by Darynda Jones
The wonderful team at MacMillan Audio has shared with us
a little snippet from FIFTH GRAVE PAST THE LIGHT.
I drove to Calamity’s and parked in my usual spot. The spot where I’d put up a sign saying no parking: violators will suffer from several exotic std’s for which there is no cure. It seemed to do the trick. My landlord didn’t especially like my tactics, but everyone was a lot happier when I had a parking space. I walked over to the bar and ducked in the back door.
The place was packed. On a Sunday. At lunch. On a Sunday. And once again, women seemed to be the main enthusiasts.
“What’ll you have?” Ubie asked when I walked to the table he’d snagged. I couldn’t believe it. Jessica was there again. What the freaking hell? Had she moved in?
Emaciated from watching Nicolette eat her breakfast burrito, I said, “I’ll have my usual breakfast fare.”
“You got it, pumpkin.” He waved over our server. She was new, so I didn’t know her name. Because of this, I was forced to call her Sylvia. “She’ll have huevos rancheros with scrambled eggs, and I’ll have a carne adovada burrito smothered in red.”
“So, we’re going to the actual site, yes?” I asked him as Sylvia wrote down our order.
“Yes, and I know how you are with dead bodies.”
Sylvia paused then restarted, pretending not to hear us.
“How am I with dead bodies?” I asked.
“Oh, right.” Dead people I could handle. Dead bodies not so much.
“It amazes me that you deal with dead people all day every day, but toss a dead body at you, and you turn into a girl.”
“I am a girl,” I said, utterly off ended. “And I happen to know plenty of men who would rather eat fried worms than come face- to-face with a dead body.”
“Okay, sorry. That was sexist.”
He best be sorry. “So what’s up with this new cook, Sylvia?”
“Um, it’s Clair.”
That was disappointing. Now I knew her name, but she’d always be Sylvia to me.
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