Shift – That Was Awkward

Continued from scene sixty-four


Shapeshift with me, she said. You’ll love it, she said.

Jeff was right; I was losing it. And my old life was starting to look pretty good right now.

This underground labyrinth, the killing room, worldwide tribes ready to go to war with one anoth––

“Christian!” yelled Karen over the corridor speaker. “That’s enough. There will be no war.”

“Fuck! How did you do that without touching me? You promised not to read me. Remember?”

“You’re thinking out loud over the hallway security system, idiot. Now come to my office so we can talk.”

I lifted my finger toward the camera in preparation for my response, shook it a few times, then awkwardly twisted it around in a slow swirl until it was by my side again. I had nothing.

To be continued…

Shift is an online work of fiction.

This is the first draft of my manuscript Shift – Don’t judge a book by its cover. I am writing it online in sections as I go. So feel free to comment, good or bad. If you see mistakes, point them out.

The story centers around shapeshifting.

I’m currently working on chapter nine.

Shift – Fools

Continued from scene sixty-three


“So let me get this straight. In the coming weeks, I’m getting married, going on a honeymoon, and attending a shifters LARP with my pregnant wife. Carrying a weapon not made of foam?”

“Yep.”

“That’s all you’ve got to say?”

“Christian, I’d be losing my shit, too, if I were you.”

“You know, I liked your one-word answer better.”

“Doc, this boy needs a bachelor party soon, or he’s not going to make it to the wedding. Look at him. He’s a mess.

“Got it all set up for next Friday if he can hold it together until then.”

“I can hold it together.”

Nicky looked at the three of us, shaking her head. “Christian’s character profile. Fool. Jeff’s character profile. Fool. Doc’s character pro––.”

“Don’t say it if you want to keep your job.”

“FOOL.

“You can’t function without me, Doc.”

She was right, and he knew it as she walked by him on her way out.

“I thought someone was bringing breakfast?” he bellowed.

“Me too. Christian, call that wife of yours and see what the hold up is.”

“Sure thing.”

As I closed the door behind me, I overheard them both.

“He’s not coming back, is he?”

“Nope.”

Continue to scene sixty-five

Shift is an online work of fiction.

This is the first draft of my manuscript Shift – Don’t judge a book by its cover. I am writing it online in sections as I go. So feel free to comment, good or bad. If you see mistakes, point them out.

The story centers around shapeshifting.

I’m currently working on chapter nine.

Shift – LARP

Continued from scene sixty-two


Chapter Ten

“Robert, are all Elysians accounted for?”

“Yes, Chief. They’re all home.”

“What about Maggie Reid?”

“She’s taken possession of the Walker Road property, But her house is still in the planning stages.”

“Where’s she living?”

“Mick Turner offered up a room in his house.”

“He did, did he,” she replied with a smile and gentle touch to my leg.

Robert smiled back. “He did.”

“Maybe we should hold off on that house for a while.

“Jeff, have we reached capacity?”

“Yes, Mame. Food, medical, weapons, comms, you name it; we’ve got it.”

“Linda, how are things on your end?”

“Weddings covered.”

“Thank you. But I was referring to The Gathering of Chiefs.”

“Every tribe agreed. The meeting will take place four weeks from today, on the 11th, under the guise of our yearly invitation-only LARP.”

“And this year’s name?”

“You’re not going to like it, but Ghost said they would not attend otherwise.”

“Did they agree to the location?”

“Yes.”

“And the name is?”

“Dark Night.”

You could have heard a pin drop as we waited for her response.

“Not all chiefs agreed.”

“Who are you referring to?”

“I’m referring to me.”

“Chief, we’ll leave the room so you and Linda can discuss this privately?”

“Sit down, Robert.

“Let me make this clear to all. If discretion is given in the future, I hope you will use that discretion to inform me of anything out of the norm.”

“They would have not come otherwise, Chief.”

“Thank you all for coming this morning. Nicky, if you will, please put together a list of all those attending this year’s Dark Night event. Along with character details.

“Linda, come with me. The rest of you are free to stay. Breakfast should be here, shortly.”

As they left the room I asked, “Jeff, what the hell is a LARP?”

“Live Action Role Play. You know, foam swords and magic spells.”

I raised my palm to forehead.

“LARP is bigger than you think, Christian. It’s played worldwide and the perfect cover for a large gathering of shifters.”

Sliding my hand down, I looked through fingers and replied, “I’m sure it is.”

“One thing you should remember, though.”

“What’s that?”

“The weapons at our LARP will not be made of foam.”

Continue to scene sixty-four

Shift is an online work of fiction.

This is the first draft of my manuscript Shift – Don’t judge a book by its cover. I am writing it online in sections as I go. So feel free to comment, good or bad. If you see mistakes, point them out.

The story centers around shapeshifting.

I’m currently working on chapter nine.

Shift – Red Lips

Continued from scene sixty-one


When I arrived home later that day, dinner was ready, and Karen sat across from me, her lips accentuated in red.

“How did your day go?”

“Fine.” I answered cautiously.

“Just fine?”

“Yep.”

“Baby, what’s wrong.”

“What’s wrong with you? A black dress, red lipstick, dinner. What’s the catch?”

“No catch. I just wanted to make up for the way I acted last night. That’s all.”

“No need; like I said, I’m fine.”

“Don’t be like that. Talk to me.”

“We kissed when I walked through the door, so you already know. Now, if you will excuse me. Billy Jenkins wore my man brain down this afternoon. And I need a nap.”

“I did not read you.”

“I know.”

“Then why did you say I did?”

“I wanted to hear you say it.”

“Why?”

“Because I prefer your voice over your thoughts, the mystery of your smile, and unknown whispers from beautiful red lips.”

She blushed silently.

“Karen, I will never read you from this point on, and I do not want to be read. Understand?”

“Yes,” she replied, “you have my word.”

Continue to scene sixty-three

Shift is an online work of fiction.

This is the first draft of my manuscript Shift – Don’t judge a book by its cover. I am writing it online in sections as I go. So feel free to comment, good or bad. If you see mistakes, point them out.

The story centers around shapeshifting.

I’m currently working on chapter nine.

Shift – Practice Makes Perfect

Continued from scene fifty-nine


The truth is, I didn’t want to practice. I wanted to do whatever without learning the specifics.

When I was younger, I built an ultralight airplane, and my flight instructor told me to fly a few feet off the runway, then land. But I was having none of that and took to the skies. It was awesome and so easy; until I had to land. Turns out those specifics would have saved my landing gear.

But practice, I must according to Olivia. So there I sat, a few hours later, across from billy Jenkins playing brain games and thinking I would rather be flying.

Jenkins seemed amused with this and held out his arms like wings. Then abruptly crashed onto the floor, laughing.

Continue to scene sixty-one

Shift is an online work of fiction.

This is the first draft of my manuscript Shift – Don’t judge a book by its cover. I am writing it online in sections as I go. So feel free to comment, good or bad. If you see mistakes, point them out.

The story centers around shapeshifting.

I’m currently working on chapter nine.

Shift – Focus

Continued from scene fifty-eight


“Oh, she’s a funny one, that girl of mine. The Jenkins’s boy just turned seven,” I said to myself on the way over to Olivia’s.

“Good morning, Christian. How are we feeling today?”

“I’m not in the mood. Can we just get started?”

“I suppose. Today’s lesson will be on thoughts and memories. So follow me into the kitchen.”

“You wouldn’t happen to have any orange juice, would you?”

“Have a seat, she said, brushing me on her way to the refrigerator. “You know, when we touch, our brains are bombarded with a wealth of information which can be overwhelming if not processed correctly.

“You’re experiencing this as we speak, but somehow, you already know I’m out of orange juice. Even though I walked toward the refrigerator as if I did. Why do you think that is?”

“I was focused on orange juice, I guess.”

“Why guess? You could have scanned me for the right answer. But you are correct. Sometimes, we overlook another person’s thoughts because we are so consumed with our own. In this case, you were focused on juice instead of today’s lesson. In Borya’s case, he was focused on a way out of the situation. And that, along with being startled, is why you’re alive today. If he had remained calm, you would be dead, not him.

“For some reason, he took you at your word. And this is why I can not stress enough how important it is to stay focused on your goal when reading someone. Understand?”

I nodded with a dry mouth.

“Alright, then let’s move on to memories. Carol will be here around noon, and I want you ready to go head to head with her son.”

“Oh, we got two comedians in the tribe.”

“Now, don’t be like that; little Billy needs some practice too.”

Continue to scene sixty

Shift is an online work of fiction.

This is the first draft of my manuscript Shift – Don’t judge a book by its cover. I am writing it online in sections as I go. So feel free to comment, good or bad. If you see mistakes, point them out.

The story centers around shapeshifting.

I’m currently working on chapter nine.

Shift – Secrets

Continued from scene fifty-six


I must admit I felt a little nervous walking through the front door alone. Olivia left when Doc called, and Jeff refused to come in and run cover for me. So my plan was to play the drunk card hard in the hopes I could just go to bed. But It didn’t work. Karen grabbed my arm as soon as I walked across the threshold.

“So let me be clear, Olivia has known about Jeff’s little bar for quite some time. She pretends not to so he can have his space, and I will not tell him otherwise. The same for Doc, who’s a terrible liar.

“I’m a gullible female who’s easily fooled for all they know. But you know that’s not true. Don’t you?”

Before I could answer, she retreated to the bedroom, pointing to the couch along the way.

But you will, I thought. Jeff’s words were coming true, and my buzz was wearing off. Sleep was not going to come as quickly as I had hoped.

Continue to scene fifty-eight

Shift is an online work of fiction.

This is the first draft of my manuscript Shift – Don’t judge a book by its cover. I am writing it online in sections as I go. So feel free to comment, good or bad. If you see mistakes, point them out.

The story centers around shapeshifting.

I’m currently working on chapter nine.

Shift – Open Book

Continued from scene fifty-five


“How’s it a secret? Olivia can scan your memories.”

“True, but she doesn’t. Do you scan Karen’s every time you touch?”

“No, but I could.”

“True again, but you don’t. Why?”

“Never felt the need to.”

“Exactly.

“Secrets are hard to come by in our world, so finding a soulmate who trusts you is something special. And it would be a damn shame to lose it over a hidden bar.”

“So why hide it from her in the first place?”

“Being an open book leaves me feeling––let’s just say somewhat controlled. So tearing out a few pages evens things out for me mentally.”

“I get it.”

“I don’t think you do, but you will. Now let’s head back over to your house. Doc should have already called Karen to apologize for getting you drunk.

“Said you and him were even now.”

“How did he know I was drunk?”

“Sent him a text when I heard the beat to Stayin Alive. The walls are not soundproof you know.”

“We should probably look into that, don’t you think?”

Continued to scene fifty-seven

Shift is an online work of fiction.

This is the first draft of my manuscript Shift – Don’t judge a book by its cover. I am writing it online in sections as I go. So feel free to comment, good or bad. If you see mistakes, point them out.

The story centers around shapeshifting.

I’m currently working on chapter nine.

Shift – Hours Later

Continued from scene fifty-four


Hours later, I was shifting from body to body, dancing to the jukebox, and getting pretty good at it too. Having Olivia mentor me was paying off.

Without hesitation, I could do it in any position without collapsing to the floor. Although I’ll have to admit, I did miss the exhilaration of my first shift.

But whatever, I was scanning memories, learning new skills, gaining knowledge. And did I mention dancing? I was damn good at it.

“Got me a little blackmail photo now,” came a voice from behind as Jeff’s camera flashed, lighting up in the mirror between a row of unopened bottles.

Jumping down from the bar, I quickly shut off the music and returned to my original. “Funny,” I said.

“Not meant to be.”

“How did you know I was down here?”

“After fixing the mess, you made with Karen, Olivia got worried. She was expecting to find you outside when she arrived. And when you failed to show up hours later, they both got concerned and called me.

“So whatcha got to say for yourself, Travolta?”

“Sorry, Jeff, I’ll pay you for the liquor.”

“I’m not worried about the liquor. I’m worried your drunk ass is going to expose my hideaway.

“So tell me, where did you get the alcohol? And I do not want to hear Jeff’s secret bar.”

Continue to scene fifty-six

Shift is an online work of fiction.

This is the first draft of my manuscript Shift – Don’t judge a book by its cover. I am writing it online in sections as I go. So feel free to comment, good or bad. If you see mistakes, point them out.

The story centers around shapeshifting.

I’m currently working on chapter nine.

Shift – Deer In Headlights

Continued from scene fifty-three


Karen was standing in front of the mirror when I returned home later that night. And before I could say anything, she asked, “Can you see it?” holding up her shirt. “I’m getting fat.”

I thought long and hard before answering.

“You’re still looking good, babe. And that stomach of yours is as flat as ever,” I said cleverly.

I should have thought longer.

“So you think I’ll be ugly when it’s not flat?”

“I didn’t say that.”

“Then what did you say?”

I was like a deer in headlights from that point on, not knowing what to do as she cried, yelled, and screamed before slamming the bathroom door.

As the picture next to it precariously hung from the wall, I pulled out my phone. “Olivia, this is Christian. Could you come over? I’ve got a little situation here.”

“Don’t worry, I will be there shortly,” she replied.

“Should I go over to the door and comfort her?”

“Sweetie, it’s best you step outside for a while.”

And so I did. All the way to the abandoned farmhouse, where I stuck an old rusty screw between two blocks, opening the bar’s door. After pouring a shot, I held the glass high. The old man wasn’t so crazy after all.

Continue to scene fifty-five

Shift is an online work of fiction.

This is the first draft of my manuscript Shift – Don’t judge a book by its cover. I am writing it online in sections as I go. So feel free to comment, good or bad. If you see mistakes, point them out.

The story centers around shapeshifting.

I’m currently working on chapter nine.