Tuesday, May 31, 2016

from The Enchantress' Secret


 Excerpt from The Enchantress' Secret
Location: Barrio Viejo, Tucson, Arizona
Time: May 2, 2014

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He wondered as he opened a beer exactly how long before the detectives would be making a visit. He didn’t expect to get arrested but that was dependent on a lot of things. Once they studied his record, they’d know, as a one-time SEAL, he had the capability of murdering someone. He had done it. But he’d done it when it was an order by officers, when it was an assignment. Those deaths, those missions would not show up on his record—quickly anyway. The Navy protected their own—unless they got out of hand, which Nick had never done.

He lit one of the cigarettes he had picked up when he stopped at the grocery store on his way home. Out on the patio, he sat on the chair and let out the smoke. It wasn’t relaxing him as he remembered it doing. He smiled as he heard Harvey jump over the fence and down into the garden.

“What have you been up to?” he asked as the cat came over to his chair and rubbed around his legs. Harvey was feral by all the definitions. Nobody better try to pick him up. A beautiful, satiny black, he was supposed to mean bad luck, but he’d been nothing but good luck to Nick since he’d bought the bungalow and found it had another resident… now and again.

He put out dry food and Harvey quickly went over to check it out. If Nick had felt it was possible, he’d have kept Harvey inside for his safety. It wasn’t. This cat was born to be wild—but didn’t mind regular meals.

What Nick had done, irritated the tom enough that he’d disappeared for a few days after the trap and procedure. Nick had known if Harvey wasn’t neutered, he would drive himself to an early death with trying to find likely mates. The veterinarian had said he was in great shape for a feral cat, had given him the needed shots, and then notched his ear-- to notify anyone who cared that Harvey was legal to be feral.

Nick walked into his studio, stared blankly at the canvas he had only begun to cover with washes. That morning he had thought his world was all right, and he could talk to Jane to see what had upset her so badly. That morning, he had thought he had a future.

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