“Spell your name so the graphics people can put it on the screen correctly, please.”
The lanky-looking woman with the long, straight blonde hair flipped it over her shoulder. Her legs were covered by a blanket. “Peri Walker. P-E-R-I W-A-L-K-E-R.”
“Peri. That’s an unusual name for a woman.”
“It’s short for Perpugilliam. It’s a name from some British show. My dad was a fan.”
“What do you do for a living, Peri?”
Peri shifted in chair, looking around the room out of the corner of her eye. “I’m a P.I. – a private investigator.”
“Just look at me,” the interviewer said.
“Sorry,” said Peri.
“That’s all right,” the interviewer said. “So, what’s it like being a woman P.I.?”
“If you mean as compared to being a male P.I., I have no idea; I’ve never been one,” Peri said.
The interviewer laughed.
“Mostly, it’s routine investigations – cheating spouses, insurance investigations, the odd case where a family member feels their late loved one hasn’t gotten justice.” Peri was quiet for a second. “Or it was until recently.” She looked around again.
“We need you to look at me for how the shot will play on TV,” the interviewer said.
“Sorry,” said Peri. “I’ve got to keep an eye out. I never know what I’ll find, or who, or where.”
“And you’re looking for someone,” the interviewer said. “That’s why we’re doing this.”
Peri nodded. “I’m trying to locate victims of a very unusual set of thieves.”
“What’s so unusual about them?”
“It’s what they steal,” Peri said. “They steal things people think can’t be stolen.”
“You mean, like art objects, or well-guarded items?”
“You’re not going to believe my answer,” Peri said.
“Try me,” the interviewer said.
Peri seemed to withdraw within herself. She spoke quietly, but intensely. “We’re dealing with forces beyond the world you know … beyond the world of science, and computers. In layman’s terms, it’s magic, but what we’re dealing with, what I’m fighting, even goes beyond that. This is something that can … bend personal reality, shift it, twist it, and chew up the person it’s attached to in the process. It’s dark, dark magic, and very old. And so are some of its practitioners.”
The interviewer chuckled. “So, are we talking vampires?”
Peri’s gaze froze the interviewer to the core. “I only wish we were.”
“I’m sorry, but you have to admit, this is pretty bizarre sounding,” the interviewer said.
“Try living it,” snapped Peri. “I think we’re done here.”
“What?” the interviewer asked. “But I thought you’d say more about what you wanted.”
“You’re already mocking me, and when I try to explain what – and who – I’m looking for, you’ll laugh me out of the room,” Peri said. “You’ll never run this interview, even if we finish it. You’ll write me off as a nut, and the evil will continue, and this will have gotten me no closer to stopping it, and to finding the people I need to do this. This was a mistake.”
“But please, what is this evil? How ancient are we talking here?”
“I said we’re done,” Peri said. “Thank you, and I apologize for your wasted time.”
The interviewer sighed as she looked back at her cameraman. “All right, I guess we’re done. Let’s head back to the studio.”
Book: Eve’s Thieves
Author: Mac Rome
A group of women have been the victims of some unusual thefts. They have had, not items, but aspects of their physical being, such as their heights, builds and youth stolen via dark magic. To stop the thieves and restore themselves, they band together to defeat the loose confederation known as Eve's Thieves. To do it, they must battle an ancient evil, deal with betrayal … and face the darkness within themselves. But they soon find that little is as it seems. Can they trust anyone -- even each other? Who is the leader of the group known as Eve’s Thieves? What will it take to stop her … and will any of them survive to do it?
Mac Rome writes in a variety of genres and settings, including numerous nonfiction articles for regional publications. Writing as macromega, he is the author of several comic book series, including “Bigger Than This,” set for release from Giantess Fan Comics Aug. 14.