Friday, June 18, 2010

Saturday Snippet: Secondary Characters

Today's Saturday Snippet theme is secondary characters. Boy do I have a great secondary character: Gizmo the talking cat.

After meeting Gizmo, I'm not so sure I want my cats to talk. I imagine they'd be just as sassy and back-talking as him.


© Copyright ASHLEY LADD, 2006.

All Rights Reserved, Ellora's Cave, Inc.

They must have trudged five miles over the arduous hills when a thunderous sound startled her. A moment later, wide-winged dragons straddled by primitive warriors roared from behind a mountain.

Her hand trembling, she pointed at the sky even as she squatted down in self-defense. “Oh my God, Giz. Do you see what I see?”

The cat gulped and he covered his eyes with his paws. “If you see big flying dinosaurs, uh huh.”

When one of the gigantic winged creatures nose-dived not far distant, Gizmo threw himself to the ground, covered his head, and hissed, “Hit the deck and don’t make a sound.”

Way ahead of him, she flung herself to the rocky terrain.

A lyrical voice announced out of nowhere, “You have walked six point two miles, seven-thousand three-hundred, twenty-one steps.”

Cripes! Her bigmouth pedometer chose this moment to go off?

Yanking the lousy thing off her elastic waistband, she dashed it to the ground. “Thanks for nothing.” The least it could do was tell her how many calories she’d burned or sing a decent song, instead of that funky aerobic workout music.

One of the flying lizards picked that instant to spin and make eye contact. Baring its filthy, razor-sharp teeth, the beast swooped down from the air, swallowed her pedometer, and then plucked her from the ground.

The no-good gadget kept chirping from inside the monster’s belly, mocking her. At least, it had gotten its just rewards, having given away her location to the fiend.

Kicking and struggling with all her might, she screamed, “Gizmo!”

She clawed at her barbaric captor’s eyes. “Put me down!”

The armor-clad creep astride the dragon guffawed and clamped meaty vice-like hands around her wrists pinning them to her side. His malevolent beady-eyed gaze bore into her. “Keep this up, wench, and I’ll drop you here—from a thousand meters. Your pretty face will get all mangled.”

The dragon turned its reptilian face to leer and dipped its right wing so that she would have tumbled off if not for the brute’s slimy hold. Then it snorted a fireball in her direction that fried the bush a mere foot to her right.

She got the message that she was their guest—or their Bar-B-Q. “What do you want with me? I have no money. This is dollar-store jewelry, but it’s all yours.”

“You will inform the King whose army you are spying for.” He fingered her tousled hair and grunted. “What kingdom has blue-haired nymphs?”

Then he tugged at her psychedelic nurse’s tunic. “And what matter of outlandish garb is this? What form of material?”

Army? Kingdom? Nymph?

She glanced down at her hot pink, cotton-blend tunic that rained cats and dogs. Should she give him her employer’s name? In the war movies the prisoners offered their name, rank, and serial number. “I’m Rebecca Weiss, I’m an office manager for a pediatric clinic, and I’m not giving you my social security number and having you steal my identity.”

“Stay cool, Becca! We’ll get out of this.” Gizmo yelled from the back of another dragon as it pulled around them.

The man’s bushy uni-brow puckered. “You speak in strange riddles. You will be truthful with King Heinrich or you will be locked in the dungeon.”

Dungeons? Dragons? King Heinrich?

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LM Preston said...

That cover is beautiful. I also love the flavor of the dialogue.

Unknown said...

Gorgeous cover, Ashley. No I wouldn't want my cat talking either! :)

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