The reporter shoved the microphone into her face. Carleton, do you think the jury will believe the shrink? What do you think the verdict will be, Mr. Just feel that finish.

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The reporter shoved the microphone into her face. Carleton, do you think the jury will believe the shrink? What do you think the verdict will be, Mr. Just feel that finish. Even old dour Drake approves. Did you bribe the shrink? Elizabeth Xavier Carleton. So clever, those reporters. She had been the notorious Elizabeth X for over six months. She felt Rod tighten his grip on her arm.

She felt the jolt when he shoved a reporter aside. The door of the limousine was open, Drake standing beside it, his face a cold mask, his mouth an angry thin line.

At what? She wondered vaguely. At the surprise witness for the defense? At the endless harassment from the media? Rod pushed her into the limousine and quickly seated himself beside her, grabbing at the door handle. He slammed the door. There was a loud yelp. Rod cursed, opened the door, released the sleeve, then slammed it again. A flash went off in her face, then another, and another. She lowered her head, her pupils shrinking at the bright pricks of light.

How many times had Rod shouted "No comment"? How many times had she been blinded by flashes? Who cared anymore about her? There are TV cameras as well. It will be over soon, Elizabeth," he repeated. The ambitious D. Until the surprise witness for the defense. Until Christian Hunter, who had testified with calm, nearly insolent conciseness had made him look like a fool. Hunter, where were you the night of July 10 of last year? I stayed until midnight.

I spoke to her, bought her a drink - a daiquiri - and we talked until midnight. Then I escorted her to a taxi. Or spoken to her? Elizabeth Carleton, you were with? Hunter, six months is a long time ago. How can you be so certain of the date? For me it was like meeting the President. Your witness, Mr. He had thought at first to simply look at the jury, shrug, and have no questions for this obviously lying cretin. Hunter looked unruffled, completely in control, almost bored. Who was this Hunter anyway?

He calmed immediately. It was a setup, pure and simple. Someone had bribed Hunter. Moretti walked calmly toward the witness box, paused a moment, gave Hunter a long look, and shrugged.

He heard the surge of excited whispers from behind him. Hunter, what is your specialty? I have a Ph. And just what do you treat? Moretti showed no reaction. He waited for the laughter to die. Hunter - pathological liars? Slippery, smart-mouthed bastard. I returned only one week ago. I had no idea of what had happened in my absence. Moretti bit his cheek. He felt the excitement radiating from Rod Samuels, the damned bastard.

He felt the tension building from his staff, heard them shuffling papers behind him. He saw the jury hanging on every word. Moretti calmly examined his fingernails. There was an ugly hangnail on his thumb.

Nor do you know my practice. Hunter, that an educated man, a psychologist, would keep himself informed of world events? This particular event has appeared in papers all over the world. My sister happened to mention the trial, and I recognized Mrs. Olney frowned at the witness. If the man had been bribed, a possibility that Olney found quite likely, he was a master of the game. Slowly he nodded. Let the man hang himself if he wanted to. Moretti would tear his gullet out.

Moretti and let him speak to my accountants. I have no need for money. I have more than enough for my needs. I cannot be bribed. Olney pounded his gavel, impressed in spite of himself. But now. It was then that Moretti realized that it was the Christian Hunter. He hated smug, rich bastards like Hunter. Psychologist, bull.

A hobby, nothing more. Why was he saving her neck? If need be, he could a postponement from Judge Olney. The judge knew the bitch was guilty. He asked in a deceptively bored voice, "Why do you think, Dr. Hunter, that Mrs. Perhaps she thought no one would believe her. I believe that requires only a yes or a no. It is a defense mechanism, you see. Carleton blocked out murdering her husband?

Hunter, the defendant blocked out meeting you? A case of convenient amnesia? I had the impression that Mrs. Carleton was disturbed that evening. Go to bed with her? Christian Hunter smiled. As I understand it, the murder was committed during the time Mrs. Carleton was with me.


Catherine Coulter

Shelves: crime-and-thrillers This book has flaws BUT It held my attention, even though I thought the main character was, for the first pages, a stupid wimp. She changed, probably too quickly to be totally convincing, but was very interesting from that point on. Not only that, but it has several other issues that irked me considerably while I was reading: 1- Character development, in my opinion, is very poor.


False Pretenses






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