Excerpt for The Greener Grass by , available in its entirety at Smashwords

Word Count: 4000



“Hey, Gin,” Myles said, cradling the phone against his shoulder and lifting his bag from the entryway floor.

“Hi. Thanks again for helping out tonight,” Gin responded.

“No problem,” Myles said. “Thursdays are busy, just like always.”

Gin chuckled. “You’re always complaining you want excitement.”

Myles sighed as he dropped his bag on the foot of his bed and then padded his way into the kitchen. “Yeah, because a normal Thursday night is what I’m looking for when I say that.”

“Yeah.” Gin was silent for a while, only mumbling and murmuring instead of saying anything outright.

Myles scoffed. Gin had always been like that, even since they were kids. He lacked the ability to say what he wanted, but didn’t lack the ability to keep his face straight to match. “Just—what, Gin?”

“Well, I got all the way home and realized that I don’t have any food,” Gin explained. “I was supposed to go grocery shopping tonight but—.”

“I’ll come cook dinner for you, Gin. What do you want?” Myles replied.

“I have everything for spaghetti.”

Myles took a deep breath before responding. “I thought you just said you didn’t have any food.” There was no response. “Fine, I’m on my way,” Myles said. “Please pull out the wine.”

“Got it.”

The line went dead half a second later, and Myles did then take a moment to roll his eyes. His best friend was an excellent baker, but didn’t love cooking meals. As frequently as Myles had been going to Gin’s apartment to cook him proper meals lately, he should just start going home with him and then leaving after dinner.

He tended to Blizzard, snuggling her and filling her bowl, then he grabbed his phone and bag, put on his shoes, jacket, and hat, and then grabbed his keys and headed back out the door.

His body walked the path from his place to Gin’s almost subconsciously. He walked passed the same busted, blue Ford Escort his father gave him five years ago. Passed Ms. Kunezki’s same dog that always barked at him despite four years as neighbors, and around the traffic cones on the corner that hadn’t moved once in the entire decade Myles had lived there.

Same old, same old.

He was just crossing the street that marked the halfway point of his trip when he heard a series of grunts and thumps. Myles had made the chilly trek four times that week alone and it was usually silent. He reached into the front compartment of his bag, pulled out his phone and slipped it into his coat pocket. He stepped forward quieter, noticing that the sounds were coming from down one of the dumpster alleys between buildings, and peeked his head around the corner. His heart took to racing immediately at the sight. There were four bodies that he could clearly see in the twilight, and they were all hunched over a single body huddled in a heap on the ground. Myles pulled out his phone and, without taking his eyes off the situation, swiped his thumb up from the right corner to open the emergency call feature.

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