This is such an exciting time for me! Aries is going up for pre-order this weekend. I’m so humbled by my success in the writing industry that until Aries’ release on Jan. 23rd, my publisher and I are offering a sale on Gemini. $2.00 off the regular ebook and nook price. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00Y3LARWS“>So now you can purchase Gemini for $1.99. In this blog, I’m going to feature never before seen excerpts.
FROM CHAPTER 1
Undulating her body on stage, she made the most of the techno and house music in Zodiac, the dark and dingy strip club on the lower west side of Manhattan. She encircled her legs around the glistening pole as if she was the giftwrap for a valuable prize for the men watching her. Very expensive gift-wrap. The embroidered red dragon on the outer side of her right boot reflected in the glaring lights as she raised her leg and arched her firm midriff. She held onto the pole with her left arm as she extended the right. Her impressive breasts popped out of her skimpy top. Standing upright and feigning embarrassment, she put her hand over her mouth. After a few moments to entice the enthralled men, she cupped her breasts in the palms of her hands sliding her thumbs over her nipples and they slithered back into the cups. She bent over and gave a flirty wiggle to make sure the girls were back in place. Wearing a Lucille Ball flame-red wig, and so much makeup, with bright emerald contact lenses, she camouflaged her true self. She wouldn’t want anyone to see her true self. She didn’t want to see her true self.
While she danced to the hard and fast music, keeping the rhythm and gyrated her hips, her gaze wandered around the room, focusing on some shirtless men whose bodies weren’t worth a second look, and then down the stairs. Then she saw him.
The bum who was older than the rest.
The bum pushed people aside on the dance floor to get through the crowd on his way to the stairwell. His ratted knapsack swiped against two twenty-something guys in the middle of an E exchange who were too engrossed in what they were doing to notice him. But she could read him. She could tell he was the type who would go unnoticed. Medium height, medium build. She’d wait to make her decision when he got closer.
Ignoring everyone, the bum walked steadily up the stairs to the second floor. The black light illuminated the astrological signs painted in neon on the wall behind him. Those going up and down the stairs needed to squint from the glare. Blindness and burning eyes from the artificial smoke overwhelmed them. The bum clung to the banister, banging his knee on the top step, the steepest one.
Good. He’s getting too old for this. Perfect.
FROM CHAPTER 2
As much as he tried to concentrate, his gaze kept going back to framed photos on his oversized colonial desk. Not a day went by that he didn’t reflect on these photos. His beautiful wife Vicki, with a golden blonde ponytail, wearing a light pink T-shirt, short shorts, and flip flops sat in the bright sun on a lounge poolside. He picked up the photo and smiled at the date. Exactly a year ago. Her contagious smile and sparkling, round blue eyes showed contentment in her rural Central Florida hometown. And she was leaving him tonight on a five p.m. flight to go back home. No matter how hard she tried, she never considered New York City her home. He hadn’t been able to sleep or drum up the energy to work out since she told him she was leaving two weeks ago. How could he deny the woman he loved so much her happiness? He couldn’t. He was going to have to let her go. He sniffled to hold back emotions that would flood out of him had he not had control. He felt his eyes burn. He began to sweat. He loosened his shirt collar. But he was at work. He had to hold it in. He put down the photo of Vicki, put his lips to his platinum wedding band, and lifted the other photo.
FROM CHAPTER 3
She opened her door and noticed that the black floor tiles in the hall still needed a cleaning from the paint job. Before she took a step, she mentally navigated her path. She’d never forgive herself if she got paint on her navy sneakers. She entered the down stairwell and, wincing at the rancid odor of the paint job, covered her nose and mouth.
As she descended to the second floor, she heard uncontrolled screams of anger coming from a classroom. Sounded like a major fight going on while the teacher shrieked unintelligible words. As she opened the second floor stairwell door, she realized the commotion was coming from the classroom she’d be visiting.
Standing outside the closed wooden door of room 215 and observing through the plexi-glass windows on the top third of the door, she assessed right away that the problem in this room was not the children. Thirty six-year-olds were doing their own thing, ignoring their teacher of one year, Miss Klein, who was at her wit’s end. They were running and chasing each other around the perimeter of the room. Some played a boxing video game in the corner and wrestled over whose turn it was, as one girl pulled another one’s braids. Two others engaged in a knock-down-drag-out fight. Considering the screaming she heard, Barbara knew this wasn’t center time or any constructive activity.
The teacher’s high-pitched squeals came out as raspy screeches. “Sit down, sit down. I told you not to do that! I can’t take you anymore!” It was obvious this teacher did not want to be there. Nor did she belong here wearing skintight jeans with a low V-neck sweater showing too much cleavage. And her long greasy hair was in pig tails. Seriously? Barbara crinkled her nose in disgust. Better now than in front of the class.
FROM CHAPTER 8
“Nothing is impossible, babe. I never stopped you from getting a job. I never stopped you from wanting to teach. If we move into a house and have a mortgage, well then—”
“I tried teaching here. I couldn’t take it. I miss my kindergartners in Florida.”
“You tried for a few days. You gave up before you gave yourself a chance.”
Noticing her lowered eyes and her hands wrung together, he realized that was the wrong way to go. “We won’t take that much of a loss. The market in Manhattan is still pretty good. We’ll get a beautiful house, Vicki, in the country with enough bedrooms for your family to come visit. Mark and Jaimie, and Brian and Ann with the kids, your parents and my parents. We can have all the holidays here. You know how much you love to spend Thanksgiving and Christmas together. You’ll finally have that white Christmas. And we’ll need an extra bedroom when Ricky comes back to us.”
“You live in a fantasy world. Ricky isn’t coming back. You think you can manifest whatever you want just by asking. It doesn’t work that way.”
“Yes, he is. He most certainly is. Wait-and-see. It does work that way, Vicki. You have to believe.”
“It’s been three years! Darlin’, I need to go. I need my space. I’m suffocating here. You’re suffocating me. Please. Three weeks, John. That’s all I need. Three weeks. Please give me three weeks.”
“Babe, you can have three weeks. Take your three weeks, but don’t use that break up word. Just tell me you’re going to visit your parents.”
“I don’t know what I’m going to do. Everything you’ve done for me to have me like New York City. I can’t. You don’t understand. If I asked you to come move to Florida, you’d miss your partying, your fancy stores, the dress-up affairs, the doctors’ meetings, the fancy Broadway shows. You love the bright lights, the noise, and even the traffic! Well, I miss the starlit skies, the animals in the woods behind the house, the sun, roads without any potholes, the calves nursing on their mothers on the farms, the clean air without pollution, the pitch black nights, the quiet, and I miss my guns, John!”
“Excuse me? Did I just hear what I think I heard?”
I hope you enjoyed this blog of never before seen excerpts of Gemini, the first novel in the Sign Behind The Crime Series.
Please feel free to leave comments and questions. And play the “Name the 4Th Book in the Series’ Game. I’m writing Scorpio now and you have nine more choices. Write the sign you’d like the 4th title to be in the comments, and I’ll add your vote to the tally. Also, sign up for my newsletter so you have a chance to win a giveaway on Aries’ release day. Jan. 23rd, 2016.