Today I am so pleased to welcome D.N. Bryn to Joyfully Jay. Danny has come to talk to us about their latest release, Odder Still. They have also brought along a great giveaway. Please join me in giving Danny a big welcome!
With his cane tapping my legs, he steps around me with ease. Then he lowers himself, gracefully, to the ground at my side. His lips quirk. “Now I also ken you’re either a fool or a schemer.”
I can’t quite contain my surprise. “I’m what? Why?”
“You just handed me the one thing you could have bargained answers for.” He gives his brooch a small wiggle before pinning it to the collar of his shirt. “A schemer might give it in order to grant me a false sense of control, and a fool because they don’t understand its importance. Though you… Perhaps you’re a third option.”
I’ve lived beneath the heel of a boot long enough to sense whatever miniscule power I had left slip away. Of Tavish’s list, he is certainly the schemer, twisting every vulnerability into a shield. It’s intoxicating in its genius and distressing in its triumph. “Tell me, then, what am I?”
“A man on the verge of collapse.”
A schemer indeed, making me trust him more with every moment. “On the verge? I’m alone, very far from the only place I’ve ever known, with nothing to my name and no way to return.” I stop myself short of mentioning the parasite in my neck. I’ll have to tell someone about that, whether him or another member of Findlay Inc. But not yet. “I’ve seen death, particularly as of late, but I’ve never killed…”
The shudder that runs through me resonates between the parasite and myself. It snaps, ‘You’ll hurt yourself.’
Impossible, silt-breathing creep.
Tavish stares out to sea, his fingers fiddling with his brooch. Finally, he lifts one hand and finds my shoulder, squeezing it once before dropping his arm. “Sounds to me like some real shite.”
“You don’t know the half of it.”
Rubem is plenty happy keeping to his wine, his pets, and his extensive collection of fishnets. But when a sentient parasite latches to his brainstem, he’s forced out of his comfortable—if lonesome—life in search of someone in the nearby underwater steampunk city who can safely remove it. Here though, both the power-hungry rebels and the tight-gripped monopolies want to viciously dissect his parasite for its energy-producing abilities, and the only person offering him sincere help is the dashing and manipulative philanthropist selkie at the center of all the city’s chaos.
Danny Bryn is a queer, disabled author of speculative fiction and fantasy romance. When not writing, they conduct infectious disease surveillance in their hometown of San Diego, where they enjoy basking in the Santa Ana winds, hiking the brush-heavy slopes, and eating too many tacos.
Danny has brought FIVE copies of Odder Still to give away to some lucky readers. Just leave a comment at the end of the post to enter. The contest ends on Friday, June 17th at 11:59 pm ET.
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