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                                SCENE STEALER Excerpt – Chapter 1

    After a chance encounter on the subway, Miss Augusta Weidenmaier, a retired schoolteacher living in New York City, is determined to help the police in the search for missing 9-year-old child actor Kevin Corcoran.
    I must have been staring at the child. They were such an unlikely pair: the boy clean and neatly dressed, the man unkempt. For a moment our eyes met; his were frightened, seeking help. Or was it my old lady’s imagination gone wild? No, I understood children. All those years of teaching elementary school, I knew this child was afraid. The man seated next to the boy nudged him and the child lowered his eyes.
    As usual, the Broadway/Seventh Avenue local at Sheridan Square was crowded; I stood to one side to allow passengers to exit but the man pushed his way on, dragging the child behind him. A new rush of passengers hid them from my sight when the subway stopped at 14th Street.
    Such a darling boy; why did he seem familiar? Of course! The child was the spitting image of that little tyke in the Cowboy Bob’s Big, Bad Burger commercial. The commercial where the boy, dressed in chaps and a ten-gallon hat, twirls a rope and dances a hoedown with animated French-fried potatoes. Big blue eyes and a warm smile people returned. But this adorable child wasn’t smiling.
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    I must have been staring at the child. They were such an unlikely pair: the boy clean and neatly dressed, the man unkempt. For a moment our eyes met; his were frightened, seeking help. Or was it my old lady's imagination gone wild? No, I understood children. All those years of teaching elementary school, I knew this child was afraid. the man seated next to the boy nudged him and the child lowered his eyes.
    As usual, the Broadway, Seventh Avenue Local at Sheridan Square was crowded. The man pushed his way on, dragging the child behind him. A new rush of passengers his them from my sight when the subway stopped at 14th street.
    Such a darling boy; why did he seem familiar? Of course! The child was the spitting image of the little tyke in the Cowboy Bob's Big, Bad Burger commercial. The commercial where the boy dressed in chaps and a ten-gallon hat, twirls a rope and dances a hoedown with animated French-fried potatoes. Big blue eyes and a warm smile people returned. But this adorable child wasn't smiling.