Happy Halloween!

Next time I decide to grow a garden, I’m making one like this–

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because every trick or treater deserves to be met by a full-sized composted body, don’t you think?

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It would have scared the cowgirl hat off of me!  Though I also suspect I wouldn’t have been able to resist sneaking closeer to see if that sack (under the window) really held homemade bone meal!

If all that isn’t scary enough for you, I’m posting today a newly sliced piece of novel, still bleeding from having been torn from my wip.  This was a part of the story I’ve torn apart and shredded to make room for the new words I’ll be writing as part of NanoWrimo this year.  The novel is a middle grade, with treasure hunters, giant dragonflies, space pirates, and a volcano spewing lava!

Ronin tossed the knife into the air and caught it.  A truly beautiful piece, with the kind of balance that made it seem like an extension of his hand.  Of course, the blood jems sparkling on its hilt didn’t hurt, either.  He smiled, and hefted it again.  If only he could keep it.  It made him feel less a lowly retrieval apprentice and more the Crusader he wanted to be.  With this in his hand—

He reined in his thoughts, and went still.  Someone was watching them.  He glanced across the flitter, to Ari.  She was updating their flight log and hadn’t seemed to notice anything.  With her amber cat eyes and better senses, she was usually aware of danger before he was.  Had he only imagined it?

He turned his focus back to the jungle around them.  Bird cries pierced the air, and the whir of giant dragonfly wings clattered overhead—all sounds which he hoped were normal, but since this wasn’t his home planet and he was no xenobiologist, he couldn’t be sure.  Behind him, he could vaguely make out the sounds of the other retrieval crews.

Well, maybe it was nothing, and maybe it was one of the elephant wasps they’d been warned about.  Only one way to find out.

Casually, as if he hadn’t a care in the world, Ronin went back to packing the flitter.  He pretended to be absorbed, fitting each foam case on so it wouldn’t rattle in flight and strapping it down, then activating the lock and seal.  But he kept the jeweled knife close to his hand, and flipped the safety off his lazer pistol.  Nothing drew out the ugly beasties like their target appearing easy prey.

He didn’t have to wait long.  A cluster of pale blue leaves on the far side of the flitter shook, then stilled, like someone had calmed the branch to hide their movement.

He still didn’t know what it was, so the lazer pistol wasn’t a good option.  He couldn’t go around frying things for no reason.  Which left the jeweled knife.  A solid prick would persuade the creature to show itself—but he’d risk losing the knife.

His hand hovered over it.

The leaves rustled again, and a masked face appeared—black and white stripes overlaid with a red hand.

A Goram Cultist!  Fear jolted through Ronin.  He snatched the knife up and flung it at the face in one fluid motion, while his other hand reached for his lazer pistol.

“Ari, watch out—”  He stopped.

Ari’s hand had flashed out, and caught the jeweled knife in flight.  She glanced into the jungle, at the masked face, then shook her head at Ronin.  “It’s not a Goram Cultist.  Just a fat-head in a mask.”  She flipped the knife back, so it stuck point down in the foam case in front of Ronin.  Her grin was mischievous.  “That knife’s much too pretty for him.  If you want to take Bruce out and claim it was self defense, I’m all for it, but I suggest you use the lazer pistol.”

No Star Lord’s, but it does have a certain affinity to Guardian’s of the Galaxy…I’m sure the characters would get along, anyway. In fact, I really think a singing, dancing Groot belongs on my desk, for inspiration!  Don’t you agree?

I’ll be patching up this novel–or actually, starting from scratch again–and working on it throughout November.  If you’re a writer and Nanoing this year, I’d love to connect so we can cheer each other on!  And if the above isn’t enough inspiration for you, stop by my post yesterday on the Mommy Authors blog, and take home a fire elemental–my treat!

4 comments to Happy Halloween!

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