NaNoWriMo 2015 – Day Twenty; “The End” but Not Really

It’s always a defining moment when you reach the point where you type “The End” at the bottom of a manuscript. Especially in NaNoWriMo, you’re happy and you’re sad, and, more importantly, you know it isn’t the end. Not really.

After NaNoWriMo comes editing, revising, cutting, inserting, moving chapters around, taking chapters out, or even the dreaded re-writing. For me, because this romantic thriller or thrilling romance genre is so new to me, I’m going to turn first to beta readers familiar with the romance genre and get an indication of whether I should even bother. If I don’t have what it takes to write a cogent romance; then, I’ll go back to my plain old thrillers. We’ll see.

But it was fun, a lot of fun to turn characters on their heads, to muck around with their established back story. Hey, if it works, I can always change the character names and query agents who specialize in romance.

Now, because people have been reading snippets of the work on a Facebook group and here and who were aghast I killed off the male romantic interest, this should make you feel better:

The reception area of the clinic was empty except for Ekaterina Bukharina, in her doctor’s lab coat now. Such a place on a large, busy collective should be packed with minor injuries and illnesses.

Mai turned on Natalia when they entered. “Look, enough of all this subterfuge. If I don’t find out what  is going on here, why you brought me here right now, I’m leaving,” she said.

Ekaterina put a hand on Mai’s arm. “Come with me, and everything will be explained,” she said.

Ekaterina led her down a hallway to an examining room. She held the privacy curtain aside and motioned Mai to enter.

Not caring that the woman saw, Mai drew her gun, brought it up to the ready, and went inside.

On the bed amid tubes and IVs and monitor leads, Alexei lay, thin to the point of gauntness, his head shaved but sprinkled with scabs and scars, his skin showing he hadn’t seen the sun in a long time. Those eyes, those incredible, blue eyes shifted toward her, moisture leaking from their corners.

What was it Olga Lubova had said? That Mai would find what she’d lost.

“So,” Alexei said, “deduskha, are you here to kill me or kiss me?”

The End

NaNoWriMo 2015 – Day Five

A great day today with 3,629 words; 17,404 total. I’m finding it hard to not focus on the thriller aspect of the romantic thriller or thrilling romance. I need to be focusing on the romance, baby!

Today, the plot thickened:

When the phone rang in the foyer, Finnoula O’Saidh used the extension in the kitchen to answer. She gave the soup she was making a stir, lowered the heat, and wiped her hands on her apron before she picked up the receiver.

“Fisher House, O’Saidh speaking,” she said.

“Ms. O’Saidh, this is Alexei Bukharin. May I speak to Mai, please,” came the accented voice.

O’Saidh pursed her lips. “Lady Fisher is at her place of employment and won’t return until between six and seven this evening,” she said.

Silence, except for the man’s breathing, and he certainly sounded a bit breathless.

“Yes, of course,” he said. “Would you take a message for her? It’s very important.”

Finnoula snagged the pad and pen near the phone and said, “Go ahead.”

“Please explain to her I have an emergency trip for my work, and I won’t be able to make our date in Paris. Tell her I’m very sorry, but it can’t be helped and that I’ll be in touch as soon as a I can. Do you need for me to repeat any of that?” he asked.

What does he think? That I’m an eejit?

“You’ve been called away for your work and can’t make it to Paris. You’ll be in touch as soon as possible,” Finnoula repeated.

“Yes, that’s it,” he said. “Thank you.”

“A shame. She’s been looking forward to her birthday trip,” Finnoula said.

“I have, too. Again, please tell her I’m very sorry, and I’ll make it up to her,” he said.

“Of course, I will,” Finnoula said.

“Thank you again, Ms. O’Saidh. Give her my best, please. Good day,” he said and hung up.

Finnoula hung up the phone and looked at the message. She’d dutifully written down the date, time, and the man’s name, as well as the details he’d given. Herself would be disappointed. She’d talked about this trip constantly for two weeks, had practically bought herself a new wardrobe. Well, that might be an exaggeration, but she’d definitely gone shopping.

She looked from the message to the phone and picked up the receiver again. This time, she dialed a number in Dublin, Ireland, a private line.

“Fanny, what is it?” asked Roisin O’Saidh.

Finnoula explained what had just happened, all the while studying the message she still held in one hand, and she told Roisin what she thought she would do with it.

“I think you have the right idea,” Roisin said. “Better a little heartache now than a mess to clean up later.”

Finnoula hung up again. She tore the message into the tiniest possible pieces she could, placed them in the trash bin, making certain not a single scrap of paper had escaped. Though the trash wouldn’t be taken up for two more days, she removed the plastic bag from the bin, tied it closed, put it in another bag, and tied that one as well. She thought about putting it in the larger trash bin at the rear of the house. Instead, she put the plastic bag inside a spare paper bag, made it as small as she could, and tucked it away in the tote she brought back and forth between her flat and the house.

She washed her hands and went back to the soup.