Dead on the Fourth of July (David Dean Mysteries) (Prologue, page 2 of 5)

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The tunnel elbowed around yet another corner. She caught sight of a side passage out of the corner of her eye. "That's twice we've turned, Caleb," she scolded. "If you don't mark 'em all with rocks we're going to miss a turn on the way out and end up god-knows-where in the middle of the earth someplace." She halted and quickly piled five small stones in an arrow pointing back the way they'd come, then wiped her muddied hands on her jeans. "Caleb!" she yelled as he moved ahead without her, leaving her in near darkness. "Wait up!"

"Scared?" he grinned, turning, the light beneath his chin illuminating his Halloween face.

"I'm not scared," she grumbled as she caught up. Then, with a rush of confidence, she added, "But I'm not a moron either. And getting lost down here would be really stupid. We've been gone nearly an hour, I bet."

"Ain't been near that long," he muttered.

"All I see is rock and more rock. I don't see anything that looks like gold."

"Don't be so dumb. The only gold is gonna be away in back, at the end. All the good stuff here has been dug out already. Besides, we're not just looking for gold. I told you."

"But you wouldn't tell me what we're looking for-what he told you was in here."

"And I'm not going to tell. I'm gonna show you. It's a surprise."

"Come on. I'm here, aren't I? Tell me what's so important that we have to get all cold and wet, and . . ." she stomped her feet, "so muddy. What are we looking for?"

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