Jen Air: Asterion – Now

There’s one week left that you can use the coupon ND72U to get The Little Queen free from Smashwords (also available in all these places).  It was revised a bit just last month, and hopefully the updated version will be made available to people who previously got it for Kindle.  The sequel is coming along nicely now, although I still can’t say when it will be finished.  I’m not concerned about sticking to a certain wordcount this time, and even when the first few drafts are done I want to make sure it’s properly checked through and proofread before putting it up anywhere.  In the meantime, here’s another extract from the current draft:

The station was already busy by the time Jennifer arrived.  A lot of large, square shouldered officers filtering in and out of the doors, often accompanying other fierce looking individuals whose bodies were pierced and painted in various ways, some of them bearing bruises and other wounds.  Jen immediately felt like she stood out and wanted to run out right away, if only that wouldn’t in fact have drawn more attention to herself.  So she swallowed and asked very quietly, “what now?”

Tenley, wearing her blue duffle coat, stood straight next to the blonde, her little arms folded in front of her chest as she took in the scene.  “I guess you have to ask the person behind that desk.”

“Right,” Jen swallowed.  All she had to do was ask that person.  That should be easy.  Just ask. But ask what?  About Kaya or Chance?  If she asked the wrong question it would be wasting police time, and wasn’t that a crime?  No… she was obviously being silly.  The person did just look very tired and grumpy though… she turned to Ten.  “Um,” Jen meekly smiled.  “Could… c-could you ask them?  Please?”

The girl screwed up her face.  “Why should I?”

“I’ve just, got to… go, over there, and check my e-mails, or…”

Tenley clearly saw through it.  “You’re totally useless,” she said, shaking her head, but then sighed.  “Fine.”

The woman stood behind the desk seemed a little perturbed when she saw the little girl approach by herself.  “You can’t be here without an adult,” she said.

Ten’s nearly black eyes surveyed the area and she said with a quick shrug, “well, looks like there’s a lot of adults around here, so…”

The woman rolled her eyes and patiently explained, “what I mean is, you need to be accompanied by another officer or legal guardian.”

“Sure.  I have one of those.  She’s…” Tenley pointed back, but Jen had suddenly gone.  But it only took a second to catch a glimpse of her light blonde hair. “She’s hiding behind that plant. We want to see Chauncey Delainy.”

“Well, what’s the magic word?”

Tenley didn’t understand the question.  She screwed up her eyes and thought, but although she’d read stories about magic she didn’t see how any of the words in them were appropriate to this situation.  So she guessed.  “Now?”

The desk-woman wasn’t impressed, and then she saw another problem that she clearly deemed more urgent.  “You’ll have to wait a minute,” she informed the girl.  Two officers had just entered the station, struggling with a thin, sunken eyed man with a long goatee beard.  He only looked thin because there was almost no fat anywhere on his body; he was obviously strong, keeping up with shouting and challenging the officers all the way to the desk.

“Finally got this bastard,” one of the officers said, leaning over the desk to sign something.  The woman behind responded with a satisfied.

“You boys should be thanking me,” the goateed man proclaimed.  “This is gonna make you famous!”

“Shut up.”

The villain laughed, looking around and obviously was surprised to see a black haired little girl next to and peering up at him.  But he clearly wasn’t the sort to waste any opportunity to make himself seem like more of a heel.  “Hey, little girl,” he leered and leant toward her.  “You want to give your daddy a kiss?”

He was pulled up, but Ten had already gotten a face full of his foul breath. Her lower lip tucked itself under the upper as she slowly nodded and turned away, the man laughing maniacally. She only took a few steps before she turned back, and with a little jump planted her foot into the back of his knee, bringing him down low enough that could deliver an ax-handle blow to his surprised face which then bounced hard off the desk before he fell into a ragged heap by the feet of the officers with him.

Tenley readjusted her coat, a single dot of light reflecting in each of her dark eyes as she glared at the desk person.  “Now?” she asked again.

The stunned and frankly terrified woman stared back, saying, “s-s-sure,” as she reached for her phone.  “Chance? Could you get your butt down here please…”


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