A tiny excerpt from a novel I’m working on dealing with how academics are turning up gruesomly murdered. At the same time there is a group of terrorists campaigning around language rights. As dectectives hunt the killer it looks more and more like the evolution of language is the culprit.
A repetitive beeping awoke me, it was growing louder and was reaching that point where all you can think is to find the source of the beeping and smash it into a million little pieces. I looked around the room. It was hard as the light coming in the window was still that early morning grey, the kind of light that makes you feel you should still be fast asleep and not thinking about getting up. I was stuck somewhere wanting to get up and wanting to dive deeper into the bed in the hope that the noise will disappear.
I got up and followed the source of the noise to the study, and it appeared to be coming from the laptop sitting on the desk. I opened the bare metal laptop and looked at the screen. It was an alarm going off, a reminder that Cowgill had the dentist in two hours. I switched it off, was about to close the laptop, when through the fogginess of my mind I realised that I was in Cowgill’s laptop, there was no password. Maybe he always wanted his thoughts to be known if he died? Did he expect to die? If he did, what was he up to and why hadn’t he mentioned it?
First, though, I went to his kitchen and found some coffee left in a jar. I boiled the kettle and poured the water straight onto the coffee. There was no point looking for milk as his fridge was empty. Today was going to be a strong black coffee kind of day anyway. I took my now hot jar back through to the study, and subconsciously I looked for a coaster it felt wrong to just place this jar down anywhere in this immaculate study.
I settled down and decided to start looking through his files, which might be easier than I was thinking. Is desktop was blank, bar one file floating around the middle of the screen. The file was called “Ur-Nammu.”