This is a work of fiction.

All of the characters, organizations, and events
portrayed in this novel are either products of the author’s imagination or are
used fictitiously.
YOURS, MINE, AND OURS Copyright © 2012 by MaryJanice Davidson. All
rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America. For information,
address St. Martin’s Press, 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10010.
www.stmartins.com
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Davidson, MaryJanice.
Yours, mine, and ours / MaryJanice Davidson. — 1st ed.
p. cm.
ISBN 978- 0-312-53118- 8 (hardcover)
ISBN 978-1-4299-8808-7 (e-book)
1. United States. Federal Bureau of Investigation—Officials and
employees—Fiction. 2. Serial murder investigation—Fiction.
3. Christmas stories. I. Title.
PS3604.A949Y68 2012
813'.6—dc23
2011041099
First Edition: March 2012
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1

c hapt er one

“—doing in here?”
I blinked at the woman across from me. She was not pleased, not
even a teeny tiny bit. Her hair, which was once probably a lovely
brunette pageboy, now looked as though the woman had been
combing it with a wire whisk. Her face was red and shiny. Her
clothes were a mess— a run in her pantyhose, her blouse untucked, one shoe missing— and she was standing ankle-deep in a
drift of snow. Her brown eyes were really, really starey.
“Well? What do you have to say for yourself?”
“I didn’t miss Christmas, right?” I asked. This wasn’t an idle
question. The last thing I remembered was December, but hardly
any snow—it had been a weirdly “green” winter.
“That’s your question?”
I wondered if she had a hearing problem. “Um. Yeah. That’s
my question. I really, really hope I didn’t miss Christmas again.”
“Didn’t you hear me?” the woman croaked. Her voice was
hoarse, either because she was ill or she’d been screaming. Probably at me, poor thing. Unless she was hoarse and ill. Poor thing!
“The cops are on the way! This is . . . it’s . . . it’s destruction of

2

M A RYJA N ICE DAV IDS ON

property! You think I don’t know that? Everybody knows that!
You’re . . . you are a destroyer of property! My property!”
Well, that certainly sounded bad. I nodded encouragement
(“yes, my, sounds terrible, really, just awful awful awful”) but it
didn’t calm her down, not even a little.
I tried to figure out where I was. There were no newspapers
around, so I had no idea what city I was in or what the date was. No
TVs running with a CNN stream. Windows, sure, but too high for
me to see billboards or the Golden Arches or any sort of landmark. (Mmmmm. Arches! Suddenly I wanted a Filet- O-Fish or
five.) Nothing indicating the name of the building the poor thing
and I were trapped together in. Just barking.
Lots of barking from, I would deduce (being a trained investigator for the FBI, I could do that; I could deduce all over the place),
lots of dogs.
Dogs.
Ah.
I looked down and observed that the “snow” I was standing in
was actually mounds and mounds of poodle fur.
“Uh-oh.”
“That’s it? That’s all you have to say for yourself? After what you
did?”
“Um . . . oh, crumbs?” (Profanity was for the unimaginative.)
“And . . . I’m sorry?” An apology seemed like the right move. When
I woke up in a strange place with enraged strangers who were wearing only one shoe while standing in poodle fluff, it was almost
always the right move.
“And there they are!” she shrilled, pointing with a flourish at
the approach of two police officers. “You boys! You come over here
and . . . and get her.”
“Get me?” I asked, appalled. “But you don’t even know me.”

YOURS, MINE, AND OURS

3

“Don’t say that like we haven’t spent ten horrible minutes together.”
Well. We hadn’t. She and I, is what I meant. She had spent time
with my body, but not with me. Don’t worry: it’s not as depraved
as it sounds.
“She committed felony assault on all my show poodles!”
Scratch that. It was at least as depraved as it sounds.
“Ohhhhh, that sounds bad,” I said as the officers hurried up.
They were St. Paul police, I noted, as I nodded politely and tried to
look the opposite of dangerous. Both big and blond and puffy, one
with blue eyes and one with brown.
“You called in the assault, ma’am?” Blue Eyes asked.
“I think, yes, Officer,” I said, well into helpful mode.
“You shut up! I did.” She blew a hank of hair off her forehead
with a gusty, egg-scented puff. “She committed assault all over
everything and I’ll lose now and months—months!—down the
drain!”
“You should probably arrest me,” I agreed. I went to set down
my mocha, then realized my hands were empty. No wonder I was
thirsty. “I’ll come along quietly.”
And I did.

chapter two

“Haw!”
I looked up and stifled a groan. My partner, George Pinkman,
was standing just outside the holding cell bars, clutching his stomach with one hand and pointing at me with the other. “Oh my God!
I thought the police report had been exaggerated. But you really did
it. Shaved poodles!” He hee-hee’d for several seconds; I’d rarely
seen him in such a good mood.
“You did not think that,” I said, appalled. “Cops wouldn’t exaggerate on a government document.”
“Like I give a shit,” he replied, instantly bored . . . the classic
mood swings of a clinical sociopath. He eyed the contents of the
holding cell, which looked and smelled exactly like holding cells
all over the country. I had reason to know, I was sorry to say. “Okay,
so, this could still be interesting. My situation can be salvaged.”
See that? My situation. Like I said. Classic.
He looked up and down the corridor. “So, is there some kind of
Chained Heat thing going on here?”
“Gross.”

YOURS, MINE, AND OURS

5

“Don’t take this away from me,” he begged. “I have so little in
my life. Caged?”
“George.”
“Bare Behind Bars?”
“Are you trying to make me throw up, or is it just a side effect
from talking to you?” Zow! I must be grumpier than I thought. I
could usually be a little more civil. “Sorry.”
(I was a compulsive apologizer. I saw a doctor for it and everything. I was a get-along girl; if everyone wasn’t content I apologized. My sisters hated it. Hated.)
“So Young, So Bad? Women In Cellblock 9? Cell Block Sisters?”
“I’m sorry to have to point this out.” Really. I was! “And maybe
you’ll remember I’ve told you this before, but there’s something
deeply wrong with you.”
He cursed me. “Goddammit. Reform School Girls, at least?”
I shook my head. “The terrible things I find out about you when
I’m stuck in a holding cell.”
“Coffee?”
“No thanks. I’m a cocoa girl.”
“I mean you should buy me coffee, you useless harpy.” He yawned
and ran his fingers—pianist’s hands, surgeon’s hands, psycho killer’s hands—through his thick black hair. “Goddamned Michaela
called me at the crack of dawn, and I had to haul my firm and wonderful ass down here to get you out. On my day off, I had to get up
early and rescue your sorry ass!”
“It’s two o’clock in the afternoon.”
“Shut up. I had stuff to do first.” He rubbed his eyes, which were
a fine, pure green. “Hey, I said “crack” and “ass” in the same sentence. Let’s go.”
I turned to the three women I’d been spending time with. Two

6

M A RYJA N ICE DAV IDS ON

of them were in the far-left corner. The other one was crouched
beside the lower bunk. They were all staring. My, what big eyes
you have, cell mates. “It was nice talking to you.”
“Please don’t hurt us anymore.”
“No, no,” I soothed. “Of course not. And, um, I’m very sorry.”
For whatever it was I did.
If I had to guess (and I didn’t have to guess; I knew), I’d say my
sister, Shiro, had paid them a visit. That was bad, but if my youngest
sister, Adrienne, had come, things would have been much, much
worse.
Natch, I couldn’t remember a thing. This was behavior I was
used to, but never cared for. I remember reading Sybil, by Flora
Rheta Schreiber, years and years ago and thinking Thank goodness
somebody gets it somebody really gets it this woman is writing about me!
Sometimes I hated the sorry fact that my sisters could hijack
my body, make it do all sorts of odd and unacceptable things, and
then return the body back to my control . . . usually after they’ve
used it to commit various felony acts.
All that to say, I don’t know what nonsense my cell mates pulled,
nor did I know what Shiro did for payback, but I was never one to
hold a grudge.
“So. Um. It was nice meeting you all.”
The gal by the bunk was going to have a gorgeous shiner. As for
the other two, the moment I got my body back I’d been able to stop
their nosebleeds after a couple of minutes. I’m not one to badmouth,
but I really think they blew this whole thing out of proportion.

chapter three

Cadence was right. They blew this whole thing out of
proportion.

c hapt er f our

“—she do?”
George stepped aside as the duty officer unlocked the holding
cell. Officer Crayon (the poor man! what a name), too, was careful
to stand far back as I exited.
“Sorry, George? I didn’t catch that.” Most people would think
Huh, I must have drifted off or Golly, guess I wasn’t paying attention. I
never drifted off. Stupid fargin’ MPD. Shiro must have popped
back in the driver’s seat, probably to show off by coming up with a
silly obscure fact. Less frequently, it was to agree with me.
And again: I was trying to keep my internal whining under
control. It could have been worse. There are much worse things
than putting Shiro in the cockpit.
“I said— and try to stay in your body for half a minute if it’s not
too much damned trouble—what’d you do to those poor bitches?”
“Don’t call them that!” I was so shocked, if they hadn’t closed
the door I would have fallen back into the cell. “They are human
beings, George Pinkman, and deserve respect.”
“They’re two whores and a dyke-beater.” He turned, walking backward, the better to talk to my former cell mates. “For the record,

YOURS, MINE, AND OURS

9

I’m into that. Hey, domestic abuse should apply to everyone, not
just heteros. So keep up the good work, gals. Hip-hip-hooray for
equal rights!”
“You shush your big mouth!” I was frantically waving my arms,
trying to hush him up. “They can hear you!”
“You look like a duck trying to take flight when you do that. And
of course they can hear me,” he said reasonably, with no idea why
I was upset. “We’re only eight feet away. Now, after we walk through
this big iron door and they clang it behind us, then they won’t be
able to hear me.”
“You . . . you never get it, do you? And you never will. You look
at them, you look at me, you don’t see people with feelings. You
don’t see people at all. Just things to play with. Toys. At best.” I
wouldn’t say it. I wouldn’t say it! “Sorry.”
Rats!
George yawned. This wasn’t anything he hadn’t heard from any
one of his number of bosses, therapists, coworkers, family members, or random strangers. I didn’t know why I was wasting my
breath. I didn’t know why his yucky crapola was getting to me more
than usual.
Yes, I did know. I promised my psychiatrist I would make a
real effort not to lie to myself so much. “We lie best when we lie to
ourselves,” he said, which I thought was profound and accurate,
though my sister Shiro thought

c hapt er f ive

I thought it

was obvious, and idiotic. Trust Cadence to be
charmed by the yappings of a fortune-cookie therapist.

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