Here it is nearly the second week of the Clarion West Write-a-thon, and alas, I must report that I did not successfully complete my revision of “The Diplomat’s Holiday” — damn thing grew a massive, undigested lump of a flashback yesterday. Now the story’s present and past are out of balance, and I’m not going to be able to fix it in the next hour or so.

The good news is that I just read through my intended Week 2 story, “The Last Taste”, and it turns out the sucker is practically done. I really just need to dial down a sex scene and off it goes to Weird Tales, I think.

So I’m moving on to the second story, with the intent to double back and finish off the first one this week.

The opening paragraphs:

Mariah had spent weeks watching from a distance as the vampire ordered drinks she never raised to her lips. Tonight it was neat scotch. The vampire studied it as if the amber trapped an exotic insect.

“If you ask to be turned I won’t even bother to kill you,” the vampire said when Mariah sat down next to her. “I’ll just nod to the bouncer and you won’t get in here again.”

“I don’t have a request,” Mariah said. “I have an offer.” When Mariah rehearsed this she’d allowed a dramatic pause here, perhaps making room for an inquiry. Now she knew if she hesitated she wouldn’t be allowed to finish, so she pointed at the scotch and said, “I can remind you what it tastes like.”

Off we go…

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