from Beta by Stephen L. Brayton
Her name is Mallory Petersen. She is a six foot blonde private investigator with a Fourth Degree Black Belt in Taekwondo. She owns her own business and martial arts school.
How and why did you get involved in this case?
Cheryl McGee stopped into my office Monday morning and wanted to hire me to find her eight year old daughter, Cindy, who went missing the previous Saturday. Cindy was the latest in a string of children believed to have been kidnapped in the region in the last eighteen months.
Why was this case so special?
Talking with an officer friend and the lead investigator, I discovered a possible connection to child pornography. I followed some leads given to me by an informant buddy and wound up encountering a bunch of seriously perverted people.
Did anything make this case difficult to solve?
The links in the case were tenuous and I had to follow a trail of clues leading me out of Des Moines, Iowa, down to the little south central town of Oskaloosa, then all the way up to the Quad Cities. Plus, I kept getting more frustrated with each dead end.
Did anyone help you with your investigation?
Of course, my secretary and friend, Darren provided some information. Also helping me out was my little informant Willy Washington who I met years ago trying to steal my car. Then I meet dreamboat investigator Lawrence Cameron out of the Quad Cities. He and I spent an entire day together searching different places for Cindy.
Has this case affected your personal life in any way?
Well, meeting Lawrence certainly. I think I found a new wonderful boyfriend. But the missing child and the exposure to child pornography really affected me because I instruct children in martial arts training, and to see this one child and to learn of so many more subjected to this horrible crime pushed me to the limit mentally and morally.
Thank you for being with us today, Mallory. We wish you well in trainiing in your private investigations and in teaching children martial arts.
Stephen L. Brayton lives in Oskaloosa, Iowa and is a Fifth Degree Black Belt in Taekwondo. Beta is scheduled to be released October 1. His other works include “Night Shadows” and four short stories. Information on his works can be found on his website at www.stephenbrayton.com . He can also be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org.