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PW #138: Adult Contemporary Fantasy: SIGHT OF HAND

Wednesday, 2 November 2016  |  Posted by Brenda Drake

Manuscript Status: Finished

Mentor Name: E.L. Wicker
Mentee Name: Leigh Stanfield
Category/Genre: Adult Contemporary Fantasy
Word Count: 81,000


Deaf street magician Nick Hazard goes from struggling performer to suspected terrorist when a job gone spectacularly wrong lands him in Seattle’s City Hall with a ticking bomb. He escapes, but with cops, crooks, and a government agency full of super humans breathing down his neck, Nick will have to use his street smarts and preternatural eyesight to find the real bomber—preferably before the bomber finds him.


Years ago, if somebody had asked why I’d be running through a farmers market with two pissed off dopeheads on my heels, I would’ve asked if they had the right guy. Yet, there I was. And there they were. My morning had definitely taken a turn for the worst.

Never take the act off the street corner, Nick. I knew the rule. It was my rule, and I had it for a reason. As a street magician, I spent my days practicing sleight-of-hand for pocket change. It was tempting to use those skills for evil—to get flush fast off back-alley card games and lifted wallets. But the kind of people running sketchy poker games on milk crates behind the liquor store weren’t the kind of people who appreciated a little good-natured trickery. After that one guy knifed me in the ribs last summer, I figured I’d learned my lesson.

Apparently not.

Angry faces scowled and flapped their mouths at me as I shoved my way through the crowded market. I couldn’t hear their voices, but their stink-eyes spoke volumes. The people packed themselves into the aisles shoulder-to-shoulder, like sardines. If sardines went to brunch and swore off gluten. I wasn’t one to judge—live and let yogalati, if that made them happy—but I swore I smelled mimosas as I ducked past a woman in leggings and a puffy vest.


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