Tainted Waters Chapter 1 & Chapter 2
Writing Tainted Waters was an interesting journey. It was one of those stories that started due to real life events. Throw in my imagination and the story took off. If you haven’t read what sparked the idea, click here.
Here is Chapter 1 & 2 of Tainted Waters, for you to read.
I thought this would be a great way for you to get to know my work and read some of my latest book. You’ll know right away if it’s for you.
Get the first 10 chapters here
Tainted Waters Book Blurb
He didn’t commit suicide but who’s going to believe her?
Frustrated at being fired from her latest job and overwhelmed by her consolatory family, Sam needs to get away, so she moves to the family’s cabin at the lake. A place she hasn’t been since her dad committed suicide there, twenty years before. Or did he?
Keegan has recently moved to the area to finish his latest book, but he is also trying to find out if his grandfather, who’d passed away ten years before, died of natural causes. Or was there more to his death?
The descendants, of the four families who own the land around the lagoon, are dying off. But why?
Since Sam and Keegan are the only ones asking questions, they find themselves working together to seek the truth. Are people being murdered? Who would benefit from their deaths? And why are there barricades and armed guards at the north end of the lake? What they discover is unbelievable but even worse is who’s behind it. To stay alive, Sam and Keegan must find proof and convince others, before more people are killed … including them.
“Daddy, I love you.”
“I love you too, punkin.”
He touched the tip of her nose. She squealed in delight and touched his too. He smiled at her.
“Shall we go see the baby birds?”
She jumped up and down clapping her hands. “Oh yes. But we have to be quiet. Right, Daddy?”
“Yes, sweetheart. And we don’t touch.”
“I won’t. I won’t. I promise.”
He squatted down in front of her. “Okay then, hop on and I’ll piggyback you. We have to walk through the water and over to the marsh area. I think it’s still a little deep for you.”
She climbed onto his back, bouncing up and down, bobbing from one shoulder to the other, so she could watch where they were going. Her dad had on his waist-high rubber boots. He took her to neat places when he wore those. He carefully stepped into the calm water.
Then everything changed.
He was lying face down in the lake. She touched him. “Daddy. Daddy,” she called, but he didn’t move. She tickled him under the chin like she always did but still he laid there. She grabbed his hand and tried to pull him, but she couldn’t move him. Her tiny arms weren’t strong enough.
“Help! Daddy! Help!” She screamed and screamed but nobody came. And she couldn’t leave him.
Then the lake started to churn. To spin. To suck them both into its swirling vortex. Shaking with fear, she held on tight to him. The water started pulling them apart. One minute she was clinging to him, the next she was flung aside … tossed out … lying on the grass. With shaking arms, she struggled to get up. She could see him, but he was now far away … slowly disappearing … vanishing from her life.
“No, Daddy. No. Please don’t leave me. Please don’t leave.” She stretched her arms out to him like she had many times when she’d asked him to pick her up.
Sam’s hands slammed down on the arms of the office chair as she jerked forward. “Because some dude stole a necklace from his wife, pawned it, and got the insurance for it? And I had the nerve to tell the story?”
There was so much more she wanted to say to him, to tell him. It wasn’t fair that she was getting kicked to the curb, for other people’s lies and secrets. It wasn’t her fault she felt truth should win out at all costs. Climbing to her feet, she stared hard at her boss, debating about telling him again why she’d written that story. The blue vein bulging from his forehead and the deep crimson color of his puffy cheeks told her it was pointless and might just cause a heart attack.
“The story didn’t run, so what’s the big deal?”
His mottled face started to shake with fury. Sam picked up her coffee, which she was glad she’d set down when she came in, and took a step back. The last man she’d seen that angry had thrown a punch.
“Only because I caught it. Nothing, and I mean nothing, gets printed in this paper without my say so. Very sneaky, Samantha. Not acceptable. You’re done here. And don’t worry, you won’t ever work in this industry again.”
She shook her head, hoping something would fall into place and this would all make sense. It wasn’t like it was any different than any of the other stories the newspaper wrote—they got details or as many as they could and then skewed them sideways if that’s what made the tale sensational. Only she hadn’t needed to do that. The facts themselves had been enough to make the story astounding. For once, the paper might have been able to print the truth and nothing but the truth. The informant who’d put her onto this situation had been right, it had been unbelievable. She wished she’d been able to thank him but that was part of the agreement—no names, no thank you, and no mention of where the story started. And she couldn’t tell anyone because it wasn’t supposed to have been hers to tell.
“I’m fired.” It didn’t compute.
“Of course. I don’t say things I don’t mean. Now get out.”
She eyed Mr. Donner, the man she’d thought she would have a lot of respect for, the man she’d envisioned thanking for all he’d taught her. For taking her under his wing and making her the exceptional journalist that she was. Okay, she knew that was crap, but she had hoped that her initial ‘feeling’ about him had been wrong. Besides, she figured that even if he wasn’t more than a pompous figurehead, there had to be some people at the paper she could learn from. To date, unfortunately, she’d only been patted on the head and given the lame jobs. Still, she’d started to believe that this work might be her calling. Well, until she’d taken it into her head to run with a tip she’d been given. It hadn’t been meant for her, but since Tom hadn’t been at his desk when his phone had kept ringing and ringing, she’d figured it had been hers to run with. She’d been the one to answer the call. She’d planned to show them what she could do and then that would have been the start to her amazing career.
Another damn dream dashed.
Without stopping to think about what she was doing or even taking the time to rationalize that this wouldn’t be in her best interest, she tossed her almost full cup of lukewarm coffee across the expansive cherry wood desk into the face of the man who had been her supervisor for a few short months.
“You bitch!” he screamed. He jerked awkwardly to his feet, only to step onto the leg of his office chair, pitching him forward. His large bulk flopped forward onto the desk, with a loud thud, landing spread-eagle over the almost immaculate surface.
Her eyes widened in disbelief as she choked back a laugh. It was way past time for her to leave. She saluted with two fingers, spun on her heel, and scurried out the door, shutting it with a gentle click behind her. No point in enraging the man any further. Hurrying down three flights of stairs, she ran to her desk, opened the top drawer and pulled out her wallet, skimmed through the rest of the drawers to see if she had any other belongings, which she knew she didn’t but wanted to be thorough. It was highly unlikely she’d be back. Her hand brushed aside the USB key she’d been using to store information, totally against policy. She’d only been doing it because there was some amazing stuff—fact was more captivating than fiction—and she figured it might give her some ideas for the book she planned on writing someday. Another plan she was sure would never take off, but it was better to dream than to do nothing. Knowing she didn’t have time to erase it and couldn’t leave it to be found, she shoved it in her pocket. She reached out and unpinned the only other thing that belonged to her in her cubicle—a picture. She slid it into her back pocket, reminding herself to remove it as soon as she got home.
“Where is she?”
Not waiting to see if that bellow was for her, which she knew it was, she scurried out of her cubicle, doing a hunched over old lady impression as she raced down the aisle.
She kept her head low as she zipped out the exit door and headed down two more flights of stairs.
“Samantha … Sammie … Sam … Will you wait up? Gee whiz.”
Her co-worker Fred’s call was the last thing she wanted to hear. So, she ignored it and didn’t stop until she’d reached the main floor.
“See you, Suzanne.” She raced by.
“Sam, you’re always in a hurry.”
She wiggled her fingers at the receptionist as she cruised by, thankful the phone rang at that moment, distracting her.
A glance over her shoulder showed her Fred, a sixteen-year reporter at the Tennison Post and someone who had taken a real interest in her, huffing and puffing as he exited the stairwell.
She stopped. “I’m in a hurry. Have to go.” Turning, she pushed her way out the front doors.
“Is it true? Did you get fired?” He followed her out. “I told you not to go snooping. You should have listened to me. I could have saved you but now you’ve done it. You can’t be telling stories about the big boys. They don’t like that. I thought you understood that. That was the first thing I told you. I tried to teach you. You refused to listen. Now, look what you’ve done. I can’t fix it for you now.”
How the hell did he know already? Were people standing outside the damn door?
To continue reading, get the first ten chapters of Tainted Waters, here.
Here’s what other’s are saying about Tainted Waters:
An edge of your seat thriller that offers chills galore… The story held my attention and I didn’t want to stop reading until I’d finished, which is always deserving of five stars in my opinion…
There are a few mysteries going on in this book but you’ll never lose track of the story. The writing is down to earth and easy to follow and the story flies. Before you know it, you’ve reached the end and gotten your answers. Some of them will set you back on your heels wondering, “How did I not see that coming?” …
The author of Tainted Waters introduces her readers to a smart, skilled yet unfocused woman with a curiosity to keep you turning pages...
Take an adventure beyond your fingertips...
Multi-Award winning author, Maggie Thom loves the challenge of creating a web of secrets, lies and deceit. She doesn’t want you to figure it out until the end. Author of The Caspian Wine Suspense/Thriller/Mystery Series – Captured Lies (Award Winning), Deceitful Truths & Split Seconds (award winning) - and her other individual novels Tainted Waters (2013 Suspense/Thriller Book of the Year through Turning the Pages Magazine), Deadly Ties, Fractured Lines, and Blurred Lines (free on her website maggiethom.com). Her new series, The Twisted Deception Series - Fostered Identity, Shadowed Footsteps, Exploited Innocence (2022), Lost Tears (2022), and Last Betrayal (2022). Take the roller coaster ride. It’s worth it.
Her motto: Read to escape… Escape to read…
Her motto: Read to escape… Escape to read…
"Maggie Thom… proves her strength as a master of words, plots and finely chiseled characters… she weaves a brilliant cloth of the many colors of deceit.”Dii - TomeTender
"Maggie Thom writes a fast paced thriller laced with romance that keeps the reader interested and on edge!" InDtale Magazine