[Hey, what happened? We backed up!
Yes, yes we did. I'm changing how I post novel excerpts here, for several reasons. I was trying too hard to post entire chapters and skipping over important stuff to do so - everyone who complained about me cutting Parvo's first scene with Dr. Tuckby can stop spam-bombing my e-mail now, I'm putting it back - and I've been told that shorter chunks are easier to read at work, you slackers. Also I can post more frequently this way. So I reworked the previous posts and will continue on from here. We're back in the first chapter. I'll try not to do this again.]
Twenty minutes later Parvo was looking up at the biggest, ugliest chandelier in the world. It didn’t help that the crystal and brass monstrosity appeared to have a laser cannon coming out of it, or that the scientist standing under it seemed to be in love with it in a way that was disturbing and possibly against the laws of God and man.
“Isn’t it glorious?” he demanded, beaming at it.
It also didn’t help that the scientist, whom Buchanon had introduced as Dr. Tuckby, looked exactly like Elmer Fudd. Parvo realized his edginess was partly due to his unconscious expectation that Tuckby was, at any moment, suddenly going to whip out a shotgun bigger than himself and fire wildly into a hole in the ground.
Around him was an assortment of lab techs and research assistants who all seemed very proud of something. Otherwise the room was conspicuously empty in that stark, “must be easy to quickly decontaminate” decor which signalled, to the experienced eye, that this was not a good room to be accidentally locked in, particularly if any sort of countdown was involved.
“Yeah, you’re a lucky man, doc,” Parvo said. “Can I go home now? I have a federal manhunt to start avoiding…”
Buchanon leaned over and whispered out of the corner of his mouth. “Vince, your only options at this juncture are to nod politely and pretend to understand what’s about to change your life and the lives of everyone on this planet forever, or go directly to jail. Now, political advocacy groups, concerned with negative implications regarding personal sexual preferences, forbid me to suggest or insinuate that a very large and smelly someone in that jail might want to make you his very unhappy girlfriend despite your own personal sexual preferences, so I’d appreciate it if you’d choose the first option, thus allowing me to avoid a few angry phone calls and allowing yourself to continue to walk normally. I await your response.”
“So,” Parvo said brightly, clapping his hands together. “What’s it do?”
“Good boy,” Buchanon whispered.