Sunday, June 5, 2011

I'm Back Baby... Plus A Section from my novel "The Bridge"

I survived college and finals!  Woo-hoo!  Thanks for everyone's patience in waiting for me to get done.  I plan on being more active here during the summer, before starting the last semester of getting my A. S. in Human Services this fall.  I should have the degree by December.  Come January, hopefully I'll have work or if not I'll be just continuing with some more college.  I've got financial aid already lined up for that semester, no sense letting it go to waste.  Besides, I'm planning on pursuing a second degree in Dance.  I find Dance can help people who find it hard to express themselves, especially if they've suffered trauma or other problems.  And since Human Services is about Counseling, I feel the two will go hand in hand.

Anyway, as far as writing goes I'm still waiting to hear back from the agent in New York on my first novel "The Bridge".  In the meantime I've gotten a second and third novel underway.  One takes place directly where "The Bridge" left off, but the focus leads to one of the secondary characters whose family has a dark history, this one is tentatively called "The Door".  The other novel doesn't have a title yet, but deals with that family's dark history and events taking place in  the early 1800's prior to the War of 1812.  My wife is urging me to focus on this one to be the next in line, since it will reveal details and events that are crucial to explaining to the reader what is happening and why in "The Door".  Not sure what I will do yet as far as which one should come first.

In the meantime, here's a scene from "The Bridge"... um... please excuse the formatting, this is what happens when you copy and paste from MS Word.


THE IMPOUND LOT
   
                At the Impound Yard, a middle aged man was going over the vehicle under discussion.  Paul Chase had worked on vehicles since he was 7 when his dad first handed him a wrench.  Since then he had worked on cars, trucks, motorcycles, limousines… the works.  He knew every part and square inch of most vehicles, including this model, and so far he had found nothing.  No hidden switches or alterations to the wiring.  Everything was as it should be.
            He stood back and scratched his salt and pepper covered head.  According to Ronnie and the Medical Examiner, the driver and passenger had been dead for almost 10 hours.  Two dark muddy patches on the front seat marked where the victims had been found.  There was more all over the gas and brake pedals.  Chase took samples and set them aside for the lab to analyze, then stepped away from the vehicle to get some fresh air.  Wherever the victims had drowned, it had a nasty smell attached to it.  The entire vehicle reeked of something foul besides death.
            He glanced around the yard nervously.  Ever since the wreck had been brought into the yard, he’d had the feeling of being watched.  This whole thing was starting to get on his nerves.  Cars didn’t drive by themselves with or without dead people in them.  Yet this one had been seen maneuvering curves at high speeds for miles.  Even now he could feel eyes watching him.  He literally jumped when Ronnie’s voice came out of the radio in his workshop. “Chase you there?”
            The mechanic shook his head and went to answer, unaware of the eyes staring at him from one of the back seat windows.  At the bottom of that same door water began to drip.  It formed a small puddle which slowly began to grow and stretch as if to follow him.
            In the workshop, Chase picked up the mike and replied, “I’m here Sarge.  You just had to send me a puzzle, didn’t you?”
            “So you haven’t found anything yet?” he could hear the smirk in her voice.
            “Nothing but an overwhelming stench that doesn’t want to quit,” he told her.  “Everything is exactly where it’s supposed to be.  There’re no secret black boxes or anything like that.”
            “Cars don’t have flight recorders Chase.”
            “Then you haven’t heard about the mysterious black boxes that allows someone to take control of vehicles from a distance,” he teased.  He didn’t believe those stories any more than he did UFO’s. 
           “No I hadn’t,” admitted Ronnie. “Maybe, it’s disguised as an ordinary car part, so you won’t recognize it?”
            “Honey, I’ve found drugs, booze, stolen items, etc. in vehicles.  Believe me.  I’d
know if something wasn’t what it was supposed to be,” Chase replied making a face.
Was it his imagination or was that smell starting to seep in here?
           
            Back at the scene of the accident Ronnie rolled her eyes.  “If you’re so smart Paul, how come you can’t tell when a superior officer is your coworker not your ‘Honey’?”
            “Aw don’t be like that Sarge, you know I loves ya,” was Chase’s reply.
            Ryan grabbed the microphone in his vehicle. “What about me Chase?  Do you love me too?”
            “Not since you broke my heart you bastard.”
            “When did I do that?”
            “When that ‘69 Camaro you had got trashed,” Chase replied with annoyance. “I told you I wanted to buy it.  But you said no.  Then some kid goes and steals it and hits a tree.”
            Veronica looked at her partner and shook her head, “A cop who gets his car stolen and totaled?  I may have to trade you in.”
            Ryan gave her a hurt look.  But, before he could say anything, a new voice came over the radio.  “I’ll trade all of you in if you don’t get back to work.”
            Ronnie smiled and replied, “Must be a slow day if you’re checking up on us Roy.”
            “Actually I’m in the middle of an important meeting,” her boss replied stiffly. 
            “But you accidentally pushed something against the radio button and left it on?” she smiled. 
            The voice of Alice Peterson could be heard in the background, “She got you there
dear.”
           All three officers were about to lose it when their chief’s warning came over their respective speakers.  “Anyone caught laughing or snickering, will be on Crossing Guard duty for a month.”
            Silence reigned.          
         “By the way Ronnie,” their boss continued, “I just got a call from your other half, he found another eyewitness to that vehicle that crashed this morning.”
            Veronica frowned.  How the hell could Alex have found out anything?  He was supposed to be resting.  
            “Seems the young lady you sent over to keep an eye on him, was nearly run down by a vehicle that fit the description.  She also saw someone in the backseat.”
            “Are we sure it’s the same car?” Ronnie asked quickly. 
            “That’s what we’re waiting to find out,” replied Roy. “She’s coming here right now.  I’d like you to talk to her.”
            “I’m on my way,” she told him.
            Meanwhile, Ryan was relaying this new piece of information to Chase at the Impound Lot. 

            “Okay, I’ll take a look in the backseat,” Paul replied as he checked his hands and feet.  The stench seemed to be getting worse. 
            He looked out at the wreck and did a double take.  There was water trickling out one of the backseat doors.  “Ryan, I think you might be on to something.  Let me get back to you.”  He put down the radio and turned back to the vehicle and froze.  For a moment,
he thought he saw movement in the backseat.
            Within moments he was at the wreck looking through the window.  The backseat was empty.  But, someone had been there.  A damp patch, similar to the ones on the front seat, was clearly visible.  He opened the door and was assaulted once more by the powerful stench.  Only it was worse.  What was causing it?
            He spotted something dark, coiled up in a puddle on the floorboard.  Covering his mouth and nose with one hand he reached down.