3200-word steampunk mystery
Dr. Lucia Crosswire receives a request from the Mont Saint-Vogel monastery to investigate a strange occurrence in their secret library, which contains every prophecy known to man.
Available to download FREE through Mar 31, 2016 in:
UP AND COMING: STORIES BY THE 2016-ELIGIBLE AUTHORS anthology
Published: March 2016
On a seaside cliff on the far edge of town, a single gas lamp sent Dr. Lucia Crosswire’s thin shadow cowering into the tangled pines. Her heels crunched steadily along the winding cobblestones, and a well-fed rat darted across the path, screeching at the disturbance to its nocturnal traipsing.
Nighttime strolls along the outskirts of Clifton weren’t generally advisable for an unaccompanied lady, but Lucia wasn’t concerned. With her pistol securely in its strap upon her leather tool belt and her newly invented electroshock weapon at her other hip, she was confident that she’d come out ahead in any altercation. Besides, the townsfolk of Clifton were highly superstitious when it came to the reclusive monks of Mont Saint-Vogel. Rarely did young ne’er-do-wells trespass on the monastery’s hallowed ground and certainly never after dusk.
Even the forest itself seemed to cower from the expansive hilltop monastery, its pines bending outward from the stone pillars and walls. Far above the arched entrance, an angel held a balance, its trays askew. Thou art weighed in the balances and art found wanting.
Lucia pulled her cloak tightly to herself, her tools and instruments clanking in the many pockets.