Friday, October 19, 2007

Excerpt from ANY WAY YOU WANT IT

Excerpt from ANY WAY YOU WANT IT

by Kathy Love

A January 2008 release from Kensington Brava

"This is...something," Maggie managed, peering around, not sure where to look at next.

Even Jo and Erika, who were definitely worldlier when it came to bars and partying, gawked around themselves in awe.

"This is pretty amazing," Erika finally said, after they'd all stood mesmerized by a pair of female mannequin legs in black stilettos, kicking in and out of a club's windows.

"You definitely don't see that every day, do you?" Jo said.

Maggie almost added that she'd never seen that before, period, when her attention was seized by a distinct strain of music, somehow reaching out to her over the warring chords of Jessie's Girl, Living On A Prayer and Summer of '69.

Without thinking, she took a step toward the sound. Then another--until she'd zigzagged through the crowds of revelers to a bar on the corner of Bourbon and some cross street.

She stopped on the sidewalk, staring at the building. The place was shabby, paint peeling from the wood, the sidewalk around it crumbling and layered in filthy. But from her spot on the street, she could see the stage through huge opened windows where a band was setting up. And she could clearly hear that distinct melody. Piano notes swirling through the air, a sound as out of place in this world as she felt.

Again, her feet moved until she found herself in the bar, standing in front of the stage, peering up at the person playing the music. Music that no one else should know.

Well, no one but her and possibly a few other authenticators. And the person who wrote it, of course. But that person was long since dead.

"Wow," Jo said from beside her, dragging Maggie's attention away from the music. "Good eye. That guy's pretty darn hot."

Maggie blinked back at the stage, for the first time noticing the man actually playing the music. He was tall with long hair in a shade somewhere between chestnut brown and dark mahogany, cascading over his broad shoulders.

He was looking down at the keyboards, his hair falling forward, shrouding most of his features, so that Maggie wondered how Jo could tell whether he was hot or not.

Then the thought quickly vanished as she watched his long fingers travel over the keys, playing a particularly difficult combination of chords. That combination exactly what she'd been studying so closely before she'd left. A fusion of notes that seemed to be a signature of sorts.
If Maggie's belief was correct, a signature of a composer that she was will to bet this man playing, a guy in a cover band on Bourbon street no less, had never even heard of. Much less could play.

Yet, here he was, playing it. Playing a piece that no one knew. An undiscovered composition probably by a lesser known composer.

Then two things happened at once, the beautiful, haunting tune abruptly switched into the intro to the classic 80's rock ballad, Sister Christian, and Maggie realized that the musician was staring directly at her. And she was staring back.

"Ah, man, he has a lazy eye," Erika said with a disappointed sigh.

Maggie heard her friend's words and regret, but somehow they didn't seem to quite reach her as if they echoed from a distance or through a somnolent haze. She just kept staring at the man, unable to look away, even though everything in her told her to do just that.

"There is something up with his eye, but I don't think it's lazy." Maggie heard Jo say.

Maggie wanted to speak, to say there wasn't anything wrong with his eyes, but the words in her head couldn't fumble their way her lips. All she could manage was to focus on him. On the eyes in question. Eyes that seemed to match the music he'd been playing, complicated, intense, haunted. And just as the music held her entranced, so did his gaze.

Until finally, a small smile curved his lips and then his gaze left her as he concentrated on his keyboards.


Jennifer Y. said...

Ooooh...I love the cover and can't wait for the book!

Stacy S said...

It sounds great!!

BiteMe91 said...

can't wait till i get a hold on a copy. covers the type that draws the eye, blurb the type that draws ones interst and the excerpt has just signed the deal. i so want to read it.