Friday, May 21, 2010 | |

First Chapters by Darren

So, these are two different beginning chapters of books I am currently working on, and I figured that since I didn't have any reviews prepared this week I'd at least give you all something to read. Feedback is appreciated!

This one is from Dangerous Words:


    I had just ordered coffee and sat down, whipping out my laptop to work on my book, when suddenly I looked out the window to see a car crashing headlong into an 18-wheeler on the highway. It was late, and the only people in the diner were me and the cook; he was in the back freezer, and probably didn't hear anything. I ran outside to see if there was anything I could do, but I was not prepared for what I saw when I got to the car.
    The driver was the only one in the car, and he was quite dead, though from the crash or the large caliber wound in his chest I couldn't tell you. Judging by the amount of blood seeping through his suit jacket, I was leaning towards the bullet. He had a phone clutched in one hand, and a pistol in the other. It had a very professional-looking silencer on the end, which was a bit disconcerting. A tally was starting up in my head: black SUV, pistol, silencer, bullet wound, nice business suit, ear-piece... Shit. This was some heavy stuff, and probably way above the pay-grade of a wannabe author like myself, but this would make a hell of a story if I told it right.
    Before I could call the cops, a couple more black SUVs barreled towards me out of the darkness. [Like Hell!] I thought. [I want this story, and no coverups!] I grabbed the phone, and the gun, and ran. I tried to keep the body of the crashed SUV between them and me, and hoofed it back to the diner. I grabbed my things, tipped the cook, and got the hell out of there.
    As I left, a couple guys in nice suits and sunglasses (oh yeah, they were REALLY trying hard to blend in) came up to the doors, and stopped me. They were of average height and build, with drab brown hair, and tans that made it obvious they worked outside often.
    "Sir, we'd like to ask you a few questions if you don't mind. Did you see the crash?" said the first agent (because I'm pretty sure that's what they were).
    "Of course I saw it. I was right there!" I pointed out the window seat where I had been. "It was really loud too! But you guys got there before I even thought to go and check what happened. Is everything alright?" I asked, keeping my face carefully blank of anything but worry. No need to tip them to the fact that I knew anything (which I wasn't sure I did, really. I mean, yeah, dead guy... but that's about it at the moment).
    "Okay, well, we just needed to get a better picture of things. Can we get your contact information for follow up questions?"  asked the second agent in a creepily similar manner. In fact, now that I thought about it, they both pretty much looked alike. I pride myself on my powers of observation, and I don't think I could tell these men apart if you put a gun to my head (now THAT was an unpleasant image).
    "Yeah, sure, of course." I gave them a fake name and address, of course. I'm not THAT stupid. I told them I didn't have a phone number at the moment, I had just moved in a couple days ago. Yes, I'm a damn good liar if necessary.
    "Thank you sir. We'll be in touch." said creepy clone-boy number one. The terrifying twosome then stared at me until I got the message, and left in a hurry. I didn't want to be around here much longer. I also wanted to go check out that phone, and see if it gave me any clues. No, I'm not a cop, or a P.I. I'm just an unnessicarily curious guy, and I was looking for some inspiration for a book. Plus, I mean, how often do you stumble across an obvious coverup of a murder? They hadn't asked me about anything other than where I was at the time of the crash, and if I had gone up to the car at all. It was pretty obvious they didn't want anyone to know that the driver was shot. That in itself was enough for me to investigate further. Plus now I had a gun, so I felt very Magnum P.I.
    Driving home I kept looking nervously in my rearview mirror for signs of a tail, but after a while I convinced myself that I was just being paranoid, and that I was way too good of a liar for them to think they needed to tail me. When I got home, I didn't immediately pull into my driveway, but instead rolled around the block one or two times, just to make sure. When I finally pulled in, I immediately ran inside, locked the door, and went into my study. My house is a decent-sized three room apartment in downtown Seattle. I had a living room with a kitchen tacked on, a bedroom with bathroom attached, and a small back room with no windows that I used for my study.
    I opened the phone, and when I read the last number dialed, my hair stood up on end. It was MY number. I looked at my phone, and my message light was blinking. I tried to calm myself down for a minute by writing down all the contact info from the phone, and then I turned it off, removed the battery, and the sim card. I'd seen way too many cop shows to let myself be caught by friggin GPS. I was still slightly hyperventillating when I walked over to my phone and pushed play.
    "You have one new message. Message one:" said the answering machine. A male voice spoke, sounding very much in pain, and I heard the sound of cars passing in the background.
    "Mr. Edwards, if you are there, please pick up, this is urgent. I have information that you really need. Your life is in danger. There are agents on their way to your house right now, and I am maybe 15 minutes ahead of them. My cover is already blown, and I am wounded, so I might not make it. If I don't, you need to know that you have information that is very interesting to the Organization, and you are considered expendable once they obtain that information. You need to talk to Eric Donahue, his number is..." and he cut off with a crashing sound. [That must have been him hitting the truck.] I thought detachedly, still in shock. [Why would anyone want to kill me? What information? What the hell is going on here?]
    I didn't know, but I was sure that if his timetable was on, agents should be outside my house in about 20 seconds, give or take. I had to get out of there, yesterday, and it didn't help that I didn't know where I should go. I pocketed the sim card, the contact info, and my phone. I also grabbed the pistol, because why not? I had a credible threat against my life, I felt I was entitled to fight back. Plus I'm a decent shot. I also grabbed a bottle of water and some aspirin, because I could feel the beginnings of the worst headache ever. It was going to be a long, long night.

 More to come!

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