View Full Version : Teaser

05-05-2003, 02:08 PM
Months ago I put up the beginning of a new, orginal GF story. It's progressing nicely if slowly. Here's a recent chapter:


I woke up the next morning with a sore head and a sour attitude. I’d slept off the nerves left over from the night before and now I was annoyed with myself over all the worrying I’d done about it. With a clear head and fresh coffee it looked pretty obvious what the attack was all about, but like I told Tomkins there wasn’t a damn thing I could do about it without a description. At least, nothing that was sure to do any good. So I made breakfast out of a couple of eggs, toast, and a dark cloud; and then I got dressed and headed for the office. I went first to the newsstand to pick up the morning papers, then walked another half-block to the cab stand near a medium-sized hotel.
I got to the office earlier than usual but still not earlier than Jen. She was taking off her jacket and hat when I came in. “Bill Farnham’s working early. Or late,” she said. “He left a message on the machine saying he wants to talk to you.”
“And good morning to you, too,” I answered.
Jen drew herself up and, in a prim tone, said, “I’m sorry, sir, but have we been introduced?”
That got a little laugh out of me and a wince when my head didn’t like it.
“For God’s sake, Frankie,” Jen said with asperity, “you’re not hung over, are you?”
“No,” I said, “but I wish the pain I have had come from a bottle. I’ll explain later. You’ll love it. First get Bill on the blower; he must have something important.”
I went into the inner office, tossed the papers on my desk and cracked a window open. I sat down and spread open a paper and scanned headlines while I’ll filled my pipe. The phone rang. I picked it up and said, “That you, Bill?”
“If it isn’t my parents have a lot to answer for,” Bill’s voice said over the wire.
“They do, anyway,” I said. “What’s the flap?”
“Can you come down here?” he asked. “I don’t want to talk about this over the phone.”
I finished getting my pipe lit before answering. “That serious, huh? Yeah, sure. I can make it down now if you like.”
“Good. There are things you should know.” There was a pause, then Bill said, “You’re not going to like any of it, but you’re gonna need to hear it. But hurry. Farver might be tied up until noon but I can’t be sure.”
“Sure,” I said. “I’ll hurry. I don’t feel like meeting Farver so soon after yesterday. By the way, do you have any idea where he might have been around, say, 8:30 last night?”
“No,” Bill said with a snort, “and I wish I did. Our great leader took a long supper and left me holding the bag. He’s in Jessica Needham’s office right now and if there’s any justice he’ll only come out in a vase.”
Needham’s job at the BI was to make sure the agents didn’t get out of line and to take steps when they did. If she’d called Farver into her office then someone at the BI wasn’t too pleased with him. “Best news I’ve heard yet,” I said. “I’ll even chip in on the vase.”
“I’m sure that will touch him deeply. By the way, you’re still not here. What’s the holdup?”
“Sorry,” I said. “I’m making dust now.” I hung up.
I went back into the outer office and told Jen I was going downtown to see Farnham. I took a cab to the Plaza, thinking as I paid the driver that I’d made the trip so often the past few days I ought to qualify for a special rate. I walked to the BI building and took an elevator up to the fourth floor. I went left from the elevators until I came to a pair of doors with the words Missing Agents painted in small block letters in the lower-left corner of the frosted glass in the right-hand door. The doors were hinged to swing in and out. Apart from the glass panes in the upper halves of each, the doors were heavy, solid oak. The small effort it takes to push them open always seems to ask whether it’s worth the trouble to get in. I gave one door a shove that said it probably was but there wasn’t a lot of conviction in it. I let the door fall shut behind me and scanned the room for Bill.
The missing agents division was an important one for the DOD but they didn’t give it much space to work in. Just inside the doors was a small space separated from the rest of the main room by a low railing. A little swinging gate was set in the railing in front of the doors. On the left-hand side of the gate, behind the rail, was a desk for the duty sergeant; and to the right of the gate was a low, wooden bench where those damned to wait for attention could fidget if they wanted to. Beyond the rail was a longish room crammed full of desks, filing cabinets, and crooked cops paying for their sins. I couldn’t spot the one I was after so I told the desk sergeant I was looking for Bill Farnham. He gave me a glower with nothing personal in it and picked up the phone, punched a couple of numbers and spoke into the mouthpiece in low tones. He then put the receiver in its cradle and said nothing, but a second or two later I spotted Bill emerging from the short corridor in the rear of the bullpen. He crooked a finger at me and I pushed open the gate. The sergeant glared at me, looked over his shoulder and spotted Bill, so he kept his peace and turned back to his paperwork.
“Let’s go into my thinking parlor,” Bill said when I had waded through the desks to him.
He led me back into the corridor toward his office. On the way we passed Farver’s door. It was open and the room beyond was empty. When we got to Bill’s office he closed the door and then came around to sit down behind his desk. I sat down in the only other chair in the room.
“Drink?” Bill asked. I started to shake my head, but the dull ache persuaded me to change it to a nod. Bill poured two small shots of rye and shoved mine across the desk. I tossed it down while Bill asked, “Why did you ask me where Farver was last night?”
“Reasons,” was all I said.
A nebulous frown formed in front of Bill’s skull. “I don’t see why you should get cagey.”
I shrugged. “There are things you don’t say to a cop unless you’ve got good reason. We’ll leave it at that.”
“If you say so,” Bill said, “but you’re making me more than curious.”
“If that’s the way you want to play it,” I said, “though it’s a damned silly way to treat idle curiosity.”
“Idle? Nuts,” Bill said with a growl.
“Leave it,” I repeated. “You brought me here for a reason.”
I expected Bill to give it another try, but instead he took up a file folder and put it down again on the desk a little nearer to me than it had been. “I’ve got a report from the medical examiner,” he said. “It might have some bearing on that missing woman case you’re working on. But you know department rules. I can’t possibly divulge any of this to you.” He paused to look at his watch. “I’ve just remembered something more important than you.” He stood up and went around the desk to the door. “I’ll be back in a few minutes.” He closed the door behind him.
I picked up the folder and opened it up. Some of the report didn’t bother me. It gave tentative identifications of the sprouted souls based on roughly how old each was relative to the list of vanished reapers I’d come up with. Nice to see some people at the BI took me seriously. The ME wasn’t optimistic about getting positive identifications of the three oldest: the roots of the plants and time itself had done a lot of damage and those skulls could belong to anyone now. The second-most recent wasn’t that bad and the ME intended to bring in people who’d known the person the victim was supposed to be. The condition of the latest sprout gave me a chill. According to the report, the face had been smashed in so thoroughly that some of the bone was reduced nearly to powder. A former expert in facial reconstruction was being flown in from Puerto Zapata but the medical examiner wasn’t optimistic about that, either. But the part of the report that really got to me was what it had to say about the leaf I found in the car. The ME took the position that the sproutella used in each case was of a good grade because each victim sprouted in one plant species each: five victims, five kinds of plant. The leaf found in the car was from a sixth type of plant.
If the medical examiner knew his onions, then two souls got popped in that car.

05-05-2003, 03:20 PM
Nice to hear from you again, 'Monk. Where is the rest of the story going to be posted?

05-06-2003, 10:09 PM
Not too bad, really good in fact, but you're going to have to make a phenomenal effort to top that novel of yours.

05-09-2003, 02:26 AM
Originally posted by Metallus
Nice to hear from you again, 'Monk. Where is the rest of the story going to be posted?

Smart-ass answer: When it's done.

Serious answer: See above. :D

I'm in sight of the finish but I'm not rushing. I'm really working on atmosphere and getting the language just right.

05-09-2003, 03:46 AM
Yes, but read my post again :).

05-10-2003, 02:42 AM
Oh. Where. *smacks head* Hi. Me dumbass. What you name? :rolleyes:

Not sure about where. I've got some personal web space with my ISP I've never used. I might slap together something and put it there.

05-10-2003, 07:02 AM
The original story used to be on Glottis's Garage but then Glottis's Garage just 'went'. Prehaps you can just put your stuff on www.cybcity.com rather than bother making a fancy little website for yourself.

05-14-2003, 02:25 AM
Actually, I'm looking for an excuse to learn a little HTML.

05-14-2003, 02:53 AM
Originally posted by Sanspoof
The original story used to be on Glottis's Garage but then Glottis's Garage just 'went'. Prehaps you can just put your stuff on www.cybcity.com rather than bother making a fancy little website for yourself.

Check me out (no, really).

05-15-2003, 03:47 PM
Great fan fic. Can't wait until the next chapter :D

Does anyone know what happened to Glottis' Garage? Is it something to do with the server being down at at GFC?

05-17-2003, 01:54 PM
I wonder if it really counts as fan fiction. After all, I'm not using characters and situations from the original; only the environment. And even then, the only specific locations being revisited are the Bureau of Acquisitions building and the Limbo Highway. I think it stretches the notion of fan fiction to the breaking point, which is a good thing.

05-17-2003, 04:00 PM
Yes, people often have the notion that fan fiction is incredibly bad stuff, thanks partially to all the Monkey Island efforts that have been completely devoid of all entertainment and may damage your brain (If anyone who writes Monkey Island fan-fiction is offended by this remark, rest assured I am not basing this on your works).

You should definitely invent a new buzz word so that you can stay away from that blanket of hate, because this is actually pretty decent writing.

05-18-2003, 12:37 AM
In the vein of 'pretty decent', the story is now pretty much done. It needs revising so it's not going to be appearing anywhere in the next few moments. :dev11: And maybe I shouldn't hold it back just to fool around with HTML. How about it, Met? What to slap it up with the rest of my crap?

I'm thinking of calling it 'Dead Vows'.

05-18-2003, 08:26 PM
Yeah no problem 'Monk, I'll make it a more prominant feature on the site in the next incarnation (due up this summer).

05-26-2003, 02:17 AM
Sounds good. I have to go over it a time or two more (especially the concluding chapters) though.