Authors: Terri Reid
A MARY O’REILLY PARANORMAL MYSTERY
HAUNTED TALES – A MARY O’REILLY
© 2015 by Terri Reid
All rights reserved. Without limiting the rights under
copyright reserved above, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored
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without the prior written permission of both the copyright owner and the above
publisher of this book.
This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places,
brands, media, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination
or are used fictitiously. The author acknowledges the trademarked status and
trademark owners of various products referenced in this work of fiction, which
have been used without permission. The publication/ use of these trademarks is
not authorized, associated with, or sponsored by the trademark owners.
is licensed for your
personal enjoyment only. This
may not be resold
or given away to other people. If you would like to share this book with
another person, please purchase an additional copy for each person you share it
with. If you’re reading this book and did not purchase it, or it was not
purchased for your use only, then you should purchase your own copy. Thank you
for respecting the author’s work.
would like to thank all those who have contributed to the creation of this
book: Richard Reid, Sarah Powers, Denise Carpenter, Maureen
Jennifer Bates and Hillary Gadd.
especially wanted to express my love and gratitude to my “clever mommy”
Virginia Onines who has always supported my dreams and has offered loving
She would also like to thank all of
the wonderful readers who walk with her through Mary and Bradley’s adventures
and encourage her along the way. I hope we continue on this wonderful journey
for a long time.
Kristen Banks adjusted the transistor radio on her desk to
pick up the station that seemed to be fading out; she turned the knob to the
left slowly and then reversed the movement, turning it to the right until the
station once again came in clearly.
was hard to pick up the popular AM Chicago radio station all the way in Polo,
especially within the confines of the school, but the solid rock music was
worth the effort.
Singing along to “Could It Be I'm Falling in Love,” she
pulled another piece of narrow, lined paper off the stack of spelling tests and
quickly reviewed it.
With a frustrated
sigh, she picked up the red pencil and marked the first three words. “Really,
Andrew?” she muttered softly. “Did you even study the words at all?”
Even though Andrew was only a fourth grader, Kristen could
see that he had potential, but if he didn’t buckle down and start studying, he
was going to fall short of the person he could be.
She counted the number of red checks on the paper;
he only got six of the twenty-four words correct.
With a heavy heart she placed a red “F” on
the top of the page but next to it wrote, “You have the ability to do much
better than this. I believe in you. You should believe in yourself.”
The radio’s jingle interrupted her paper grading, and she
glanced up at the clock above the bulletin boards.
It was already past seven. Where did the time
She sat back in her chair, picked up the latest letter from
her fiancé that was lying on the top of her inbox and smiled. “This is where
all the time went,” she murmured, a soft smile playing across her lips. “I’m
daydreaming about you again, Danny.”
Pulling the thin sheet from the airmail envelope, she reread
the closing lines once again, although they were already burned into her
My deployment ends in
I’m doing everything I can to
stay safe because all I want is to hold you in my arms again. I can’t wait
until we stand before our families and friends and I can hear you say the
words, “I do.”
So, I’ve been thinking we
should get married right away.
As soon as I get home.
Between my mom and your mom, I know we can pull this off.
I love you with all my heart.
Yes, she could pull it off!
She leaned back in her chair and smiled up at the ceiling. She would
to pull it off!
And, as soon as she got home that evening,
she was going to give both moms a call so their quick wedding would be perfect.
She looked down at the open journal that was next to the ink blotter on her
desk and jotted down a few more items under her newly created list,
Things for my wedding
She used to keep her journal at home but
found that she had more time to write her thoughts during the week when she was
sitting at her desk.
She turned to the next page and wrote
Give Andrew’s mom a call about study
habits for Andrew.
She often used her journal to write down thoughts and
reminders about her students and their parents, thoughts that might not be
appropriate for her teacher’s notes.
A noise in the hallway interrupted her thoughts, and she
looked at the glass pane on the classroom window.
She could see a shadow moving down the hall,
but the lights were too dim for her to get a clear view.
She knew it wasn’t the janitor; he’d already
gone home for the day.
A shiver of
apprehension went down her back as she realized that everyone who worked at the
school had probably gone home for the day.
She shook her head. “So what?” she chided herself. This was
Polo, Illinois. This was her home town. People kept their doors unlocked and
the keys in their cars.
nothing to be afraid of in Polo. Perhaps it was just a concerned parent coming
to meet with her.
She opened the desk drawer to her right and lifted up the
secret compartment under the floor of the drawer where she kept her journal and
her letters from Danny.
She loved having
them near, too, but didn’t want someone to accidentally come across them or her
So, sixteen months ago, when
she received his first letter, she added a false compartment that was only a
few inches high and fairly undetectable.
She put the letter into the journal and slipped them both into the
compartment. For some reason, she felt the letter and her journal were safer in
the compartment until she dealt with her unexpected visitor.
Pushing her chair back, she walked across the room to the
door and opened it. “Hello?” she called out into the hallway. “Can I help you?”
She looked up and down the hall. No one was there.
“That’s odd,” she murmured.
The hairs on the back of her neck stood up, and she stepped
back into her classroom, turning the lock into the closed position.
She wrapped her arms across her body and took
a deep, calming breath. “You’re being ridiculous,” she said to herself. “It was
just a reflection of a passing car.”
She looked around her classroom, the desks neatly lined up
in six rows, the bulletin boards filled with recent art projects. The counter
held their science projects, sprouting bean seeds in paper cups lined up under
the window, and a map was pulled down to highlight Illinois for Social Studies
the next day. She tried to let these familiar sights instill a feeling of
But the lump in her stomach
just seemed to grow larger as her heart pounded in her chest.
“Okay, I’m just scaring myself now,” she admitted. “I might
as well work from home because I’m going to be jumping at every little sound I
Walking to her desk, she gathered the unmarked papers
together and placed them in her leather briefcase, along with her favorite
marking pens, a red one and a black one, and her smiley-face stickers.
She closed up her desk, pulled her jacket and
purse from the small teacher’s closet behind her desk and unlocked her door.
She hated that she peered up and down the hall before she
stepped out of the classroom, but there was no one there to witness it so what
did it matter.
The hallway was
She stepped out, put the key into
the lock and locked the door before sticking the key securely into the outside
pocket of her purse.
Taking a deep breath, she shook her head. “All safe and
sound,” she said.
“Not quite,” a low voice from behind her whispered.
Her scream was swallowed as a large hand was clapped over
She struggled against the
strong arm that pulled her back against a hard body and held her tightly. “I just
want you to be mine,” the low voice whispered in her ear. “I know you think you
love someone else, but that’s just because you
really had a chance to get to know me.”
She tried to shake her head and pull away.
She tried to scream.
But the large hand was also covering her
nose, and she was finding it hard to breathe.
She felt herself moving, being pulled backwards toward the staircase.
“You’ll be happier with me,” the voice continued, and she
trembled with repulsion as she felt wet lips graze alongside her neck. “I’ll
give you the kind of loving a woman like you needs.”
Her vision was dimming, and she knew that in a matter of
moments she would lose consciousness and be totally vulnerable.
The hand moved lower, stroking up and down
“Your body was just made for me,” the voice said, and the
grip tightened once more and pulled her forcefully back. “And I’m gonna show
you a real good time.”
With fury born of desperation, she lifted her leg and kicked
back, her high heel connecting with something solid.
“You bitch!” the voice roared. The hands whipped her around
and pushed her back.
She didn’t have a chance to focus on a face. A scream
exploded from her mouth as she stumbled backwards onto the open staircase and
She bounced against the concrete
and steel stairs, felt the pain rip through her bones, and finally as her head
collided with the wrought iron railings, she felt nothing at all.