SHORTS FROM THE SHELF features short serialized fiction by author Shannon Muir, administrator of SHANNON MUIR’S THE PULP AND MYSTERY SHELF, that may be later released as part of e-book or print collections. The story line featured over the next  fourteen days is “Shining a Light on Crime”. This is Part 3 of 14.

Fortunately, Roxane could think of a way to get a look at the closing reports Lou turned in nightly. Also, having now sorted out the storeroom, Roxane intimately knew what products should be around and how many there should be.

Her mother kept the books and ordered supplies for the business, so she figured she could approach her with her idea.

“Hey Mom, I just spent the last week doing a full audit of the storeroom. Any chance I can go over the last month of reports just to make sure the sales match up with what we’ve got?”

“Lou had you do all that? How thoughtful! Of course I’ll get him reports for the audit!”

Roxane didn’t like the fact her mother gave all the credit to Lou. However, after the way she disappointed her parents so much, she somewhat understood. Part of her hoped that by showing the real Lou, maybe they’d see her differently.

As promised, her mother got all of the requested info. On the surface, nothing appeared out of order. Roxane did notice that one particular item showed up as being sold often. She didn’t remember seeing in the storeroom. Roxane asked her mother about it.

“Oh, that specialty item is very popular. We can’t keep it in stock. Lou has a special relationship with that vendor, so he just orders directly.”

Now Roxane needed to see what the real deal was with the vendor, as this direct relationship easily could be abused. However, she had to do it without making Lou suspicious. Given they’d never been a close family, she’d really need to work hard to make it happen.