Sunday, April 27, 2014

Sunday Snippet: The Cockpit

April 27, 2014


Whew. Wild week in TV. Arrow, of course, amped up the tension and drama with a total shocker at the end of the episode. Okay, maybe not a total surprise, but wow, I'm dying to see what happens next. S.H.I.E.L.D went to great places and planted some new seeds for a future season (I hope!) and Orphan Black delivered another taut hour of viewing pleasure. I have several things I want to see happen with Rachel, but I'll save those for a fandom blog post. LOL I'm honestly not sure about the whole Helena/religious cult dealio, but I'll keep watching to see what happens.

Writing wise, the week ended up being way more productive than expected, in a truly odd way. I've been updating my Works in Progress page and the exercise is shaking off some cobwebs and getting the creative juices flowing again. I love it when that happens. J

Tonight's post is from The Cockpit, a sexy little short story about a pilot's R&R with an old friend.

Here's the tagline:

Lark Fisher pulls R&R and hits the most happening bar on Virgo, The Cockpit. Imagine her utter stupefaction when she finds out its owner is not only an old friend, but the one who got away.

And a sneaky peek…

Lark walked in and glanced around. She liked the atmosphere. Crowded enough to get lost in, but not so packed she couldn't breathe. And the setup vaguely resembled a cockpit of a plane, wider at the entrance, tapering and funneling down toward the bar at the end. A grouping of game tables filled one bumped out section of the space and several rows of seats faced a staged area where a squared circle and two cage pits lined another additional bumped out space. The middle area, teeming with people, didn't have an empty table in sight.
She angled her way toward the bar, skirting the side of the room with the boxing ring. Her eyes narrowed when she caught a glimpse of one of the opponents using a punch jab combination exactly like her former CO. No one boxed like the old man. Except maybe Fox. But it had been a long ass time since she'd seen him anywhere near a boxing ring.
Lark hit the bar and climbed up onto a barstool. The bartender placed a shot glass in front of her then studied her for several moments. He turned and carefully selected a bottle of Cornea Red and filled her glass.
Lark's lips quirked. "You're very good." She downed the liquor. "How'd you know?"
The man waggled his eyebrows. "Trade secret." He stuck out his hand. "Name's Charlie. Welcome to The Cockpit."
Lark shook his hand. "Thanks." She craned her head, getting a better look at the interior. "Great place. Right mix of everything." She tapped the smooth wood surface of the bar and Charlie poured her another round. "How long has it been here?" She lifted the tumbler. "I'm sure it didn't exist the last time I hopped R&R to Virgon." She definitely would've remembered.
Charlie tilted his head. "Round about three years. The guy who bought the place had a very specific idea of what he wanted and made it happen." He grabbed a larger glass and filled it with chipped ice and soda then slid it down Lark's way.
She grinned. "Where did the owner find you? And how do you know—wait, never mind. Trade secret, right?"
Charlie laughed. "I worked at the former most popular establishment—The Cockpit pretty much crushes the other watering holes in the area—and yes, the how is top secret." He leaned in, speaking in low tones. "But if you stick around long enough, I just might share the information."
Lark gave him a wide smile. "I just might do that, Charlie." She took a long sip of the icy drink. "What can you tell me about this place?"
He propped his forearms on the counter and filled her in. People flocked to the welcoming establishment, especially the ones who hated clubs and thumpy music they couldn't talk over. The bar had its fair share of fights and assholes, but anyplace that served alcohol did.
Lark nodded. "What does the owner do for security." She glanced around but didn't see the usual contingent of bouncers anywhere.
Charlie snorted. "We rarely need it. The owner can pretty much quell a major incident with a hard look." He flicked his gaze toward the fighting area. "Or a quick go round in the ring."
Lark scoffed. "Really?"
Charlie straightened. "Oh yeah." Charlie jerked his head toward the sparring match. "He's in there right now." A smile split his face. "Oh! And he just took out the brawler wannabe who wouldn't keep his mouth shut." Charlie shouted over the crowd. "Nice one, boss! Wanna a tall, cold one to celebrate?"
Lark swiveled around on the stool to get a look at the owner. He gave Charlie a thumbs up and spit his mouth guard out. The protective headgear came off next.
Lark let out a bark of laughter. "No fucking way. You've gotta be shitting me."
Charlie gave her a questioning look.
She explained. "Your employer and I go way back."
Charlie's eyes widened. "You know the boss man? Hey, Fox! Got a lady sitting here who says she's an old friend of yours."
Fox threw a towel around his neck and stepped out of the ring, straining to see over the group of people going back to their tables.
His eyes widened and he made his way to the bar. "You got the lady part wrong, but Lark's definitely a friend." He made the introductions. "Charlie, this is Captain Lark Fisher. Lark, meet your new best friend, Charlie." He nodded toward the bar tender. "Charlie, her drinks are gratis, which means we might have to close up shop tomorrow." Lark laughed and rose to pull Fox into a hard hug.
Fox stepped back and swept his gaze over her. "You look great. The Olympus agrees with you."
Lark's brows knit. "How did you know?"
Fox chuckled. "It's the only battleship in orbit right now. The old man keeps me up to date so I know when to stock extra alcohol." He snorted. "He neglected to tell me you'd be aboard though."
Lark grinned. "You would've ordered extra, wouldn't you?"

And so begins a fun reunion…

That's it for this week. Catch everyone on the flip.

ML Skye

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