Unfinished Novel – Chapter 1, part b

Here’s the rest of Chapter 1 from my collaboration (and first novel attempt) with Randy McNair. Here’s the link to the first part, in case you missed it.

It’s fun for me to see how far I’ve come as a writer in the past decade.


He could see the delicatessen at the side of the store. A fairly large group of people were kneeling on the floor, cowering and waiting for what the madman would do next.

An average sort of fellow sat casually sipping his orange soda and pointing an antique colt revolver at the hostages. This perpitraitor had his attention focused on something at the other end of the aisle, though.

Darrien leaned a little more to see what it was. It was officer Drake, from Department 9. The criminal lowered his glass.

“Can I buy you a drink stranger?” Drake’s blood boiled, but only the color of his neck betrayed the fire in his bosom, his voice was low and his words deliberate. You could almost see them lining up single file on his tongue before passing his lips.

“I thought I told you not to show your face in this town again Johnson.” Drake always fancied himself a lawman of the ancient west. The man smirked, laying down the can he held in his right hand.

“Oh! Did you now lieutenant! Seems to me it was the other way around. I’m sorry, I must have forgotten.”

‘Johnson?’ Thought Darrien, ‘Blazer Johnson? Holy momma, this is a big one. Probably worth $8 mil to the prison council.’

“See if this helps you remember” said Drake as he started for his gun.

“I wouldn’t do that if I were you” Johnson snapped the hammer back to prime the single action weapon. Drake stopped mid-draw, clearly beaten for the moment.

“What do you want?”

“I dunno.” paused Johnson “How’s about your gun for starters.”

“And if I don’t?”

“Someone dies.”

“All right, here it is” Drake started to slowly pull out his weapon.

If Darrien interfered now, Johnson would probably scare, and kill some innocents. So he retreated behind the isle and crouched in wait. No sooner had he done so than the crashing boom of the Colt 45 rang through the air.

“You weren’t as fast as you thought.” laughed Johnson.

‘Shoot. That fool. He thought he could out draw a bullet.’ He had to think quick.

“What’s everyone’s recent fascination with produce?” Darrien’s voice echoed in the quiet store.

“Who said that?” Snapped Johnson.

“This is the third call I’ve received this week that has to do with stolen turnips. it’s not just a local problem either.” Just keep him busy.

“Who ARE YOU!?” Johnson began to get frantic.

‘Good, he’s focusing on me, but with the echo, he can’t tell where I am.

“Across the nation turnips are disappearing from shelves like gold nuggets.” Another shot. Darrien saw a can of beans midway down the isle explode.


“It’s as if there is some kind of international plot to rid the world of turnips.”


“You know, about a billion cops will be here in a few minuets.”

“Where are you, you lit1le…” another shot. That made four.

“Each and every cop will want the money from your capture to go to their department.”

“So?” I

“So I’m gonna get it.” The now all too familiar sound of the colt rang again. This time, a box right above his head burst. Five. He grabbed a can off the shelves, and threw it as high as he could without hitting the ceiling. Startled, Johnson fired at it. Darrien took a swift stride around the corner and aimed at Johnson. Blazer threw his gun at Darrien and scrambled for the gun of the dead policeman. He was stopped mid-flight by a laser shot to the back.

4 thoughts on “Unfinished Novel – Chapter 1, part b

  1. While I agree you’ve come a long way, I also think this has potential. Are you interested at all in picking it back up? I see sort of a Maltese Falcon, film-noir narration style fitting this so well. If told in first person it would be amazing.

    Just a thought. How’d you like doing the collab? What was the division of duties? How’d you guys decide who was doing what?

    Or did you explain all that already and I missed it like the dork I am? 😉

    Good stuff. Lots of fun.

  2. There was no plan at all. Randy and I had been keeping in touch via email after his family moved to Alaska while we were in high school. One day one of us (I can’t remember which) wrote that we should write a novel. We never really discussed plot all that much and never discussed responsibilities, we just emailed the story back and forth, making changes and adding a little each time. It was fun for a while, but fizzled out over time and came to an end when Randy left on an LDS mission.

    I may do a futuristic noir story at some time, but I have no plans to resurrect this project. As it ends up, though, I am currently working on a traditional hard-boiled detective story intended for publication in Astonishing Adventures Magazine.

    And on another note, you must have been getting on line at the same time I was posting this, it had only been up for a couple of minutes when I got the notification of a comment…

  3. I’ve been kicking the idea of a hard-boiled detective piece too; and setting it in the future. Great minds must think alike. Fortunately for me, I think like a great mind every once in a blue moon too.

    Interesting concept. And AAM — do they pay you for the submissions? Have any idea what their circulation is? Just wond’ring.

    I just happened to check my reader and there is was; I had no idea you’d JUST posted. 🙂

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