NaNoWriMo – April 2022 – Day 12

First Dig Two Graves, the second Zoe thriller.

Today we are in Vienna, at the hotel that Zoe was staying trying to get information out of the hotel staff. This leads to a contact on a riverboat that goes from Vienna to Bratislava in Slovakia.

Yes, we’re off to Bratislava, chasing Zoe down.

In the background we have the shadowy Worthington, pulling endless strings, gathering information on her whereabouts for John. He had deduced that if John can find her, she will pause long enough for Worthington’s hit team to get there.

John does not realize he has ulterior motives, but, then John doesn’t fully understand the spy business.

John also tasks his newfound private investigators to track her down, and Isobel doesn’t disappoint.

Then, a photo of her from Worthington arrives, she is discovered, and, as you can surmise, all hell breaks loose.

I’ve always wanted to go to Bratislava, ever since I saw it in a James Bond movie. That showed it had trams, and I’m one of those people who love trams, trains, buses, anything that reeks travel.

I would also like to hop a boat and travel up the river, perhaps from Vienna to Bratislava, or beyond.

One day.

Today’s writing, with John desperately trying to find Zoe, 2,525 words, for a total of 36,812.

NaNoWriMo – April 2022 – Day 11

First Dig Two Graves, the second Zoe thriller.

We are now up to the part where we introduce Isobel properly and find out why such a talented person is drifting in the doldrums of Rupert’s private detective agency.

Aside from being a once high-flying legal eagle, she is also a computer hacker, or perhaps that’s what she evolved into in a devil finds work for idle hands type person.

This hacking is going to be useful, but it’s also going to bring problems, especially when she starts tracking down Zoe.

And, it seemed she had struck up a dark online relationship with another hacker with the handle Tzar.  What are the odds he is Russian?

She’s digging for information, and Tzar helps, and, suddenly it appears, briefly, then is gone, with a warning.  Stop digging.

And if she doesn’t.

People were coming for her.

Meanwhile, in the basement, Zoe has had enough time to devise a mask that might stave of the effects of the gas long enough to affect an escape.

And, it almost works, the mask that is.

She manages to get past all of the guards, but Romanov is waiting.

He doesn’t kill her, but he does give her some information, then leaves.  He knows how dangerous she can be, especially when wounded.

Today’s writing, with Isobel trawling the dark web, 2,583 words, for a total of 8,871.

NaNoWriMo – April 2022 – Day 11

First Dig Two Graves, the second Zoe thriller.

We are now up to the part where we introduce Isobel properly and find out why such a talented person is drifting in the doldrums of Rupert’s private detective agency.

Aside from being a once high-flying legal eagle, she is also a computer hacker, or perhaps that’s what she evolved into in a devil finds work for idle hands type person.

This hacking is going to be useful, but it’s also going to bring problems, especially when she starts tracking down Zoe.

And, it seemed she had struck up a dark online relationship with another hacker with the handle Tzar.  What are the odds he is Russian?

She’s digging for information, and Tzar helps, and, suddenly it appears, briefly, then is gone, with a warning.  Stop digging.

And if she doesn’t.

People were coming for her.

Meanwhile, in the basement, Zoe has had enough time to devise a mask that might stave of the effects of the gas long enough to affect an escape.

And, it almost works, the mask that is.

She manages to get past all of the guards, but Romanov is waiting.

He doesn’t kill her, but he does give her some information, then leaves.  He knows how dangerous she can be, especially when wounded.

Today’s writing, with Isobel trawling the dark web, 2,583 words, for a total of 8,871.

NaNoWriMo – April 2022 – Day 10

First Dig Two Graves, the second Zoe thriller.

John is in Vienna, Austria.

It’s been quite some years since we were in Vienna, and I remember it was a very pleasant experience, and the copious notes and photographs I took have aided in the writing of this chapter.

There is no doubting the zeal Worthington will put into the capture or assassination of Zoe, if and when she is discovered, and John would be horrified if he knew he was being used in such a manner.

At times it is going to be a bit like reading an Eric Ambler thriller, going to the hotel, getting information from concierges, and then tracking her movements. Money, as always, speaks one language, pay enough and you will find out what you want to know.

We know Zoe is languishing in a basement somewhere in Bratislava.

John is about to find out that is where she went, but searching for someone in Bratislava is going to be completely different from searching for someone in Austria.

The same rules don’t apply in Hungary.

As for our visit, we stayed in the Hilton Vienna Park, though the park had a different name then. It wax also when we have our first authentic Vienna Schnitzel and sampled Austrian cherries.

From there we took the train to Schonbrunn Palace, with its extensive gardens and maze, and the impressive architecture, old rooms and paintings, and at the end, so many sets of crockery.

There was also a kitchen nearby that made Apple Strudel, where we watched it being made and then had a slice to taste afterward.

We also went to a Wiener Palace which served a large and varied number of sausages.

Unfortunately, there were no music recitals or orchestral events at the time of our visit.

Today’s writing, sampling the best Vienna had to offer, 2,731 words, for a total of 28,973.

NaNoWriMo – April 2022 – Day 5

First Dig Two Graves, the second Zoe thriller.

Talk about rescue missions gone wrong.

John is not very good at this, though who’s to say Sebastian isn’t as good as he thinks he is.

So, tossed in a basement awaiting his fate, who should he discover: Zoe

Mission accomplished.

Of course, no good deed goes unpunished as she tears strips off him for being a fool, firstly to come after her, and second, for trusting Sebastian.

But, they’ve been in tighter scrapes before, and the fun is just about to begin.

After a few minutes of catching up!

And, no doubt, Sebastian is somewhere near plotting his own operation to fix up the first operation.

Today’s writing, with Zoe and John equally surprised to see each other, 3,050 words, for a total of 11,921.

NaNoWriMo – April 2022 – Day 4

First Dig Two Graves, the second Zoe thriller.

John’s search for Zoe was at an impasse, simply because it was her job to disappear and reappear at will, and he knows he’s no match for her in that regard.

So, having gone to her residence in Paris, not finding her there which was predictable, the place looked like it had not been visited in months, he concluded a short stay might help to clear his head.

Until he gets a phone call.

Kidnappers, other than the Russians, have captured Zoe, and they’re ringing him for a ransom.

Odd, because he was not the one who placed the kidnap order on her, so why would they be ringing him?

This was initiated by Zoe, no doubt playing the kidnapper by sending him to a bigger payday.

If that’s the case then John has to deduce she has faith in him to come and get her.

Which he’s going to do, but not on his own.

It’s time to call Sebastian, someone John knew would know what to do.

Or at least hope he does!

Today’s writing, with Zoe languishing in a dungeon waiting for a white knight, 3,270 words, for a total of 8,871.

NaNoWriMo – April 2022 – Day 30

First Dig Two Graves, the second Zoe thriller.

The month is up, the hard work is done and the numbers are in.

I finished the first draft, as awful as it might be, with a total of 65,265

And this is the winner’s certificate:

That’s it for another April NaNoWriMo. Now I can rest!

NaNoWriMo – April 2022 – Day 2

First Dig Two Graves, the second Zoe thriller.

Just when you think you’ve got a good start, it all comes crashing down.

Here’s the thing…

I’ve been planning the sequel for quite some time, and from time to time, I’ve been jotting down notes about how the story will go. I thought I had filed them all in the same place, and because I thought I had all of them, I missed a part.

This was confirmed when I found a synopsis, something I rarely make before writing a story, with details of several sections I obviously added when the thought came to me. Perhaps the idea of the synopsis was to consolidate all the ideas, at a time when I thought I was going to sit down and write the story.

Dated a month or so before covid came along, I suspect it all got set aside for the two-odd year’s hiatus.

Now, the time has come, and today, I went n a detailed search of three computers, four phones, cloud storage, and the boxes that hold all the handwritten notes.

I have a reference to the section, several chapters, but no writing. In the back of my mind, I have a feeling I’d written the chapters, but the evidence says otherwise.

Damn!

I’ll move on, and come back to it later. At the moment it doesn’t have relevance.

Oh, and Zoe has now become Mary-Anne. What is John going to think when he finally finds her.

Todays writing, introducing Mary Anne, 1,501 words, for a total of 3,610.

NaNoWriMo – April 2022 – Day 1

First Dig Two Graves, the second Zoe thriller.

At the end of the first book in the series, Alistair, Zoe the assassin’s handler, was killed.

As far as he was concerned, Zoe had reneged on the contract to kill a target, and for that, she had to be punished, just to let the rest of the team know they could not decide arbitrarily who or who they would not kill.

For her sins, Zoe had been captured and was about to be executed when John, the man who wanted to become her boyfriend, turned up in a luckless and unplanned rescue mission.

But as ad-hoc operations go, that one was very successful.  Zoe, though badly injured aided John in a do-or-die escape.

Alistair learned to his chagrin, that a badly injured Zoe and untrained well-meaning friend trumped overconfidence.

Of course, Alistair’s death does not go unnoticed, and his mother, a renowned and very capable ex-KGB agent with connections, wanted to avenge his death.  Her influence reaches as far as the upper echelons of the State’s intelligence services, and requests from her would never be ignored.

Such a request for information is made, and so starts the next book in the series.

Revenge.

Of course, nothing to do with Zoe, or John, or their relationship, runs smoothly, and once again in pursuit of the impossible, makes it his mission in life to win over the assassin-on-sabbatical.

But first, he has to find her., and sort through the lies and treachery of his best friend who is also looking for Zoe, but for entirely different reasons.

Todays writing, the first three chapters, 2,109 words

NaNoWriMo – April 2022 – Day 30

First Dig Two Graves, the second Zoe thriller.

The month is up, the hard work is done and the numbers are in.

I finished the first draft, as awful as it might be, with a total of 65,265

And this is the winner’s certificate:

That’s it for another April NaNoWriMo. Now I can rest!