Bobby and Ichi’s Story.
Coming from Dreamspinner Press; December 2014
The interior was mostly faux-Italian, full of sweeping plaster embellishments, lush velvets, and trompe l’oeil vistas meant to whisk theatergoers to a lush Vienna celebration. The balconies were reminiscent of gondolas, toothy woodwork and black with swirling gold curlicues amid a sea of spangled stars and dusky skies. A pair of balconies wide enough to hold two or three people sat near the top of the stage opening, once meant for an operatic chorus to stand in during performances, and it was one of these outcroppings Jae was struggling to get to, using a slender shelf nearly a story up off the theater floor as a bridge.
Someone in the theater’s past bricked off the platforms and removed the access stairs, most likely during its revival as a cinema. If Ichiro could go back in time, he’d punch that someone in the face, because watching Jae inch his way to one was going to give him ulcers.
“Should you be doing that anyway?” Ichiro couldn’t stand it any longer, and he paced down the side of the theater floor, walking down the steeply angled aisle until he was directly below his friend. “You were shot.”
“I was shot months ago, and the doctor said I could resume normal activity—within reason.”
“This is so not within reason.” Ichi’s heart leaped up into his throat as Jae reached the balcony and threw one leg over the balustrade. “I don’t think he’d agree being Batman was normal activity—or even close to reasonable.”
“This is nothing. You should see—oof—what Cole and I—”
“I don’t want to hear that. Not about my brother. Or you. I don’t need that in my head.” He took a few more steps, hovering beneath his friend. Jae’s camera swung from a strap around his neck, and the lens nearly caught against the railing when Jae slid over into the balcony. “I’m not sure I’m going to survive this.”