Today I am one of the stops on the blog tour for Doctor Perry by Kirsten McKenzie I will be sharing an extract from the novel. There is also a giveaway for one e-book copy!
Under the Hippocratic Oath, a doctor swears to remember that warmth, sympathy, and understanding may outweigh the surgeon’s knife or the chemist’s drug.
Doctor Perry assures his elderly patients at the Rose Haven Retirement Home that he can offer warmth, sympathy, and understanding. Doctor Perry is a liar.
Hiding from a traumatic past, Elijah Cone wants nothing to do with the other residents at the Rose Haven, content to sit at his window waiting to die. He’s about to learn that under Doctor Perry death is the easy option…
Extract from Doctor Perry:
Clarita Swann has arrived at Doctor Perry’s office for a followup consultation. Newly arrived in Florida, with no friends or family, she is the sort of patient Doctor Perry prefers. The sort of person no one misses if they suddenly disappear without any word. Doctor Perry immobilises Clarita using his modified blood pressure cuff which has a needle inside to administer a strong sedative. What happens next is not for the faint hearted…
Please stay still, Miss Swann,” Doctor Perry advised. She’d be immobile shortly, a shame but a necessity. He couldn’t ignore the messages from his clients requesting fresh stock, and those requests hadn’t come with any pleasantries. There’d been another message today, which he’d replied to by promising to deliver Clarita Swann tonight. After supplying them Clarita, the twins, and then Myra, the Cavalletto’s would have more than enough to be getting on with, giving him ample time to disappear before they’d ask for more. And Mary Louise, he had forgotten about her, he still had her up his sleeve. And Molly, she’d go too. Over the years, his receptionists had been excellent stock, a ready supply. The money he’d earned so good, it was a shame to walk away, but the Cavalletto’s were getting too pushy, and now with the police asking questions about two of his elderly clients… He knew where the two men were, and their files. He’d have to destroy those, but he worried that that might make it look more suspicious? He’d think on it later.
The blood pressure monitor beeped, and the cuff deflated automatically with a quiet hissing sound, leaving no other sounds in the room other than Clarita’s shallow breathing. A tiny prick of blood appeared as he removed the cuff from her arm, and Doctor Perry wiped the blood away with a fragment of gauze.
With his patient unconscious on the table, Doctor Perry unbuckled the straps from beneath the bed, and strapped his patient down. Elevating the bed, he opened Clarita’s mouth, a mouth full of straight white teeth – an orthodontist had done excellent work here.
Bringing over the glass of tonic, he tipped it into Clarita’s open mouth, massaging it down her throat, like you do with a cat and a worm tablet. The tonic’s effect was instantaneous. Doctor Perry had barely poured the last drop in when the convulsions started and Clarita’s body strained against the leather straps.
Doctor Perry rinsed the cup, his back to the machinations on the bed. Not listening to any screaming was a huge improvement. Why he hadn’t thought of this earlier was beyond him, and he made a mental note to take the modified blood pressure cuff to Mary Louise’s house, then he wouldn’t have to bring her here which would save time.
A choking sound made him spin around – Clarita’s eyes were open wide, her mouth frothing. Her bones undulated beneath her rippling skin. How was she awake? This was not the reaction he’d been expecting. He looked back at the cup he’d just washed out. Eight fluid ounces wasn’t too much; five might have taken too long. The splash of liquid on the floor made him look back towards Clarita. The contents of her bladder, her bowel, gastric acid, vomit, her cerebrospinal fluid, dripped from the bed creating a virtually impassable lake around her.
Doctor Perry stood transfixed. He’d never had this reaction to any variation of his tonic, although he had lost several patients in the early years of experimentation, but none like this. Picking up the bottle of tonic, he sniffed it. The odour was no different. He daren’t taste it, not with the potential outcome disintegrating on the bed in front of him; a disaster. Backing away, he stuffed the tonic bottles into his bag and snapped it shut. He’d have to clean up the mess, but it was still rippling and heaving, the limbs alternately shrinking and growing back.
A sound like a gunshot made the doctor jump. Clarita’s lovely white teeth weren’t even her own. A full set of dentures exploded from her mouth as her jaw shrank and expanded, landing several feet across the room, scattering the individual teeth in every direction upon impact.
Clarita now reminded Doctor Perry of the Old Croghan Man, an Iron Age body he’d read about years ago. With her skin split like a leather lounge suite left too long in the sun, and her tendons and arteries guitar string taut, her body pulled in on itself, distorting her into an unrecognisable tangle of muscles.
Fleeing crossed Doctor Perry’s mind as he surveyed his consulting room, his bag in his hands. There was too much of Clarita left to stuff into the hazardous waste container and cleaning up would take the whole night. He could just run, now, and forget the others, and the Cavalletto’s. He had enough money to hide from them, and enough tonic. He was looking forward to regaining his youth, but not with this batch. He needed to go to his lab to make another batch and then he’d run, which meant he had to clean up now.
The shuddering on the bed stopped and silence reigned until Doctor Perry pulled out the trash sacks, shook them open, and stuffed Clarita Swann’s desiccated remains into the thick black plastic bags.
About the Author:
For many years Kirsten McKenzie worked in her family’s antique store, where she went from being allowed to sell the 50c postcards as a child, to selling $5,000 Worcester vases and seventeenth century silverware, providing a unique insight into the world of antiques which touches every aspect of her writing.
Her historical fiction novels ‘Fifteen Postcards‘ and its sequel ‘The Last Letter’ have been described as ‘Time Travellers Wife meets Far Pavilions’, and ‘Antiques Roadshow gone viral’. The third book in the series ‘Telegram Home’ will be released in November 2018 by Accent Press.
Her bestselling gothic horror novel ‘Painted‘ was released in 2017, with her medical thriller ‘Doctor Perry‘ following closely in April 2018.
She lives in New Zealand with her husband, her daughters, an SPCA rescue cat and a kitten found in the neighbour’s shed, and can usually be found procrastinating on Twitter under the handle @kiwimrsmac.
Win a e-book copy of Doctor Perry!
This giveaway will run from today (July 15th) through midnight Eastern US time on July 20th. Winner will be announced/contacted on the 21st. This is the length of the tour. Good luck! Copy will be supplied by Kirsten. Contact info will only be kept for this giveaway.
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