life, don’t let her get away twice.
How did you meet the love of your life?
Leslie's Facebook Author page --- everyone who "likes" the page and helps her reach 750 "likes" will be entered in a drawing for a box of notecards featuring paintings by the fabulous Montana artist Nancy Cawdrey.
Death al Dente is the first in the Food Lovers' Village Mysteries by Leslie Budewitz (Berkley Prime Crime) ---and winner of the 2013 Agatha Award for Best First Novel. The series is set in a small, lakeside resort community in Northwest Montana, on the road to Glacier Park. Watch for Crime Rib, coming in July 2014 -- available for pre-order now!
Leslie is also a lawyer and won the 2011 Agatha Award for Best Nonfiction for Books, Crooks & Counselors: How to Write Accurately About Criminal Law & Courtroom Procedure (Quill Driver Books). Visit her at www.LeslieBudewitz.com or www.LawandFiction.com