Greetings, Loyal Reader!
Another peek at the current draft of the first chapter of the forthcoming Jason Cosmo: NOBLE CAUSE. Picking up directly after the first preview:
“Getting killed can wreck one’s schedule,” said Merc.
“You have no idea,” I said. “At first it was but an ambush here, a drive-by crossbowing there. But it reached a point I couldn’t walk to the pub without a running street battle. I’ve lost three homes in as many weeks. And forget spending a romantic evening with Sapphrina. Nothing spoils the mood like Nynja assassins coming through the skylight!”
Merc shrugged. “Depends what mood you’re going for.” He leaned close and said in a conspiratorial tone, “I can clear your calendar if you’d like.” He snapped his fingers, giving off a blue spark of mystic energy. “One shot, the way they’re bunched together.”
He wasn’t called Boltblaster for nothing.
“No, Merc!” I said hastily. “I have to fight my own fights or I’ll never live down my reputation as the most feared man in the Eleven Kingdoms!”
“That almost makes sense,” said Merc. “But not quite.”
“It’s the principle,” I said. “This standing engagement every Whooshday morning has really cut down on random attacks and ambushes. I won’t say I’ve scotched them all, but if word gets around you’re blasting my foes wholesale, no one will play along. Then I’m right back where I started.”
“Fair enough. So how can I help?”
“Just call the list. My usual assistant is ill today.”
Merc studied a sheaf of papers attached to the clipboard I handed him. “Appointments? I thought you took all comers.”
“Yes, but I give preference to those who sign up in advance.”
Merc rolled his eyes.
“Well, what would you do, Merc?”
“I’d find those who want to kill me and hunt them down first.”
“I’m the Champion of The Gods, Merc! I can’t do that if I’m to convince the world I’m one of the good guys.”
“Good reputation is overrated,” said Merc. “But as you will.”