While I talk very fondly about Elliot, I have to admit, if our characters could kill us, I think he would by now. The first book of the series, Glass Block, destroys a lot of Elliot’s world (no spoilers as to what happens though), but Elliot reveals himself as someone that has lost his innocence already. I think one of the most harrowing things, beyond what he visited on me a few weeks after writing this (W for ‘the Wall’), and the fact that
Here’s a snippet of an early chapter of the book that’s been released before.
Silence filled the gaps with companionable ease, and then was chased from the room by the wave of conversation lapping around them. Elliot took a long draught from his third pint, studying Jack Harper and Morrigan Roth across the table.
The world ran in loops around them – barmaids circling like butterflies, regulars blundering through waspishly, people that had wandered in randomly chased off by the obvious wall of police uniforms and shabby detective suits – a uniform of their own, that wore the stench of stale coffee and the weight of dozens of crime scenes rather than a badge. No aftershave, no bathing and scrubbing every last scrap of it off – nothing could remove that aura. Ex-cops carried it with them for a long time after they left – prolonged if they ended up in another civil support job, pulling elements of it back, opening up an unending scab. It took more than simply purging and letting go to get away from it – the loops that they saw in their private lives reflected in the lies and worlds that shattered around each and every violent crime they tended to.
The three each shared the view that crime scenes, and crime investigation wasn’t ‘giving the dead a voice’ or ‘a face’ or anything else. It was closure, for everyone involved – hollow, guilty, boned out and burned into each person that was touched by it like a deep, covered over scar. Morrigan’s theory was the most elegant of all – the hearts that were now being weighed in the afterlife, also held scars and chunks that had been removed, or deformed because they’d been in contact with a crime scene. Elliot was less elegant – you got scared and scraped and stabbed and mugged and beaten up, by everything. The act of walking down a street that triggered memories were a tiny death in your head, and that your mind was a constant crime scene. Nothing would ever fix that, and that those hearts that go forward for weighing, by Morri’s standards, would be so chipped, shriveled, and damaged that they’d be a sliver of what they were. A small, tiny pile of ash.
His was nothing – empty. His chest a cavernous space where the blood pooled and drained in ebbs and flows. Tide had been in for a while, and the space was filled with pain, and blood – anger drowning in there because the hole was filling in. It’d drown, then rise up again, from out of nowhere, gibbering and out for different blood – had its fill of his, so it’d go looking for others to punish, to make suffer. To marr like him – tear out their hearts, let them drown and rise up agonized, till there was nothing left and everyone felt the same. Then he’d have someone, anyone to talk to. He looked into the glass, grimaced and sighed. Another, longer draft of his now rapidly diminishing pint, feeling it settle acrid in his stomach, and tried to turn his thoughts away from the internal angst that Morri would describe as “Hand *staple* forehead”. She thought the angst was pointless, but she had other things to worry about.
If this has piqued your interest, please do head on over to the Glass Block page and order the book. We release on April 30th!
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