Jimmy was a good cop, but age and changing times were getting the better of him. If he could only get an edge, take advantage of some of that new-fangled tech – what would be the harm? I mean, everybody cheats a little, don’t they? Just be careful not to get caught… Read “In a Flash” to see how Jimmy gets himself out of trouble.
“In a Flash” is a sci-fi/crime short story, the first in the Detective Jimmy Delaney series. If you like a little self-deprecation and humor (think Rockford Files) with some sci-fi elements thrown in, this is the series for you.
Targeted Age Group:: 16+
What Inspired You to Write Your Book?
I didn’t intend to write a detective story, let alone a series. Sure, I like to have a little mystery, misdirection and reveal in my fiction, but I write speculative fiction (sci-fi, fantasy, and horror), not police and detective who-dun-its.
So where did Jimmy come from?
It started with an off-hand comment, someone wishing they could just plug in a flash drive and get the knowledge and skills they needed without all that work. I’d also seen a lot of articles on what’s coming in brain research, especially reading, memory, and control, and my thoughts tend to gravitate and revolve around mind control.
I thought it would be interesting to explore the ethics a little. What are the trade-offs when you gain experience without really earning it? What are the ramifications if someone can have ideas put in his head by someone else? When are your actions not your own? If you don’t have control of your own mind and commit murder under these circumstances, who’s responsible?
Once murder entered into my thoughts (for the plot!), it became a crime and detective story, and “In a Flash” was born, Detective Jimmy Delaney grew from that as someone I could identify with – someone getting up in years watching the times change around him, and wondering whether he can keep up. Someone not making the best of his situation on multiple fronts and needing to act, to do something to fix it all, failing to make the right choices again and again and yet still squeaking through by stubbornness and perseverance. Someone with a code – obviously imperfect, but redeemable. Some hero, huh?
How Did You Come up With Your Characters?
As in all my books, the characters (or at least elements of them) are floating around within me. As I start writing the story, the circumstances and setting will strike a nerve with one of them, and they will decide to come out to play. Then they and the story grow from each other.
Diana met Jimmy at the door to her husband’s office. He got a good whiff of that musky perfume as she took him by the hand, and that got him wondering about her again. “Come in, Mr. Delaney. My husband is just finishing up with a patient. Please sit.”
She led Jimmy to a chair in front of the desk. He studied her as she slinked around the desk and slid into the chair behind it. She opened a drawer and pulled out what looked like a flash drive, but it could have been a lipstick, with the way she dragged it entrancingly along her lips.
“What’s that?” he asked.
“Just something I want to show you,” she smiled, as she inserted it into the computer.
The sound of a gunshot ricocheted in the small room, echoing in the fog in Jimmy’s head. He grabbed for his .45, but found that it was already in his hand.
What the – where am I?
He tried to clear the cobwebs from his mind as he scoped out the place: white walls, a radiator by a barred window, dark outside. A bed, and a body lying crumpled on the floor in front of it, blood pooling by its head. Jimmy knelt down and turned the body over on its back.
The blood oozed from the wound behind his right ear.
Remove his AugMentor, a distinctly female voice whispered.
“What?” Jimmy jumped up and looked around, but there was no one else in the room.
Remove his AugMentor, came the other voice in his head. It was louder this time. And familiar.
Jimmy stared at the bloody hole in Eddie’s head. No way he was pulling anything out of there.
Remove his –
“Ahhrgh! No! No! No! No!” Jimmy shouted.
The door opened, and an orderly came in. “Is everything…” he began, but stopped as he found himself looking down the shaking barrel of Jimmy’s gun.
“Get over there by the window.”
He handcuffed the orderly to the radiator, then gagged him with a pillowcase. Jimmy slipped out of the room and made it outside just as he the alarms started clanging. He found his Cuda out front and roared away.
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