Title: CENTRAL AVALON
Category/Genre: Adult Horror
Word Count: 94,000
My Main Character is most uncomfortable with:
As an unwilling medium, Constance spends most of her life keeping others at a distance, and, as a result, gets squeamish when it comes to sentimentality. If you need a sarcastic quip, she’s your woman. If you’re pressed to find someone to threaten the too-tight pants off the landlady, she’s way ahead of the game. However, if you try getting touchy-feely with her, that’s something she’ll try deflecting like sunbeams off a bad comb over.
Constance is used to solving problems with her fists. Too bad for her those tactics don’t work too well up against the incorporeal. In fact, if the twenty-two-year-old never had to see another ghost again, she might stand a chance at being happy for once in her bitter, sarcastic life….And, yet, when one of her oldest–and only–friends asks her to join his freelance ghost hunting group, she begrudgingly tags along.
The Suppressors are a hapless, hopeless crew of misfits that quickly discover just how much can go wrong when the paranormal comes into play. As they square up against spirits of urban legend, injuries and police shakedowns make it painfully apparent that they’re underfunded, inexperienced, and ill prepared, but, hey, nothing they can’t make up for with a little ingenuity and a lot of instant coffee. But spirits are growing restless, people are going missing, and the longer she spends with the mismatched crew, the more her once-coveted “alone” becomes the last thing she wants. When the team eventually learns that she’s a medium that’d been trying to run from her fate, she’s okay with letting the dorks in on that side of her. They can’t blame her for fighting that life, either–after all, losing a loved one to a malevolent spirit is enough to turn anyone off of the paranormal.
The scales finally appear to tip in the Suppressors’ favor when Central Avalon, a lofty professional parapsychological institute, requests their audience…but Constance is wary of the good news–and she has every right to be. Once inside the institute, they’re immediately entangled in a web of death and deceit, power and experiments…and, now that Constance has found her place among people worth fighting for, it’ll take a lot more than a right hook to get out.
First 250 words:
Blood on her knuckles. Again. The familiarity with which Constance scrubbed the red residue from her hands was borderline unnerving–to her male companions, at least. The way she saw it, it was shaping up to be a regular Tuesday.
There was a method, a well-versed circular pattern to her rubbing that cleansed all trails from her skin. Her precision bore a “standard procedure” air. If she cared more, she’d have excused herself to clean up in the bathroom rather than hunker down at the sink in the mechanic’s coffee station. If. Were it her own blood, she might’ve put forth the effort for privacy to clean any wounds. No, she was perfectly happy letting the scene serve as a challenge, should anyone be watching.
“Pleasant,” Ander sniffed. To his relief, there wasn’t anyone watching; the lone pair of employees were in the garage at work, and the target of the female’s ire had ducked outside to wait in safety.
“What, you’d rather I wipe it off on your shirt?”
“No,” her superior glared, taking a half-step backwards. He figured she wouldn’t actually act on the notion…but he’d prefer a little distance in the off chance she changed her mind. “I’d rather you hadn’t punched that man in the first place. We almost had a customer. Our first. But you decided it’d be a better idea to break his nose.”
“Wait a sec, Ander,” Constance shut off the valve when the final crimson remnants swirled down the drain.