As the final key stroke fell on the keyboard LRR Hood sat up straight in her chair and stretched feeling her vertebra realign with a few snaps. The best selling fantasy/erotica author’s bum was sore, numb and tingling, her shoulders were burning from hunching over her laptop for hours enumerable but it was finally finished. The final installment of her best selling series to date was ready to be sent to the publisher.
“Christ.” A gush of her low Southern accent whispered in the silence of her New England home as she pushed her seat back from the desk and stood up. LRR Hood was not her real name, it was a clever - or so she thought - pen name she was bestowed by a beau who teased her for her obsession with werewolves, she had a tendency to pick up men in bars who she considered to have certain lupine qualities.
Elle often pondered whether or not her readers would believe it if they knew that her books were ninety percent true events and ten percent creative reasoning? Pausing at her reflection in the mirror, her hair seemed to be sticking up at odd angles, there was a Cheeto hanging from the lapel of her robe, her plump bow lips pulled into a smirk. “Nah.” A melodic laughter escaped from her alabaster throat as she made her way to the restroom. She needed to clean herself up after a twelve hour writing binge. Sometimes she just didn’t know where she got the energy from, the material could write itself but her ability to write it was at times what the petite blonde questioned.
The purple and orange dawn was rising over the tops of houses as she came out of the bathroom feeling a bit less unkempt now that her teeth and hair had been brushed and her terry cloth robe was shaken loose of any edible debris. Elle was secure enough in her slovenly ways to admit, she’d eaten that Cheeto.
Now, if she knew her next door neighbor like she thought she did, Alice no doubt had lost just as much sleep as she had anxiously waiting for the appropriate time to show up to her door step with two mugs of coffee and the plea to read the latest manuscript before it hit the shelves. Chuckling gently she skipped into her bedroom clicking the print button. Giggling as one pure white sheet of paper was littered with her labors and being spit out into the retrieving tray as the knock came at her door.
The small hairs within her ear canal prickled as she opened the front door, birds chirping in the trees despite the fact that it was freezing outside - what they had to be so happy about Elle never understood, the life of a bird must have been riff with hardships yet they always made the best of it with a song to sing.
“Good morning, I brought your paper. Is it ready?” Alice blurted the choppy sentence out, positively bouncing.
Elle was greeted by the eager, red cheeked face of her next door neighbor and sometimes Saturday night companion on the couch with a bottle of wine.
“Just finished it.” Elle grinned at her holding the door open so that Alice could come inside, retrieving her coffee cup from the woman’s hand as well as slipping the paper out from under her arm as the slightly rounded middle aged lady scurried into the bedroom lured by the sounds of her printer churning out page after page of fantastical smut. Elle couldn’t be too displeased with the invasion of her privacy, women like Alice were her core audience and far be it for her to disappoint them.
“Yes, just help yourself.” Elle mumbled softly under her breath as she took a sip from the coffee mug and grimacing as she heard the springs on her bed depress with the middle aged lady’s weight. Alice was a wonderful woman, but her coffee making skills weren’t as strong as her friend-making skills.
Her slippers clip-clapped over the hardwood floor as she made her way into the heart of the house, the kitchen to make a proper pot of coffee. Setting the cup down and shaking the paper out, azure orbs scanning over the front page. Another car bombing in the Middle East, local senator caught in gay scandal, mutilated body found washed up on the beach near Lighthouse Point; oldest woman in Connecticut celebrates one hundred-fifth birthday. Wait, Elle paused for a few minuets before scrolling back through what she’d just read. Of course she wasn’t that interested in a hundred year old woman’s birthday - although at that age it certainly was something to celebrate, but that wasn’t what caught her attention.
"Mutilated body found washed up on the beach near Lighthouse Point, see page four.”
Turning to page four she spread the news paper out on the kitchen island, pulling herself up a bar stool as she leaned over the paper, elbows on counter, chin in her palms.
“New Haven Police are awaiting autopsy results on a partially decomposed body found washed up on Lighthouse Point beach early Wednesday morning. Police Chief Clayton Eisner is reported saying that the body couldn’t have been in the water more than twelve hours and authorities are being lead to believe that they body was dumped there. New Haven Police Official’s are not releasing anymore information on the victim at this point other than the victim is female and appears to be in her mid to late twenties. Anyone with information on the identity of the woman is being asked to please come forward.” The blonde’s ashen brows linked up with curiosity as she processed the information before mistakenly taking another drink of the scorched coffee brought by Alice and nearly gagged, dripping coffee onto the news paper.
Growling gently she slipped out of her seat taking the mug over to the sink and pouring it out before she managed to finally make coffee that wouldn’t be considered rocket fuel by the international space program. Listening she wondered how Alice was doing in her bedroom; coffee in hand Elle went down the hall past the bathroom and peaked inside the door way of her bedroom, a smile tugging at the corners of her lips as she found that Alice had made herself a forte of pillows and was propped up against the headboard zealously devouring the pages from the printer.
“Mind if I catch a few winks while you catch up on the latest exploits of Mistress Delilah: Werewolf Huntress?” Elle grinned setting her mug down and flopping down onto the spare side of the king size bed.