As I was at a steampunk convivial yesterday (much fun and frivolity had by all), I thought I’d snippet today from Counter Culture, my novel featuring a romance between a steampunk – Archie – and a sales assistant (Robin, but he’s not in this snippet).
Here, Archie’s local steampunk group is brainstorming a suitable name for their esteemed organisation:
“Splendid Hitchworth Eccentrics and Explorers of the Paranormal?” the plague doctor suggested. “Although the acronym is perhaps somewhat lacking.”
Yeah, Archie didn’t reckon SHEEP really cut it, either. “Maybe if we added “Electric” at the start, to give us Electric SHEEP? No, hang on, that’d be cyberpunk. Ignore me.”
“How about Steampunks of Hitchworth, Including Time-travellers?” Bridge called out.
“I like that one!” That was River, who tonight was dressed down as David Tennant’s Doctor Who. They looked good in the sharp suit and overcoat, but Archie’s fave was their TARDIS outfit. It was epic, complete with flashing light on the top hat and woop-woop noises.
Somebody laughed, and River frowned. “Wait a minute . . .”
Perry had to call for order after the rest of them worked out that acronym and choked on their drinks.
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Customer service has never been this personal.
Robin Christopher, beleaguered retail worker, isn’t having an easy November. His boss is raising stress levels planning a Black Friday to end all Black Fridays, his family doesn’t understand him, and his best friend thinks his new crush is a hallucination brought on by watching too many episodes of Doctor Who.
Archie Levine dresses in Victorian style and divides his time between caring for his young son and creating weird and wacky steampunk gadgets from bits of old junk—when he’s not looking after his mum and trying to keep on good terms with his ex. The last thing he’s got time for is a relationship, but the flustered young man he met while disembowelling a fridge is proving very tempting.
When his mum’s social conscience is roused by a local store with a cavalier attitude to the homeless, former rough sleeper Archie shares her anger. Little does he know that Robin works for that same store. When Archie finds out he’s sleeping with the enemy, things could cut up very rough indeed.