The day was cool and crisp as Becca finished packing the last of Charles’ book collection. The moving company would be arriving at 11 a.m. to load everything from this cozy lodge house on the lake. That gave her two hours to shower, change and put her suitcase in her car before driving down the interstate.
To the outside world, Becca had been married to Charles Morgan for fifteen loving, wonderful years spent as best friends and lovers. She was a freelance writer for several women’s magazines. He had wisely invested a small inheritance. Along with income from his public relations firm and her writing fees, they were able to build their dream home at the lake’s edge.
Now, to the outside world, Becca was a widow, grieving for her beloved husband. Charles died from injuries he received from a hit and run driver a month ago. A neighbor who found Charles on the side of the road to the lake, informed Becca, who had been volunteering at the local animal shelter at the time. She raced to the hospital, but not in time to say goodbye. She was devastated.
In reality, the grieving widow Becca was Rachel Conrad, Becca’s identical twin. The girls, separated at birth, never knew they had a twin. Rachel had become aware of Becca’s existence when she saw her picture in one of the magazines Becca wrote for. Rachel led a hardscrabble life, going from foster home to foster home, then from one man to another. Her new boyfriend, Paul, had come up with the idea of having Rachel take Becca’s place in the Morgan household. Paul befriended the Morgans and studied their habits, their styles, likes and dislikes. He relayed the information to Rachel, so that when he “eliminated” Becca, Rachel could easily assume her life. Once he eliminated Charles, the new Becca would sell the house and cash-in insurance policies and Charles’ other investments. Then Paul and Rachel would lead the kind of life they believed they deserved.
As Rachel was preparing to leave the lake house, two sheriff’s cars pulled into the circular driveway. Sheriff Donahue walked up to the driver’s side of her car, opened the door and asked Becca to exit the car. She complied, asking him if there was a problem. He informed her she was under arrest for the murder of her husband. An unidentified informant had given the police department information that the car that hit Charles was registered in her name – Becca Morgan. Her alibi did not hold up, since she had left the animal shelter earlier than usual. Rachel Conrad, a.k.a. Becca Morgan, was convicted and sentenced to life in prison.
Paul, a.k.a. Peter Talbot, smiled at his passenger as he pulled into the airport parking area. He couldn’t remember a time when he didn’t love her. It was most fortunate for Peter, and his new wife, Alison Rebecca, that Rachel never questioned how Paul had “eliminated” the real Becca.