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PW #124: Adult Speculative Fiction (Alternate History with a Steampunk twist): THE BRASS QUEEN

Tuesday, 31 October 2017  |  Posted by Brenda Drake

Manuscript Status: Finished

Mentor: Léonie Kelsall and Marty Mayberry

Mentee: Elizabeth Chatsworth

Title: THE BRASS QUEEN

Category: Adult

Genre: Speculative Fiction (Alternate History with a Steampunk twist)

Word Count: 102,000

Pitch:

The Aeronaut’s Windlass meets Soulless. In a steam-powered world, Constance Haltwhistle is the last in a line of blue-blooded rogues. Selling firearms under her alias, “the Brass Queen,” has kept her baronial estate’s coffers full. But when US spy, Trusdale, saves her from assassins, she’s pulled into a search for a scientist with an invisibility serum. As foes create an invisible army to start a global war, Constance and Trusdale must learn to trust each other. If they don’t, the world they know will literally disappear before their eyes.

Excerpt:

The grass was always greener in another dimension. Miss Constance Haltwhistle assumed that in a parallel world, she was enjoying her coming-out ball. A taller, less red-haired version of herself was waltzing in the arms of a dashing beau. Young noblemen, resplendent in white tie, were lining up for the opportunity to propose holy matrimony.

And no one had tried to kill her in weeks.

Draining her fourth glass of champagne, she stuffed her unmarked dance card into the pocket in her bustle. Snickers erupted from a trio of viscounts trailing her around the party as they made wagers on which etiquette rule she would stumble over next. Her current faux pas included dropping a fan into the punch bowl, wearing steel-toed ankle boots instead of dance slippers, and mistaking a cigar in an earl’s pocket for a concealed weapon. She’d demanded that he disarm himself before she damn well did it for him.

Alas, sometimes a cigar was just a cigar.

She strode away from the viscounts, recalled her need for a wedding proposal, and added a little swing to her bustled behind. She glanced over her shoulder as the lords guffawed at her dropped dance card.

She’d missed her pocket. Again.

Cheeks aflame, she headed for the dance floor.

Filed: PW Entries

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