It’s Labor Day weekend here in the U.S.  For most people, that means the end of summer, kids are back in school, and fall is on the way.

end of summr

Photo credit: David Kracht / Foter / CC BY-NC-SA ) 

For those of us who don’t work retail or in the medical field, or whose kids are no longer in school, this weekend is just a nice, three-day weekend.  I would be enjoying it much more if it didn’t still feel like mid-summer here–still hot and sticky and no end in sight.  I know technically, the start of fall is more than two weeks away, but I’ve been ready for it since July.

There are a lot of things on the calendar for this month, too.  We have a family birthday, and there is at least one book event I’ll be attending (just for fun!)–the Baltimore Book Festival.  The big thing on my list for this month, though, is finishing (first draft and revisions) the shape-shifter manuscript I’ve been working on, then getting it to my agent.  That is a fairly big undertaking.  The first draft is mostly done, except for connecting some scenes I wrote out of order.  The revisions, though…that is always my least favorite part.  A necessary part, however.

 

revisions

Photo credit: mrsdkrebs / Foter / CC BY )

So I’m going to keep my head down and my fingers on the keyboard, or busy with my red pen on the printout I just did last night.

What does your September look like?  Anything fun planned for the rest of this month?

And, just because, I have a tiny snippet from the shifter story I’m working on…

____________

All Harley wanted when he got in the house was to find something to eat, perhaps a cold drink, and then to park himself in front of something mindless on the television for the rest of the evening. But when he walked into the otherwise silent house, the phone was ringing. No other cars were in the drive, which meant either he needed to answer it, or listen to it ring until the machine kicked in.

He debated for half a second: cold beer or ringing phone.

It would take him far less time to get to the telephone than it would to get to the refrigerator in the kitchen, and he’d be able to hear the phone the entire time. Sighing, he headed for the nearest phone just inside the library.

Harley smiled when he saw the name on the caller i.d. His evening was looking up now. It was about time he got lucky. He snagged the phone from the cradle. “Hello, little Tessa.”

There was silence for a moment, and then he heard her inhale shakily. “I need to speak to India please.” Even her voice trembled.

Surely she wasn’t that upset by having him answer the phone.  He must just have startled her. “She’s not here.” He wasn’t sure he managed to keep the smugness out of his tone.

Another shaky breath reached his ear. Then a sniffle.

He frowned now, on alert. “Tessa? What’s wrong, honey?”

“Someone broke into the house,” she whispered.

His heart pounded faster. He stuck his free hand into his pocket and grabbed the car keys. “Call the police, Tessa.” He strode out of the office toward the entry hall.

“I did. They’re here, but they won’t let me go inside.  They said I won’t be able to stay here tonight.”

And he could hear in her tone that right now, she didn’t want to stay there. He stopped near the front door. “I’ll be right there. Are you okay? You didn’t walk in on whoever it was, did you?”

“I’m fine.”

He resisted the need to snort his disbelief at that claim.  He could hear in her voice that she was far from fine. “I’ll be there in just a couple of minutes, honey.” He pushed the off button on the phone and dropped it onto the table beside the door on his way out.

It took him eight minutes and a lot of miles an hour over the speed limit to reach Tessa’s place, and he saw the flashing red lights on the police cars before he even got in view of the house. When he jerked his car to a stop at the end of her very crowded driveway, he saw her, standing outside the front door, arms wrapped over her middle. Shaking.

His protective instinct rose up with a growl as he shoved the door open and climbed out of the car. The cops had left her standing there alone. Unprotected. Unattended.

Her front door had been smashed in, shattered. There was no need to use that much force to open the door, he thought as he strode nearer. Whoever did it had done so maliciously, simply to destroy it.

__________

Harley is so much fun to write.  Trying to wrangle him in rewrites will probably not be as much fun.  Good thing he’s so yummy!

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