Malina and Petyr

An excerpt from Drowning Above Water.

“You’re so pretty,” Malina said as she ran her hands along Petyr’s blonde hair. “Your mother must have been beautiful.”

“I don’t know,” he said. “I don’t remember. But I think so.”

“I bet your babies will be pretty just like you,” she said.

They stretched out on her bed. He gave her space to move and reposition, but managed to keep physical contact with her skin. A finger on a shoulder, a heel on the back of a calf, but he couldn’t let her go. He looked at her. Her eyes were so busy; so much spinning behind them.

“Did you have babies before?” he asked. “When you were home?”

She shook her head.

“I’m sorry,” he said, kissing her forehead. She didn’t pull away from him, but she didn’t return the affection. That’s how it typically was.

“And what about you, my pretty boy? Do you have any babies?” She grinned as she said it. She knew very well he didn’t have any children. She knew he couldn’t imagine lying with any other woman but her.

“No babies. Only you,” he said.

“Yet,” she said. “You just haven’t met the right girl.”

“You are my right girl,” he said.

“Sweet, fantastic boy. So young. So hopeful. I don’t want you to ever learn.”

“You’ve done well this time,” he said. He didn’t mention exactly what he meant. But she knew. There were no pills in the tin in her purse. She had done well this time. He wouldn’t press her.

“Do you think we’ll be old together?” she said, propping herself up to look directly at him. “Grey and fat and limping? Do you think that will be us?

“Of course it will,” he said.

“No,” she shook her head.” You’ll find some heartbreaking girl…or boy, and run away together and never look back.”

He propped himself up to meet her. “Never,” he said. “I will never run away from you.”

“Then I’ll have to push you away when it’s time,” she said, pressing softly at his shoulder.

“You could never,” he said. I wouldn’t go.”

“What if you had to?” she asked.

“I wouldn’t go,” he said.

“I hope not,” she said. “You are what keeps me alive. And smiling for another day.” There was a knock at the door. Malina groaned and rose from the bed. “Make him wait outside for a minute, then let him in,” she said.

“Be careful,” Petyr said, rising to meet her.

“You be careful,” she said. “This is the easy part.” She squeezed his hand and walked off to the bathroom. When he heard that door close, he walked to the hotel room door, opened it, and made sure to close it behind him when he exited.

Drowning Above Water is the new suspense novel from Alyssa Herron. It is available at Amazon. 

Drowning Above Water – an excerpt

Malina and the Dock

Malina’s head felt as if it had been smashed in by a cinderblock. It hurt so much she was convinced that if her neck didn’t keep straining or spasming, her head would simply topple off her body. Her mouth was dry and gritty. She retched onto the floor but there was not enough food or liquid in her system for her to vomit. She only managed a sandy cough. It was stark black inside the trailer. She couldn’t see anything, didn’t know if it was day or night. Her legs ached and begged to move, to rise, but she was afraid to try to stand because she felt fairly certain she couldn’t. The grinding of machinery and wheels in the last hour had awoken her, letting her know that she wasn’t on the water any more. She’d made it across and she had no proof that she was dead. Felt like it. Would have been preferable. But she wasn’t.

Kneeling. That was the thing. Crawling. Try that first. Getting to her hands and knees, she felt moderately stable. But, a few strides later her arms stared to quiver. Another two paces and they collapsed under her. She didn’t know where she was in the tank, so she had to keep moving until she felt metal, which would eventually turn into the metal door. Turning, she sat down and inched her way ahead, using her heels to slide her along and her arms just to keep her from falling backward. It felt like hours. She counted forty-seven pulls until she felt her toes hit metal. Then she adjusted, putting her flank as close as she could to the metal plane. One corrugated segment at a time, she searched for the door. She was weeping with exhaustion.

When she opened her eyes again, she was still lying against the metal. Her face was flat and flush against the wall. She might have been passed out for thirty seconds or the better part of a day. She couldn’t remember where she had been or not been inside the box, so she started her forward scooting again, following her feet. Counting, she pushed forward seventy-two bumps and finally her hand brushed over the horizontal bar of the segmented door. Pulling herself to her knees she grasped the handle in both of her fists and pulled as hard as she could. The door creaked and leaned upward by an inch then flopped back into place. The tears wanted to come again, burning and itching her eyes but Malina disallowed it. With a wobble, she got to her feet, not taking her hands off the bar of the door. Throwing her weight up and back, she screamed as she lifted with everything she had. She laughed when the door slid open only a foot and a blaze of sunlight cut a path into the black trailer. She dropped flat to the ground and started to wiggle under the opening of the door to the other side. She had made it to the dock.

 

(Drowning Above Water is the new novel from Alyssa Herron. It is available now at Amazon.)

Teckla

Drowning Above Water – Teckla – An excerpt

 

From thumb to pinky, his palm nearly spanned her entire back. His other dense, rough hand grabbed her shoulder, to prevent her from considering a movement she would never make. The girls, whatever their intentions on either side, let go of her hands. She couldn’t blame them. The instinct for self-preservation was too strong. She would have done the same. He slid his palm down the length of her spine; down until he held in his open hand the curve of her tail bone. She was so cold. Not all the girls were sweating from the heat. Some, like her, were sweating from the fever of their illnesses. The goose bumps that surfaced along her back he took, in his ego, as a signal of her pleasure. Never would he have considered it was a sign of the pending seizure that would distort her poor febrile body. Keeping his hand flat and weighty against her, he pulled closer and breathed, hot and moist on the back of her neck.

“Who are you?”

She could barely move, but managed to turn her head. She could not quite face him, but at least she was not pressed against the trailer wall.

“Don’t make me ask again, kurwa. Imie!” the Shepard said.    

“My name is Teckla.”

 

 

(Drowning Above is the new novel from author Alyssa Herron.  It lives here at Amazon.)

https://www.amazon.com/Drowning-Above-Water-Alyssa-Herron/dp/0999364707/ref=sr_1_1?s=hpc&ie=UTF8&qid=1506554045&sr=8-1&keywords=alyssa+herron

 

Drowning Above Water – Teckla and Beata

 

     Teckla looked at her mother, in complete shock. She didn’t understand. And she tried. She tried to see past the trailer and the water. She tried to reason past the second gun shot that sounded behind them. She tried to understand why she was getting pushed into a floating coffin that wouldn’t be opened until she crossed an ocean. And one of the only things she could understand was that she’d probably be dead when they opened it.

“Your sister? Grizella?”

Beata grabbed her daughter again, crushing her against her chest. “I love you, baby. This will be better. I promise.” She kissed her daughter and then pushed her out of her arms. The man at the trailer door grabbed Teckla by the hand. Beyond him,  in the trailer, she heard voices. A girl screaming. Crying. The man shoved Teckla by both of her shoulders, making her fall backwards into the trailer. As she hit the ground, he pulled the door down and locked it from the outside with a rusty hook.

  From inside the metal box, pounding echoed.

 Beata ran.

 

 

This is an excerpt from my new novel Drowning Above Water. It is available now at Amazon.

Drowning Above Water – Petyr

 

Petyr sat in his room. It was black except for the glow of the convenience store sign, blazing its light through his grimy window. It seemed like years since he had been here in this hotel. The room was empty. Naked mattress. The only other furniture was a single wooden folding chair with the words Paul G. Fink Funeral Home stenciled on the back. The “landlord” had rented his room the day after he got on the plane, but hadn’t changed the lock. Petyr didn’t have anything here. But it was soothing to him, just to sit there in the dark, waiting.

He heard a rhythmic rubbing sound, soft and close. He looked down and saw that his hands were shaking in his lap, rubbing against the fabric of his pants. At a glance, they were clean. When he looked closer, even in the grey room, he could see blood at the base of his nails and in the wrinkles of his knuckles. There was a large kidney-shaped drop dried in the knuckle of his right middle finger. He rubbed it with his thumb but it didn’t budge. Without thinking, he bent his bloodied finger, stuck it in his mouth and started to suck. He couldn’t taste the blood, so he pulled harder. All he tasted was sweat and dirt. Pulling his lips back from his teeth, he dug them into his skin, pressing down until he finally got the taste of blood on the end of his tongue. Satisfied, he stopped and wiped the wet, spitty, macerated, bloody finger on the chair.

There was no noise outside. Not yet. But he would wait. Abraham knew he was back. He would come looking for Petyr. And then he would go back to kill Grizella. Not right away. Maybe not at all. Or maybe eventually. So, Petyr had to kill him first.

 

Drowning Above Water is available now at Amazon. It lives here:

 https://www.amazon.com/Drowning-Above-Water-Alyssa-Herron/dp/0999364707/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1505090527&sr=8-1&keywords=alyssa%20herron

Drowning Above Water

This is my introduction to two of the characters that took up space in my heart and mind for the last few years.

Malina and Petyr.

I’m sharing some short excerpts from my book along with a bit of these people’s lives. And with that, very likely, also shining a light on some of my own secrets.

Petyr and Malina quietly traveled across the yellow bridge to the east end of the city. The buildings turned from polished metal to rusted metal and from beautiful, established bricks and stone to crumbling buildings that were held together by their paste and inertia alone. Then they drove past streets and structures that had given up all together. Passing several lots that were empty except for garbage and broken shopping carts, they arrived at a multiple story building that seemed to have been erroneously lifted in from another side of town. Their car passed three gigantic luxury vehicles, tanks to protect their money-filled owners. They turned a corner and slowed into the side street behind the building. Dumpsters and dying cars rotted along the sides of the building. Petyr smoothly pulled his car into a tiny space between garbage bins. He got out and stepped around to the passenger’s side where he opened the door for Malina.
She stepped out, her matronly pumps and nude hose immediately drenched in the standing water in the alley. The tall brick building stretched above them. The rain dripped through the drainpipe down to them, splashing water one drop at a time into a puddle at their feet. He hovered over her, reached his arms around her waist, and lifted her out of the wetness. She looked at him with pity—though not only for him—and incredulity.
“Thank you,” Malina said.
Side by side and in quiet, they walked along the rough, stony edges of the building until they got to the dark metal door. She paused and tilted her eyes toward the reflective panel that was small and square and eye-level. It was a door no one would willingly want to enter. The kind of door that would no doubt creak and scream when opening and thud with claustrophobic finality on closing.
Petyr, of course, reached out in front of her to grab the handle.