Thursday, 24 June 2010

Excerpt Day - A Certain Pressure in the Pipes © by Clancy Nacht


To Governor Lloyd, his son was a political and personal embarrassment. "Your mother indulges you. That's your problem. Too much indulgence. What you need is the rod."

"Quite. I believe a rod is what I was attempting to obtain prior to your intervention."

"Impossible. You're impossible. Don't think those big blue eyes are going to help you forever. One day I will send you away."

But his father never did.

Not even this night when Sheriff Cook sent out word to the Governor to explain he yet again had his son in jail. The charge—performing unnatural acts.

Conrad sighed and dropped his head against the wooden wall. The decrepit panel creaked.

In the cell next to him, a savage stood dressed in a most peculiar fashion for his people. He wore a sharp camel tweed suit cut exquisitely to his broad shoulders and tapered waist. He stood several inches taller than Conrad, posture impeccable even for these Victorian times. His dark eyes scanned Conrad, pausing at his face and again just south of his waistcoat.

Conrad had never been so near a savage. Even when he did see them, they were in the distance—all leather and red skin, sweating, with glistening black hair feathering down their muscular backs. Again, he had to adjust himself.

The savage cleared his throat. "Is your stool uncomfortable? I suppose a posterior such as yours rarely rests on something so hard."

Conrad eyed the well-spoken savage. Given the disparity in their stations, he should protest a savage speaking to him, particularly in so familiar a manner. But liking the look and attitude of the man rather than his color, the corner of Conrad's mouth curled up.

"I assure you, this posterior has pleasurably rested on many a hard thing quite comfortably."

The savage smiled, his thin lips parting over surprisingly white, straight teeth. He stuck his dark hand through the bars.

"Allow me to introduce myself. I am Ezhno."

Conrad was raised well enough to take a hand when offered. This interaction would horrify his father, which made it even more gratifying.

"How do you do, Ezhno? My name is Conrad. It is a wonder to meet the likes of you in a place like this. You are a rather unusual man. I don't know I've ever seen a savage in a suit before."

Ezhno wrinkled his nose at the word savage and Conrad made a mental note not to use it again. With his agreeable manners and dress, Conrad didn't think he was a savage. At least, not the way he understood them.

"Indeed, fine sir. I apologize for my ignorant words. We don't see many Indians around here and never alone."

"I am unusual. A loner. My name means 'solitary,' which is what I am." Running his huge hands down the tweed lapels, he said, "This suit suits me, don't you agree?"

There was a creak of complaint from a deputy leaning against the wall, "Won't tell where he got it."

With middling regard to his prisoner's desires, or perhaps because the prisoner's desires were becoming more obvious, Sheriff Cook butted in. "We know they don't make no tweed on them looms, so we just wanna know who it needs to go back to."

Ezhno sneered. "It is my suit. I bought it."

Conrad watched the interaction with interest. Ezhno didn't have a trace of an accent. He sounded as well bred as Conrad himself.

"Oh sure. You just hunted outside in your loincloth and traded wampum until you could get a whole suit and dress like a white man, did you? As soon as we find out who that suit belongs to, you're gonna hang." Sheriff Cook folded his arms.

The deputies laughed behind the sheriff. The noisome cackle made Conrad wonder if he should rethink his use of the word savage. These men certainly seemed to warrant it. He tapped his plush lips in thought, noting the familiar cut and line of the suit. The tailor's work was as familiar as his own handwriting. If that particular tailor had made the suit for one of the other narrow-shouldered Brits, it would not fit this broad-shouldered Indian so elegantly.

"I think you'll find the suit was made by a Mr. Gerald Wexler off of Darby Street. Rather than look for a non-existent dead body, why don't you ask Mr. Wexler if he's sold any suits to any Indians?"

The deputies looked to the sheriff who shrugged and sat heavily on his wooden chair in front of his desk. He hadn't given an order, but one of the guards grabbed his gun, presumably to head into town to question Mr. Wexler.

Though Conrad was excessively pleased with himself, Ezhno pressed his lips together, jaw clenched. He leaned as close to Conrad as the bars between them would allow and whispered, "I promised I wouldn't say who made my suit for me. It could get him in trouble."

"Get in trouble for what? Gentrifying? I should think he deserves an award for convincing anyone to put on something so itchy and constraining. But especially you. Your traditional attire better suits the climate." Conrad paused.

Ezhno's brows were furrowed, eyes to the side. "I'm trying to decide if that's a compliment or an insult."

"Oh a compliment! You are quite handsome in your suit and any tailor should be proud his art is worn on such a shapely body."

Ezhno turned his head, cocking it to one side and making it difficult to tell how the compliment went over. Conrad wrung his hands; certain this meant he'd added insult to injury. He was forming an apology when he heard what must have drawn Ezhno's attention away from their conversation— the distinctive sound of the copper coil springs Conrad had designed and installed into his father's coach. The coils were just one of the upgrades Conrad installed to lessen the ruggedness of the terrain on the posterior of the passenger.

As the coach drew closer, the soft bell-like ringing of the protective shields for the horse's hooves—another of Conrad's creations— filled the air with a musical tinkling. They were small amongst his prodigious amount of tinkering. Much of the coach's customizing was purely cosmetic. He'd even edged the carriage with brass and copper, with a gorgeous redwood inlay. It was the only truly magnificent coach in the area.

Inside, he concocted a very simple banded system that connected two propellers—one outside of the carriage and one inside. The hard winds that often blew through the county kicked up dust and often necessitated keeping the windows of the coach closed from the wind and the sun. The propeller caught those winds and spun the small fan inside, creating a pleasant breeze that kept the rider comfortable.

His father had acted quite put out that his son had done something as plebian as physical labor in order to outfit the coach. He'd hoped his son aspired to something better than a coach-maker. But the overall effect was quite grand and so the Governor rode in his coach at every opportunity.

Conrad backed away from Ezhno and sat on the stool, watching the door steadily as the creak, clomp, and tinkling of the coach grew louder and louder.

It seemed the coach had barely stopped before the door swung open with a loud bang. His father's booming voice broke through the awed silence.

"I should leave you to rot in there, you lazy, good-for-nothing prat!" He reached through the bars to box his son's ears, but Conrad stood beyond his reach. "There's an election coming up! What am I going to do with you?"

© Clancy Nacht

A Certain Pressure in the Pipes
M/M Steampunk Erotic Novella 
Author: Clancy Nacht

Publisher: Noble Romance

Release Date – June 28th

Conrad Lloyd's father, Governor of an old west town, wishes his son wasn't so interested in inventing, or men for that matter. It isn't until Conrad meets Ezhno, a Native American inventor, that Conrad thinks he can find sexual and intellectual fulfillment all in one man. Will they find their way together despite the societal and familial divide that threatens to keep them apart? Or will Conrad have to satisfy himself with his steam-powered Pleasuring Machine?


2 Speak To Me:

. Ruz . on 24 June 2010 at 22:39 said...

Nice blog! I'm following you. =) My book home is at Ruz's Bookshelves

p/s: Can't wait to read your review on One Reckless Summer.

麗芬 on 25 June 2010 at 07:54 said...