The Viaduct Killings
188 pages

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188 pages

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Perfect for fans of Happy Valley!

The start of a new crime thriller series from Wes Markin, bestselling author of the DCI Yorke series.

Still grieving from the tragic death of her colleague, DCI Emma Gardner continues to blame herself and is struggling to focus. So, when she is seconded to the wilds of Yorkshire, Emma hopes she’ll be able to get her mind back on the job, doing what she does best - putting killers behind bars.

But when she is immediately thrown into another violent murder, Emma has no time to rest. Desperate to get answers and find the killer, Emma needs all the help she can. But her new partner, DI Paul Riddick, has demons and issues of his own.

And when this new murder reveals links to an old case Riddick was involved with, Emma fears that history might be about to repeat itself…

Don’t miss the brand-new gripping crime series by bestselling British crime author Wes Markin!

What people are saying about Wes Markin...

'Cracking start to an exciting new series. Twist and turns, thrills and kills. I loved it.' Bestselling author Ross Greenwood

'Markin stuns with his latest offering... Mind-bendingly dark and deep, you know it's not for the faint hearted from page one. Intricate plotting, devious twists and excellent characterisation take this tale to a whole new level. Any serious crime fan will love it!' Bestselling author Owen Mullen

'A nerve-jangling, heart thumping belter of a crime series.' Bestselling author TG Reid



Publié par
Date de parution 21 novembre 2022
Nombre de lectures 0
EAN13 9781804837474
Langue English

Informations légales : prix de location à la page 0,0900€. Cette information est donnée uniquement à titre indicatif conformément à la législation en vigueur.



To Jo


Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Chapter 17

Chapter 18

Chapter 19

Chapter 20

Chapter 21

Chapter 22

Chapter 23

Chapter 24

Chapter 25

Chapter 26

Chapter 27

Chapter 28

Chapter 29

Chapter 30

Chapter 31

Chapter 32

Chapter 33

Chapter 34

Chapter 35

Chapter 36

Chapter 37

Chapter 38

Chapter 39

Chapter 40

Chapter 41

Chapter 42

Chapter 43

Chapter 44

Chapter 45

Chapter 46

Chapter 47

Chapter 48

Chapter 49

Chapter 50

Chapter 51

Chapter 52

Chapter 53

Chapter 54

Chapter 55

Chapter 56

Chapter 57


More from Wes Markin


About the Author

Also by Wes Markin

The Murder List

About Boldwood Books

Malcolm’s Maze of Mirrors.
A sign hanging on the kiosk at the maze’s entrance said:

Welcome to the unknown.
Emma Gardner, ten years old and full of curiosity, was not one to turn her back on the ‘unknown’, even if it was almost six o’clock, and nearly everybody else had vacated the theme park.
‘Please, Daddy.’
Her father looked down at her. ‘The eyes?’
She fluttered her eye lashes.
He pinched one of her pigtails and then slid his fingers down it. ‘Are you sure, honey? Are you ready for the “unknown”?’ He made quotation marks with his fingers over the word . ‘And you’ll be going it alone…’
‘I love the unknown ,’ Emma said, still working her eyelashes. ‘And I work best alone.’
Her father pressed two pound coins into her hand.
‘Sucker,’ her mother said and laughed.
‘The best sucker in the world,’ Emma said, turning around to look up at her mother.
Her mother had her hands on her younger brother’s shoulders.
Speaking of unknown , she thought, looking down at Jack’s gaunt, pale face.
The eight-year-old boy didn’t meet her eyes. He stared off into space, completely lost to his own thoughts.
‘You want to take Jack with you?’ her mother asked.
Not really. ‘Of course, Mum.’ She smiled. She was a good, compliant girl. Always had been. It gets you what you want. Generally. She wasn’t about to mess that up by refusing to do her bit with the weirdo brother who always ignored her.
Her mother leaned down, so her lips were level with her son’s left ear. ‘You want to go in with your sister?’
Jack sucked noisily at his bottom lip for a moment to suggest he was thinking about it. It was a con. He looked up at Emma. ‘No, thank you.’
When she was certain that her mother’s eyes were on her father, rather than her, she mouthed ‘weirdo’ at Jack. He must have missed her criticism because he made no response.
She headed to the kiosk and stared up at the elderly woman with purple hair and large glasses. Emma thought she looked remarkably like that presenter her parents liked to watch on television. Dame Edna Everage. Or was it actually a man dressed as a woman? She seemed to recall her father telling her something like that a year or so back.
‘Now, babber, you do realise we’re closing in five minutes?’ Edna said.
‘It’ll only take me five minutes,’ Emma replied, standing up straight and opening her hand to reveal the two pounds.
‘Confident, aren’t you?’ Edna smiled and took the money. Her teeth were the whitest Emma had ever seen. She wondered if they were real. ‘You’ll be all alone in there, you know? Not the hardest maze in the world, but lots of funny mirrors, and strange lights. You sure you wouldn’t like to take that little man over there with you?’ She nodded back over at Jack and her parents.
I’ll be more worried with him in there with me , she thought, shaking her head.
‘Through the curtain then, babber… Don’t linger… If we get to five past six, then my manager will have my guts for garters!’
Emma threw a wave at her small family and then lined herself up with a large, grinning clown’s face painted on the side of the structure. She suspected the clown was supposed to be Malcolm. The entrance was through Malcolm’s mouth, and the curtain that admitted you looked rather like a long black tongue hanging over his bottom lip. It trembled in the light breeze.
Well, you wanted the unknown, Emma , she thought, and the unknown is certainly what you’re getting.
She lifted the curtain and entered.
She expected it to be dark; however, the tunnel of mirrors stretched before her, bathed in a green glow.
Apart from the faint humming sound of the lighting equipment, and the occasional whistle of the breeze through the old slats that formed the frail structure, she could hear little.
Edna had been right. She was completely alone. Not that she was nervous about it. If anything, she was overjoyed, and chuckled loudly to herself as she walked the corridor, knowing that nobody could hear her foolish sounds.
In the mirrors, she observed herself in many shapes and sizes.
Emma the turnip. Emma the pencil. Emma with a head like an aubergine.
She reached the end of the tunnel and opted to turn right over left. Several steps later, she opted for left over right.
A strobe light kicked in.
She paused at a mirror that made her look like Tweedledum and did some dance moves in front of it.
She did The Brooklyn Shuffle from Staying Alive . It was her mother’s favourite film and, by default, one of Emma’s.
Tweedledum doing The Brooklyn Shuffle in slow motion. This one brought out the loudest chuckle yet. When her amusement passed, she weaved further into the maze, but the flickering lights were making her feel nauseated.
She sighed in relief when the strobe light stopped—
Quick footsteps. Somewhere further in front… No… perhaps, further behind?
With the realisation that she didn’t know where they were coming from, her breath caught in her throat.
Disorientated, she turned in a full circle. Which way had she been walking again?
The footsteps stopped. She paused and listened…
Humming lights… whistling breeze…
She looked at her reflection. A balloon head and a stick-thin body. She wanted to cry.
‘Hello?’ she called. This felt sensible. She did it again. ‘Hello? Is anyone there?’
No response.
Had it been sensible?
She felt her stomach turn over, and put a hand to it, as if that could stop the discomfort.
Get a grip , Emma. She darted forward in the blue glow. She took a right turn, then another right. There was a chance one direction could lead her to the exit, wasn’t there?
When she reached a dead end, she stopped and pressed her palms to the mirror, and looked at her reflection – she was one eyed and her face was squashed beyond all recognition.
Her heart pounded in her chest. She opted for a word her dad was notorious for saying but would cost her a week’s pocket money. ‘Shit!’
The strobe lights kicked in again.
She turned from her monstrous reflection and ran. ‘Help me!’
She weaved left and then right this time. ‘Help me—’
She slammed into a mirror, and then backed away, clutching her nose. As she turned from the dead end, she checked her palm. No blood.
The strobe lights stopped.
Jack was standing in front of her with his hands behind his back.
‘Jack!’ she cried. ‘Thank God, Jack!’
Yes, he looked peculiar standing there, staring at her with his empty eyes, but he always looked peculiar and, besides, his presence here meant that she wasn’t being stalked through a maze of mirrors by Malcolm the clown or any other psychopath.
‘You changed your mind then?’
He didn’t respond, but this was typical.
‘It’s quite a laugh.’ She took a step forward, so she was standing directly in front of him. ‘Hard to find your way out. Maybe we can do it together?’
He didn’t change the position of his head, or eyes, but he did let his hands – which were behind his back – fall to his side.
There was a large stone in his left hand.
‘Jack, what have—’
Her brother swung the stone upwards and everything turned white. She staggered backwards, the pain pulsing in her forehead. The mirror stopped her, and she slipped down it until she was sitting on the floor.
Her vision was blurred, so she rubbed at her eyes with her sleeve. When she pulled her arm down, she saw blood soaked into her cardigan.
She looked up at him. He was holding the stone by his side, and still wore that empty expression.
He let the stone fall to the floor with a thud.
‘Weirdo,’ he said, before turning and walking away.
From that day forth, Emma Gardner no longer craved the unknown.
Trouble is, it always had a knack of finding her.

* * *


Detective Chief Inspector Emma Gardner locked the car with her fob and then looked up at the twelve-storey high-rise estate.
‘It’s seen better days,’ Detective Sergeant Collette Willows said, shielding her eyes from the glare of the sun.
‘Every high-rise from the sixties has seen better days,’ Gardner said, starting towards the brick carcass.
‘Wiltshire is beautiful, boss, and yet for the last ten years, I’ve only ever seemed to end up in the gloomiest of places.’
‘Well, try twenty, Collette!’ Gardner said. ‘And I’ve yet to land anywhere exotic, myself.’
‘You really know how to make a girl feel happy with her choices in life.’
Gardner laughed and pointed down at the smudged stamp of a ladybird on the back of Willows’ hand. ‘You’ve nothing to complain about. Clubbing on a school night. Life of bloody Riley.’
‘Ladybirds is an LGBT club you know?’
‘Yes, I know. What’s your point?’
‘The point is that clubbing is a necessary evil. I’m looking for a partner. I’d rather be tucked up at home all cosy-like, blissfully watching Netflix like you and Mr Gardner.’
‘Well “blissfully” is an overstatement. Have you met Barry? Anyway, let’s not go there. Besides, isn’t the internet a safer bet for finding Ms Right these days?’
‘Nah. Th

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