Amy adjusted the over-sized headphones and slumped in the tall, old bar stool chair. She noticed a call light up. "Wonder who it will be this time...freaky perverts are getting old." She cleared her throat and got back into announcer mode. "Hi, who’s this?"
"Hi..." The rumbling male voice was a little hesitant. "Is this Amy O'Connor?"
"Yep, sure is. What can I do for you this morning?" She had already punched the Record button on another cart to play back just in case this caller didn't have an agenda like so many others before. The disadvantage at working overnight besides the sleep deprivation was an alarming number of perverts and miscreants that called at the sound of a female voice.
"Wow, it is morning already, isn't it?" She heard a raspy sigh on the other line. “How do you do it, work such hours and still sound so chirpy?” Oh what the heck it was slow and she was about to fall asleep.
"Sounds like you're having a long night." Sometimes there were moments like these that had her feeling like a radio bartender.
"Yep. Working late again." The weariness of his tone was beginning to endear her to him.
"What's your name and what evil company do you work for that has you pulling such long hours?" She noticed her radio voice had begun to slip having heard and matched the exhaustion in his voice. She gave herself a mental kick.
"It's usually me who asks all the questions." He chuckled a little. "Feels good to be on the other end for once. I'm Detective Mark Holliday with the Buffalo PD."
"Nice of you to call in, Detective Mark." She wasn’t sure if she was successful in recovering from her momentary pause or hiding the nervousness in her voice so she dropped his last name in a teasing way to make up for it. "Was there a song you were wanting to request?"
"Why don't you pick one out for me? Something with a beat to help keep me awake." Was it her imagination, or did his voice seem to have changed to what she thought was disappointment?
"One caffeinated song coming up." Her tone changed from her cookie-cutter announcer voice to something more herself as she pushed the Record button off. "Don't stay up too much later."
"You're sounding just as tired as I feel." It was a sure sign of her sleep depravity when her ears could swear his voice sounded warmer.
"Well not for long. Got a fresh batch of coffee with my name on it." She eyed the pot. Sure enough a full pot sat there waiting for her to claim it.
"Have a good rest of the night, Detective Mark."
Moments later an edited version of the detective's song request broadcasted and Amy cued up 'I Fought the Law and the Law Won.' Amy let out a sleepy chuckle and imagined the response from the nice detective with the hypnotic voice.
CATHERINE: Several times throughout the dialogue, I found myself wondering whether Amy or Mark was the speaker, since we got a lot of Amy's thoughts surrounding each and there were no speech tags. In this instance, I'd recommend adding a few in. Also, several times my fingers itched to add a comma in where they were missing. Still, I thought that the light banter between the two was charming.
GAIL: I really enjoyed reading this story. You kept me hooked the whole way through as I tried to figure out if he was dangerous. My only suggestion has to do with how she initially answered the call. Since I didn't yet know where she was, it sounded a bit unprofessional and strange that she didn't identify herself or her employer. You might want to add a bit more there. But that's a minor detail. This is a very strong excerpt. Thanks for sharing it with us.
AMY: This was a fun read. The only suggestion I have is that it took me a moment to realize she was a radio personality. Maybe if it were a little more clear somewhere at the very beginning we would get the image of her in the studio.
SAMANTHA: Like Gail, this excerpt kept me hooked the whole way. I'd like to read more to see what kind of connection she'll end up having with him. I love that you were able to establish chemistry between them with just a phone call. That's not easy to do, but I think you pulled it off with the natural dialogue. Also, it seems odd that a detective would call in to a radio show while he's on duty. Makes me wonder if he's investigating her, and if so, why? Okay. I want to read more. LOL. Thanks so much for sharing this excerpt with us.
LYDIA: I write historicals so I never thought of a "First Meeting" as being anything other than in person and face to face. So I liked this submission switched that up. I liked way Amy let her guard down the longer she talked to Mark. And the song choice was hilarious!