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In Vino Veritas
When Vinnie Whitney-Ross witnesses a double murder, his life changes. As his dreams to make great wine come true, he becomes a hunted man. The time has come to take a stand...and add to the growing body count.
Vinnie Whitney-Ross is passionate about wine, he sells it, he talks about it, he lives it and he drinks it. He, and his wife, Anna, enjoy their life in the heart of London, a life that revolves around wine and chocolate. Then a twist of fate puts him in the wrong place at the wrong time and he witnesses two gruesome murders. By another twist of fate he knows the murderer, from another life long ago. He's left with no choice and in order to survive he must commit a terrible crime.
In return for testifying against his childhood friend, he receives immunity and both he and Anna are placed in witness protection. He fulfils his dream, instead of selling wine he gets to make it. They buy a boutique winery on an island off the coast of New Zealand and, with new names and new identities, they continue Rocky Bay's fine tradition of exquisite Bordeaux blends.
But festival success brings recognition and recognition brings danger. Some very nasty men are hunting Vinnie to convince him to rescind his testimony. Everything is at stake, his precious wife, his dog, his winery, it is time to stand and fight…and add to the rising body count.
"In Vino Veritas" is the first in a trilogy of crime novellas featuring Vinnie and Anna Whitney-Ross and Detective Inspector Peter Harper. Death by a bottle of Petrus, death by drowning in a vat of must…In Wine, Truth.
"Look at all my trials and tribulations, sinking in a gentle pool of wine..."
The last thing he'd expected to hear as he died was a line from Jesus Christ Superstar. Shouldn't his life flash before his eyes? But it made sense for he was, indeed, sinking in a gentle pool of wine. Except it wasn't gentle and it wasn't wine, it was must, the grape skins and juice that were left to ferment in shiny steel vats.
It was the consistency of porridge and it whirled around and sucked him under like quicksand. He thrashed from side to side and pushed the skins away, his legs kicking desperately but he knew it was far too deep. Bitter juice splashed into his mouth and stung his eyes. The layer of air above the cap of skins was CO2, thick and deadly. His lungs screamed for oxygen and the pain was intense, a burn deep inside.
He hit the side of the tank and clawed at the slippery rim, if he could just raise himself up, above the CO2, into the air, into the fresh oxygen. In the distance something silver shimmered and moved through the ruby red liquid towards him, there and then gone, there and then gone. He could just see past it to a vision, a face, two blue eyes, brown hair, swimming in and out of his rapidly fading consciousness.
Was it an angel of death or were they coming to rescue him? A wave of warm, black, comforting nothingness rose up from the depths of the tank and engulfed him as his hands slid from the rim....