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Liz Farrell is still reeling over the murder of her mother almost a year earlier at the hands of her father, Leo Bauer, when she receives the startling news that she’s inherited her estranged father’s sizable estate. Unable to come to terms with her father’s unspeakable legacy, Liz and her grandmother, Kate Stanton, visit Leo’s property in Benedict Canyon, desperately hoping to find closure. Instead, they find a bunker hidden under an old hunting lodge that had been used by Leo at one time to hold Liz’s mother captive. Horrified by the discovery, Liz immediately orders the bunker filled and the lodge destroyed but the ensuing demolition quickly comes to a grinding halt after a man’s remains are discovered in a shallow grave at the base of the old lodge. Once the press get wind of the gruesome discovery, rumors quickly surface, linking the remains to a murder spree that took place at the same address almost half a century earlier; a murder spree conveniently covered up by the governor at the time who also happened to be Leo Bauer’s stepbrother. Liz and Kate’s efforts to uncover the truth behind the murders are soon hampered by family secrets and a killer who’s intent on finishing the job started almost fifty years ago.
Karen Devane pulled into the parking lot of her cousin’s apartment building with a squeal of tires. She drove around, trying to find a parking spot. Finally, she gave up and pulled into a tow away zone. Picking up the pizza box on the seat beside her, she hurried into the building before waiting impatiently for the elevator to take her to the second floor. Rushing down the corridor, she stopped in front of the door marked 10B and rapped on it. A second later, she rapped again, this time more impatiently.
“Who is it?” came the muffled question from the other side of the door.
“It’s me,” Karen replied. She heard a few locks turning and the door was thrown open a minute later by Liz, wearing a bathrobe and a forlorn expression on her face.
“Hi.” Her eyes were puffy and red, and it was clear that she’d been crying.
“Hi yourself.” Karen charged into her apartment, not waiting for an invitation.
Liz followed behind, watching wordlessly as Karen marched into her kitchen and began opening cupboard doors, looking for plates. Everything about her small apartment, from her dining room table to the small balcony that was a myriad of colors and scents, was neat, orderly, and inviting. “Cupboard on the right of the sink, second shelf,” Liz told her automatically, pulling up a chair to the other side of the counter. “What are you doing here … or is that kind of a stupid question?”
Karen gave her cousin a pointed look. “What do you think? Grams told Mom what happened at the attorney’s office and Mom told me.” She flipped open the lid of the pizza box and extracted two cheesy slices before plopping them on a plate and handing it to Liz.
“Figures.” Liz listlessly picked at the crust of her pizza.
“You might as well get used to how things work in our family.” Karen helped herself to several slices of pizza and went over to sit beside her cousin. “Want to talk about it?”
Two lone tears slid down Liz’s cheeks. “What’s there to talk about? How totally screwed up my whole life has been, or how screwed up it is now?”
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