As I write this, I almost have to laugh because I know that most readers are like, “yeah, right…that book is never coming out.” Trust me, I share your sentiment. I’m anxious in my own right (write) to get it out, but I really want it to be done well. I’ve done a lot of research. There have been a few officers from the MPD who probably would like to have this book over more than me. Writing technically to ensure t
hat you don’t screw up how things would “go in the real world” can be tricky.
See, when you write about love, it’s more so about conveying the message of what the two people are feeling. When you write about blood, guts and glory, it’s a lot harder.
Enough complaining, because I’m actually enjoying myself. I wanted to share some excerpts: please keep in mind that they are unedited.
Now, in the World in Reverse, we see Nicola during one of the most if not the most trying time in his life. I’ve always liked several things about Nicola. He’s smart; he’s elegant; he’s an alpha male and he’s honest.
But like any man (person), the environment can change you. It definitely changed Nicola.
Starting out on the right path at the first of the story, we watch him basically forced into a position where he must depend on men whom he has genuinely hated for nearly a decade. But he’s turned away from any real help on the PD, so
he’s stuck with his other option…the Medlov family.
Intro the soon-to-be married Anatoly Medlov, the recently turned Gabriel Medlov and the infamous Dmitry Medlov.
Before everything that happens in Nicola’s life, he’s able to rationalize why he’s so different from these men who are known organized crime leaders and basically the undoing of the new world order.
After he is faced with the problems in his life, I don’t think we ever really see the Nicola of old again. No more Ivy’s Twisted Vine, devoted officer. A new animal emerges, and he’s out for blood.
Excerpt from The World In Reverse (DRAFT COPY) (Copyright © 2013, All rights reserved)
With Al Green’s greatest hits playing softly on the stereo, Nicola sat outside of his in-laws’ house in his LX Lexus truck, smoking a cigar and drinking cognac straight out of the bottle with his window half down and the air blasting. The cool midnight breeze provided a temporary calming backdrop for his chaotic thoughts and helped circulate the robust smell of his fine Cuban cigar out of his new vehicle.
He had a hundred problems to solve and in no particular order they flooded him like crashing waves against the rocks of a battered coastline: where was Roxie? How long had his house been bugged? Could he trust Johnson? Was there a mole? How did Cane fit into the murder of Twist? What was the common link between Twist and the Baby Boy murders outside of the drug, Molly? How was he going to go about solving this case? How was he going to keep his family safe until he did solve the case? Would jail be more likely than just being fired? Did he have a case to fight for his job? What was he going to do about his unborn child?
He was in the eye of a major storm in his life and all that he could do was brace for impact.
The questions kept multiplying in his head, yet the answers seemed so distant from him. If he were to prioritize his concerns, even for a second, the most important thing would be to keep his family safe. But it would be a lot easier to do that if he only knew who he was looking for in the first place. Ivy wouldn’t be receptive to staying home from work until he found out, and she really wouldn’t be receptive to leaving town and staying with his family in Miami until it was all over. So, he had to figure out a way to maneuver around her so that she didn’t feel that he was watching her every move, even though he would be. He had no choice.
The thought of hurricane winds ripping through a seaside city crossed his mind. That’s how he felt at that moment. Like he was being ripped into. But it wasn’t guilt for his actions; it was anger that he hadn’t done more. He should have pushed the man to a confession, especially since now he was in critical condition. He should have pushed him to cliff and dangled him over, offering him death for silence or life or answers. Pity that he didn’t get enough time.
As Nicola sat in deep thought staring out of the window of his truck, more hyper alert than he appeared, he noticed a figure emerge out of the front door of his in-laws’ house.
At first, he figured that it was Ivy, but then he noticed a tall, muscular bald man closing the door behind him. Madison. Ivy’s father. One of the most militant black men that he’d ever met in his life. The retired military colonel probably had an earful for him. Madison had always stomached Nicola, but he was never really sure that he liked him. He was a quiet man who normally only showed affection to his grandchildren and the women in his family. Still, he had always given him respect. And in turn, Nicola had done the same.
Making his way to Nicola’s truck in pajama bottoms and a red Marine Corps t-shirt with a beer in his hand, Madison opened the passenger door and slipped inside. With a nod, he closed the door and settled down in the seat.
“So, do you plan to stay out here all night?” Madison asked, looking over at the cigar with envy. Sadie never let him smoke anymore.
In quiet understanding, Nicola moved his gun off his lap and put it carefully on his console between them, then reached across his father-in-law to his glove compartment. Pulling another cigar out, he passed it to him. “Consider it an early Christmas gift,” he said, sitting back.
Madison took the cigar in his hand and ran it under his nose, inhaling the aroma. “Real Cuban, huh?”
“Oh, yeah. Only the best.” Nicola grunted and shifted in his seat. “How’s Ivy?” He could barely look at Madison.
“Not well. She’s been a basket case since she received your text earlier.” Madison huffed, frustrated with the entire situation. He had received call after call all day about the boy. People wanted to know what Nicola was thinking. Like he knew. He wasn’t a damned mind-reader, just the boy’s father-in-law. Even Nicola’s father had called him. Evidently, Nicola’s twin brother had seen the story and alerted everyone in Miami.
“Is she pissed at me?” It seemed like nothing else really mattered in the world at that moment. Nicola just wanted to know that she was still by his side. If she was, then he could find a way to handle everything else.
Madison frowned. “Angry? No. She is confused. We all are. You went from a press conference being backed by the mayor of Memphis to a damned police brutality beat down that will go down in history in less than an afternoon.” He looked over at Nicola for an explanation. He had known the man long enough to know that whatever had brought all of this on had to be major. Nicola had grown to be a level-headed man, devoted only to his family and his job.
“Cops get threatened every day,” Nicola began. He almost laughed. “I remember the first time someone threatened my mom. I was fresh out of the academy and working with my FTO. This guy promised me that when he got out, he was going to find her and sodomize her.”
Nicola smacked his lips at the fleeting thought. His tone was even and low. “I wanted to kill him, but my FTO just told me to shake it off. He said that it was one thing that I could get used to… being threatened because of my job. Shortly after that, I saw what the FTO was talking about. Someone was going to fuck me up, kill my family, screw my wife even before I had one, every single day that I made an arrest.” He looked over at Madison to make sure that he was following him.
“So what was different about this arrest?” Madison asked.
“What was different?” Nicola looked out of the window and clenched his jaw. “Every cop worth his salt knows the difference between idle threats and the real thing. This was the real thing. He…the perp…threatened my family for real.” Nicola bit down on his lip. “He knew about Ivy being pregnant. He knew about Brooks’s death and the baby. He threatened my kids…said they would end up like the others. Just like the boys I pulled out of the fucking dumpster not even a week ago.”
Madison winced as if hearing the words hurt him to his core. “Do you think he has the capability?”
Nicola shook his head. “I don’t know if he does but someone he works for sure in the hell does.” He rolled his eyes and gripped the steering wheel until his knuckles turned white. “I don’t know anything anymore, except that I did what any man in my place would have done. I showed him that my job was not the most important thing to me…my family is. And anyone who threatens them won’t get another chance to do so as long as I’m around.”
That brought up another point for Madison. “I hate to risk sounding like a prick, but how long do you think you’ll be around? The news said that if you’re brought up on charges, you could go to prison.” Madison hated to say it, but it was true. They had to think ahead, at least starting now.
“I doubt if I’ll go to jail, but I don’t think they’ll let me be a cop anymore.” His voice broke in disappointment. All he’d ever known was being a cop. If they took that away, who would he be then?
Madison turned to Nicola. This was an area that he truly understood. He had retired from the military after devoting his entire adult life to it. Nothing was stranger than acclimating after. It was a hard pill to swallow to go from being saluted everyday to being ignored by the person right in front of you. He touched Nicola’s shoulder in sympathy. “You’re a damned fine cop. They aren’t just going to throw you to the wind, but if they do, you have other options. You’re educated. You come from a damned fine family with opportunities they’d love to share with you. And you have your skills, no matter what. Just remember that you have to keep your cool. Getting fired isn’t the worst thing in the world. There is life after.” He shook his head and turned back around, fearful that he’d shown too much of himself. “As far as the family, you know that you’ll have my help. Ivy is my little girl, and my grandchildren mean the world to me.” He chuckled. “You I could do without.”
Nicola snickered and took another sip of his cognac. “Sorry, old man. You aren’t getting rid of me that easily.”
“Tell you what…why don’t you give me that bottle and go in there and see after Ivy? I’m sure that she’s dying to talk to you. And I’m not going to lie, she needs consoling. Your mother and I tried, but she only wants you. The kids are finally asleep. It took a hell of a lot of work. I don’t see how you two do it every single night. And the idea of another one…” His face lit up. “I can’t lie. That’s great news, but I hope it’s a girl. You’re just a few shy of damned football team.”
“You didn’t know she was pregnant?” Nicola asked.
“No, she still hasn’t said a word,” Madison said under his breath. “I imagine that with everything that happened today, she wouldn’t want to talk about that.”
“Do me a favor and don’t say anything yet,” Nicola asked sincerely.
“Mums the word.” Madison zipped his lips.
Nicola passed Madison the bottle and kept his quiet shock to himself. This was the first time in their marriage that Madison had ever been so open and so intimate with him. “For what it’s worth, I appreciate you,” Nicola said, opening the car door.
Madison nodded and picked up the lighter. “I’m going to sit out here and enjoy this cigar before I go back into the wife and let her rip me a new asshole for smoking.”
“Bring the gun in with you. I’ve got another one on me,” Nicola said, raising his shirt slightly to show another Glock packed closely to his side.
“Beat you to it,” Madison said, taping his side.