Twisted Justice

Read the first chapter of Twisted Justice a joint investigation between Lorne Warner and DI Sally Parker. 



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PROLOGUE

Ferocious fire raging beneath her surface, Claire Knight cast a distinctive look over her family, who stood nervously before her. They awaited her instructions with fear and trepidation etched on their faces. She ruled over them like a general commanding a squad of able and willing soldiers. Sometimes, however, her family needed gentle persuasion to remind them that she really did know best.
Claire Knight was the type of woman who, when rattled, could put an erupting Mount Vesuvius to shame. She scanned the worried faces of her three beautiful offspring. Mostly, she felt pride for the women, even if they weren’t as smart as she was at times. Inwardly, she accepted their tiny flaws, aware they would need to be exceptional to match her abilities in this life, but outwardly, she had no trouble displaying how much her children annoyed her when they had the audacity to bombard her with dumb questions after the years she’d spent moulding them into near replicas of herself.
“And Lucy is all right with this, Mum?” Olga asked, swiping at her twitching nose after the drugs she’d just snorted.
Olga was referring to the only daughter absent from the meeting. Claire had felt it best not to involve her at this stage, if at all, in the plan, after the fresh round of doubts Lucy had issued only last week concerning certain aspects of her mother’s full-on life.
“Of course she is,” Claire lied, flashing a smile. “It’s time you were setting off. Take the old car, not the new one. Leave it in the car park and grab a taxi if you’re at all worried, or if someone sees you arriving back to shore.” Teagan and Helen frowned at each other.
“Don’t bloody start having doubts now. It’s too late for that,” she shouted, making them jump.
“No doubts, Mother, just a little apprehensive about what Lucy will say when she finds out.” Teagan swept her curly, chestnut-coloured hair over her right shoulder.
Teagan was the one who most resembled Claire, in looks and spirit. The pair had shared more arguments over the years than the rest of the family put together. “Follow the instructions to the letter—that’s all you have to do—and leave Lucy to me. She’ll know this is for the best, come the end. What’s with the look, Teagan? Don’t you trust me on this?”
Teagan sighed heavily. “Yes, Mum. You know best. I’m sorry to question you,” she replied, repeating the same dictum she’d been forced to say since she was six years old, since her life of crime had commenced under her mother’s demonstrative leadership.
Throughout their childhood, all the kids had been desperate to feel their mother’s love, so much so that they had been willing to regularly break the law and to even, when necessary, kill for Claire Knight…
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