Okay, so I started in on the story that I promised to write in my last post.
There is still plenty of time to get your name into it–all you have to do is leave a review of Duel Visions on Amazon, and you can be part of the action!
The world of the City of Dracoheim is a bit hard to explain–it’s best to show it.
I’ve already published two stories set in this world, “An Interrupted Scandal” in Cirsova #10, and “Grand Theft Nightmare” in Ye Olde Magic Shoppe.
I’ve got two more Dracoheim stories in the pipeline to publication, and another one out for submission.
I’m going to give you the opening of my current one here. If you like what you see and want to have a character in it named after you, then you know what to do.
“Worth The Candle”
It was Saturday night and I was home alone, my feet up, with a cold cider, the latest issue of Tales Of The Savage Frontier, and the Leo Breckenridge Trio live from the Thomist Arena on the radio. I was just telling myself that it was time to call it a night—after I finished this next story—when the phone rang.
Since the only calls I get in the evenings are from work, I turned the radio down and grabbed my notebook before I answered.
“Erik, this Tony on the night desk. I need you to run a squeal in the city. You know the Machinist’s Building on Founder’s Way?”
“Sure,” I said. “Swanky neighborhood.”
“You don’t know the half of it,” he went on. “Ever hear of a club called The Fortune’s Favored?”
“Fortune’s Favored?” I repeated. “Private gaming club, right? Rich and famous only need apply?”
“That’s the one,” Tony agreed. “City Police got a call and they’re asking for our help.”
“What’s the call?”
“Murder by means of magic,” Tony said, “Leastwise, that’s what City Police thinks. You want to head down and check it out?”
“On my way,” I said.
“Oh, and Erik,” Tony added. “Supervisor Higgins is already on site.”
“Really?” I asked surprised. Supervisors don’t ordinarily get out into the field, and almost never on after hours calls. “He’s running the call himself?”
“He was there when it happened.”
Ten minutes later I was pulling up to a roadblock outside one of the most exclusive and expensive addresses in the city. Two constables in crisp uniforms stood beside a sawhorse set in the middle of the street while a third stepped out to block my way, one white-gloved hand raised. They could have been parking valets at a theater premier, except that behind the sawhorse instead of limousines there were a pair of ambulances parked at the curb, their blue lights spinning lazily.
I showed him my badge and he waved me past the roadblock and towards a spot at the curb. Ordinarily there was no street parking on Founder’s Way, but there were already a dozen city police cars, marked and unmarked, so I just added my old sedan to the line.
The lobby had recently been remodeled in a painfully modern style. The walls were alternating panels of white pine and polished mirrors, the carpet pale gray with an intricate geometric design in black. All of the furniture was brushed chrome, blue glass, and white vinyl. It looked like a laboratory, with the crowd of cops standing around looking like unwitting subjects of some experiment.
I located the most expensive suit and introduced myself.
“Erik Rugar, CPS.” I didn’t offer my badge. I would have been gauche to pull it out here.
The white-haired man didn’t give me his name, just curtly nodded to a nearby uniform. “Take Agent Rugar into see the scene. I want confirmation that this is a CPS case soonest.”
That was disturbing. Usually City Police is loathe to relinquish jurisdiction and insist on running cases involving magic as a joint investigation. If they wanted to hand this over quickly then somebody had the idea it was going to blow up into a big mess and they wanted their hands to stay clean.