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Ghost Seer

Ghost Seer, contemporary paranormal romance, page 11:

Denver, Colorado, the same morning

I like the way you smell. I’m staying, the figment of her imagination, a “ghost” dog, said. It—he?—sat on the end of her bed.

“No,” Clare Cermak whispered as she slapped a palm down on her buzzing alarm clock. She stared at him in shock. Well, through him. He didn’t have a touch of color.

“This can’t be happening,” she muttered. She was on her third day of denial of ghosts, but that still worked for her. A year might work for her. Forever.

She closed her eyes and scooted under the sheet.

Coldness touched her shoulder, and her eyelids sprang open.

The Labrador looked at her with big, dark gray eyes that had been chocolate brown when he was alive. He was too close up and far too personal.

She gulped. “You aren’t—weren’t—even my dog, Enzo.” He’d been her weird great-aunt Sandra’s. Sandra, who said she saw ghosts and helped them “transition.” Who’d recently made her own transition, and had bypassed Clare’s parents and brother and made Clare the sole heir of her estate, leaving Clare a fortune.

Yes, there was family money and trusts, but Sandra had added to it. Who knew pretending to talk to ghosts was so lucrative?

I’m your dog now. Enzo’s tongue lolled as he gave her a too-perky doggie grin. We should play, too.

“I don’t believe this.” She sat up, hardening her heart against large, dark eyes and wagging tail. Hardening her expression. “I don’t believe in you. In any . . . ghosts.” Though something was wrong with her vision, because she’d begun to “see” gray and white and shadowy and transparent images of people. She’d made a doctor’s appointment for extensive testing.

Now a shadow was “talking” to her in her head.

That’s all right. I believe in you! Enzo’s imaginary tongue shot out and swiped at her face . . . and she felt a clammy touch on her cheek. Enough that she reared back and banged her head on the curved wood of her sleigh bed.

This invasion of the visions right here in her home and her own bedroom was new and unwelcome. Chicago, where her aunt had lived, was one thing. Right here . . . not at all good.

But you hear me, right? Huh, huh? I looove you, Clare. Always liked when you came. You brought treats. Do you have treats here? Enzo bounded off her bed, leaving no sign he’d been there, and whisked straight through her closed and solid bedroom door.

“I’m seeing things,” she said weakly.

The spectral dog loped back into the room, drool dripping. Again Clare stared. The shiny droplets vanished before they hit her rug. Which was weird.

The whole thing was weird.

She’d turned weird.

You have no treats, Enzo said, giving her the big puppy eyes.

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