The Prestige

--By Stephanie


Disclaimer:  As always, this is just for fun!   I do not own the characters of Jessica Fletcher, Seth Hazlitt, or George Sutherland.  And like everyone else who is participating in this Writer’s Challenge, my intent is not to infringe on anyone’s copyright, nor is it to make any money. 



Jessica checked her carry-on bag one last time just to make sure that she hadn’t forgotten anything.  “I’ll be at the Graystone Inn on South Third Street,” she said as she cradled the telephone against her shoulder and zipped up the bag. 

“You sound excited, Jess,” George commented, having noted an extra hint of sprightliness in her voice, especially considering the early hour.

Jessica stopped and considered George’s observation for a moment.  She smiled as she thought about what lie ahead for her over the next week.  “You know, George, I really am,” she said.  “I really am.”

“I know I’m not supposed to ask but…”

“No, you’re not,” she said, cutting him off abruptly as she slipped the Amateur Magician’s Handbook into her briefcase.  “You’ll find out what my book is about when everyone else does and not a moment sooner.  Well, maybe sooner, but not until the final draft goes to the printers.”

“Seth just pulled up,” she added as she slipped her arms into her coat. 

“Then you’d better go, love,” he replied. 

“Yes, I should.”


“Yes, George.”

“I love you…and be careful.”

“I love you, too, George, and I will.” 

Just as she settled the handset into its cradle Seth knocked, and then opened the back door.

“Better get a move on, woman, or you’ll miss your flight,” he announced as he stomped his boots on the doormat before stepping into Jessica’s kitchen. 

“Yes, Seth, I was just saying goodbye to George,” she said as she handed him her suitcase. 

As they made their way around the house to his car, Seth became noticeably sullen.  “I bet you told Sutherland what has you flying off to North Carolina on a whim,” he complained after the luggage had been stowed in the trunk.

“I did not,” Jessica answered as she angled herself into the front seat.  She buckled her seat belt and then added, “And I’m not telling you either.”  

She smiled to herself as she settled in for the drive to Portland.  Who would ever believe that she was going to spend the next week not only researching her next book but taking magic lessons as well?