Saturday, March 17, 2007

Another String

from the Warrior Series
by Dave McGary.

So far in A Malignity of Ghosts, I have my protagonist, Lillie, a dead husband zombie, Nathan, and Dumbarton, the Devil Dog.

Let me introduce a quasi-normal character, temporarily named Rick.

Since it was way too early to request repair for my phone line, I stopped at the nearest coffee shop. Besides, I needed caffine, black and sweet as sin, before I headed for the cop shop with my package of show and tell.

The place was already half-full but I found a table near the window. In a corner. With my back to a wall. I noticed the place went quiet when I walked in.

I was brooding over my second cup when a department of highways crew-cab pulled in and parked.

I recognized one of the men who climbed out by the broad-brimmed black hat he always wore. Made him look like a Mennonite elder. Rick something. Tall and thin. Face like demented chipmunk. Receeding hairline. Decent sort. He did highways. I did buildings and public spaces. He was salary. I was contract. We'd met at an orientation seminar and passed occasionally in the municipal building. He'd been at the funeral.

The other man took his coffee and cruller and went back outside to sit in the sun and smoke. Rick picked up his cardboard tray and peered around in a mechanical, uncertain way, like someone coming out of a dream, or as if he'd had a night as bad as mine.

He nodded to four guys in works department uniforms who were leaving. Only one nodded back. It wasn't obvious, but they skirted around him. Talent makes a lot of people uneasy, even sensible, practical guys.

I dragged my boots off the opposite chair and gestured. Freaks might as well stick together.


December Quinn said...

*sigh*...I love this...

Bernita said...

Kind of you, December. Thank you.

Ric said...

Kinda sucks you right in - gotta know more, keep reading....

Bernita said...

Really, Ric?
Maybe I'm getting the hang of this after all.

Ric said...

Opening up a whole web of possible story lines - in a minimal space. The curious want to know.

Naturally, I would suggest you edit out that 'k'.

Bernita said...

With " a face like a demented chipmunk," Ric?
Hard to visualize YOU that way.

Erik Ivan James said...

I'm enjoying it a lot so far. Yes, Bernita, you are "getting the hang of this after all." I'm curious now to see what sort of relationship might develop between Lillie and "Rick". Many possibilities there.

Bernita said...

Thank you, Erik.
Rick is a colleague. Older, married.

raine said...

It wasn't obvious, but they skirted around him. Talent makes a lot of people uneasy, even sensible, practical guys.

Oh, now this I love, lol.
MUST know more about Rick. :-)

Bernita said...

Rick is a secondary, Raine, the hero hasn't shown up yet.
I think I'll give him a face like a bag of hammers.

Gabriele C. said...

Ah, here's some more from the scene at Evil Editor. :)

Btw, I won't take the comment of that scriptwriter too seriously, scripts and novels are two very different media.

Bernita said...

I don't, Gabriele. Seems he's taken a course and is now very eager to edit and be helpful...
I intended to put that section up here tomorrow as it follows today's piece.

Gabriele C. said...

Helpful? Well, maybe the first post, but he comes across as Know Better Than You to me by now.

I was tempted to give him a reply, but since I've never posted on EE, I don't want to introduce myself with an 'aggressive' post.

Btw, I didn't find a dialogue to send him, they're all so intertwined with character thoughts, action and description that any dialogue snippet that makes sense is over 300-350 words.

Bernita said...

So I wasn't alone in wondering that!
I know what you mean. I removed some of the thoughts and action to get this short enough - with the result that it caused a little confusion.