Wednesday, January 25, 2012

WIP Wednesday

Today, I'm posting the scene where my two main characters, Alexis and Joseph, are brought together by fate (or could it be luck) and meet for the first time. I'm not going to proclaim the meeting goes well, since they are both so strong-willed, but maybe they will have occasion in the future to meet again under better circumstances.

Joe walked across the old crumbling asphalt parking lot, and over patches of loose gravel in front of the abandoned auto parts store toward the bar. As he crossed the alley, he heard a voice and, looking into the darkness, he saw a man and a woman in the shadows by a garbage dumpster. The man said something, and the woman jerked her hand away from him. Joe's body reacted before his mind even realized the two were not standing in the dark for romance. The woman was backing up, and the man was advancing toward her.
"You alright Ma'am," he heard himself say as he closed the distance between him and the assailant grabbing at the woman. He made it to the man in five easy steps. The man was preoccupied with the woman, allowing Joe the opportunity to wrap his arm around the man's neck and drag him away from the woman, making sure to jerk his knee into the man's back at every step backwards. Joe kept dragging the man backwards until he was brought off balance and went to the ground. He then knelt down with his knee in the man's back again, rolling him over onto his stomach, and yanking his arms behind him. Joe grabbed his zip straps out from the left side of his waistband, and tightened them around the man's wrist before bringing his attention back to the woman.
"Are you okay? Did he hurt you?" Joe looked up at the woman, standing among the dark shadows of the alley. He could only make out her general shape in the dark, but he was certain he saw her eyes, just for a brief moment, nearly glowing, something primal reflecting in them through the darkness. His eyes adjusted to the darkness of the alley, and the two standing in front of him came into better view. He recognized the man as Lefty, the local sleaze ball, and the very skip Jake contracted him to bring in. His luck was certainly changing from earlier in the day. The thug wannabe down and secure, Joe turned his attention back to the woman.
"It's alright, I got him under control," He said to the woman, as he jerked Lefty up by his cuffed wrists. Standing closer to the woman, he got a better look at her. She looked, not too pleased that he stopped Lefty from doing to her ... whatever it was he was thinking of doing. In fact, the smug look on her face made her seem completely ungrateful that he just saved her life, or, at the very least, her honor. Her pale skin reflected the dim light from the crescent moon overhead, and contrasted sharply with her dark hair. Joe didn't usually think much of white women, but even in the dark, he saw something special in her, a kind of confidence, a deep, animalistic skill for survival. He was beginning to wonder if he hadn't shown up, if she would've taken care of Lefty herself. Then she spoke, and removed any doubt about her confidence.
"I'm alright," the woman said. "I didn't need any help." She crossed her arms, and moved into a stance that, even in the darkness, came off as arrogant.
"Yeah, I could tell, you had everything under control," he said, with as much sarcasm as he could muster.
She glared at him; a cold hurt showing in her eyes, even through the dark, and he regretted the words as soon as he said them. Truth was, the woman looked like she could take care of herself. She was taller than most women, with a solid build. She was more hard-rubenesque than stick-thin, and her eyes showed strength. Even in the dark alley, her eyes conveyed volumes. Joe liked beautiful eyes, and he liked a strong woman. He decided to take on a different approach in talking to her.
"I didn't get your name."
"I didn't give it," she said as she turned, and began to walk away. "Like I said, I had everything under control until you showed up."
"Sorry if I interrupted your ass-kicking, but I've been looking for this guy." Joe left out the fact that he had just started looking for him.
"Well, you got him," she said as she walked toward the street. "Can I get back to work, now?"
"You work here?"
"No, asshole, I don't work here. Not on the street. I'm a waitress at the Pink Pony."
"Oh, I didn't mean ...” But it was too late. She'd already rounded the corner and disappeared. "Wait," Joe yelled after her as he moved as quickly as he could to the street, while pushing Lefty in front of him.
He reached the crumbling parking lot just as the woman stepped into the building, the door closing behind her.
"My name's Joe," he yelled as the door closed.
"Damn you, Lefty," Joe said as he jerked him toward his truck and pushed him along. "You just cost me a date."
"More like, I just put the two of you together," Lefty countered. "Who are you, anyway?"
"Nobody really, Lefty. I'm just the guy that gets paid for collecting trash like you and bringing them to jail."
Hope you enjoyed this scene and, as always I would love your comments and/or criticisms on the work. Always keep in mind that what I post here on WIP Wednesdays, is my first draft. I know it seems odd that I would post something for readers that is less than fully edited and perfected, but I want you all to have the opportunity to see the work as it's being developed-exactly as it was when it first dribbled out of my mind, through my fingers, and onto the screen.

One last note, in the coming weeks, I will begin skipping ahead scenes to post only what is most important or exciting. Of course, I'm going to hide some pivotal scenes otherwise, how could you later enjoy reading the finished story? I will be finished with the draft by the end of February and am way behind on scenes posted. So, in order to merge the end of my WIP posted scenes for this story, and the actual release and publication, I'll have to do some skipping ahead.

Until next week ...

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