For the A to Z challenge, I present Murder Most Fowl, an unedited serial story from the unpublished Cera Chronicles. Please excuse the grammar mistakes. This hasn’t been critiqued yet. If you’re just diving into this story, you may want to start with part A.
Just because I respected my friend’s eating habits, didn’t mean I would ride with a corpse. Molly, Fues and I piled onto the masked man’s ostrich with the owner—still alive and uneaten—tied to the back. Despite the elbow-jabbing, lap-sharing, and name-calling, we managed to all fit on it. Mostly.
We bounced and bounded down the dusty road framed with nest-heavy cacti and the occasional gaping burrow. Little ground-dwellers darted from our path. I couldn’t blame them, having been trampled by an ostrich myself. The shadow of my stalker followed us until we stopped at the saloon.
I dumped the others from the saddle before hopping off myself. Then I untied the masked man and flung him over my shoulder.
The ostrich plunged its head into the feeding trough, burying it from sight.
Fues pushed the swinging saloon doors wide and our little group strolled inside. The music crashed to a halt. Dancing girls froze on the stage. Patrons stared at us, beer tankards halfway to mouths and jaws hanging ajar. A flash flared. The photographer lowered his hand-held flash-lamp and popped up from beneath his black curtain. “Copy for a quarter.”
The bartender leaned against the counter. A toothpick hung from between his lips. He watched us from beneath bushy white eyebrows. “What’ll ya have?” The toothpick bobbed in time with the words.
Fues leapt onto the bar, spear in one hand and a Y-shaped bone rattle in the other. The rattle flicked back and forth before finally settling in one direction. He pointed at one of the bottles–a squat green one with a thick neck. “Water!” Standing on top of the bar, he was almost as tall as the bartender.
The bartender looked up and down Fues’s short frame, probably noticing the distinct lack of clothing my companion wore. “You got money?”
Fues grinned and reached into his loincloth. His hand came back up with a glistening diamond from the previous world. Ewww. I’d wondered where he’d stashed those. He offered it to the bartender. “You take this?”
The bartender used a towel to pick up the gem and examine it. He shrugged, pulled out two glasses and grabbed the bottle. He filled both glasses, dropped the diamond into one, and shoved the other toward Fues. Then he tossed the towel into the trash.“Best not be braggin’ about your treasure.”
Fues patted the front of his loincloth between his legs. “I keep safe family jewels.”
I rolled my eyes. “You know those two midgets weren’t really your parents.” They were mighty fine cobblers though. I shot a despairing glance toward my broken shoes.
The masked man shifted on my shoulder. And then, he woke up.
If you want to start at the beginning, find it here. Don’t forget to visit other bloggers participating in the A to Z Challenge.
Loni here. Thank you all for reading. I know many of you have left comments, and I’ve been trying to reply, but I’ve decided visiting all of you at your blogs is equally important. I apologize if I don’t reply to everyone’s comments. I do read them, and really appreciate them. I’m glad you’re enjoying the story so far. I am always open to critiques, and really do my best to improve based on feedback given. If you don’t feel comfortable criticizing my writing publicly, I welcome it via email at loni(at)lonitownsend(dot)com. Seriously, tear it to shreds. I can’t improve if I don’t know what I’m doing wrong.
Question: Do you think I should post Murder Most Fowl to Wattpad? I’ve never used it. Have any of you?
Now, Featured Photo Friday! (This is a regular occurrence on my blog.)
Sticking with the A To Z Challenge, I bring you:
My daughter really liked the choice of subjects this time around (mostly because I bought her candy for no other reason than to take a picture of it).
Do you like it when someone surprises you with treats (despite having their own agenda)? And what about Wattpad? Ever use it?