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The Crow's Nest

By Beka P All Rights Reserved ©


Chapter 1

"If you knew what I know, you'd never touch that again."

I'm snapped from my trance wherein I'm staring at my phone, swiping through endless screens of exquisitely lit photographs. I stare at a curtain of braids in front of me and the hand furiously scribbling into a notebook just behind. This is Raechelle Thompson, paranoid genius. If I were the kind of person to have a best friend, she would be mine. Unequivocally, I would not be hers. Proof: I am not hers.

Rae is some kind of InfoSec prophetess which means every morning she throws on her meticulously ironed cape and saves us all from evildoing cyber criminals. Saves the highest bidders, that is; She's amazing and bills accordingly. She is also a huge pain in my ass.

"Powerful black woman," the barista yells.

From the look on his face it doesn't seem possible, but I am somehow more embarrassed than the barista. Everyone is staring at us. She loves messing with people, especially uppity white people, and I'm typically collateral damage. For instance, there was the time she insisted a cashier transcribe hexadecimal encoded text into the customer name field of his register and ended up crashing their entire point of sale system. During lunch. I miss eating there.

"Oh, for f-"

"I'm not giving them my name. Do I look brand new?" she shoots over her shoulder as she sashays over to pick up her breakfast. The only other black woman in the cafe and Rae have an effortless "right on, girl/thank you, sister" moment. In general, I'm complete garbage when it comes to speaking to people I'm acquainted with, let alone strangers. These types of exchanges are out of my grasp and they fill me with...everything. Hope and disappointment. Joy and fear. I have never been good enough but, my God, look at how some people glide through this life.

I'm Audra Quinn, photographer. I won't sugarcoat it: I'm unattractive, forgettable, strange, pale as a ghost, and generally unlikable. I take damn good pictures though. People pay me well to notice things about them and capture moments happening to them. I was told by a mentor that I'd never make it because I couldn't develop relationships. "No client will ever trust you," he said. I don't need them to, though. I make zero emotional demands on almost everyone and others are rarely compelled to invest any towards me. At least once a week someone breaks down looking at their proofs. They didn't know I was there. "How did you get that shot?"

"I'm blessed." But, no, a quiet telephoto lens is the bulk of it and basic psychology takes care of the rest. Most people are so self absorbed they will only notice you if you can validate them in some interactive way. Except for kids. Around the age of 5 they begin to sense the playground trauma in my past. Little vipers.

Rae is back with her blueberry muffin and cuban coffee and begins writing again. "What is that?" I ask. "A security memo explaining that the biggest threat to my client is their vapid bourgeoisie employees who couldn't generate a strong password without the assistance of a child in their lap, banging on the keyboard. Suggest deploying toddlers."

My breakfast suddenly appears on the table before me and the barista is gone before I can register and mutter thanks. Rae, however, is immediately all over it. "Why is he bringing it to you and made me walk all the way up there?" Sighing, I slowly turn the scrawl on the my cup towards her. The only part legible reads "Odd" and trails off from there. "They tried."

She gives a wry laugh. "Well, Cinderella, we know that shoe fits."
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zoheusher20: What more can I say? The writing style and little details drew me into the book and for the entirety of the story I was Juliet. I felt her turmoil and emotions and every trouble or triumph as they arrived. This story was very different and had quite a few little but unexpected twists that made it...

cato50802: this book is truly well developed and truly captivating, I thoroughly enjoyed every part of the book. there are little to no grammatical errors, and the characters are very interesting. it’s one of those books that’s hard to stop reading!

amh1books: The story was wonderful. It took me a while to get into, but that's because I read it really slowly. It picked up towards the middle, and was great. I will say that the dialogue doesn't read like normal speech, but overall it was a great book.

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More Recommendations

PersephanieBoyce: I was intrigued with the subject of this book from the snip it I read, and as I continued to read I felt like I was inside the characters brain. His thought processes, his memories, everything was so beautifully and forcefully made aware.The descriptions were vivid and detailed. At times, I did t...

Nabeel Parkar: With a lot of twists in the story as well as a few grammatical mistakes, this novel is great. It's not an original concept, but the interpretation of this concept is the best I've seen so far. I recommend this to all willing to read and who love a good romance/fantasy story. Very good overall!!

Alkira Joan: Great story, I found it hard to read especially the dialogue. You just need to fix up some spelling errors and the gramma .I enjoyed this book. was a little hard to get though.,.,..,.,.,,..,.,.,, , , , ,.,, , , , , , , ,., ,,.,,,,,

Alkira Joan: amazing story and plot, you just need to work on re reading and punctuation and gramma .'.........................................................................................................,.,.,..,.,.,.,.,..,.,.,..,.,.,..,.,.,..,.,.,.,..,.,..,.,.,..,.,..,.,.,.

Fzogim milch: ali svaka cast bas me je zaintrigirala i ne znam sta da kazem ostao sam bez teksta zasto mi je rivju prekratak mislim ono koliko da napise vise ne okej stvarno me mogu vise ne mogu vise ne mogu vise stvarmo dzdm

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