Wednesday, August 19, 2009

28 Secret Agent

TITLE: Light Bringers
GENRE: Urban Fantasy

Ryan sagged against the brick wall outside of a dilapidated building in the old shipping yard. A headache pounded through his head, but he kept a sharp eye on his surroundings. He had already screwed up, and wasn’t planning to make it worse by getting himself jumped again. He touched his forehead, and his fingers came away slick with blood.

“Great,” he muttered, ignoring the queasiness squirming through his stomach. He listened to the black water slap against the pier, listened to his fellow soldiers closing off a perimeter, and listened to his heart practically beat through his chest.

Ryan straightened slowly as Lieutenant Charles Diesel stepped out of the abandoned warehouse.

Diesel approached, folding his python arms over his chest. “You alright, son?”

“Yes, sir.”

The superior officer studied Ryan with hard eyes, then he turned and shouted, “Gage!”

Corporal Heath Gage hurried out of the building.

“Check over your partner,” the lieutenant said. “Make sure he hasn’t broken his brain. Then call in the Cleaners, see if they can get anything useful from the scene.” Diesel strode away, barking orders into his Communicator.

The perimeter of Heath’s irises sparked like a blue flame as he gave Ryan’s head a once over. “You’ll live,” he said. “Well, you’ve got a slight concussion, but nothing Kalie can’t handle.” He shot a glance over his shoulder, then whispered, “Ch**** mate, what the bloody hell happened back there?”

“Dude, he cracked my head,” Ryan snapped. “That tends to slow me down a bit.”


  1. I really like the way you showed the scene around Ryan, through his POV...through thoughts and impressions.

    The line, "Check over" struck me as odd. Is that how a soldier and officer would say that?

    What is "the perimeter of Heath's irises?" Are you talking about his eyes, literally? If so, I think that (and the "like blue flame") is overwritten.

    Would I keep reading? I think, for this story, I would, because I feel like it needs more story for me to decide if I like it or not.

  2. Yes---ish. I'm curious about the setting and the whos and whys the guy was getting mugged.

    I was squinting at word choices here and there, like the listenedx3 and 'python' arms, and such.

  3. This is interesting and I would keep reading. However, for me, parts of it felt a bit awkward for want of a better word.'A headache pounded through his head.' and 'Queasiness squirming through his stomach.' Either queasiness or squirming would do, I think. 'His heart practically beat through his chest.'
    Also, if the corporal is the MC's partner, Lieutenant Diesel wouldn't be a 'superior' officer, he'd simply be an officer?
    Having said all that, I like the writing and would definitely read on. Hooked.

  4. I'm a go on this one. The first paragraph hooked me--good and hard. Blasted 250 words, was he being sarcastic with his last sentence? LOL

  5. Intrigued, but watch the adverb use. I would ask to read more.

  6. Yup, I'd want to read on.
    I agree with other comments that some of your word choices are a little jarring.
    Loved the last line.

  7. Hmm. I'm intrigued but thought things like "python" arms and "perimter of Heath's irises" to be a bit much. I'm also interested in that Kathleen finds other stuff "overwritten" but is okay with this one. I'm interested because I'm perplexed, at times, by reader's likes/dislikes and wonder if they are consistent. Anyway, I'd read on.

  8. This has some snappy writing, and I high five you for getting the word "dilapidated" in there. Awesome!

    Not sure I'm completely hooked, but I'd read more to see where this was heading.

  9. What happened before this would be a much better place to start.

    Putting your POV character in mortal danger is a definite hook. Having him sitting with a knocked noggin is not.

  10. Hooked. Your opening paragraph gave me a sense of the surroundings and also enticed me to read on to learn how Ryan screwed up. And I, for one, loved Diesel's python arms. I was a little turned off by that reference to "the perimeter of Heath's irises," though. Wouldn't just "Heath's irises" suffice, since the iris already forms a natural perimeter around the pupil of the eye?

  11. Hi guys! Thought I'd come on and address the perimeter of Heath's irises since it was brought up more than once. Heath is actually endowed with the ability to see through things, and when he is using his gift, a thin ring around his iris glows. I've changed it now to make it clear that he is actually looking into Ryan's head for injuries and his irises are glowing. Thanks for pointing that out to me...this is why I love this blog! Thanks to everyone who commented.

  12. Good work in my opinion! Well done!

  13. This is great, so far. I'd definitely keep reading and would likely request the first 50 pages if the query letter indicated a good story. Military-themed commercial fiction, especially romance, definitely has a strong market. There was plenty of action here; clear, simple language; good characterization. Well done!

  14. And I'll add that I LOVE the title.