I’m still not totally sure this novel is going to end up being workable, but practise is practise. Even if I don’t end up ever wanting to see it again, it’s still another novel under my belt. Part of my issue may be the fact I’m just not that into m/f romance anymore, even if it’s only a means to an end in this particular novel. That’s something I can tweak if I don’t hate it too much to never touch it again. I’d like to try to deconstruct a lot of common tropes that end up in a lot of m/f romance. I was kind of trying to go for it in this draft, but found I wasn’t really hitting the mark.
Anyway, this excerpt takes place during an afterschool detention that a teacher gave Selene for not handing in homework because she was too unwell to do it because of a particularly harsh full moon. Mathias, the love interest, stuck up for her so now he’s in the same boat.
There were two empty chairs in Ms White’s office, but apparently naughty students didn’t deserve the privilege of sitting in them. So Mathias and I were on the floor, backs against opposite walls, while Ms White marked a stack of papers. I still kind of wanted to kill her. But when Mum was through with her, Ms White would wish that I’d given in to temptation. Even without the pregnancy hormones, Mum could be a damn hellbeast when she wanted to be. Her father was a werewolf and she’d married one and raised two—and possibly had a third on the way, though I was hoping that wouldn’t be the case. That sort of thing was not for the faint of heart.
Ms White neatened her stack of papers. “I need to take these to a colleague for crossmarking. Don’t move. Don’t talk.” She gathered the papers and stepped out. Mathias and I rolled our eyes.
“She seems like a nice lady,” Mathias said once he couldn’t see her out the window anymore. I was at a slight disadvantage, sitting beneath said window, but I could hear her footsteps if I concentrated well enough.
“She’s my favourite teacher,” I replied. Mathias threw his head back and laughed. I couldn’t fight back a little smile in response.
“You’re one of the funniest people I know.”
“You mustn’t know many people.”
“Or maybe I just really like sarcasm.”
“If that were the case, you’d get on with Connor a lot better than you do.”
“Hey, I can’t help it if he thinks I’m going to eat you alive or something.”
“He’s protective. It’s a mutual arrangement.”
“So that’s why you hate Janice?”
“I’m not a fan of his girlfriends in general. He’s a big boy and can make his own decisions, but that doesn’t mean I have to approve. Not that he needs my approval.”
“Is all that because you move around a lot?”
“Part of it, probably.”
Mathias brought one of his knees up to his chest, resting his chin on it. “I guess I can see why that’d make things hard. I move around a lot, too. Dad’s not around much. Work stuff. Likes to plop me down in some new place and piss off for weeks at a time.”
“My parents are self-employed,” I replied. “Dad does web and logo design. Mum caters when she can get the business.”
“You’d think that’d mean you wouldn’t have to keep picking up and moving all the time?”
“Yeah. You’d think. It’s complicated.” Hopefully he’d get the message and not dig any further on that front.
“Translation: butt out.” Mathias knocked his head against the wall by accident, wincing a little. “I speak fluent Selene.”
“You’ve certainly got designs on yourself.”