Stop that man #mfrwhooks

Last week in Alien Contact for Kid Sisters we met the antagonist, Sergeant Squitt of the Kwadra Island Gendarmerie, who is herself up to no good, and on a much bigger scale than our hero, Quinn. He reacts quickly to her appearance at the open air table where he is selling fake wood carvings.

An orca fin housing a camera and stun beam sat atop her helmet. Quinn stuck out his tongue at the camera and then, before she could demand his nonexistent business license, he upended the table, shattering priceless, phony carvings, knocking Squitt on her ass, and sending the twenty-dollar bills he held fluttering toward the ground. Quinn plucked the bills out of midair, kissed them, and ran.

Only a few steps, though. His escape hatch — he always had an escape hatch when pulling a scam — lay in the opposite direction, beyond where Squitt struggled underneath the table. Instead of escaping right away, though, he bent down to grab a mask and a totem pole that hadn’t broken. He shoved them in the White Sox fan’s arms and ruffled the boy’s hair.

“A gift, kid, from my world to yours.”

The delay gave Squitt almost enough time to climb from underneath the table. Quinn shoved it back down with one foot, trapping her again. Then he stomped across the table, drawing satisfying oofs from the gendarme.

He leaped down and extended a hand to help her up. Squitt glared, angrier than he’d ever seen her. For some reason — maybe it was bad breath? — he always seemed to infuriate her.

She raised her hand to accept his help. Grinning, Quinn snatched it away.

He’d dallied a second too long; tourists had gathered to watch the commotion. As he shoved through the crowd, apologizing to everyone he bumped, he heard a crash as Squitt flung the table aside. She roared. Yep, angrier than usual.

“Stop that man,” she bellowed — but in Shanoog, which the tourists didn’t understand. No one stopped him.

Be sure to check out the hooks by other great writers in the Book Hooks blog hop.

Alien Contact for Kid Sisters

Fleeing murderous rebels, the queen’s sister finds a hero to save her.
Or is he kidnapping her, instead?

Marianne is sick and tired of being just the kid sister of the famous queen of Kwadra Island. Although she daydreams about being a warrior, when rebels bomb the royal ball she’s shunted to one of the many tunnels that honeycomb Kwadra, where she awaits a captain of the valiant Royal Guardians.

Quinn, a scam artist fleeing the police, dons the uniform of a Royal Guardian killed by a tunnel collapse. When Marianne mistakes him for her bodyguard, Quinn can’t decide whether to save the feisty maiden, fall in love with her—or kidnap her. With bloodthirsty rebels pursuing them and a treasure map in his pocket, what will he choose?

18 comments

  1. You’re a master of action scenes, Ed. Great!

    1. I am? I don’t feel like I am.

  2. Great action – and the little detail – she shouts – stop that man – and the tourists don’t respond.
    Tweeted.

  3. henhousepublishing · · Reply

    Quinn’s a bit of a showman.

    1. I’d go so far as to call him a total ham.

  4. Interesting characters.

    1. Thanks. Quinn epitomizes that prankster who’d probably be annoying to know but who works well on the page.

  5. Cathy Brockman · · Reply

    What a fun excerpt. I loved his Shenanigans even in a time of hurry. Great excerpt

    1. He’s never in too much of a hurry to be blind to the possibility of some fun.

  6. Love this excerpt. This is one lovable rogue!

    1. The heroine won’t find him quite so lovable, at least at first.

  7. deesknight · · Reply

    This excerpt is so funny!

    1. The website’s tag is “Science fiction with romance and humor.”

  8. Lucky for him the tourists didn’t understand her. Love the humor!

    1. Much of the time, humor creeps into my stories without conscious intent, due, I guess, to my ironic view of life. Here, though, it’s intentional. I wanted Quinn to be a lovable, happy-go-lucky guy who sails through life with a laugh and a smile.

  9. Having him give the kid the totem pole and mask is a nice touch. It makes him much more sympathetic.

  10. It’s his Save the Cat moment, if you get the reference.

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