Derry, Northern Ireland

Derry, Northern Ireland
A book I'm working on is set in this town.

Monday, May 15, 2017

A bit more of A65...

Jumping a bit farther ahead, Adam is forced to stay in LA overnight so will accompany Casey to a premier, thinking she doesn't want to show up alone. He's tired. He's hungry. He's hit his head, again. And he's feeling very unsure, at the moment.
Moments later, Adam was wandering through a room as large as his mother's semi-detached home, gazing out a sliding glass door out on that sculpted yard that he now saw could hold her entire block -- with a pool, of course. Chairs thick with padding, some on swiveling wheels, faced a desk that snaked around more than two full walls. It had five CPU towers underneath, was topped with four massive monitors connected to them by impossibly neat cables and three keyboards, with two laptops sitting at one edge. All it was missing was a partridge in a pear tree.

Jeremy would have had kittens just seeing the space still available, not to mention the array of electronic additions, especially since not even one section of the desk would have fit properly into his little photography room. The carpet was as thick as sponge, and the plants within were almost to the point of where, if there were two more, the room would be its own ecological unit.

Most of the dark fabric-covered walls were decorated with framed posters of films Casey had been a part of -- Minotaur, She Wakes, Minotaur 2, Mini Minotaur, Sky Knights, Blood Angel, Safe Haven, The Wilderness Rule, Mine To Kill, Find Ray T, and others. In the center of them all was a breathtaking Syd Mead-style serigraph of Ilithium 4's world that Adam felt really should have been used for the paperback's cover in place of the rather pedestrian space-view one. Across from it was one of Ilithium 4 under attack that could have been done by Douglas Trumbull, similar in beauty to Syd Mead but more harsh, violent and cynical ... and looking very much like it was an original work.

But what caught his interest most was a full-size corkboard mounted on a thick-wood door, about eye-level, where dozens of darts held a photograph of Lando Grissom in place. Ice-blue eyes looking straight at the camera, a little smirk on his lips, his too-square chin outlined with a touch of scruff that also whispered up and around his mouth in a vague goatee, eyebrows carefully bushied-up, hair neatly coiffed, apparently shirtless, with his left arm flexed and his left hand behind his head suggesting well-formed muscles. The photo was carefully lighted to make very wrinkle vanish and give his cheekbones the feel of a knife. The darts had been slung so precisely into his face, it was obvious there was something far more intense than dislike happening here. Adam even wondered if Casey had really been the one to break up with Lando.

Then Adam was presented with a glass of orange juice and several cookies on a plate.

"Breakfast cookies," is how Patricia described them. Then she asked, "Would you like me to nuke you something?"

"If it's no trouble," Adam said, his stomach threatening to growl. "I'd planned to eat at the airport and -- "

"No problem, honey," she said as she vanished.

He had little time to take more than a few bites of cookie, which was surprisingly bland, and sip some of the OJ, which was surprisingly tart and sweet, because as if awaiting her call from around the corner, a short, wiry, Terrier of a man, dressed in white pants, white turtleneck, black boots, white hair and dark eyes burst into the house, planted Adam in the center of the office without even so much as a "Hello," and began to handle him as if he were a mannequin, part of which included picking at the holes in Adam's jeans as if he were trying to make them longer and wider. This was Orisi, and he considered the concept of personal space to be nonsensical.

"Jumpin' jeebus, son," Orisi barked. "Didn't your momma never teach you to stand up straight? Shoulders back. Tummy in. That's nine-tenths of lookin' good."

Orisi ran his fingertips over Adam's cheeks then groped the bandages on his forehead and chin. Adam could not formulate a coherent word of protest, he was so shocked.

"Gotta shave," snapped Orisi. "Not enough to call it scruff, though you could use some." Then he ran his hands through Adam's hair and growled, "What's this bump?"

He pressed on it. Adam yelped, in pain, and cried, "Hang on!" as he jerked his head away. "I ... I struck my head on Monday," he gasped.

"Self-destructive, that's all I need." Orisi heaved a sigh to fill the ages with regret. "So much for shaving this crap off."

Which jolted Adam into saying, "Shave my -- um ... so much for something that was never going to happen."

Orisi ignored him and kept eyeing Adam's scalp. "Dunno if I can fix it, though. And your skin -- jumpin' jeebus. Have you never heard of exfoliates? May need to apply a base. Now -- your fingernails." The man picked at Adam's nails, then gripped his left hand. "What's this?"

"It's henna ink -- "

"I know that, but who did it? It's a class design."

Adam pulled his wallet out and gave him Julie's card. "She did."

Orisi blinked. Twice. A third time. "Julie Marshe-Croton did this?!" Adam nodded. "THE Julie Marshe-Croton?" Adam shrugged. "Meanin' she's here in LA?" Adam nodded. "Well, she's gotta do the other hand, now. Just one side throws everything off. It's good that you're almost hairless; no need to wax." Then Orisi jolted and spun him around. "Wait -- them's some hairy legs! Do you wax your butt?"

"What!?" Adam all but screamed, spinning back to face the man. "No."

"We'll see."

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