My very good friend, Sara Dobie Bauer, is an author. She has been publishing short stories since I’ve known her, but her goal has always been to publish her books. Today, her goal is reality. Her new novella, Wolf Among Sheep, is out and available at Amazon and Goodreads. Check out the excerpt below and then go support this amazing author.
About Wolf Among Sheep:
New from Hot Ink Press! Avery Collins is an ambitious young journalist in early-1900s Charleston, South Carolina, when exotic newcomers Timothy and Vonnie Duke spot him at a fancy gala on the Battery. The Dukes like bringing pretty playthings to their marriage bed, and with a promotion in mind, Avery entertains their advances not knowing lust can quickly turn to love — and love to murder.
Wolf Among Sheep
By Sara Dobie Bauer
My husband shares a smile before he continues talking to the odious Cleaver woman. She is round in the wrong places, the shape of an upside-down cupcake. The layers of tulle beneath her gown remind me of juvenile dress-up.
Of course she would be taken with Timothy. His skin is pale like hers, but he speaks with the unfamiliar, crisp accent of one who travels often, unlike the lilting, lazy-mouthed dialect of this strange place. He is tall and broad and wears his light hair in a careful wave above his forehead. He keeps his moustache clean and coiffed. I know he smells like coffee beans, his trade.
I notice the shark as I reach into my purse for a cigarette. I slowly place the end into my ivory holder and light up. Smoke from my mouth joins the smoke of so many others in a blue cloud against the gilded ceiling above.
The shark is out of place out of water. How on Earth did he flounder his way up from the harbor, across East Bay Street, up an entire flight of circular steps? How does he manage to hold a glass in his fins?
I am busy studying this unsettlingly beautiful, wild presence when Timothy returns to me with a hand on my lower back. He sips champagne then leans in and presses a single, moist kiss behind my ear.
“I spy,” I say.
“What do you spy?”
“I spy a shark. A wolf among lambs.”
Timothy’s body, so close, gives off more heat than a Charleston kitchen at lunchtime. He has his arm wrapped around me, one hand on my right hip, and the other against the balcony. His half-empty champagne flute balances precariously between us.
“Oh, of course,” he says. “How could I miss him?”
I take a sip of earthy wormwood. “He’s not rich.”
“Not at all. His eyes search the party as though studying it.”
I lean closer to my husband. “A journalist, perhaps?”
“On assignment. How intuitive.”
“Describe him to me, darling,” I say. It’s a game we play. I like to hear if Timothy sees what I see.
He speaks right into my ear. “Hair the color of a spilled inkwell. Unkempt, uncut. Perhaps he can’t afford a regular barber.”
“Or perhaps he keeps his hair that way on purpose.”
“An air of flippancy, yes, which is why he wears no tie. He leaves his skin open to the air.”
“Practically a scandal.” I finish my second drink. “What else?”
“I can’t be sure from all the way up here, but I believe his eyes to be the color of burnt coffee beans.”
I smile, which is precisely when our flippant shark looks up at me. I run the backs of my fingers across my cheek. He watches.
“Although, I do believe you’re wrong, Vonnie. I believe him to be a lamb among wolves.”
“Is that so? Let’s give him a name,” I say.
“Hmm.” Timothy kisses the shell of my ear. “He looks like a Judas.”
When I tongue my top lip, the shark looks away. “Destined for betrayal?”
“Willing to do desperate sexual acts that could get him hung.”
I laugh and notice several people turn to stare. I’m beautiful—more beautiful—when I smile, and I know my laugh has the resonance of a sea horn over a motionless sea. “Let’s meet him.”
About Sara Dobie Bauer:
Sara Dobie Bauer is a writer, model, and mental health advocate with a creative writing degree from Ohio University. She spends most days at home in her pajamas as a book nerd and sex-pert for SheKnows.com. Her short story, “Don’t Ball the Boss,” was nominated for the 2015 Pushcart Prize, inspired by her shameless crush on Benedict Cumberbatch. She lives with her hottie husband and two precious pups in Northeast Ohio, although she would really like to live in a Tim Burton film. She is the author of Life without Harry, Forever Dead, and Wolf Among Sheep. World Weaver Press will publish her novel, BITE SOMEBODY, this summer.
Where to find Sara Dobie Bauer:
Wolf Among Sheep book trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sP-hz7_li68