Yo yo yo fine folks of the interwebs!
Been a fairly interesting week, namely because I completed the first and pivotal stage in my epic fantasy saga. That’s right book one is done and with some fanfare. Just going over it now with a fine tooth comb, proofreading, making some changes as I usually do. Came in just over 50k. It would have been longer but I took out some filler I thought just slowed down the narrative. I mean it was just filler, you don’t need filler haha.
It turned out pretty interesting, solved some of the problems I had in my head, I think I wrapped things up in a nice way that makes the ending seem final but also have a lot of things left up in the air. It has a satisfying conclusion but not satisfying enough to feel like it’s all over. Because it’s sure as shit not, I have four more books already planned out haha.
So starting friday I guess it’s back to clownworld for me haha. Gonna start up where I left off of three ring until I work up the nerve to start Diana two, so that should be a lot of fun. Be a nice break from all the gore and seriousness, actually probably not from the gore haha. What am I saying? Definitely not from the gore haha.
On an even better note the new Parker book seems to be a total return to form tossing out the quick easy action and small frame of the last two books and returning to the autistic planning and arguing I love haha. Almost to a level that seemed impossible haha. I love the scope of this book because he already turns down like two jobs and he’s working on the third now and it’s great. On top of that there’s his fight with this elusive enemy who he let go before so it’s got some nice layers and all the planning and build up and characters are really satisfying. We just have to see if the action and heist side can live up to that now and seal the whole thing. Because you can’t have all this build up without some pay off and I’m really looking forward to see how it develops along both lines.
I just love how grounded this one is with how he’s hopping from job to job, like some kind of criminal goldie locks; “Oops some asshole from my past loused this one up and shot someone, oh now this job is full of unreliable emotionally unstable people, ah this one seems just right, now down to haggling” I really like it so far.
Also in recent news I watch oceans 8 that sequel to a movie franchise no one asked for and surprisingly enough I thought it was ok. I think it’s just because I thought it was going to be as terrible as the ghostbusters remake but with loads more identity politics as I’m well aware of the politics of the people involved. But it was actually fairly competent at sticking to the style and structure of the previous films so it was alright. Not amazing, but I was never a fan of the George Clooney ones really. They’re sort of just popcorn movies on you put on in the background, they’re like the type of movies that make dumb people feel smart.
And this movie doesn’t really bring anything new to the table or elevate the others really so no wonder it did so poorly but I thought it was watchable. No review necessary as I had no strong feelings for it either way really.
As far as the witcher books are concerned they’ve sort of just become background noise to me, I just cant be bothered with them.
Well that’s that, more zombie nonsense for you haha. I can’t believe how long this book is haha. When I’m using actual mythology I can only do around 50k but when I’m pulling zombie nonsense out of my ass and anime it just never ends haha.
Anyway gotta do something more constructive today. Gotta proofread Cur so I can send it off to my editor when she finishes up Diana, which she very nearly is.
A deathly silence filled the mall. Drowning out even the din of the hordes of furries banging sofly on the glass of the icerink. The sporadic bursts of gunfire from the mercs.
Carpenter and the French assassin hired to kill him locked swords again but stopped for a moment. Frozen like the skeleton crew on whose ship they were stowaways. It was as if they’d both realised they were interrupting some pantomime on a stage. An audience of people watching them in stunned silence.
They both felt naked and out of place for a second.
Carpenter looked over at the icerink. The Frenchman who’s eyes were still sealed blood opened one corner of an eye to look over to see what he was looking at.
Carpenter let out a sad laugh and a sadder smirk and said “I guess there goes the star of the show”.
Evergreen watched in silence, his face wooden but lined like an armrest on an old bench.
“Sir, we need to go”
“The shows over” Rigby said.
He sighed in agreement and squeezed the hand rail on the second floor balcony. Then released it and turned to walk over to Rigby. “You’re right”.
“YOU WILL DIE BY THE TIP OF MY SWORD THIS DAY!!!!”
“What the fuck?” Evergreen mouthed.
TJ drew his sword slow, the cold made it stick but it didn’t matter. Soon it would be warm with blood and it would rust and then it would never go back in the sheathe ever again.
His face was a mask of cold angry tears. A well of loss and desolation poured from the deepest pit of his self loathing. Filling every inch of his body with tremulous rage.
He felt light but strong, like he was vibrating, like every cell was awake and a sleep at the same time. Existing in the spaces between this world and the next. Ready for death and for life and for everything in between.
The sword glistened over his head, his eyes closed, his feet rooted in the ice. He looked like a statue. Like a weathervain, like the world would freeze over and he’d still be standing there just like that. Waiting for lightning to strike him and the ragnarok to begin.
“I’m gonna cut off your arm.” He said calmly like he wasn’t even in the room like he was talking to someone on the phone. He readied his sword in front of him and took a mountainlike stance. Were those his words, or someone else’s, did it matter?
The eviscergrator shrieked like a ghoul and started it’s blades whirring again. Those pumps and shafts and pistons firing building up heat. He was drenched in her, there was nothing left, nothing recognisable. She was in a thousand pieces, never to be put back together again.
He sniffed and closed his eyes and listened, darkness, whirring. The smell of coppery blood on steel.
“Are you ready?”
Read the rest of the chapter by clicking on this link and heading over to inkitt. A tooth for an eye
Don’t really have much to update from yesterday so brevity is the brother of victory or some other such quote I just made up. Still trucking along with editing this beauty, with the help of the wonderful Chrissy Szarek, my polish friend told me her name is pronounced ‘Sharek’. Makes her sound like some kind of bond villain but she’s a nice lady, a published indie author and a great, prompt and reasonably priced editor.
This is my official recommendation of her, if you just type her name into facebook I’m sure you’ll find her and her work and you’ll be glad you did. It’s been a very pleasant and easy process working with and she’s very hands on and attentive. My last editor I literally had to email them three times each time ramping up the passive aggression before they’d even respond, with Chrissy it’s literally the other way around but without the passive aggression haha. I haven’t had to chase her up once, she’s constantly emailing me with updates on her progress, it’s really a refreshing change and she’s been really good with flexibility in terms of payment processes.
So that’s going on and speaking of my last editor, I’ll still be working through The One That Came Back today, hopefully in time for the folks on my mailing list, but I won’t send it out until I’m 100% happy with it. I’m not even going to give away something I think is a pile of shit haha. But I’m sure if anyone is looking forward to getting it by now they have the patience of a saint haha.
Ok so that’s about the skinny of it, off to editing and spamming I go.
Of course if you want to read the previous chapters head on over to inkitt where they’re all neatly collated.
I guess locking doors was for poor people who weren’t literally encircled by a small army of trigger happy ex-cops. I knew because she was out prepping for the prom she wouldn’t be here. I also knew she had a brother but he was rarely home in the day, myths of an expensive heroine habit abound. So I was guessing he’d stumble home much later if at all. The house should be empty possibly but for an annoying little yappy dog she was banned from taking into school in her purse. Hopefully since the prom wasn’t at school that meant she’d probably have the annoying little rat with her. And I wouldn’t be tempted to pulp its head into an eight hundred dollar Persian rug.
I did say I loved animals but not that particular one.
I took a quick precautionairy glance across the street but thankfully aside from a team of illegals gardening two houses over they were quiet. I guessed everyone was out living the good life, lounging around a golf course or a yacht or something.
When I was sure no one was looking I slipped into the house and closed the door firmly behind me. As I stood in the cool sweet smelling entryway I felt ok. I was just a pretty rich white girl coming home from yogalates, walking into her own home no big deal. Nobody could call the cops over that. It’s not like I used a grappling hook and scaled the wall garden.
The interior was fresh and clean, cream interior walls with off white, I guess eggshell tiles on the floor. A stair case carpeted in a darker cream snaking off from the oddly angled front door up to the bedrooms on the right as you entered. A big curtain-less window at the turn of the stairs letting in lots of light. I stopped in the entryway and just listened to the steady creak of silence. When I was sure the house was empty I let go of my breath and began to pad the tiles and dust off this new set of leathery predator wings.
The entryway opened up into a huge but very minimalist carpeted living room which seemed to take up a whole corner of the house. It was very eighties deco, devoid of colour with a high ceiling that spanned both floors cut off by a balcony onto the second floor. A door off to the left lead into a relatively small galley kitchen which was nevertheless very nice.
But needless to say I wasn’t here for the tour. I doubled back to the front door and started a slow ascent up the stairs. Looking outside the huge window at the turn hoping not to see some nosey old woman staring at me and memorizing my face for a sketch artist to reproduce.
I figured if I was going to find any evidence at all of her guilt it wouldn’t be lying between the pages of a copy of teen vogue on the coffee table. “Hey remember when I poisoned my dad and framed my mom for the money lol smiley face smile face xoxox”. It wasn’t out of the realm of possibilities but it seemed unlikely. But who knows. She wasn’t like me, not the same kind of monster, a normal killer for a normal reason, a sane reason to do something insane, money was the root of all this. So there was a chance she wasn’t like me at all, there was a chance she had emotions. One of those possibly being guilt and if that was true she would leave some trace of it behind.
I figured my best bet was finding her computer and working a little slack hack magic on it, basically shake it and see what fell out.
I turned the corner checking the window but it was just the bare windowless face of the neighbouring house staring back at me. I continued on up the second flight noting an open bathroom off the stairs, seemed an odd place to put a bathroom but ok.
The second floor split off in two directions leading to the bedrooms. As far as I could remember her bedroom was off to the left and her parents ensuite was off to the right. But considering her parents weren’t in the picture anymore it made little sense to not occupy the empty ensuite. It’s what I would do, you’d have to be crazy to let all that closet space go to waste because of what? Sentimentality? Ghosts maybe?
I padded the carpeted floor delicately, hoping my light frame wouldn’t leave any telling footprints. Thankfully I’d remembered to not wear heels and opted for a set of flat tread-less pumps.
Taking the right looking over the second floor balcony down at the living room and the large windows. It seemed like an average sleepy day in this neighbourhood, not a curious dog walker in sight. Just sun shining and birds chirping. Oh how I longed for the huge savage moon and that black canvas of night to paint red, ‘soon’ it hissed and I knew it was right. Soon I’d have my starry night and my bloody moon.
Really there was no rush, I’d started as early as I could. Depending on the schedule they’d be at the preparations until late into the afternoon. Factoring in frappachino and pastelito breaks, maybe some California tuna rolls, suddenly realising skipping breakfast was a mistake. New rule; never break and enter on an empty stomach.
The hallway got a little narrower, I passed an airing cupboard and I could distinctly smell signs of a lived in nature. More specifically Wendy’s perfume, it seemed my estimation of her and our shared desire for closet space was on point.
I opened the door and was sort of surprised that the room was so small then I turned my head and realised that I’d stepped into her closet, oh.
I opened the door to her actual room and was instantly taken aback.
It was so… so-
Horrifying, truly horrifying.
I knew she was sort of anal and a bit of a control freak. But beside from the smell and the obvious personal effects the room seemed like a movie set or a window onto a dolls house. The bed perfectly made, almost creaseless, like it had been ironed, big and fluffy with pillows that seemed to go on for days. Not a sock on the floor not a sagging poster, the walls were bare and smooth. No litter, not even a bin with litter in it. Her dresser was immaculate, the mirror looked like it was brand new and all her makeup was neatly arranged almost seemingly with a ruler.
It was for lack of a better word; ‘creepy’ even for me.
The room was large and the closet was basically a room on its own. It wasn’t even a walk in closet it was just a room the size of an average bedroom only a little smaller than my actual bedroom, turned into a closet filled to the brim with clothes and shelves full of shoes hanging over my head.
The room like all the others in the house was sort of an odd asymmetrical shape. The ensuite was on the right wall at something like forty five degree angle from the rest of the room. And of course it too was spotless and it seemed pointless rooting around for clues in there.
I was hoping her online activity was a little less neat.
Walking around the room with a spectral lightness of foot. I opened a few draws on her dresser until, oh you’ve got to be kidding me, could it really be that easy? I started to get a little nervous, first the door and now this. Her diary was lying right at the top of the first draw down. On top of a stack of neatly pressed pink panties that smelled like lavender and dollar store candy.
I picked it up carefully and thumbed through it, sadly it was putridly average. Vomit inducingly so, saccharine and pointless and banal. So much so I felt myself slipping into bored unconsciousness as I scanned it. I hardly expected to just stumble upon…”Dear diary today I was thinking about how I poisoned my dear papa for cash, oh how silly of me”.
I clapped the little purple book shut and put it back in the drawer just as I found it. Feeling slightly deflated, nothing, not a chuckle not a whisper from the darkness below, just dull ringing silence.
There has to be something, I looked about the room planning to save the laptop sitting on the desk by the window for last.
I had some time to soak the room in, it was pretty, like a little girls room honestly, lots of pastel colours and stuffed animals. It was a fairy princess room for a little latina fairy princess. Maybe I was jealous, there was a picture on her side table. The whole family, her mom and dad and their little princess in the middle with the toothy grin missing the two front teeth. She must have been around six or seven. Maybe I was jealous of her, she had everything I could only dream of, and to my estimation she’d tossed it down the dark well. Only to live a long and empty existence here in this castle alone. Or that’s what I assumed. I found myself staring into the black gap of her tooth and hearing some building scratching in the dark back seat. I flipped the picture over and there was a small pieces of paper hidden in the frame. They wouldn’t have even been noticeable if there weren’t so many of them.
Check stubs, made out to Denny Vargas, Her brother, the amounts seemed to fluctuate, growing larger by increment. My guess was because of his little habit Wendy was put in charge of the estate and was dolling him out an allowance. Hmm. A small tick coming from the dark well, a drip.
Was it blackmail I was smelling, was I in some noir mystery? Still not nearly enough, no telling the amount of scandals a girl her age with her money could get into besides murdering her father. A tiny blip on the dark radar.
Ok time to skip to the good bit.
I strode across the room starting to feel a little rushed. I needed to find something good enough to justify a house invasion at the very least or I would feel very silly. And would have to reconsider a great many things about myself.
I sat at a white wicker chair she had at her clear desk, her laptop positioned perfectly central to the desks edges. I opened it and let it boot up, it was password locked but it wasn’t too hard to crack. Went through her parents’ names, her birthday, ‘Smoochie’ the name of her annoying little dog, of course it was the same as her password at school, let no one accuse her of being an original thinker.
I was in, no notes on the desktop, no elaborate confessions or future suicide notes stored away for good measure and her wallpaper was a pink glass slipper with pink fluffy trim.
I opened up a browser and started looking into her history. I wasn’t expecting to find much on the surface, after all, this all transpired what, a year ago, maybe two. So I wouldn’t even expect this to be the same laptop let alone that she didn’t delete all her search history. But considering how neat her room was I expected she was the kind of person who took care of her toys. So there was a chance this was the same computer she used back then, or at the very least it was backed up with files from her previous computer.
Despite the fact she probably deleted her search history, it’s never really gone, nothing deleted ever truly stays deleted. It’s always there in some form or another, waiting for some clever little nerd to pick up and dust off.
It didn’t take too long because I had a rough idea of what I was looking for, key words; ‘poison’, ‘murder’, ‘getting away with murder’. Ethylene glycol, that was anti-freeze to the uninitiated. A perfect household poison, colourless and odourless and with a sweet taste that allowed it to be ingested rather easily. But resulted in a slow painful death after consuming very little. When broken down in the blood stream it was almost impossible to detect unless you knew exactly what you were looking for. And most hospitals didn’t even have the facilities to test for ethelyne glycol. According to Wikipedia.
A dull humming laughter sent ripples through the dark water. A suspenseful breathing from the dark watcher, it was enough, more than enough for him. But this was nowhere near enough for Brodsky. I’d need something hard, some proof he couldn’t deny.
Bending a knee I probed under the bed, the wide window giving me ample light to see all the nothing underneath. No dust or cobwebs or bloodied baseball bats to be found. I took a closer look and ran my fingers underneath the frame of the big white bed. My fingers coming to rest on something that felt jagged and creased and out of place. Stuffed between the mattress and the frame of the bed were what appeared to be wads of paper. As I pulled them out I saw them to be what they were, opened lettered with a women’s central jail postmark. They were from her now convict mother, no doubt she was still awaiting arraignment before sentencing. The wheels of justice turn so slowly here in this laid back state. It was not uncommon for someone to be warehoused in a jail awaiting trial for years at a time.
They were carefully opened but not so carefully pressed under the mattress so I didn’t see the need to put on gloves and a hazmat suit.
I just opened them and eased the paper out of the first letter and allowed it to unfold. The first letter was fairly average, talking about her trial sprinkled with general niceties, ‘how do you dos’, stuff normal people say. No damning Shakespearean pros or accusations, no hamlet uttered at all but as I scanned on I noticed some parts were for lack of a better word ‘Redacted’. That is some parts were scribbled over with a black marker. Not unlike you would with a yellow marker if you highlighting a portion of text but instead they were blotted out. Conjuring a wry chuckle from the dark watcher.
The letters seemed to be kept in the order they were received. As I got further along the lettered got a little juicier a little more frantic and raw needing a lot more redacting. Whole paragraphs were taken out of this to a point where I wondered why even keep them at all?
I really doubted these were admissible in court since I assumed prisons read the letters of inmates coming and going.
Some terminal sentimentality I could never understand. Some piece of the puzzle I thankfully lacked.
There were small portions that had been drying out for so long I could read in the light, “I understand, he was…” The letter was written in an odd way too. It didn’t seem like a mother writing to a daughter it felt more like a student writing to a teacher. It was laced with a manic devotion, an obsessive maternal bond. I felt like I was reading a fan letter to the night stalker. “I love you, I’ll do anything to protect you-anything”.
A flutter, a swift uplift of dark wings and I knew it was satisfied a while ago but this might be enough for Brodsky. Scribbling out a sentence with a black marker I was sure was not enough to hide the truth. Some lab geek with a laminate at Brodsky’s behest in Washington undoubtedly could cast some sort of forensic wizardry on it. And that would be the tip of the iceberg of circumstantial evidence to sink Wendy. Although how well it would hold up in court would be anyone’s guess and I would assume Wendy wouldn’t go down without a fight.
She’d hire the best lawyers available and she’d probably beat it.
None of this would hold up in court of course, but there was a totally different court we were arranging for Wendy with a very different type of judge and the sentences were a lot more creative to say the least.
The last letter was thicker and although I thought I would have enough I could see no harm in probing further.
I gently removed the letter and tipped the rest the content of the envelope onto the soft carpeted floor. A few pictures came tumbling out, little passport photos of them together as a family when she was a baby, cute couple. There were a few more shots of her as a baby forming a little pile on the cream carpet.
I gave a dry breathy chuckle as I saw the letter was merely one page of entirely blacked out letters. Maybe I should buy her a shredder for her birthday.
There was a standard high gloss photo of Wendy in a diamond tiara at her sweet sixteen, her hair done up like a princess. I was pretty sure I went to that. I remember wearing some hand-me-down dress that looked like a black vacuum bag. She had a professional photographer take our pictures like this in front of a painted screen made up to look like a tropical sunset. It wasn’t too dissimilar to the one that would be at the prom.
I turned the picture over and there was no secret esoteric message written on the back with blood just a regular photo.
There was another from that day but it was a little different. It was her in her brother’s lap but there was something strange about it, something in the way she was smiling. His faced was turned into her neck with his arms around her waist and hers around his head. There was just something off about it, her eyes shut like that, her smile not of happiness but of almost. I wanted to say ‘shame’ or something like that, she looked almost like she was being tickled and she liked it, a little too much. But not being an expert on human emotions I didn’t put too much stock in my evaluation. But it garnered some attention from the dark backseat, some probing question, some lingering intrigue. A dark smirk projected onto the inside of my skull.
I idly flipped it over like the picture before, not sure what I was expecting but it seemed vital in the moment and I wasn’t disappointed. I froze, spittle welling up in my mouth and I suddenly felt very small and very thirsty, my heart tightening with a vice grip in my chest. Written on the back in pencil were the words ‘DO YOU SEE?’
I had no time to think how he knew or how he got in here but I knew it wasn’t a coincidence.
A car horn outside, shit. Calm down Diana, this isn’t some shitty rear window knock off. She isn’t coming home in the middle of your little fishing expedition. She isn’t putting her key in the lock and she isn’t talking loudly in the hall on her cell phone. Or loudly walking up the stairs as we speak and I’m definitely not frantically stuffing the letters back under the bed and hiding there myself.
This was not how I expected today to go.
She came in and sat on the bed and I could do nothing but admire the excellent spring retention, you really get what you pay for. I guess guilty consciences are no match for space age mattresses.
She was talking on her cell phone, to whom I couldn’t fathom as I was desperately trying to remember if I’d left anything out of place in her room. I was sure I closed the computer, I put the check stubs back. I hoped.
I mean, I guess I could have played this off “Oh hey this isn’t my house, my bad”. But that was really a longshot. And I was already in the doghouse for missing the set up, I didn’t really want to add breaking and entering to that list of friendship testing events.
She didn’t seem too pre-occupied with searching her room. She was having what could have been described as a ‘heated discussion’ with someone on her cell phone. The doubt came from the fact she was talking in fast fire Cuban which was like Spanish which remember I suck at but working against an imaginary clock. It was pretty much completely beyond me.
So it was hard to tell if she was actually anxious or was having a perfectly normal conversation about sandwiches. It was only when she broke into a few sentences of rushed English that I picked up the reason she was home.
“I got another one”
“Another what?” The small voice on the other end said. I could barely make it out over the sound of her breathing, evidently speaking Cuban didn’t allow for breathing pauses.
“Another one of those fucking notes, someone knows Denny, someone fucking knows!” She said in a harsh whisper.
“You’re talking crazy” Denny said.
“I got one in my locker the other day and now I found one in Smoochie’s basket, someone knows and I have no idea what to do” She sounded frantic and teary eyed.
“Ok calm down, I’ll come over in a day or two and we’ll figure something out. If someone does know they would have gone to cops, this is just straight up blackmail, we can make that go away.”
How would they make me go away I wondered. He was so sure he could. Almost like he’d done it before. But then something stuck out at me.
I didn’t write a second note.
And I certainly didn’t put it in her dog basket while prepping for the prom since I was here. And as far as I know didn’t have a clone and thus could not be in two places at once.
I had been very busy but not that busy. I left the first note just to gauge her response, see a flicker of something certain and deadly behind those eyes, some glimmer of guilt and fear. I wanted her to see the slowly descending guillotine, just for a split second, just enough to know she did but so little that she could tell herself she didn’t. But that was all, I had what I needed, a second note would just be more of the same. Psychological torture sending her into this messy flurry of emotions and planning and readying. I wanted to nudge her not send her over the edge like this.
So then who sent the second note and why?
I had a rough idea but it seemed petty and silly and childish almost like a deadly prank. Someone wanted to see her rushing around like a headless chicken for their amusement. They wound her up like a toy and sent her reeling at me. It didn’t seem like something a cold blooded killer would do. Someone circling, waiting for the right time to strike making me feel like he was god’s hand. Everywhere, always watching, knowing my every move before I made it. Knowing that at any moment he could reach down and snuff me out.
It felt almost like a game.
Entertaining if a little cookie cutter.
Sort of just an off the cuff review, Just going to highlight some of the strengths and weaknesses overall.
First mistake right off the bat; starting a the first sentence with the words ‘dazed and confused’ is just going to get that Led Zeppelin song stuck in my head the whole chapter long haha.
No but in all seriousness, the opening is good, some of the description is a little cheesey, to the point of parody. I always find it’s a tough middle ground with similies and metaphorical description in any way. You either make it too whimsical so it seems silly or too dry so it’s boring or unimaginative, it’s tough to get them where you want which is the middle. Otherwise it’s just cringe inducing.
Although I thought the opening was good, gives people a little taste of whats to come and gives a little bit of action and suspense which is exactly what you want when you’re about to tediously unravel paragraph after unbroken paragraph of spoonfed exposition at people at people haha.
Honestly, it’s not that bad but the paragraphs are just way too long, you just have these long monoliths of unbroken text that it becomes a burden to read. I found myself wanting to skim a lot of it and when I did I heard this name called ‘Cindy’. And I was reading back like ‘who’s cindy, weren’t we just talking about his father who killed himself?;
Then I searched for ‘Cindy’ and her name is only mentioned twice in that whole chapter, so we’re talking about his dead father then dead wife (I’m guessing) is just tossed on for good measure. I’m sure it’ll be explained later but highlighting it out of the blue then dropping it just as suddenly was strange since it goes out of its way to explain the dead father thing. Which I sort of didn’t like either, the suicide note was to me posed as a mystery then solved in the next parahraph. Essentially I think you should have swapped his wife and father, mention the father and don’t explain it, then explain the wife.
The writing is great though, very polished, a few mistakes here and there, a wrong word used, nothing that an edit wont pick up but something spellcheck always misses. The dialogue is a bit stiff but serviceable.
It almost seems like a japanse interpretation of noir. A little silly, a little wet, which I like. Some of the description and the dialogue seems like something out of a good point and click adventure.
As a fan of murder and serial killers, the murder is a little boring. I like a little theatre a la Dexter. But it’s realistic, although everything you’re mentioning is not something you wouldn’t find in any generic cop show of which there are a billion.
Overall though, it’s well presented and fairly enjoyable but suffers tonally and it gets a little tedious with the way it’s laid out. A fun read I could see occupying fans of the genre.
The header image is just a random photo I found when I googled ‘retribution’ haha. If you wanna check out the actual book, it’s all up for free on Inkitt of all places. Link below.
Well here he is, my first and maybe my only detective character haha. Porter Caraway, I hope you like him, or maybe I don’t, I worked hard on him or maybe I didn’t haha.
What have I been up to besides day job, not much, doing what I hate, waiting and watching. I hate that shit, I’m only happy when I’m moving forward, can’t stand standing still. I’m waiting on my editor to get back to me on editing LCYE so I can give it away for free, waiting on artists to get back to me on covers for LCYE and GS, waiting waiting waiting, driving me crazy. I want to be selling this shit, I want my fame and millions now please haha. Yeah right.
I need to keep moving forward, I said I’d wait til january to write something new and I kept my promise, did I need the rest, probably not. It’s just another novella to keep my mind occupied until I settle on another novel. I’m battling in my minds between doing the fantasy novel or the serial killer dexter fanfic. They’re both fighting for supremacy in my subconscious.
Or I could fall back on a longer comic synopsis, I have some crazy shit stored away but my instincts are telling me if this novel, this one as in ‘The one that came back’ isn’t a mainstream hit, if it doesn’t get me an agent or get above an amazon publish then I need to focus on more mainstream hot spots, so the dexter fanfic and the crazy shit I have in my back catalogue is pushed to the side by the fantasy series I’m not as crazy about. And I know just writing more and more shit won’t help me sell books unless I can market them but I’m not as interested in selling as I am in publishing them for real and not going into this sea of indie nonsense. But I’m trying to stradle both streams, why not?
So right now, just losing my mind, swimming in a sea of unease, unsure what stone to step on next, if I’m even moving forward. I dunno, anyway here’s a segment of it here.
Let me know what you think and as always you can check out the full chapter and the last chapter on inkitt.
It was late, a guy in a pair of sweatpants and vest beat on a Blonde in a tan overcoat in the glare of a giant super eight sign.
The parking lot of the super eight was like a cheery holiday graveyard, all lit up and nowhere to go.
“You done?” The blonde spat blood on the floor and looked up at the man in the vest.
“You fucking son-of-!“ The man in the vest sunk a shoeless foot into the blonde’s ribs and he wheezed a sickly a laugh through a bust lip.
“The pictures are in the mail.” The blonde looked up at him, cocking his head, his sunken eyes half open. He licked his lips and propped himself up on his hands as he sat on the parking lot floor to watch the man in the vest go back into his motel room. The room closest the entrance looking out onto the interstate. Guess he thought he could see anyone coming and he did. Not that it mattered.
The blonde was still sitting on the happy concrete as he watched the man in the vest through his open curtains. He entered his brightly lit room, greeted by his brightly lit woman. The blonde on the ground smiled and waved as he pushed a cigarette passed his split lip.
She held the man in the vest back as his blood boiled up again. Instead he just marched over shot a few daggers at the blonde and shut the blinds.
Porter pulled himself up off the ground, all the outside bits hurt. The skin and the bone, but the inside, no one could touch that. He ruffled his short blond hair, running a finger across his jawline. Making sure his rudy good looks were still all in the right order. Dusting himself off he felt a little melancholy slip in as it usually does. The image of the woman he’d been sent to spy on greeting the man she sent out to beat his ass, warmed the cockles of his heart. A part of him knew he’d never have that for some reason. Nah it was just his job to watch, like someone paid to poke an antfarm every ten minutes or so, see what fell out.
What fell out this time; a husband paid him a couple hundred bucks up front to get him pictures. His woman was stepping out with some small time country music singer. Apparently the honkey tonk man’s daughter made it big up north and left him down here to rot. Squeezing her two dollar ass into five dollar spandex and shaking it for teenagers. Fine work, if you can get it. Now he was carving himself off a piece of someone else’s wife.
He’d already been hanging on the last couple of nights and he had enough pictures. This was just a follow up, obviously he’d out stayed his welcome.
I had a fucked up neck yesterday from doing manly shit so I couldn’t work out and I was doing some writing and I wasn’t really feeling it like I usually do. I couldn’t my whole yogi-yoda meditation shit. But it wasn’t too bad. I chose a house for this fbi scene I’m working on in a later chapter. Oh if you didn’t know already I literally go on google maps and look at houses and locations and stuff haha. I’m a fucking cheater ok.
Yesterday I literally went on a like a property website so I could look around a California house in Belvedere where I set this fbi scene. It was too good to be true, the house had a virtual tour, I could flip through pictures like I was walking through the place. It didn’t have any furniture but my mind ‘furnished’ it with … furniture. It really helped me visualise the scene. I felt more like a director than a writer. It was fun, still kinda pissed about my neck and it still hurts but I got a haircut today which has successfully eaten up all my writing time so I have turned to some self-indulgent whiney blogging instead.
And hark on the horizon, here comes my day job to fuck it all up again. So that’s happening.
I never really cared if this blog was doing well, it was more of a nice sounding board for me, just talking to myself then maybe when I’m long dead someone will look at it and say “Well he didn’t totally suck the sweat off a dead man’s balls”. But it’s perked up a little bit so that’s nice. Still can’t be fucked with that mailing list. GIMME YOUR FUCKING EMAILS! Why did that sound that Hillary Clinton in my head?
This was a pretty fun chapter to write, getting into some of the trippy dream stuff a little, strap in folks it’s only getting weirder from here.
As usual you can find the full chapter for no money down on inkitt;
It’s cold, he awakes from his dream to the sound of running water. Cool night air brushes his cheek and he opens his eyes to see the bank of a stream leading into a larger river. He seemed to recognise it but couldn’t quite place it.
He was sitting on the bank of a stream under an overpass, but he couldn’t hear any cars going by. It was a cloudless night with a few stars tossed up into that mess of a sky. The moon was nowhere to be seen.
His back was against concrete. He was under one of the arches, his head felt heavy, it was hard to lift. He realised after some blank staring and heavy blinking that he was in a storm drain not on the bank of a river. He was lying on a raised embankment on the far side under the bridge. It was just cool dull yellow concrete lit by the ambient glow of the night as far as the eye could see. A trickle of a stream flowing under his feet. He saw a few whisks of grass in the distance beyond a chain link fence on the other side of the bridge.
His back felt wet as he leant against the wall. His legs splayed out in front of him in his work clothes, his black shoes covered in a film of light brown dust. His head felt dry and taught and it hurt to move his neck. He sat there for a minute trying to collect himself.
He leaned forward and pulled himself onto his knees. Crawling like a baby over to the small body of water running through the storm drain.
He splashed his face a couple of times and put a cold wet hand down the back of his neck. It felt dirty, the dry sweat made his clothes itch and hang heavy. He felt starched and sickly.
James looked down at his reflection. He looked tired he could taste blood. He bore his teeth, his gums were raw and dirty looking. He sucked his gums and spat a wad of blood into the trickle of water running through the storm drain.
It spread out fast. A brown and deep red viscous liquid hitting the water hard and dispersing as the stream started to pick up.
James stood up, stumbling. His flat shoes scraping away out from under his feet on the slick raised concrete under the overpass. He slipped back down to his knees with a bone jarring jolt. The fall sending questions all over his body, where is all this pain coming from?
The stream started to get faster and thicker and he didn’t know why, the sky hadn’t changed. Maybe a dam or sluice-gate opened. Were there any dams in California? Was he even still in California? He had to get out of there one way another. His heart started to pound, his mind rushing by trying to find answers to questions it hadn’t settled on.
Then a noise.
Plinking and then something larger, a splash and a hollow plonking sound. He walked out from under the overpass and looked up at the bridge. It was well lit with deco lamps lining either side only three or four feet apart. A waist high guard rail along the footpath. There were no cars pulled up along the side of the road, there were no cars going by. He waited thirty seconds but nothing came.
The stream was a black and dark brown like his blood now. Probably some filthy rain water from a storm drain higher up.
He squinted up and down the stream for what broke the water. Then he saw it, it was white which made it easy to pick out against the murk. It bobbed on the surface on the water like a fishing lure. It looked light but also hard and slick reflecting some dull twinge of moonlight from somewhere.
It crept closer to him bobbing in and out playfully. Before he could feel it. He was standing in the now knee high water. He stood unmoving watching it approach, taking shape in front of him. It was long and thin, delicate looking, it’s subtle curvature giving way to long thin fingers.
He bent down to pick it up.
It was the left forearm of a female mannequin. He starred at it quizzically, turning it around in his hands trying to discern its origin. He turned it over, there were scratches on the underside. Scratched on to its wrist were the words “SHE HAS DYED HER HAIR RED”.
He dropped the arm into the stream and it bobbed off down into the distance.
A torso, legs, hip, arms, hands, and a head, all the pieces, maybe more than one mannequin he couldn’t tell. He couldn’t know why just yet. They were blank, featureless, pale white parts. Perfect, only for the leaves and the debris that surrounded them in the vile manmade river.
He breathed in and out slow. The chill getting up his back, his shoes squelched full of water and silt, listening to the night music.