Ava Fisher is a mess. She is the sort of person who gives bottle blonds a bad name. Kenny Summers, recently graduated from high school, isn’t much in the looks department but he projects intelligence and a warm personality. Luvon Ramsey deals in junk that hoarders love. He is cranky and tight fisted. Marie Elrod is a sixteen- year-old student at McLarsen School For The Handicapped. She is lovable, trusting and sweet natured. Their mutual error is they all say “Hello” to the wrong person. Each ends up strangled, holding a Teddy Bear with a knife in its back.
The serial killer is hidden in plain sight and he has his focus on Olivia Haines, an English teacher at Fairmont High School in West Los Angeles. She seems unconcerned by these murders until one day someone leaves a strangled cat in her classroom as a calling card. It suddenly dawns on her that she is to be victim number five.
Olivia is in her thirties, reserved, unmarried and brainy. She realizes it is either her or the serial killer and one of them will not survive. Using every English teaching skill for deduction she owns, she wages an all out battle for survival against a very lethal psychopath. If you like Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple, you’ll relish Olivia Haines in TEDDY BEAR MURDERS.
Ava Fisher was a flamboyant mess. Everyone said it no matter what the occasion. This doesn’t necessarily mean that she was an unkempt person. It denotes that in spite of her being basically pretty and in her late thirties, she was the sort who gave bottle blonds their bad name. She had just enough of the tart in her to get on people’s nerves after about five minutes. The only person who didn’t seem to mind was her husband Danny, who obviously believed he had won the grand prize when it came to wives. Also her black and white cat Gomez was a fan of hers too. Her thirteen-year-old daughter Heather didn’t exactly see eye to eye with her mother and really couldn’t be called a fan.
Ava often said she was a lousy parent and if it weren’t for Danny, she didn’t know what would happen to Heather. Of course she said this as though she were joking and most people assumed she was. . . .
Her cell phone rang and in her excitement to answer it, she knocked over a little jar of teal blue eye shadow, which she was in the process of applying.
“Hi there. Who’s speaking?” she said in her most dramatic mid-Atlantic accent.
The voice on the other end identified itself and in a large coo, she said in an excited voice, “Oh, it’s you, you sweet thing. I’m here all alone and waiting for you. I hope you have a present for me.”
Obviously the caller gave her the answer she was seeking because she cried out in glee, “Oh you precious thing. Two presents? You’re too good to me. Now hurry on over, you hear?”
She blew the person a kiss over the phone, pressed the end button, put the phone down and finished doing her eyes as quickly as she could without making some kind of calamitous error. Before long, the doorbell rang and she jumped in anticipation. She stepped back, looked at the finished product in the mirror, smiled as though quite pleased with herself and then ran to answer the door.
She opened the door with a big smile and in her best Ava voice sang out, “Hello.”
A group of campers ranging in age from 14 to 18 were seated in a campsite open-air theater in Lake Arrowhead, California. The surrounding area was very beautiful and the tall pine trees shaded the little amphitheater. On stage several adults of varying ages were seated.
A serious man in his mid-forties got up and walked to the center of the stage where there was a microphone.
“Good morning, science campers,” he said in a loud voice. . . .