Sunday, February 19, 2017

Sunday Snippet: Fireworks

February 19, 2017

Okay, I ended up watching The Walking Dead and enjoyed having the group back together. As always, The Talking Dead made me happy, too.

An off week for The Flash and Legends of Tomorrow, which meant I got to start a binge watch of Daredevil. So far, so good. I have two more episodes of season one to watch and I'm loving it.

Arrow's episode with the origin of Wild Dog ended up being terrific. I'm so happy they got a season six order. Arrow is consistently one of my favorites.

Riverdale continues to be must-see for me. It's not perfect, but I like that. Lots of room to grow the characters and plot threads. I'll be waiting patiently for the next person to slap Alice Cooper… or to bring her down. Either is okay with me.

Caught up on Murdoch Mysteries and happy to see Brackenreid back. I enjoy him a lot. Looking forward to this week's episode.

And that's it for television this week. Tonight's post is from Fireworks, a novella with one of my favorite tropes—sibling rivalry.

Here's the mini-blurb:

Adelle Lizt and Zeth McKibbet are a volatile mix—neither gives quarter when they know they're right. But with two sides to every situation, they find some common ground in a very interesting place—the guest quarters on base.

And a sneaky peek…

Adelle Lizt dragged in a deep breath and slowly exhaled. "Better get to it." She rose and tucked the fit rep under her arm then strode to the door to poke her head out. "McKibbet, you're up." She didn't wait to see if his expression when he left his classmates.
Instead, she walked back to her desk and waited for him to enter and be seated. She hated this part of her job. Delivering bad news ranked right up with a visit to the psychiatrist and having dental work completed of things she didn't enjoy.
Keith McKibbet remained at seated attention, his gaze focusing on the wall in front of him.
Adelle propped a hip on the edge of the desktop and opened his file. "Cadet McKibbet." When he met her gaze, she continued. "I'll give it to you straight. You're not going to qualify for finals. Your current scores are too low." She handed him the folder, something she didn't have to do.
But she found letting the student see their marks in black and white usually helped them accept their fate.
Keith scanned the documents, doing the math. He closed the fit rep and returned it to her.
She placed the packet on the desk and crossed her arms in front of her. "Do you have any questions?" Again, she didn't have to give her students the opportunity to discuss her decision, but she tried to let them have a chance to vent.
Keith pursed his lips and gazed in her direction for several moments. His displeasure rested between his set shoulder blades, his clenched jaw adding to the tension.
Flicking a glance out the window, he voiced a question. "What's it going to take for me to stay in?" He met her gaze again. "I need to qualify and there has to be something I can do to make the cut." His knee bounced up and down, an additional sign of his frustration and anger.
Adelle shook her head. "I'm sorry, Cadet. There's nothing. You don't have the chops for this program." He had above average intelligence but lacked the coordinated skill and quick reaction time it took to fly.
His tension snapped and he jumped up. "You can't be serious. I waited forever to get into flight school. You can't fail me." He paced back and forth, working up a good head of anger. "What is your problem with me?"
Adelle straightened. "With you, specifically? I don't have one." She tapped the file on the desk. "The numbers speak for themselves. You're not cut out to fly fighters and I won't put anyone else at risk by putting you in the air or out in the black. You'd be a danger to yourself and them." She struggled to keep her voice even and not let her rising irritation show.
Keith snorted. "I think you mean I'd be a danger to your perfect career." He whirled around and stepped closer. "That's why you're failing me, isn't it? Can't have your next promotion delayed, can you?" He sneered the words and took a step back.
Adelle bit her tongue to keep from lashing out. "My record speaks for itself. You're not the first cadet I've failed and you won't be the last. Moving up the ranks has nothing to do with anything. You saw your scores." Dammit.
He gave a slow nod. "Oh, yeah. I saw them alright. You've got discretionary control. I'm close enough you could bump me a few points up."
Adelle managed to keep her jaw from dropping. "So, basically, you're asking me to fudge the numbers." No way in hell would she start something like that now.
McKibbet shot her a hot, angry glance. "I'm not asking you to do anything. I'm saying it's in your power to do something." He rolled his eyes.
She moved and stood toe-to-toe with him. "Yes, well, it's not going to happen. I don't plan to start cutting breaks anytime soon." Why start now?
Keith gave her a smirk. "Yeah, I figured as much." He started toward the door but glanced over his shoulder. "You haven't heard the last of this yet. I've got some pull of my own and I do plan to use it." He sailed out the door, not bothering to wait for a response.
Adelle blinked, caught between being stunned at the total disrespect he'd shown and being pissed she'd let him get away with being an ass. She turned and rounded the desk, yanking the chair out before sitting down.
Picking up the folder, she grabbed her stamp and inked the spot in bold, red letters for failure. Flipping the file shut, she placed it in her drawer and got ready to move on to the next cadet—one who'd be going on to the qualifying run next week.
But her mind strayed back to Keith McKibbet's parting words. Surely, he'd let his anger make an empty threat. He'd calm down and move into a field better suited for his skill set.
She could only hope.

I ended up being very happy with how this scene came together. I'm looking forward to diving in and getting this one done.

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

ML Skye

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