“Zipper Fall” release party 5: What’s good for the gander is good for the other gander, too.

September 22, 2013

You might think Wyatt is the wild one and Jack is the voice of reason. Jack merely impersonates a rational adult, though. Now I know that picking locks in real life is a lot harder than in fiction, but I couldn’t resist! Watch Wyatt be a bad influence in this excerpt:


SATURDAY afternoon had come and gone, rolling into evening, and I still hadn’t heard from that infuriating, obstinate man. I didn’t want to go out, didn’t want to watch a movie or hang out online; I wanted Jack, and nothing else would do.
“Hey, Wyatt.” Reyna called me later that night. “I got the most unusual phone call.”
“Yeah?” I was parading around my small apartment in a pair of black silk shorts and a ratty, light-blue T-shirt at least a size too large. With the phone stuck to my ear, I continued straightening up those odds-and-ends that tend to accumulate over a period of several days.
“Yeah. Azurri called. He wanted to ask some personal questions about you.”
“Oh yeah?” I perked up immediately. “Like what?”
“I can’t tell you that.” She giggled. “Oh, nothing harmful, don’t worry too much. It’s just, if I told him about you, he’d tell me about Auguste. They went to school together.”
My heart sank. “Reyna! Did you sell me out?”
“No, you pathetic goofball, I’m giving you a heads-up. Why’d he ask about you if he lost interest, right?”
We talked some more, me trying to pull critical information out of Reyna, her working hard not to let anything slip. She succeeded; I failed.
Resigned to my fate of earning my living through honest work, I poured myself a tall glass of beer, and once its head settled, I navigated it over to the coffee table, where I left my laptop. I settled on the sofa and got to work. The Novack proposal was beginning to look good. He wanted to target novelty seekers and the lunch crowd. For his crepes, he’d do best to advertise with the Francophiles in the area. Over the next two hours I compiled an exhaustive list of French teachers, as well as local schools and translation agencies, and I was about to get started
102 KATE PAVELLE on travel agencies when my ears picked up suspicious noises from my
front door.
Somebody was trying to pick my lock. That bastard.
Karma was out to get me in this life instead of the next. Payback was imminent. I tiptoed to the door, grabbed my old baseball bat off the coat rack, and listened to the burglar’s effort from the other side. I snickered—what a bumbler. Really, my locks were pretty average. I saw no need to draw attention to myself by indulging in high-tech security. A peek out my peephole didn’t show anything, since whoever was trying to burgle me was either bent over or kneeling on the floor. I was just about to call them on their incompetence and laugh in their face when I heard the tumblers align and fall in place, and the door swung open.
I jumped back, the baseball bat at the ready on my shoulder. I crouched behind the opened door, waiting to see who it was so I could whack them a good one for their trouble.
Tall, brown hair…. “Jack?” My voice rose, and he turned, startled.
His eyes widened at the sight of the weapon. Then I saw him relax and push the bat down with his long arm. “Hey, Gaudens. Should I also greet you with a baseball bat?”
I cleared my throat. “As I recall, you greeted me with a gun and tied me to a chair.”
“I guess turn-about is fair play.” He shrugged, sauntered over to the dining nook right off the kitchen, and set a brown paper bag on the table.
I shut the door behind him, turned the lock, and hung the baseball bat back in its place on the coat rack. “Why… why didn’t you call first?” Being fair-minded, I didn’t ask him why he didn’t knock.
“Why should I call?” he asked. “You never do.”
“Actually I always call before I break in, to make sure nobody’s there. Then I knock for good measure. That one time you were asleep. Your phone must have been turned off.”

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