Friday, November 16, 2007
Day 15: 5014 (26120 book, 143,205 total)
We are running out of time here. Unless something drastically changes, Russ will be leaving for New York next Friday. I don't know when he'll be able to come back. It's just not a good situation. There is a faint, little whisper of a hope that he might be offered a job tomorrow in Omaha. It has to be enough of a job to make this work, or else he has to take the job in New York. We are out of options.
This, of course, affects every part of life. NaNo really doesn't mean much when you're faced with someone you've lived with for thirty years moving away. We're not even sure how we're going to manage that, since I will need things here. My last check (the only one I'll have until the middle of next month again) just went to keep things covered for a while longer. It did not cover the bills due now or buying food. We hope for a small check tomorrow. And we hope for a little miracle so that we can actually stay together. No matter what, we can't both go.
So, it's a miserable time. We'll get through it, but it's not easy.
Writing, as always, helps takes my mind off the troubling stuff, so that's why I'm still doing any work on NaNo at all. I don't know if I'll go on through the end of the month. We'll see what happens, and how things settle.
But here's the snippet for the day. Oddly, this particular book seems to be going very well. I even have several notes for tomorrow's work as well.
"Thank God you're all right," he said, and seemed to mean it. He'd keyed on the pause again. "Thank God both of you are. You gave us one hell of a scare."
"My fault, sir. I knew that we were in a situation where the person behind all this had far too easy access to us. It was the best I could do to ensure we did get out alive."
"I'm glad of it," he said.
"I think I know a little bit more now about how the original bombing was done," Zerod said. He had the man's attention. "It was much the same as what happened below the hotel. A robo -- probably a normal service type -- was already rigged with a trigger. Our person only had to aim it at a door he'd already set with explosives as well. The two combined created the explosion. I think it was likely timed. And I think, sir, that the man would not have trusted that one robo would be free at the time. I want to check the rest."
"Others set to explode, too?" Claudian said. He looked worried.
"We checked them already," Royce said, but he frowned. "But we were looking for explosives. If it's only half the answer, then maybe we missed it. I'm willing to go over them again. They've all been pulled off anyway. We didn't trust anything after the explosion."
"Wise." Zerod said.
"Let me know what you learn," Claudian said, his hand over the computer again. "And be careful."
They stepped back out of the office and into a hall where there were more people working now. It seemed more normal, and that worried Zerod, who still wasn't certain where the enemy might strike next.
"I'm going back to my people," Cailin said. "I have work to do."
She patted his arm -- and he worried about her going out there alone. But hell, it wasn't like she'd been safe with him. He gave her a nod and thought he saw a little worry in her eyes as well.
"I'll see you later," she said and then turned to Royce, who had one eyebrow raised and was, plainly, trying not to smirk. "Don't say it," she warned.
"I wouldn't dare," Royce replied, and seemed to mean it. "Be careful."
She nodded and left, walking past Kenzie who was heading their way. She looked back at the elevator and shook her head and grinned, obviously showing how glad she was to get out before Kenzie had arrived.
One of the officer workers noted it, and Zerod felt a definite hint of amusement there. It was all he could do to keep from smiling. Kenzie was not a person you smiled at when you met her, and especially not the mood she was in. He could feel her anger from a dozen steps away.
But beneath that, he felt growing panic -- so strong an undercurrent that it was all she could do not to run and hide. It was chilling.
"Why have you not found any answers?" she demanded, looking straight at him. She plainly expected nothing from her brother. "Why are you here, when you should be --"
"We are headed to check something now, Kenzie," Royce said.
"That's not good enough. People are in danger," she said, looking from her brother and back to him.
"I am well aware of the danger," Zerod said, keeping his voice neutral, though that was not going to help her anger. "I am also aware that discussing it with you will not get us any farther."
Her eyes went wide and panic surged up so quickly that even Royce could see it this time. Was she that worried about something she couldn't control? He'd known people like her before, though none quite so fixated on themselves.
"We have work to do," Royce said. He started away, and Zerod followed with the odd feeling that they had barely gotten away from a dangerous situation. It was an odd feeling. He wasn't usually bothered by people in power, but for some reason, Kenzie radiated a dangerous combination of power and someone on the edge of losing control.
He looked back at her when they reached the elevator. She was talking to someone from the staff, her back straight and her face stern. But it was a mask and he knew it.
He and Royce slipped into the elevator and Royce quickly keyed in the destination, which was a couple floors below ground level. Between elevators and basements, he thought maybe he wouldn't mind a walk in the woods so much after all.
They stepped out into a narrow, cement walled hall. The lights, at least were bright down here.
"So," Royce said as they started away. "You actually like my sister, huh?"
The question took him so much by surprised that he actually sputtered. "Why in Gods name would you think I like --"
And stopped. Not Kenzie. They were not talking about Kenzie.
"You mean Cailin. Cailin is your sister."
"Yes, of course." He looked sideways at Zerod, his brows drawn down -- and then they rose again as he laughed. "God. You thought I meant Kenzie. No wonder that bothered you so much!"
"I didn't know Cailin was your sister."
"Half sister. You didn't study the family history?"
"Not that deeply," he admitted. "I was more interested in business troubles."