Fic snippet: An Invitation

A snippet from my supernatural drama WiP featuring shapeshifters and set in modern day UK, on the England-Wales border.

Romaine (Wolf) and El (Cat) are currently working at a supernatural helpline but Romaine was a field agent until taking leave after an incident, and El is biding time until her chance to make field agent.

An Invitation

El glowered as she typed. “My family is having a party,” she said. “Anniversary party for my great-aunt Madelana and her husband Grant. They’ve hired a room at a social club, a DJ, catering, full bar.”

“Sounds nice?” Romaine ventured uncertainly, twisting on his swivel chair to look at her. El was upset about some aspect of this party.

“It might have been, except my cousin Laura will be there,” El fumed. “Laura whom I hate, not Laura I like. Nor Lana from Texas. Laura the smug asshole.”

Romaine typed a few things into the database, updating some records. El’s extended family seemed impossible to keep track of but he was fairly certain he’d not heard of hated!Laura before. “Right.”

“If I show up alone she’ll make a snide comment. She’s engaged to some dumbass but he’s always too busy to come anywhere with her. He’s supposedly jetsetting around the world, saving illiterate llamas or building toys for endangered children or something.” El shook her head. “Flashes her engagement ring, talks about her So Important work in finances in fucking London, and how Findus is combating climate change by travelling the world in aeroplanes and helicopters.”

Despite the obvious hyperbole and sarcasm, Romaine had to ask. “Findus?”

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Fic snippet: A Pleasant Afternoon

WiP: WRE fic snippet. Romaine and El spend a lazy Sunday together. (Note: Armand is Romaine’s middle name.)

coffee magazine
Photo by Kaboompics .com on Pexels.com

After lunch they slumped on El’s sofa, drank more wine, listened to some music. El put the TV on and found a showing of Princess Bride, the movie only five minutes in, and they watched the rest. Halfway through El served up generous slices of chocolate cake and made coffee.

When El had finished her cake she tucked herself up on the sofa, feet on the cushion, knees against Romaine’s leg, one arm against his, sharing his warmth.

After the movie, Romaine stretched, sorry to dislodge El but feeling stiff. “Fancy a walk?”

She nodded. “Want me to walk the Wolf?”

“Would you? Thanks.”

Romaine went upstairs to get ready, El saying she needed to use the toilet, tie up her hair, and find a coat.

A few minutes later she came to meet him, pushing open the door which he’d left ajar. She was wearing a grey hoodie with the slogan “I am a cat” on it and the hood even had little ears sewed on it. Romaine, now in wolf form, snorted at the hiding in plain sight pun and then used his nose to nudge the collar and lead he’d found from a bottom drawer and put on the coffee table.

El put the collar on him but not too tightly. The lead was a slip lead, a green and white striped cord with a leather stopper which she didn’t bother to adjust since he wouldn’t be pulling at her, and a large hand holder loop.

“Keys?” she asked. Romaine whined, having forgot about that and gestured to the key box.

El picked up his keys and slid them into her pocket alongside her own, clipped to the belt loop on her trousers for security.

She pulled the door so it locked behind them. On the way out, they met Mrs Calloway, just coming back in with a newspaper tucked beneath her arm.

“Oh this must be that beautiful dog,” Mrs Calloway said. “Can I pet him?”

Continue reading Fic snippet: A Pleasant Afternoon

Ficlet: Goats

This is a character moment I wrote about the character’s shared sense of humour. It will require some editing if it’s actually to be included in the novel WiP so I’ll share it here as is. Inspired by this advert 

goats

If there was one incident Romaine had to point to that summed up how he and El were on exactly the same wavelength and thereby such good partners, it was this, which happened three months into El’s probationary period.

They visited a farm where there’d been reports of a sighting of a dangerous supernatural. The farmer who’d reported the creature to the agency eyed them with misgiving, chewing on his pipe. Romaine assured him that he was able to handle the creature and had dealt with them before.

“It’s not that,” the man said. “You’ll have to cross the goat paddock to get to the field where I saw it last. Nasty buggers, some of them. Sharp hooves.”

Romaine and El, in unison, as if they had rehearsed it, said solemnly, “I ain’t afraid of no goats.”

The man, understandably not reassured, shrugged and gestured for them to go ahead, goats, ghosts, hooves or creatures be damned.

 

The House of Conrí

conri

Sometimes names are just names. Sometimes they are symbolic. Sometimes they’re more than that.

Thomas was thrown to the stone floor at the base of the steps. Despite his shackles he struggled to his knees, refusing to lie there complacent. He raised his bruised face defiantly and curled his lip, though that made the blood flow afresh.

“Your name?”

“Thomas Daniel,” he said proudly. He was named Thomas for his grandfather, a great hunter, and the family of Daniel had long served the rightful king. “Who are you?”

The woman sat on the throne atop the dais regarded him with brown eyes that were filled with distaste. “I am Queen Ameris, ruler of the House of Conrí.”
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