Sunday Sneak Peek 10/20

Sneak Peek Sunday is a weekly blog hop in which writers are challenged to post six paragraphs, no more and no less, from a published work or work in progress and then invite other writers, readers and random bloggers to read, critique and comment. Visit their site by clicking on the button below for a list of other participating writers and share the love! Today’s Sneak Peek is from Pool (working title and subject to change), which is a long way from written, but getting closer every day! In this scene, the heroine and her friends arrive at the place where the rest of the book is set.

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It wasn’t long after that the first signs of human habitation began to appear. They began as long flat patches—man-made ledges cut into the sloping side of the mountain off the main road, some with tumbles of debris marking the place where tents or crude shanties once stood. The remains of a rickety wooden stair led from these directly up to the mine, discernable from below only by its unnaturally flat edge. Norah wasn’t sure how much time the stairs cut off the miners’ commute—and seeing as how whole risers had fallen away here and there, she wouldn’t be making any experimental climbs—but it was another hour in the truck before they rounded the last steeply-sloping hairpin turn and rolled into camp.

‘Camp’ was something of a misnomer. At first glance, Norah thought she’d inherited a whole town.

Of course, there was the mine, easily identified by the two-story derrick built over its main shaft. It stood alone in a clearing at the end of the road. Lining that road, however, were several structures and, unlike the miners’ settlement below, they had been built to last. One hundred years of ravaging Time had not taken any of these dinosaurs down; in the past three days, Norah had passed through a number of towns where not only could this small strip of buildings blended right in, but it wouldn’t even be considered the bad part of town.

Hayley brought the SUV to a stop in front of the largest of them, letting out an admiring whistle as she eyed the deeply-carved sign hanging from the covered boardwalk. “The Split-Tail,” she read, and looked hard at the enormous and buxom mermaid carved into the wall. As described, she had been split up the middle and held one half of her curved tail in each upraised hand. She had been painted once and rare flecks of color remained, dotting her bare breasts like syphilis and giving her pursed lips an evil leer.

“Not very subtle,” Norah said.

“When you’re a two-day hike from the next nearest pussy, subtlety is wasted. This guy Hodel may have been a miserly crook and a bastard, but he was no fool.”

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