I promised at the end of Bob Moore: Desperate Times and in one or both of the Behind the Scenes Podcasts (here and here) that I’d post some of the scenes that got cut from the book. If you missed it, you can read the first deleted scene here and the second here. Okay, these are the last of the deleted scenes for Bob Moore: Desperate Times (the book was 105k words long – I didn’t delete much). Here we have three short things I deleted. The first is just a couple of lines that I thought were funny but were out of place in the narrative. It was near the end (I think) during an action scene. It just broke it up too much and slowed it down. But I thought it was funny so I kept it for a deleted scene. The second happens after Bob goes to the hospital to see Liz the first time. He ends up outside wondering what to do. Eventually, he goes back inside and makes a scene making phone calls. At first, he ran into this security guard. The scene was cut because it had no real purpose and was just taking up space. You may think when you read the last deleted scene that I’ve made a mistake and that it was actually in the book. That’s why it was cut. It’d already been covered ad nauseam.
* * *
Well, I’d known a few gadgety supers who had some unnatural fixations on their cars and utility belts, but I wouldn’t call it love. There was that one guy that they found dead, buried under a pile of robots he built for sex. But at best, that was assisted masturbation – not love.
* * *
“You okay buddy?”
A short, balding man in a security guard outfit sat in his golf cart on the other side of my car. He genuinely looked concerned though he had his hand on his belt. I glanced at it. Under there couldn’t be a gun unless it was a Derringer. Probably some sort of aerosol deterrent. I’d heard they’d come in vogue recently. I think Liz had suggested at that lunch that I should get some. For dogs and such. I’d forgotten.
“Fine.” I started to turn then stopped. “Hey, how long you been on duty?”
“Oh,” he looked at his watch, I was right, there was some sort of can on his belt, “about an hour or so.”
“You hear anything about Liz Novak?” He shook his head, “Or anything about a girl in an explosion?” Another negative head gesture, “Or anything about TOP?”
The security guard perked up, “The Tippy Outreach Program?”
“Good people, them,” he continued, “got me a fat settlement when Captain Moon dropped a car on my house.” He beamed, “I only work ’cause I like it. Don’t really need to anymore.” His face fell slightly, “He did kill my cat, though. I sure do miss that cat. Though Miss Novak said that had pretty much doubled my settlement.” His eyes got wide, “Oh, is that who you’re talking about? Miss Novak? Oh my. That’s just terrible.”
“Yeah, tell me about it.”
“You know, you should ask the police. That’s what I’d do.”
I thought about my recent run-in with the boys in blue and cringed, “Yeah, good idea.”
“Oh, that’s just terrible, terrible,” the security guard mumbled as he accelerated away, “poor thing. She was good people.”
“She’s not dead!” I called out, though I doubt he heard me over the whining of the electric motor in the golf cart.
* * *
I looked back at the road, the buildings blurring by unnoticed. What was going on? What did all this mean? This girl. This telepath. She couldn’t help herself. It seemed to be all subconscious. Sure, she could do certain things willfully, but most of it just seemed to happen. But what did that mean for me? Were these feelings my own? I examined my thoughts, my emotions, and they all seemed to make sense. But when Tay hid the girl and I had forgotten about her, that had made sense too. At least it seemed to. If I couldn’t be sure of my own mind, what could I be sure of?
I turned again to the girl and forced a smile, “Nineteen…God I hate calling you that.” I started again, glancing back to her from the road as often as I dared. “I’m not sure if you can understand this, but you don’t have to make me like you, okay? You may know this, but I had a little girl once. A daughter. She…died…” I looked away, trying to clear that pain from my mind. “It was a long time ago. You’d never need to make me want to protect you. To help you. I’d do that anyway. Okay?”
I stole another look at Nineteen. She was staring at me as blankly as always but for a one change: a hint of a smile. I took a deep breath and held it. If she was controlling me, could she stop? Would she want to, regardless of what I said?
I gasped audibly. Nissa.
I remembered clearly two nights ago. Nissa in my shirt. My reaction. My desires. But the next night? Nothing. Was that me? Was it shock from the ordeal at Inhumanitas? Or was it the little girl sitting beside me. Was she canceling out any feelings I had for others so that I’d concentrate on her?