Monday, January 3, 2011

The Bridge, a "Show me Yours" NaNo project.

ACK!  The "show me yours" blogfest started today and I totally forgot to get this posted last night.  So much for my "no more procrastinating" resolution.  I'll start that one tomorrow. 

Ad I totally don't know how to add the linky thingy to everyone else's thingy.  I suck. 
anyway, here it is, just 50% over the 500 word limit....

The Bridge
 by Teri Anne Stanley:

Cold plastic slapped Hank’s face. He opened one eye just in time to see a pink flipper about to nail
 him again.  “What the fu…?” He held his hand up to protect himself and peered over his fingers at a small, blonde mermaid.  She was sitting on a stool, leaning back on her hands to support herself for the next blow.
The mermaid was about 7 or 8, Hank guessed.  She wore a baggy purple  swimsuit and pink swim fins.  Her mer-legs were fused with an ace  bandage that had seen better days.   When she saw Hank looking at her, she leaned forward and put her mer-tail on the floor.

 Hank tried to focus bleary eyes and scrambled to remember where he was. 

  Are your eyes bleeding? ”, asked the little girl. She leaned  towards him, then back quickly, pinching her nostrils.  “I’m going to get you some Trident.  Mom says if I forget my toothbrush, I should chew gum  to make my breath not so yucky.”    She stood and hopped away on her mermaid tail.               
 Hank tried to sit up to see where she went, but his brain  threatened to pop and his stomach rolled, so he lay back and closed his eyes again.   What the hell?  He had no idea where he was.   His feet were bare and he wore only cargo shorts, which seemed damp. 
Oh God, please don’t let me have pissed myself.

 “Here.” The little mermaid was back, patting him on the arm.  He  peeked at her and she held out a pack of gum and a juice box.

Hank pushed himself up on one arm gingerly, taking the juice box and  sucking at the straw.  Good.  Add a little vodka and this might even get him vertical.  She held the gum out, brooking no argument.  He took a piece, unwrapped and chewed it slowly.  “What is your name?” he asked her.  Normally when waking up with a strange female, it wasn’t a  good idea to admit you didn’t remember her name, but in this case,
 he didn’t believe he was breaking any drunken morning after rules.

 “Ariel, duh,” said the little girl, settling back on the stool and  fiddling with the elastic bandage around her ankles.  “I know who you are.  You’re Hank the Drunk Cop.  My mommy said you need some major help but Uncle  Dave said you would be okay since they saved you from drownding and that all you  needed was some sleep and you’d be fine.  You don’t look fine.  And I don’t think you should be friends with Lord Simon the Sour anymore”. 

"Who is Lord Sim--huh?"  Hank decided to focus first on the last unknown person in that list.

"Lord Simon the Sour," The kid, Ariel?  Really?  said, with patient condescension.  "The bad guy on the bridge.  He's not very nice." 

Only one thing the kid said made sense.  He was
not fine.  He'd sworn he wasn’t going to do this anymore.  He thought he’d had his last drink  three months ago.  But then he and Rick went to the ball game, and the sun  was so bright and hot and the Reds were so bad that it seemed that just one draft beer would be fine.  Shit.  Not again.  But then hell, he’d already lost everything, hadn’t he? 

Hank lay back down, because the world was starting to rock.  Wait.  The rocking was real, not a figment of his hangover.  Was he on a boat?  He sniffed.  There was a slight mildew smell, along with the distinct eau de Ohio River with a touch of diesel fuel.  He looked around.  He was on the deck of a houseboat.

 “Grace Elizabeth, you know you are not supposed to be out here.  Get back inside, now!”, a woman with a blond pony tail and long tan legs stood in the doorway of the boat’s cabin.

 Ariel, or Grace, or whoever she was, glared at the woman.  “I’m not Grace this morning, I’m Ariel, Mommy, and Hank the Drunk Cop is awake and  he needed a drink and some gum.  I’m going to make him some cereal now.  Be nice, he’s company.”  The mermaid hopped past her mother and back inside.

 The mommy, who looked more like a porn star cheerleader than a mommy, glared at Hank. 

 “Ummm,” Hank started.  Hi?  What’s shaking? Was it good for you? Who are you and how did I get here?  


  1. LOL "You're Hank the Drunk Cop"

    Children and drunks and the truth, huh?

    Great excerpt you've shared there, and quite a hook, too!

  2. This was awesome and hilarious all rolled up into one! I LOVED the little girl. Also i loved Hank's voice. I think my favorite part was the bit about adding a bit of vodka.
    Great job!

  3. Now that really cheered me up! Great writing and fantastic charactarisation, not to mention funny. Thank you for sharing.

  4. I loved that! I'm definitely hooked, and you've got some great one-liners in there.

  5. I laughed out loud at this! I really like the child's voice and would love to read more.

  6. This made me laugh, which in fiction is hard to do. You found the perfect balance between characterisation and humour. Brilliant.

  7. your voice is hilarious throughout this and spot on for both characters! Love it. Can't wait to read more!

  8. These characters are awesome. I loved them both. Lots of really good lines in this adult or YA? What genre? It's hard to tell from this excerpt, but either way, I liked it.

  9. The beginning had me hooked! I love the little girl and the bounce between her perception and his perspective. Nicely done!

  10. I really enjoyed reading this, curious for more. I like the trident comment that was fun to read. thanks so much for posting!

  11. This is a great excerpt (but you already knew I thought that.) I endorse the other commenters thoughts about the humor. Too bad about the word limit because I think the funniest line didn't appear here. Good job, Teri Anne!

  12. Ha! That was great fun! I really quite like Ariel, or Grace. She's a fun character and I'd love to find out more about her.

  13. Heh...juice box. Love that touch.

    I also love that she's "fused" her legs with an Ace bandage. :)

  14. Love it. And a weird thing - my youngest is called Elizabeth Grace. She doesn't play at mermaids though *g*

  15. "eau de Ohio River with a touch of diesel fuel" - hilarious! I loved the slightly gritty humour of this scene, and the description of the mermaid's outfit. Thanks for sharing!

  16. Love the scene. Hank the Drunk Cop - so funny!
    Thanks for sharing.

  17. I love this little mermaid. Such fun and such realism with the child-adult scenario. Great excerpt. Happy New Writing Year!

  18. Wow, Hank sounds like such a low-life to start. Then, about the time that he's going over the ball game story, I started to have some sympathy for him.
    Ariel the mermaid is a funny and cute character. At first, I was wondering if she was actually a genuine mermaid, and then the Ace bandage stuff started to clear that up.
    I'm wondering what really happened and how Hank got where he was. Thanks for sharing this excerpt with us!

  19. Loved this excerpt from start to finish. Both character's voices were impressive. Loved Ariel the mermaid. I could see her visually in my mind and she brought a smile (reminded me of my own daughter playing Ariel). Would love to read more. Fantastic Job!!!

  20. Hank the Drunk Cop, funny. Love the voice and humor in the piece.


  21. So funny! It's hard to make me laugh while reading, too. Thank you for sharing and great job!

  22. Ha ha! Love the snarky voice of Hank! I'd definitely read on to find out what happens with the cheerleader/mommy and the mermaid/girl and who Lord Simon the Sour is. That kid was a brilliant device to instill a bit of mystery in your story.

  23. A really funny scene. I really enjoyed reading it!

  24. Loved Hank and the little girl! This piece was fun to read and very humorous. Awesome job!

  25. Wow, I am blown away by the kind comments. Even if 700 "if you can't say something nice don't say anything at all" people didn't comment, I feel motivated to keep going with this story!

  26. I do like it and definitely didn't expect humor from a NaNo excerpt. Thanks for changing it up!

    In My Write Mind

  27. Oh, this is great! LOVE Ariel/Grace. I think you have a winner here. :)

  28. This was so cute...and funny. :)

    Happy 2011, Teri Anne!

  29. I loved reading your excerpt! Great dialogue. :D