Thursday, November 19, 2009

A Dark Message - 6

Without quite knowing why, Jenny chose to follow the advice of the young stranger. Her stomach felt like one giant knot. This was a new sensation; a cross between caution and fear. The girl had seemed nice enough, but something about her was dark... cryptic. But regardless of her feelings, Jenny knew she had to listen to the girl.
She found herself now standing in front of Alex's newly laid headstone. It wasn't a good night to be out here. The air was bitter cold and the wind was picking up, howling through the trees, ripping through her light jacket as if it wasn't even there. Jenny glanced around furtively, feeling a strange sense of unease. The moon cast flickering shadows through the waving tree branches, covering everything in dancing minions.
One shadow wasn't moving; it was blacker than the night and still as stone. When it finally did move, it moved slowly, toward her. Jenny backed up a step, feeling the panic flood through her body. Her limbs felt like jelly. The shadow moved faster now, coming toward her at a swift pace. Running would do her no good; there was nowhere to hide in this miserable graveyard. The only thing she could do was gape in absolute terror as the shadow grew in height, coming swiftly closer. It stopped no less than a foot from her body. The being towered above her. In the dark she could only discern that the shadow had the shape of a man, but the man was too large to be human. Before she knew what was happening, a giant hand snatched hers up, laying something cold and heavy in her palm. "When you're ready, look at what I've given you," a voice whispered. The voice didn't match the body. It was too soft, too quiet. "But don't look unless you know you can handle the truth. For if you can't, this will destroy you, as it destroyed Alex."
Jenny's hand instinctively curled around the object, but her eyes never left the huge bulk in front of her. She nodded briskly, not trusting her voice. The shadow receded, melting back into the dancing minions. Jenny stared after it, rooted to the spot by terror and uncertainty. Her mind was a jumble of a million questions, none of which she knew the answer to. The object in her hand was cold, like steel. Trembling, she finally turned and ran to her car, locking the doors and starting the engine almost simultaneously. One thought shouted in her mind. "Get the hell out of this place. Leave the secrets behind!" Another thought, much smaller but growing in gravity, whispered a different message. "Look at the object, learn the secrets."

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Help Comes Unexpectedly - 5

Jenny walked slowly up the street, toward Alicia's home. Since Alex's murder, Jenny had been staying with Alicia; staying in the apartment where Alex had been killed was just too painful. She sighed, glancing up the street. It was painful staying with Alicia too. She knew her friend was trying to be helpful, to comfort her, but Alex, despite all his failures, had loved her. She knew he had. He was always trying to make her laugh, to help her see the good in everything. She felt so alone with him gone.
She sank onto the steps outside the apartment, not caring that the cold of the concrete seeped through her clothing. Alex had been killed a month ago and the police had made no headway on solving his murder. When she asked for updates, the only response she got was a patient "No dear, we don't know anything yet." They treated her like they would a child. The kind cop was the exception to this rule. He always treated her wonderfully, but he could never tell her anything. Sometimes it felt to Jenny like they weren't even trying.
Jenny sighed heavily, "Alex," she cried, "What do I do? I'm scared. I feel so alone." She wrapped her arms around her chest. "You wouldn't just sit here. You would do something. Anything! You were always the strong one. I can't do it," she muttered, "I can't do anything."
"Yes you can."
Jenny looked up, startled. A young woman stood in front of the steps. Wide eyes in a thin face were framed by short, black hair that spiked in every direction. Her eyes darted around nervously before coming to rest on Jenny's face. "There's always something you can do," she said urgently.
Jenny stiffened, "You don't know that," she snapped. "You don't even know what I'm dealing with."
"I know more than you think." The response was cryptic. The girl glanced up and down the street, then took a step closer to Jenny. "Your answer lies with Alex," she said urgently. "Go to him."
Jenny stared at her, wide-eyed. "But Alex... he's dead."
The girl nodded, "Go to him," she whispered again then she darted down the street and was gone.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

New author!

Oh my goodness, it's been f-o-r-e-v-e-r since I last updated. Sorry about that. I've been spending a lot of my time focusing on the novel I'm writing. I'll have to post an excerpt one of these days :). Anyway, considering the fact that my goal is to be a published author, I thought I might promote a new author who recently published her first book. Her name is Lisa Mangum and the book is titled "The Hourglass Door". It's the first in a series, which is nice on one hand and not so nice on the other. I love series... I relish them really, but oh I hate waiting for the next book to be written! The sequel to this book will be published next year, I believe. So I get to wait. Oh well.
Anyway, the story is about a young high schooler named Abby and a mysterious stranger named Dante. It's a love story, but like any good love story it has other elements. This one has time travel, which definitely makes it interesting. I'm not going to reveal the entire plot on this blog, but I will say that it is worth reading, and it's a simple read. There were a few parts that I thought could have been elaborated upon... a little more detail would have made them better, drawing me into the story more, but overall it was good. You'll find that the characters are easy to like, especially Dante who is hot and mysterious, the perfect mix. I'm looking forward to watching her writing career. I hope some of you enjoy her book as well.

P.S. the image above is a picture of the cover of her book. I found the picture online and posted it here so you all would know what you're looking for. No, I have no rights to the picture, so if that was illegal, let me know!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Questions - 4

Jenny sat alone at the police station. The old police officer had gone to get her some water, leaving her alone in her grief. She had one hand pressed tightly to her stomach, feeling somehow that the baby inside her was the only link she had now to Alex. Somehow the thought was comforting, knowing that a part of him lived on in her. The officer returned and set a bottle of water on the table in front of her. "Here you go," he said. A kind smile crinkled around his eyes. Jenny tried to smile back, "Thanks," she mumbled.
"The detective is coming to interview you. He'll be here in just a minute."
"Thanks," she whispered.
The old cop took her small hand in his and patted it softly, "Are you going to be okay?"
Jenny shrugged, "I'll get through it. I have to." But she didn't look like she could get through it, not to the cop. She looked frail and worn, like she might break at any moment.
There was a loud rap on the door and a moment later the detective entered. To Jenny's surprise it was a woman, a young woman wearing a sharp outfit, heels that clicked loudly on the concrete floor, and a scowl on her tight features. Jenny's automatic response was to shrink away from her.
The detective set a file on the table and sat down in front of Jenny. "I understand you're..." she paused, glancing at the file, "Mrs. Harper?"
"Do you know of anybody that may have wanted Mr. Harper dead?"
"Where were you, when he was killed?"
"I was at my friend's. We... Alex was late and I left," Jenny's voice faltered, "I was so mad at him... I should have stayed." A tear dropped onto the table, "I should have stayed," she whispered again.
The detective shuffled through the file, "It says here that Alex was out of work. Could he have gotten involved in anything illegal?"
"I...I don't know. He didn't talk about work after he got fired."
"How did you get by after he lost his job?"
"Savings. I got a job."
"I see." The detective stood abruptly, "Thank you for your help Mrs. Harper. We'll call you if we need anything else." She nodded at the kind cop next to Jenny, "She can go."
Jenny stood, confused, "Can you tell me who killed Alex?"
"No. We don't know."
"What do I do now?"
The detective stared at her, "Nothing. We'll solve the case."
The old cop took Jenny gently by the arm and guided her toward the door, "You just take the time to get through this," he told Jenny quietly, "I'll keep you updated, and I'll check on you to make sure you're okay."
This time Jenny's small smile was genuine, "Thank you, for all of your help."
The old cops eyes crinkled again. He would be Jenny's rock through the coming months, he knew it as well as she.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The coffee shop

The change clattered onto the counter. "One cup of Joe," the bum mumbled while settling himself onto the stool. His face was blotchy red and his hands trembled. Patches of blue were visible here and there on his coat, but mostly it was gray streaked with brown. A fit of coughing racked his body. The barista looked at the man in disgust; he quickly counted the coins, trying his best to touch them as little as possible, and then turned to make the coffee. "Here," he snapped, setting the cup in front of the bum. "Hurry up with it and move on. You're making my guests uncomfortable."
The bum glanced around the room. It was nearly empty. The one exception was a young woman seated three seats down from him. She was watching him with interest. He nodded to her and turned back to the barista. "Sure," he chuckled. He took a slow sip of his coffee and sighed. "There's nothing like coffee to warm a man's..." loud, hacking coughs interuppted his words, doubling him over. He gasped for air and then straightened up, "bones." he finally finished.
The barista just glared at him.
The young woman moved to sit next to the bum, "Hello," she said, "I'm sorry. I couldn't help noticing you sitting here alone. That cough sounds bad. Are you okay?"
The bum nodded, "I'm fine."
"I don't believe you."
The bum laughed mirthlessly, "Nobody seems to."
The woman beckoned to the barista. "Give him his change back. I'll cover his tab, whatever he wants, make sure he gets it."
The bum shook his head, "You don't need to do that lady. I'm no charity case."
She laughed, "I never said you were."
They lapsed into silence. The barista counted back the bums change and dropped it on the counter.
Thirty minutes later the bum left. His changed remained on the counter; he drank his coffee and nothing more. The woman watched him go, wondering what had brought him to his current state.