Thursday, February 16, 2017

What if?

What if?

It’s a great question, isn’t it? What if is what propelled the Beasts Among Us series forward, all the questions begging to be answered.

What if there is truth behind all the myths and fairy tales? Where would the Greek gods be these days? What would vampires and werewolves do for jobs?

We’ve all heard that history is written by the winners, so what if King Arthur isn’t the good guy we’ve all been led to believe?

What if there are really things that go bump in the night? Is there really something there, when you see something with the corner of your eye? (Still have to address that one, but I’m going with yes)

I write Urban Fantasy, but I really like the term Speculative Fiction.

My main character, Gretchen, is a werewolf in hiding. Her boss is Persephone, but she goes by Percy these days. She vacations in “Florida” every winter, with her husband, Hades. Her best friend is Lacey-marie, who went from being a college student in the mid seventies, to waking up in her closet with a thirst for her roommates blood. They all work together at Olympians Salon. When hairdressers start turning up dead, they suspect a supernatural killer. Since the police know nothing of the Fae, they decide to seek out the killer themselves.

People in the customer service industry have to deal with all sorts of people. Let me give you a look at how a werewolf might handle it… (Note: This is still being edited, as it’s a snippet of my debut novel!)

I called on Greg next, a man I’d never seen before. He was in his early forties, balding, and slightly overweight.
Toni came out from her hidey-hole to wait for her next client.  She was already getting steady business, but she was often played desk jockey for the fun of it.
This was fine by me. It meant she could answer the ever ringing phone.
Greg lumbered over to me with a scowl on his face. 
Great, someone who I wasn’t going to be able to make happy, no matter how spectacular his cut turned out.
“You’re cutting my hair?” His tone was disdainful.
Wow, Mister, let it all hang out.
“Yes sir, I am.” I pasted a smile on my face, and a happy note in my voice, trying to ignored the inner one that was muttering: kill it, kill it, kill it.
“I want someone else.” He was studying me from head to toe.
“Alright sir,” I backed away a step, and turned to the side, trying to look less intimidating. “But it’s going to an hour or so before either one of the other girls has an opening.”
“What about the one behind the counter?”
“That’s our manicurist, she only does nails.” I narrowed my eyes.
“I know what a manicurist is. Don’t talk to me like I’m the stupid one. Well I need a cut, so I guess you’ll have to do.”
What a jerk.
I forced my curled hands to relax.
“Right this way.” I led him to my station
He stepped on the foot rest, flipping the chair up, causing him to loose his balance. 
I heard him mutter something that sounded distinctly inappropriate for our family friendly salon. 
I pushed the back of the chair down, setting it back onto the floor. He sat down with a thump.
“Just clean it up. I don’t want to have to get this fixed,” he said.
“Excuse me?” I tried to keep the bite out of my voice
“I guess it doesn’t take much to do hair.  Would they not let you into real school?”
My fists clenched, and I felt the hairs on the back of my neck hackle.
“It’s gotta be hard for a black woman to get into an actual college.”
My breath quickened, and my pulsed raced.
“Of course, what else is someone like you gonna do in Maine?”
“Someone. Like. Me.” I spat the words out slowly, and bit muffled, as my teeth started to grow.
My contacts split, revealing bits of amber between brown tatters.
He watched me in the mirror, his eyes growing wide. His brain wouldn’t acknowledge what he was witnessing, but the smell of his fear gave him away.
“Get out of my chair. Don’t ever come back.” I growled in a deeply.
My bones snapped loudly enough for Toni’s head to whip in my direction.
I took a deep breath as my client stood, and grabbed my mug.
“I’ll be right back ladies. Make sure that man makes it out of here.” Safely, just in case.

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