Dangerous Secrets (Mystery — Day 22)

Tara invited Katie and Marvin for dinner the next evening.  She hadn’t visited with Katie for a long time.  She marinated a beef roast in Ginger’s Oolong tea all day.  Ginger’s Oolong has the subtle flavors of peach and toasted nuts contrasted by the ginger.  In the evening, Tara cooked the beef slowly in the oven and she made a salad of mixed greens, feta cheese and pears with a lemon poppy seed dressing and baked potatoes with garlic butter.  She topped the meal off with an orange sponge pie.  All of these foods were her own creations.

Marvin and Katie were very impressed and loved the flavors of the foods.  They were excited to hear about Tara’s plans to open her own little cafe.  They promised to be frequent customers.

“So how long before you will return to China and bring your little ones home?” Tara asked.

“In about two months,” said Marvin.  “The trip Katie accompanied me on a month ago was her initial meeting with the children.  It is two sisters.  They loved Katie right from the start.  They are five and three years old.”

“I’m planning on going shopping for some things for their bedroom and to get them a few new clothes on Thursday, if you’d like to come along,” Katie said.

“That would be great, as long as you don’t mind stopping at Land and Home Real Estate with me.  I need to give Ms. Myers my decision on which place I want to purchase for my cafe.”

“Great.  We haven’t had a day out in such a long time.  You’ve been through so much, Tara.  How are you holding up?”

“It has been difficult.  I miss Allen and Eva, and the house is lonely without them, but I have to get used to living alone.  There were just so many unexpected things in this whole mess.  I never had a clue that Jaime had a son or that he had been in a relationship with someone before me.  He never told me those things.  The worst part is not knowing who is responsible for his death and knowing that whoever it was, is still walking around free.”

“That is unsettling.  You met Jaime’s son, right?”

“Yes.  His name is Hunter William Fleming.  She didn’t give him Jaime’s last name, but she did give him Jaime’s middle name.  He looks more like her, but he has Jaime’s personality.  He’s a very sweet boy.”

“How old is he?”

“Ten, and she’s sending him off to boarding school.”

“How sad.”

“Yes, we promised to write to one another.  I’m worried about what will happen to him without Jaime in his life.  His mother and grandfather don’t seem to take his thoughts and feelings into account for anything.”

“I don’t understand people like that.”

“Well, ladies, I hate to break up the party, but I have an early flight to Jamaica in the morning.”

“Oh, Marvin, I’m so sorry.  Here we are talking away and you’re about ready to fall asleep.”

“It’s okay, Tara.  Dinner was delicious, and it was a pleasure to spend some time with you.  You will continue to be in our prayers, for your new business adventure as well as for the settling of the mystery behind Jaime’s death.  We will also add young Hunter to our prayer list, won’t we, Katie?”

“We certainly will.”

“Thank you,” said Tara.

Katie hugged Tara and they promised to meet Thursday morning at eight and would be sure to include lunch in their plans for the day.

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