Weekend Writing Warriors: Odd Duck (Pushing Buttons)

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Last week, our hero Tom went to the historical home of the Talbot City packleader and met Merrok, a female werewolf who should not be mistaken for the housekeeper (once I get all my edits done).

Merrok is taking Tom to where Travis Rendall—the West Coast wolf who attacked Tom in the first chapter—is being held.


She led me through a series of hallways with oil paintings on the walls, thick carpets on the floors, and occasional objects d’art displayed on antiques.

It must have been tough to keep the wolf hair out of everything, but I decided to keep my comments to myself; I didn’t want to end up next to Travis Rendall—or buried in the back yard.

There was a small, discreet metal plate set into the wall next to what looked like a mahogany pocket door. She pressed the lower button and the door slid open. An elevator.

We went in, stood in it a while, and stepped out onto a different floor, darker and cooler. A painting of the Wild Hunt, with wolves instead of hellhounds, chased around a low, domed rotunda.

Three corridors led in different directions.


The Spring Time Change is a horrible thing to do to the chronically sleep-deprived and this seasonal torture is extended by at least a week for parents of school-aged children, because kids generally do not go gently into what their bodies tell them is an unforgivably early bedtime, just because of some government mandate. And waking them up an hour earlier than they’re used to is no picnic, either.

If you didn’t have to switch your clocks forward last night, you have my envy, and if you did, you have my sympathy and shared misery.

Either way, I’m going to try to visit everyone else’s blogs before I inevitably crash this afternoon.Β  If I don’t make it before my brain shuts off, I will if when I wake up.


51 thoughts on “Weekend Writing Warriors: Odd Duck (Pushing Buttons)

    • Thanks, Nancy! πŸ™‚

      I had my sister-in-law’s dog in mind; they both moved out a year ago and we’re still finding dog hair in the guest room! πŸ™‚

  1. Tom’s pragmatic observations plus the detailed descriptions make this so visual and believable. Great snippet. πŸ™‚

  2. Oh, that pesky wolf hair! This sounds like a very interesting place, with lots of opportunities for trouble,

    My sympathies on the time change. I lost an additional time zone yesterday, heading east, so I practically feel jet-lagged. I think I’ll join you in the afternoon-napping.

  3. Great descriptions. I almost giggled out loud at the wolf hair.

    And this “We went in, stood in it a while, and stepped out onto a different floor” — I don’t know why, but I love this line. It’s so… elevator! (And now I’ll be giggling hysterically to myself while riding the elevator to my floor at work today.)

    • One of the staff of our local zoo told me that when the wolves blow their winter coats in the spring, it’s like a fog of hair everywhere. I honestly don’t know why Twilight never mentioned that . . . πŸ˜‰

      “Elevator” is exactly what I was going for, Paula, thanks. πŸ˜€

  4. I have a perfect picture of what the place looks like. I think I can even smell it. πŸ™‚ Fantastic writing, and as always, your humor is coming through; “…or buried in the backyard.”

    Objects d’art, or objets d’art? If you were going for humor by using the first, it works. πŸ™‚

    • Thanks, Teresa! πŸ™‚ I’m pretty sure the main house doesn’t smell like wet wolf, but who knows?

      Darn it, I looked that up and still put in that darned ‘c’! Thanks for spotting that—though maybe Tom’s cynicism makes it work? Hmmm . . .

  5. I love this story. Speaking for the sleep-deprived (I swear my brain is not going to wake up at all today!), I was wondering what kind of antiques those objects d’art are on? The half-awake side of my brain is saying they are tables. The fully asleep side is conjuring images of things stacked on top of antique vases and other not-appropriate-for-stacking antiques.

    My sympathies to you as well! In addition to the bedtime and wake up issues, time changes always mess with my two diabetics’ blood sugar levels. So much hassle twice a year.

    • In my headcanon, they’re those fugly, heavy dark wood tables with the footed legs that grab your toes if you walk past them barefoot. Mostly the objets d’art go on top of them, except for a few vases that might be lurking underneath, because it’s been an unbreakable tradition to put them since one’s great-great-great grandmother did so—and no one is alive to remember that she only stuck ’em there when guests with small children came to visit.

      Oh, sheesh, yes, mealtime and medication confusion is rough. My MIL’s meds need to be taken with food and she’s been shaky and stressed about them today . . . πŸ˜›

  6. Now I have a mental image of a bunch of werewolves with lint brushes…

    Good luck with your adjustment. I think we’re all there with you, groggy but determined.

    • Those sticky-paper rolls work better! πŸ˜€

      Can you imagine bathtime? “Timmy, don’t shake! No! Use a towel!”

      Tomorrow morning is going to be ungodly difficult—I usually get up at five. πŸ˜›

  7. Cool snippet. I love old buildings like that…cool and a little creepy when one of the folks in the elevator is Merrok. πŸ™‚

    I’m right there with you about the time change. I’ve been getting up at 4 a.m. to catch my train… tomorrow i’ll be doing everything i can NOT to think about what time that was last week.

    • Exactly! I feel awkward enough sharing an elevator with humans I don’t know. πŸ™‚

      Oh, mercy, Charley—I only have to get up at five. You win—if “win” is the right word. πŸ˜€

  8. You did a wonderful job of building the mystery and mastery of this place. There is great tension and Tom is such a believable character. Great job.

    • Thanks, Jeff! πŸ™‚

      I’d love to write a straight-out tense action scene someday, but my characters’ lack of brain to mouth (or to page) filters always seem to get in the way. πŸ˜€

  9. Love the comment about wolf hairs. I have cats and dogs and can totally relate. lol Great descriptions! Enjoyed the snippet.

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