Burning Ambition aka the long-awaited sequel to Hottie is lurking right around the corner. It streets, as they say, April 1. But you don't have to wait for a tasty preview. Over the next few days, Chapter One--intriguingly titled "The Legendary Adventures Of The Department Of Hotness"-- will be served up in bite-size chunks. Here's the first part:
The kingpin of the Belgian crime syndicate patted his luxurious thatch of midnight-black hair into place and leaned close to the video monitor, ready to be several hundred million dollars richer. He expected to see quaking, tearful representatives of his hostage's family carrying briefcases stuffed with bills, desperate to make the exchange and end their nightmare. Instead he saw...a girl. A girl who didn't seem to be much older than fifteen. Wearing a red leather jacket, a short black cocktail dress, huge black sunglasses and what looked like a thick gold chain that hung down to her waist and ended in a big burning H.
The girl looked straight up at the closed-circuit camera. She wagged a scolding finger at the lens. For a second it seemed to the Belgian crime boss that flames had erupted from the girl's fingers and engulfed the camera. And then the image vanished, and the monitor was awash with static. The crime boss had no clue who the girl was or what had just happened. But he knew one thing. An intruder had breached his lair. The smooth running of the hostage handover was in jeopardy. He picked up his phone and said, "Get her."
Alison Cole stood in the middle of the abandoned warehouse deep in the San Fernando Valley and awaited her welcoming committee. In the months since she'd actively engaged in superhero duty, she'd come to relish the seconds of solitude before the fray. They allowed her time to focus, gather her inner strength and catch up with her magazine consumption. In this instance, she was engrossed in the glossy pages of Jen, a monthly mixture of fashion, celebrity and real-life problems Alison had avidly lapped up since she was a pre-teen.
The thunder of boots on creaking floorboards ended her alone time with Jen. In they charged, standard-issue henchmen, nothing she hadn't seen before. Six of them. Big. bald guys, tree-trunk forearms, colossal chests, the usual tattoos. Except for one glowering dude, who had a map of Belgium inked across his WHOLE FACE( unless it was an unfortunate birthmark, in which case Alison knew the perfect dermatologist who could clear him right up...)
The hulking underlings surrounded her, moving ever closer in a tightening circle. Close enough for the, to see their huge hairless domes reflected in her dark glasses.
To be continued...