Thursday, March 10, 2011
From My Work in Progress
I'm trying to edit my second book in the Carolyn Masters mystery series. Here's the first chapter as it stands. The Novel is called Stormy Weather:
“Today is another beautiful day in Armstrong City. The Weather Department scheduled clear, sunny weather with temperatures in the high 70's for the rest of the week. No rain in ---”
“Jeeves, snooze clock radio five minutes.” I rolled over and scrunched my pillow into my face. I dreaded the day ahead. Accreditation committee meetings in the morning and curriculum committee in the afternoon. Why do I let myself get roped into these things?
Just as I was beginning to drift back to sleep, the deep British male voice of the home management system jarred me awake, “Ms. Masters. You have a vid call waiting from Dr. Cheravik. Do you wish to receive this call or record a message?”
“Since you already woke me up, I may as well take the call. Jeeves, brew some tea and cancel the snooze.”
I staggered to the comm console. “Answer call, audio only this side.” The screen flickered to life. On screen was a snow globe with the words, “Dr. Masters, we're needed.”
“I knew it was a mistake to lend you my collection of Avengers chips, Michael Cheravik.”
“I love those vids. So crazy. But this is serious. Have you looked outside today?”
“No, I was resting peacefully in bed before I was rudely interrupted, first, by an overly cheerful weather forecaster and, then, a sight gag from a 1960's spy vid.”
“Well, you should look outside. I mean it go look outside.”
“Jeeves, Shades open. Window glass one-way.”
Rain poured down.
“Okay, what do you want me to see?”
“Yes, so what?” I lived ten years in San Francisco. Rain is nothing new to me.”
“But the forecast for today is sunny and clear.”
It took a moment for that to sink in. On earth a forecaster might get it wrong, but on the moon we make our own weather. The forecast is 100 percent accurate. In two years of life in this underground dome made to look like a typical small town, the forecast has never been wrong. Today was supposed to be sunny. It was raining. Something was terribly wrong.
“Okay, so something is wrong with the weather system. What does that have to do with us?” I was afraid I knew the answer. Two years ago, we solved the first reported murders on the moon and averted a plot to push an asteroid into the earth by lunar separatists.
Since that time, Mike’s experience with the Dallas Police Department and my time at the FBI Behavioral Analysis Unit marks us as the “pros” to call in when the local “security counselors” feel out of their depth. Mike enjoys the chase more than I do.
“Well, it's not just a glitch. Someone inserted a virus causing the system to go haywire. They want me to investigate. Since you are on the provisional lunar council, this is important to the council as well.”
“If I had known, how much work it would take to get a new government installed on the moon, I would never have supported Lunar independence.”
Mike Laughed. “You don’t fool me. You’re in your element. You rage about committee meetings, but you eat it up.”
He was right, but I hated to admit that Michael Cheravik was right about anything.
“Okay, so what do you want me to do?”
“Meet me at 2000 Lovell Drive. Wear comfortable shoes.”