Work in Progress: Another Sneak Peek

James Dean RebelConfession: I’ve never actually seen Rebel Without A Cause. Lots of people have told me that, for an iconic movie, it’s not actually that good.

I’ve stuck to checking out hot pictures of James Dean.

I feel like I’ve made an okay decision about that, because damn, dude. Damn.

Anyway, here’s another snippet. Enjoy!

I lean against the bar next to Luna, elbowing a guy with flip-flops and long hair. He looks at me like he’s gonna say something, but changes his mind pretty fast. Luna doesn’t notice.

“You come all the way down here to drink alone, detective?” I say.

She turns and looks at me, her mass of curls bouncing. Then she laughs.

“I’m not alone,” she says, her warm brown eyes dancing. “This place is practically overflowing.”

Luna’s leaning against the bar with her forearms, wearing a sleeveless shirt and shorts, her skin pale gold. I have to fight the urge to lick her shoulder.

Then she looks at my drink, and raises one eyebrow.

“Your latest married conquest buy that for you?” she asks, tilting her head just a little to one side.

Even though our eyes are locked, I can tell she’s checking me out again. I fight the urge to pull on the collar of my t-shirt under my jacket, just to make sure none of my ink is showing.

“Because it’s purple and has a cherry?” I ask, and take a sip.

“I had you figured for the gruff, whiskey-on-the-rocks type,” Luna says. “That’s positively delicate.”

“I’m dainty as fuck,” I say, twisting the stem of the glass between my fingers. “Couldn’t you tell?”

She laughs.

“So you fix cars, surf badly, wear leather jackets, and prefer your drinks purple?” Luna asks.

“I’m complicated,” I say. “Besides, I can make myself a whiskey on the rocks at home. I don’t even know what’s in this thing, but it’s delicious.”

“Looks like the Cheshire Cat took a piss in a martini glass,” she says.

Luna squeezes her eyes shut for a moment, like she’s wincing. Then she laughs.

“I spend too much time around cops,” she says. “Those filthy assholes are wearing off on me.”

“I’m deeply offended,” I deadpan.

“You do strike me as the pearl-clutching type,” she teases. “You write a lot of letters to the editor about how disrespectful the youth of today is?”

“Thousands,” I say. “I live for it, detective.”

The bartender comes over and sets two beers in front of Luna.


I raise my eyebrows, then take another sip of the tasty purple drink to cover my surprise.

“Same tab?” he asks.

Luna just nods.

“Yeah, he owes me,” she says, and the bartender leaves again.

She grabs the beers and turns to me.

“I did tell you my name,” she says. “You don’t have to call me detective, you know.”

I can’t stop wondering who the other beer is for, or whether it’s the he is who owes Luna.

“I had to drag it out of you,” I say. I’m trying to sound light, but my voice sounds a little hollow, even to me. “I thought you might prefer your title, detective.”

“Well, I’ll see you around, mechanic,” she teases.