Monday, September 17, 2007

 

Story time - Part 5

"Terry Harkness awoke from his slumber when he heard a slight sktch from the direction of the hotel room's closet. The former CIA operative with hair-trigger senses waited, as was his habit in these matters, a full five seconds; then he heard the slight noise again. Triangulating it with his keen ears, he deduced that it was being made by a shoe on the linoleum. Amateur, Harkness thought instinctively, you should've worn tennis sneakers. Automatically lunging for the gun he always kept nearby, a habit he'd acquired during his undercover days, Harkness spun and shot at the intruder while still trying to shake the cobwebs of slumber from his eyes.
"Unfortunately, the other man--he could see it was a man in the pale moonlight that filtered through the Venetian blinds of the window--was not as complete an amateur as he'd have preferred, and had begun moving evasively as soon as he'd realized that he'd blown his cover. Nonetheless, the bullet grazed his arm; but held in his other arm, Harkness beheld a rather nasty-looking handgun.
"'Who are you?' Harkness demanded.
"The reply consisted of a short, sustained burst of hot lead; catlike, Harkness avoided the bullets and, with one powerful somersault, came within five feet of the assailant. Unlike him, he would not miss from this range.
"'Drop the gun!' he commanded. The man complied.
"Harkness's mind was racing. 'Who are you?' he repeated. The man remained silent.
"'Who sent you?' he pressed. 'Talk now, scumbag, or I'll shoot!'
"His would-be killer grinned, revealing ugly, uneven teeth in a mouth exposed beneath the black stocking that covered the upper half of his face. 'You vun't dare kill me,' he said with a trace of a Hispanic accent. 'You vant answers? Drop your gun, too.'
"'Now, who said anything about killing you?' Harkness asked innocently.
"Then he shot the assailant in the kneecap."
"Th--"
Wait!
What the heck do you want? I haven't even managed to write one word in the new installment!
But aren't you gonna tell the readers about the hiatus and September 11th and Space Jam Redux and Mr. American Pie and the Nachshon Nonaccessability Factor and the new computer and--
No! I am not! Now, if you don't mind, I am in the middle of writing a novel!
"The man would have screamed with agony had Harkness not immediately leapt upon him and clamped his hands around his mouth, effectively muffling the perp."
Perp?
Ssh. Thesaurus moment.
"After all, he didn't want any valiant staff members barging in; this wasn't one of those cheap dives he had so often frequented--sometimes on business, sometimes not--in the old days. "'They may be able to save your leg,' he snarled into the man's scrunched-up face. 'It depends on how fast you'll be able to get to a hospital and the quicker you answer me the faster you'll be able to reach one, comprender, amigo?' The man nodded, sweat pouring off him like a river. Harkness could smell his fear. 'And don't scream,' he ordered, letting go and backing off, gun once more levelled at the wounded man."
Lotsa italics.
Yes, lots of italics, how intelligent of you to notice!
Oh, and by the w--
And thanks so much for letting me write a complete paragraph!
You're interrupting me.
Darn tootin' I'm interrupting you. You always do it to me.
BTW, what kind of guns have Terry and his buddy Amigo been using?
The guns?
Yeah.
Who cares! I can't tell the difference anway!
Robert Ludlum always says what kind of guns his characters use.
Ludlum can--
You're obviously using his method of over-italicizing. Why not imitate him in this to?
Oh, so that's your little game, is it? Well, I know one surefire way to cut you off... This is MetFanMac, signing off!


TODAY'S BOOK: "What Do We Do Now, George?", by Helen McCann ((c) 1991)

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