I have at least 2 books to revise….
Inspiration strikes and leaves me running for the computer to jot down some notes and an opening.
It looks like it’s going to be a fun book (something I’ve never been all that good at. Heh) and that’s probably a good enough reason just to write.
So here you go, the first bit of Firedancer. First draft crappiness and all.
Last year, the four of us – Deets, The Eye, Oliver and me – decided to start a band. I mean, we were going to be awesome and punk and it didn’t really matter that none of us could actually play anything. Punk was all about three chords and fighting The Man.
Cero City never actually got to experience our genius (a fact, dear fallen gods and goddesses, I think Cero City is heartily grateful for), mainly because Deets got bored of not being up front and centre and just stopped pitching up to practices.
The Eye was the only one with any talent, anyway, because that guy’s voice can charm nightingales down from the frikken trees. He’s got this perfect soulful croon that cracks in all the right places. I played guitar because it didn’t matter how shit I was, I was still one up on the others, and Deets drummed because for all her ice-princess bullshit, the girl can actually keep a beat, and make it sound half-way decent. No one wanted to play bass, ’cause who gives a flying one about bass-players, so we made Oliver do it.
Out of all of us, Oliver’s the only one who still stays up practising bass, even though Rabid Squirrel Death Fest has been defunct for almost a year now.
Which kinda tells you a lot about Oliver – he’s got the crazy determination to get stuff perfect, and I guess he’s the only one of us with the time for it, seeing as how the poor bastard has been seventeen for the last two hundred years. He’s also got issues about travelling by himself, and that’s why me and The Eye are heading to the restaurant where he’s waitering tonight.
I hate cycling in the dark. Drivers in Cero have no care for cyclists. Mostly they act like we’re targets, and I keep having to swerve onto the pavement to avoid being run over like road kill by some expensive car. People, I wear this safety crap for a reason – bright flashing vest equals cyclist; Do Not Squash. But, yeah, they don’t exactly care.
So anyway, there I am, weaving on and off the pavement, one eye on the road, and one eye on this maniac in a blue sedan next to me, when I see the shadow in the sky. At first, I’m thinking, wow, what the hells kind of bird is flying out at night? It’s not an owl or anything. It has this crazy long plumage that ripples behind it as it flies. It’s almost…dragon-like.
I skid to a halt, just as the bird-shadow disappears behind the dark clouds. One foot on the ground, I balance and watch the clouds. The moon dips behind a towering column of darkness, and the halogens flicker all around us.
“Lorin!” The Eye almost crashes into the back of my bike, and he swears. “Are you trying to kill me, you daft woman!”
“Did you see that?”
I stare at the area where it disappeared, willing it to come back. “Dunno. Was some crazy kinda bird…”
The Eye jumps off the Daisy Bell and wheels it up along side me. “I’m going to strangle you,” he says in a conversational tone. Which is entirely possible, I suppose, The Eye having control over air and wind, just like his darling daddy.
“Ha!” I jump my foot back on to the pedal and swerve out onto the road. “I’d like to see you try.” Technically, he’s more powerful than me, seeing as how without air, my fire charming is pretty useless, but I’m not totally weak. It would have been nice if I’d got any of my mother’s magic, but she said it doesn’t work like that. If you have a mortal parent, and a deity, you’re gonna either go one way or the other, and my luck is to take after my magician father. So I have some basic elemental skill, and no real power. Sucks.