DARK FORTYDesperate to be free of the small town trappings of his life, seventeen year old, Landon Ray Clark hits upon a scheme to get away from his fifth foster home and finally create his own destiny. As he sets his plan into motion, he finds himself embroiled in a trap that nearly costs him his life.Through sheer will and a lot of luck, Lanny meets a stranger who propels him far from his past into a new career, with opportunities about which he earlier could have only dreamed. As Lanny begins his new job he meets and falls in love with Maria, whose brother Juan tells him of an ominous mystery, that together, they feel compelled to solve.Soon, Lanny's company duties take him on a multi-state journey. However, his insistence on discovering the dark secret causes him to make a terrible mistake. His error brings him in handcuffs and leg irons back to his original small town. This time, however, he is literally a prisoner and facing possible prosecution as an adult felon. As he takes stock of his compounding problems, Lanny wonders if he will ever be able to pull himself out of the deepening quagmire that he has brought upon himself.The writer is currently president of a non-profit agency, called Christian Senior Ministries and is an administrator for the Southwest Missouri Office on Aging, supervising six area senior centers. Larry lives with his wife, Carmen, at Table Rock Lake near Branson, Missouri. The highlights of their lives are the many children and grandchildren who come to the lake to visit.