A snippet

Eeep!  I had gotten so wrapped up in working on beta edits for Alchemy of Shadows (Soon, my precious.  Soon.) that I almost forgot to do a post today.  So, here’s a snippet.


I was packing the last of my alchemical supplies into a case when someone pounded on the door.

“Open up.  Police.”

Becki’s hands snapped up to cover her mouth.  Jeff looked at me, his eyes wide.

“What do we do?” he whispered.

I shrugged. “Open the door.”

Becki went to open the door.  I still had my hands in my bag, feeling for the jar I wanted.

The door opened.  A police officer stood in the doorway.  I quickly twisted the cap off the jar.  The police officer wore dark glasses, even in the poorly lit hallway.  His hand rested on the butt of his gun.

I heard the snap of the release of the retention strap on the holster. “You.  Hands where I can see them.”

I turned, lifting my arms as though raising my hands.  The police officer started to draw his gun.  At the top of the arc of my arm motion, I flicked my wrist and opened my hand.  The jar went tumbling across the room, spilling its contents in a cloud in its wake.  The jar hit the police officer in the chest just as his gun started to come up.  He drew a breath, probably in preparation for speaking.  His face went slack.  He crumbled to the floor.

Becki’s eyes rolled back in her head and her own knees buckled.  She collapsed on top of the police officer.

Jeff started forward but I held a hand in front of him. “Wait.”

Jeff paused and looked at me.

“Don’t breathe the dust or you’ll be down there too.

He nodded and took a deep breath and went to grab Becki, pulling her out of the rapidly settling cloud of sleeping powder.

“So what do we do now?” He asked.

“We get out of here.  Did you notice the glasses?” I turned on the light next to me, then crossed to reach the light next to one of the beds.  Jeff caught the idea and set Becki on the other bed and turned on more lights.

“He’s one of those things?” Jeff asked.

“Ridden by one, I think.  Whether the police in general are after us, or just this one, I don’t know.” I stood staring down at the police officer on the floor. “If the police are after us they’ll probably have a description of my car, the Green Monster.”

“What are we going to do.”

“Get out of here first.” I grabbed my bags. The powder had settled enough. “Can you get Becki?”

Jeff nodded and hoisted Becki into a fireman’s carry.

My mind raced as we descended the back stairs toward the exit.  The last time I had to do back to back identity changes was before the modern day of ubiquitous identification and government computers all networked together.  It took time to insert data into the system.  And while I still had an emergency stash of gold, I did not have much ready cash.  I would have to sell some gold, but that would have to wait until pawn shops were open in the morning.  First we had to get out of town.  And avoid the police.

We reached the exit door.  The red and blue lights of a police cruiser flashed outside.  I peered at the car, shielding my eyes against the glare.  No one seemed to be inside.  It seemed there was only the one police officer.  Police cruiser in one direction, Monster in the other.

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