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With Open Eyes
A Kendra Michaels short story
By Roy Johansen
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- ebook (Digital original) $0.99 $0.99 CAD
- Audiobook Download (Unabridged)
This item is a preorder. Your payment method will be charged immediately, and the product is expected to ship on or around May 7, 2019. This date is subject to change due to shipping delays beyond our control.
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“There was blood…Blood everywhere. But now the police are trying to cover it up.”
Kendra Michaels stared at Janet Sanders in the parking lot outside her office. The woman was carrying on like a paranoid lunatic, but Kendra knew better. She had known Janet too long.
“Slow down, Janet. Where was the blood?”
Janet took a deep breath. “My fiancé’s house. I saw it three nights ago. I went over there and saw it. He was gone, but there was blood all over his kitchen floor and walls!” She shuddered. “It scared me, Kendra.”
“Understandable.” Kendra was attempting to process the disturbing information Janet was hurling at her. She hadn’t even known her old friend had a fiancé. She certainly hadn’t expected to see Janet waiting for her outside the medical office building where Kendra based her music therapy practice. She had just seen her last client of the day and was heading to her car when Janet suddenly approached her.
Kendra tried to remember how long it had been since she had seen Janet. A year? Maybe two?
Janet Sanders had been her teacher at the Woodland Institute for the Vision Impaired more than a decade before, during Kendra’s teenage years. A lifetime ago, Kendra thought, when she was still blind and living in the darkness. Janet had helped her learn how to live in that world.
No, not just to live there; Janet had shown her how to flourish as a sightless person, to feel beautiful and worthy at an age when she might have felt strange and awkward. Then, just a few years later, when Kendra gained her sight via a revolutionary stem cell procedure, Janet had been one of her first visitors, doing everything in her power to help her adjust to an exciting yet bewildering new world.
Now, however, Janet was anything but the calm and reassuring presence Kendra had always known her to be. Her clothes were disheveled, and her mop of blond hair was falling over her eyes. Her hands were jammed into the pockets of her oversized sweater. She looked as if she hadn’t slept in days.
“Calm down.” Kendra motioned toward a large bench just a few feet down the sidewalk. “Let’s sit down, okay?”
“I don’t need to sit down, Kendra, I just—”
“You do need to sit down. You’re starting to hyperventilate.” Kendra took Janet by the arm, guided her to the bench, and sat with her. “I need you to slow down. Tell me exactly what happened.”
Janet nodded and took a moment to catch her breath. “Okay. I’ve been dating this guy for a year. His name is Dale Baylor, and we met in the Sierra Club.” She moistened her lips. “He’s pretty special, Kendra. I never thought I could feel this way about anyone. You know my job was my whole life.”
“And there were a lot of us who were grateful you felt that way. You’re a great teacher, Janet.”
“I love my students. I love my job. It makes me feel worthwhile. But Dale…He made me feel beautiful. He told me that inside and out I was wonderful. I know I’m not pretty, but when he tells me I am I believe him.”
“You should believe him. You are wonderful, Janet.”
“That’s not important.” She gestured impatiently. “What’s happened to Dale is the only thing that matters right now. I spend pretty much every weekend at his place. But when I went over last Friday night, the door had been busted open.…And there was blood.” Tears welled in Janet’s eyes. “So much blood, Kendra.”
“Where?” Kendra asked.
- "Johansen keeps readers on the edge of their seats."—Booklist
- "Just by seeing the Iris Johansen name....you know [it] will be an explosive, unforgettable story."—Suspense Magazine
- On Sale
- May 7, 2019
- Page Count
- 128 pages
- Grand Central Publishing