Excerpt--Invasion of the Alien Dust Bunnies
Barnes & Noble
Someone rapped at Rick Shilling's outer door, waking him from a deep sleep. "Coming," he yelled. The idea of someone bugging him in the middle of the night ticked him off, because he was having a wonderful argument with Lyra in his dream. And for once, he was winning. He almost had her to the place where she could admit she was madly in love with him.
But in reality, it wasn't meant to be. She still lived in the big house next door and still dated Conor. Every night, Conor would visit until all hours of the morning and then would go home. They weren't doing anything out of the ordinary--mostly watching television and eating popcorn, but Rick was jealous. No, he was more than jealous. He was a stalker, watching her through her sliding glass windows to make sure Conor didn't do anything wrong. Thus, Rick always went to bed late, because he had to keep an eye on his neighbor and coworker, Lyra.
Rick shuffled in his bare feet down the stairs in his home to the front door. The doorbell rang and someone knocked, yet again. "Coming. Geesh! You'd think it was the end of the world or something."
"It is," came a male voice from the other side of the door. "Hurry up or they'll kidnap me again."
Oh brother. A client? That's all he needed. "Yeah, yeah, yeah. They all say that." Rick unlocked both locks on the door.
But before he could turn the knob, the door burst open and a man, dressed in pajamas, ran inside. "Quick. Hide me. I'll go anywhere you can store me, just to stay safe." He danced a bit, crossing his legs. "But first, do you have a bathroom?"
Rick pointed toward the downstairs bathroom, right off the foyer. "Hurry up. I want to go back to bed and can't be bugged with freaky-deeky clients right now."
The guy ran into the bathroom and slammed the door. Moans of relief came from inside the bathroom, but Rick wasn't impressed. Instead, he ambled into the kitchen and began making a few cups of coffee. He was going to need it. Reality descended into his brain. He realized he probably shouldn't be alone with a man dressed in pajamas, or the neighbors--and Lyra--might talk. So he grabbed the phone on the wall and made a call.
"Huh?" was the answer from other end of the phone.
"Neville, I have a client. I need help." Rick yawned.
"At 1:45 in the morning? What time did you finally come home from watching Lyra?"
"You're not to know about that."
Neville sighed. "Everyone in the neighborhood knows, considering the cops almost arrested you last night. What time?"
"The cops brought me back around midnight, then I was at Lyra's until after one. I'm tired. And this yahoo client wants me to hide him or something." Rick heard a noise and turned around.
The yahoo client stood in front of him with the knife from the kitchen wooden knife block in his hand. Rick wasn't impressed. "Get over here," he said to Neville over the phone. "Yahoo thinks he's Rambo or something and is wielding a knife." He ended the call and covered his mouth when he yawned. "Put that thing away. This isn't the time for heroics."
"Hide me or I'll kill you."
"Stupid man," Rick said. "If you kill me, everyone's going to be after you." He pointed toward the knife. "Your prints are on the handle." Didn't he watch cop shows?
"I don't have any prints. The dust bunnies stole them from me, to give to my clone."
Rick's brain kicked into gear and woke up. This guy just became a lot more interesting.
Copyright © 2006- Paige Ryter
All Rights Reserved.