Jane completed and epublished one book: Callie London’s Vampire Adventures Episode 1: When Push Comes to Shove. As of today, 10/20/2017, it’s still up in the form in which she published it. She was working on rewrites and a sequel. After her diagnosis, she talked to Per Bastet about republishing it in its new form and paying any royalties to the brother who was caring for her. There wasn’t time to take care of that. After a while, I’ll ask him if wants to follow through on the plan, since I’m nearly certain he’s her literary heir/executor.
Meanwhile, here’s Callie:
In Vampire parlance, Pushing is what Folk do when they need to get a drink and don’t want to leave behind any incriminating evidence. They just make their new friend forget they were ever there. What? ME a vampire? No way!
But what if every human one runs across seems to have been Pushed in some way? And not a soul of them is up to any good? Which of the Folk is responsible, and what can this possibly be leading to?
Callie London is certain there’s Something Bad Going On! If only she can figure it out fast enough to keep herself and her vampire girlfriends from getting themselves killed. Callie never dreams she is about to become privy to an ancient Vampire Secret. Shhh! No one can ever know! Soon she and her friends are fang deep in bewildering vampire politics.
It’s the Kentucky Derby, and everyone knows that in Louisville, Kentucky, anything can happen at Derby time. Even though it’s spring, events begin to snowball. Callie’s adventures start with fireworks and tumble into exciting horse races at Churchill Downs, several assassination attempts, and a hair-raising cruise aboard the Belle of Louisville steamboat.
And When Push Comes to Shove, where will it all end? Take the adventure with Callie and find out!
I was sure Selene had Pushed me by the time I was only halfway through my explanations to the girls. They had stopped asking questions and were simply looking at me intently. We were in a booth at the Brewery (try to say that when you’re drunk), and for just an instant, I thought they might be having trouble hearing me over the noise.
But of course, that wasn’t it. Duh. It was me. I wasn’t making sense. I stopped talking and leaned back on the bench, and the fear just started washing over me. Rosie reached out a hand to reassure me, and I flinched. She squeezed my shoulder instead of withdrawing, and I settled down. Rosie always knows what to do.
Meg said soothingly, “Selene lied to you. Lies usually don’t hold together so well.”
Lies. Right, lies. I could tell them Selene had lied instead of that I’d been Pushed. Then they’d be free to think me an utter fool for not challenging Selene on her story while I had the chance.
Damn Elder politics!
“Meg,” I said. “Do a sweep. We have to be totally secure. No one can overhear this.”
Eyes lively, Meg slipped from the booth and worked a full-blown recon of the place. Ten minutes later, she slid back into her seat.
“Clear. Now what?”
“I am only going to say this once,” I said softly. “Afterwards, none of us will say it again, neither amongst ourselves, nor to anyone else. If—and I do mean if—we refer to this again, it will be by codeword only. Agreed?”
My compatriots consulted each other with quick looks, then turned to me and held out their little fingers to picky-swear. Solemnly, this sacred function was performed.
“Okay, now. Give! Give!”
They were as eager as puppies. No wonder. In a vampire’s lifetime, the truly New is a great event.
“Selene told me,” I said bluntly, “that vampires can be Pushed.”
Breathing ceased. Seconds ticked by. The news was bad. I knew my friends were immediately trying to review their own histories to see if it could’ve happened to them.
Finally, Rosie looked up and said, “This is terrifying.”
I’m proud and happy that Jane included me and Sara (yes, that’s grammatically correct) under the names of Rosie and Meg.
If you were to go buy a copy of Callie for the low, low price of $3.99, with the royalties going to her estate (i.e. her brother), that would tickle me pink — which, by the way, was Jane’s favorite color. I know, I’m scratching my head, too, right?
A WRITING PROMPT FOR YOU: A character finds out they’ve been manipulated.