I’m getting the feeling that you’re more confused by the second idea, so I recommend you go with the first. Maybe if you put names to the women and children it would help? Is there one child or two? Who married the abusive husband? Is it one child from the ex-gf and this a secret baby story?
I think you’ll be able to develop the second plot into another book in the series eventually, but you seem to have a more definite plan for the first one right now. That’s my take on it, anyway.
Problem: I don’t know why she is there. Why does she come to Max? If she is going to prove Dad’s innocence she doesn’t need Max to do that.
Maybe the father could have saved her life somehow and they became close (father-daughter-ish but maybe son mistakes it for lovers so it causes a lot of tension between them, eventually guilt?) If she’s an investigator, maybe father used to help her but she was (injured?) and he took her in to hide her? Etc. Now that she’s out of the bad position she was in and is stronger (abusive ex, bad business partner, money problems, both, worse???), she is determined to prove him innocent because he’s such a good man.
Maybe she just found his real name on some paperwork and finally convinced him to tell her the whole story? She’s not military and from what she found out so far, it could become dangerous, so she’s asking for son’s help. Or the problem is in the military and she doesn’t have contacts there, but she knows he does?
Maybe the father never gets in touch with the son because he doesn’t want his shame to rub off on him any more than was inevitable. She assumes the son doesn’t believe his father did the bad thing and figures he’ll help. Gets very angry when she finds out son actually believes the bad thing about his father.
Just throwing out some ideas! Hope this helps.
- This reply was modified 1 year, 1 month ago by Wendi Sotis.