Assistant District Attorney Justin Blakely believes only in the letter of the law. When asked to prosecute a dangerous woman accused of killing her husband with 64 stab wounds to the chest, he sees only a butcher who should be locked away for her depraved act. But when he comes up against the woman’s driven, feisty attorney, he knows Chelsea Hanover has the power to change his mind. And, as he realizes her aim is truth rather than law, he can do nothing but respect her integrity. Knowing she’s stumbling into trouble, he’ll do anything to save her from herself, even if the casualty of his crusade is the law in which he believes.
“Contrary Evidence” — Excerpt from BURDEN OF PROOF —
“Tell me you have something.” Justin leaned against the door frame leading into the Forensic Technician Penny James’ lab. He knew better than to cross the threshold without permission. The sixty-two-year-old grandmother of four had scolded him like one of her grandkids a number of times when he was a rookie prosecutor about cross-contamination and improper attire for the lab.
Now, she glanced up at him over the rims of her glasses, her brown eyes twinkling in welcome. “Depends on what you consider ‘something,’ young man.”
“At the moment, I’ll take whatever you’ve got.” Normally, he enjoyed matching wits with Penny. She had a brilliant mind, and a sharp sense of humor. He knew she and his Uncle Mic went way back, but he never dared ask how far, or how close.
Today, however, with Chelsea’s assertions of her client’s innocence ringing in his ears, he was just too weary, and too worried, to muster up the fortitude for one of Penny’s brain teasers.
“You’re sure in a mood, today.” She tsk-ed beneath her breath and turned toward her desk, flipping through the files neatly stashed in the drawer there. “Case got you on edge?”
He opened his mouth to agree, but the words wouldn’t come out, as Chelsea’s thunderous green eyes seared through his mind, again. No, he was pretty sure the source of his mood wore a skirt and blazer that looked more second-hand than high-end. His breath caught at the memory of her slim form — the woman really needed to eat more — severely controlled red hair, and flashing green eyes… and he didn’t want to let his mind wander that way. No matter what he wanted, for years now, Chelsea Hanover wasn’t going to ever give in. She might look like sex up and walking, but she made it pointedly clear she considered him somewhere beneath pond scum on the evolutionary chain.