NaNo 2014: Julian Files, Excerpt(s) 5: a study in Beaulieus

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I hit 50,000 words early this month! First time that’s ever happened! I still have a long way to go before Julian Files as a book is finished but I mentioned earlier maybe I’d do an excerpt from Julian Files in celebration.

Well, I decided–why just one? Why not three? Because overkill! 😀

So here are a few excerpts below, from different parts. NO EDITING HAS BEEN DONE so it’s probably all levels of bad with lots of repetition but you can still get an idea from it. I tried to pull from a range of moods so it wasn’t all the same thing. This is sort of like a glimpse at the different ways the Beaulieus interacted with each other. I’m starting with the sad one first but then it’s better I swear!

ALSO, not in these excerpts but in the book there are a number of cameos– and one is someone you know very well from ICoS. Just sayin’.

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NaNo 2014: Julian Files, excerpt 4 || NaNo Day 11: 35,481 words

There isn’t much reason for this; I just randomly felt like sharing another excerpt.


 

Driving down the dusty street, with the broken windows and the empty plant holders, Julian saw the merit in staying cautious. If whoever had his brother really did have guns, then Cedrick and Julian were walking into a gunfight without even a knife. Julian had a taser, true, and he would use it if needed. But if there was more than one person armed and dangerous, a taser was about as useful as a piece of paper telling them to be nice and pretty please just hold off on attacking until he was finished with the first.

Although, the mental image of that was almost enough to want to try it one time, just to see what sort of faces he’d pull out of his adversary.

The street began to bend strangely, digging into space that otherwise would have been left untended, and with it the houses came perilously close to the tracks. It was at the apex of the curve that they saw it.

“There!”

Julian hardly heard Cedrick. All he saw was the house.

Pale green, with scalloped accents in white and blue and shades of purple. A porch that had been white picket at some point but now was as peeled and grey as a rotting vegetable. Lights that were long burned out, guttered and broken in shards that sliced the sun’s rays into pinpricks of white. That was the impression he had of the house; lost shades of white fading into greys and blacks and shadows, and hues that bled out like oversaturated watercolor.

It was just as he remembered the Greenes’ house, but with more time gone by to settle ghosts into its bones and sighs into its creaks.

He wondered what they would find inside.

 

NaNo 2014: Julian Files, Excerpt 3 || NaNo Day 10: 33,230 words

More Julian Files! I had planned, briefly, to post the chapters as I wrote them. And then I realized that would be bad for my mental health and creativity for writing this, so I decided not to do that and to stick with random snippets. I’m sorry 😦 I have this terrible tendency to think something is brilliant late at night, and then the next morning go, “Oh, but then reality.”

Anyway, did you notice the word count?? WTF. I’m bizarrely ahead of schedule–I’ve never been this fast at writing a story in NaNo, ever. But honestly, this has been so much fun to write. So far I have POVs for Julian, Cedrick and baby Boyd, and I don’t know yet but it’s possible Viv will even get a go. (If she doesn’t it’s only because I will be writing Domino which is all Viv, all the time). It’s unedited (of course) so expect terrible wording and typos– and there are some details I still need to fact-check to make sure the timing is right–but I don’t even care! I’m sharing it anyway! ohoho!

My goal this NaNo is to actually finish the book in this month–which is likely to be much higher than 50,000 words–and not just stop at 50k because that’s the goal NaNo set.

Ok, ok, all disclaimers aside, let me just say that I chose the below excerpt because it’s just, very… It’s very Cedrick. It’s why I love him, whether or not anyone else ever will, same as I love Vivienne whether or not anyone else ever does. It’s been really fun writing him, and yet it also underscores to me how different life would have been for Boyd and Vivienne both if the past had been different.

Ok excerpt now!

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NaNo 2014: Julian Files, excerpt 2 || NaNo Day 2: 10,399 words

Another Julian Files excerpt. As I mentioned yesterday, I might stop these excerpts if I decide to post the whole thing as a book, or even if it just seems like no one is interested and it’s taking up unnecessary space. Whatever works! We’ll see!

By the way, as this is NaNo, the below excerpt is unedited–as will be any NaNo excerpts I do.

Anyway–look! This time you get Cedrick POV with baby Boyd cameo.

 


 

The receptionist looked ready to deny him entry beyond the front area at first, but then she gave Cedrick a second, more searching stare. At first he was too harried to understand why, until he realized why she looked so familiar to him.

Cara Jorgenson, sister of Timothy Jorgenson. Almost five years ago, when they were both teenagers, Timothy had been murdered in their house when Cara had left to find food rations. It hadn’t been long after the bombs, which had claimed their parents’ lives. Cara had been left suddenly alone, with no one to help her, and no one to find her brother’s killer. She’d been desperate when there had been almost no investigation, and had finally resorted to calling the local news media to see if anyone would pick up the story, maybe put pressure on the police department. Cedrick had been the only one who had listened, and while he hadn’t been able to do much through his job, he’d exhausted his resources trying to find someone who could.

It was how he’d first met Julian, the only private investigator who had given a damn about the story. With Julian’s help, and Julian’s contacts in Lexington PD to the decent cops left on the roster, they’d eventually found out who had done it–but there had never been a trial, because the perpetrator had been killed on the streets not long after the murder. He’d been mugged for the cash he’d stolen from the house.

When Julian and Cedrick had stopped by her house to tell her that, she had been drawn and hollow-eyed, and with bloodless lips she’d said maybe there was justice in the world after all.

“Cara,” he said in surprise. “I didn’t know you worked here now. How are you doing?”

Maybe it was the genuine concern infused in the last question, or maybe it was simply that she appreciated being remembered four and a half years later, but she smiled widely. “I’m… Well, I’m okay. Some days are better than others. I still expect him to walk through the door, but I think over time that will fade.” She leaned forward to peer over the counter. “Oh my God. Is that your little one?”

Cedrick grinned proudly. He nodded and grabbed Boyd from under the armpits so he could hoist him up for official presentation. Simba-style. “This is Boyd. Tell Cara hi, Boyd.”

Boyd obediently stuck his hand out, which Cara took in slight confusion. He shook her hand while saying politely, “It’s nice to meet you, Cara. I’m Boyd. I’m five.” He splayed out all the fingers of his free hand, as if she needed help visualizing such a large number.

Despite the fact that he was being held up like a cat slowly falling out of his dad’s grip, he managed to sound dignified and solemn. Cara did a double take and then burst out laughing. Her cheeks flushed, and she grinned even larger than Cedrick had. She stood up so she could lean at a better angle over the desk.

“It’s very nice to meet you too, Boyd. Should we have your dad put you down?”

“He won’t drop me. He’s very strong. My dad could probably lift a car.”

“Oh really?” Cara’s eyes sparkled as she looked up just in time for Cedrick to smirk. “Is your dad a superhero?”

“Hmm.” Boyd considered that with all the solemnity of a five-year-old with his little train underwear peeking out from his pants while his shirt rode up past his belly button. “He’s not Batman, but he can be close.”

Cara laughed again.

“Gee, thanks, son,” Cedrick muttered, but he couldn’t hide the amusement in his voice.

He set Boyd down carefully, and then tightly grabbed his hand again. He knew Boyd wouldn’t wander off without him but he was always strangely afraid of Boyd disappearing in a crowd. The thought of losing his son was so unbearable that even just imagining it constricted his lungs and set his mind abuzz.

“So, what are you doing here?” Cara asked, eyebrows furrowing. “Are you visiting someone?”

“Actually, yes. An old woman should have been brought in almost an hour ago. We wanted to check her status.”

“Hmm.” Cara dropped back down into her chair and swiveled it back to face the computers. “What’s the name?”

Cedrick hesitated. “I… have no idea.”

Cara gave him a strange look, and Cedrick felt oddly abashed.

NaNo 2014: Julian Files, excerpt 1 || NaNo Day 1: 6038 words :D

I decided to do Julian Files for NaNo 2014 because I have the timeline set and–mostly–right now I just really want to write the past 🙂 Maybe it’s all the MWPP I’ve been reading lately ¬_¬;

Anyway, you can read the first two chapters at my Goodreads profile under The Julian Files in my writing section.

I haven’t decided yet if I’ll post the whole chapters as I write them… I’m currently thinking not, because I don’t do any editing during NaNo and that will be damn obvious as I go. And I might just make the whole thing into a book at the end of it, at which point I might not want to post as I go. But we’ll see. For now, have an excerpt!


A faint smile lifted Cedrick’s lips but it wasn’t with the usual enthusiastic grace. No light made to his brown eyes, which dropped to his drink unusually quickly, and Julian remembered Bell’s words from the other day:

He’s been… interesting lately. Secretive.

Julian opened his mouth to ask but before he could, Cedrick was raising his eyebrows and speaking.

“So? Something on your mind that even Kris couldn’t fix?”

Julian’s stared at Cedrick, his mouth working as all previous thoughts rushed out of his mind. “What?”

“Usually you’re in a good mood after a day with Kris,” Cedrick said with a shrug. “You’re not today, though. What’s wrong?”

Julian couldn’t decide whether he was surprised, impressed, or disturbed, and he was sure the indecision must be reflected in his fluctuating expression. He finally settled on drawn eyebrows and a flicker of a scowl. “How the fuck do you know where I was?  Are you stalking me, Cedrick Beaulieu?”

Cedrick rolled his eyes and leaned back in his seat, but there was definite smugness in the quirk of his smile. “You’re wearing your Friday jeans on a Saturday, your shirt is rumpled despite how you obviously tried to smooth it, and I can see a hickey by your collar.”

Julian wasn’t used to being on the receiving end of a perceptive bastard like he usually was against others, and found he didn’t much like it.

Accurately reading huffiness into Julian’s silence, a flicker of a smile moved Cedrick’s lips. “One would think I was the PI and you were the journalist.”

“I dunno, Ced. I’ve come to the conclusion that journalists are more alarmingly nosy and freakishly observant than any PI I’ve ever met.”

“You’re basing that off of me?” Cedrick asked in amusement. “Or did you find another best friend journalist when I wasn’t looking?”

“Bell’s included in the deal.”

Cedrick laughed. “He’s a doctor.”

“That’s not all he is!”

“Yeah, yeah, keep it in your pants.”

Julian pointed triumphantly at Cedrick, straightening with a loud, “See?”

Cedrick tilted his head. “What?”

“I never told you I jonesed for the dude, but you know without having to ask! I’m telling you. You’re freakier than your family, sometimes. And that’s damn impressive, with an alien kid and a robot wife.”

Cedrick kicked Julian with no heat. “Hey. That’s my family you’re talking about.”

“Yeah, I know. They could only be your family, seeing as I don’t know anyone else crazy enough to marry a woman like that and pop out a little alien kid.”

“Would you stop calling Boyd an alien already?” Irritation and defensiveness was beginning to creep into Cedrick’s tone and the narrowing of his eyes, and Julian held his hands up in a gesture of peace.

“Whoa, sorry. I was joking. You know I am. I like that kid, all outer space oddities aside.”

“And stop insulting Vivienne. You just don’t understand her.”

“No one does but you, Cedrick,” Julian said more seriously. At Cedrick’s straightening back, Julian shook his head and held up his hand. “That isn’t an insult. I think she doesn’t let anyone else see who she really is except around you.”

“That’s your investigative assessment?” Cedrick asked dubiously.

Julian shrugged and leaned back against the booth. It squeaked alarmingly, considering how it was hard as fucking stone. “You could say that, yeah. I’ve seen enough people in my day who are like her… show one face to the world, and another to the only people they trust. Most people aren’t as selective in their trust as she is, but I know she has to show you something I never see or else you’d never love the woman the way you do. I know you. You wouldn’t stay with someone who wasn’t a hell of a lot more honorable and good than how we normally see her be.”

“She is a good person,” Cedrick said quietly, his gaze dropping to his beer. It was nearly gone, but he still stared at it. He looked strangely sad, until Julian noticed that the color was almost exactly the same shade of gold as Boyd’s eyes. He wondered if Cedrick was thinking about the last time they’d seen each other, when Julian had rather harshly told Cedrick to get his shit together and stand up against Vivienne for not being a better mother to Boyd.

Not wanting to get stuck in another argument on a topic that wasn’t even on point for the night, Julian rocked Cedrick’s knee with a well-placed foot. Shuttered brown showed from behind a flicker of eyelashes, and Julian took that as assent to change the topic.


Oh and here you can see the god-awful cover I made for it this morning in a rush when I realized I didn’t have a cover for it at all -_- It had to be tinystyle for NaNo to accept it, hence it being a little baby pic.

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God. It’s so ugly 😄 OH WELL.

Oh and bonus! Look, I made Julian a PI license 😀

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