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He was halfway through his third draft, making the changes his editor had requested, when there was a knock at the door.

Grumbling, he got up and opened it.

“What the hell do you think you’re doing?”

He stared, blinked, and nearly fainted. The woman on his doorstep was tall, muscular, very lightly clothed and very, very angry.

“I’m uh- I’m…”

He blinked again. She was still there.

She tugged at the metal bikini which barely protected her dignity. “What the hell is this?”

He gulped. “Uh- uh- armour?”

Her eyes narrowed and she pushed him backwards into the house, kicking the door shut behind her.

“Armour? Armour?! You think that this counts as being armoured?”

He fell backwards across his sofa and stared up at her. She was exactly as he had described her in his novel – down to the last detail. Awesome. Beautiful. Lethal.

“This is not how you wrote me before,” she snapped. “What happened to my original armour, hm? What happened to the armour that allowed me to pass unnoticed through the streets of Heratellin?”

His mouth opened and closed like a goldfish. “It was – uh – my editor told me to…”

“Was what? Comfortable? Yes, it was. Practical? Yes, it was that too. Likely to save my life in a fight? Astonishingly, yes. What good is this? Am I supposed to distract the enemy with my cleavage and just hope they manage to miss me completely?”

He sat up. “But.. I mean, I liked the original armour but it’s not what the readers want…”

She laughed. “What the readers want? What the readers want is an author with integrity. What the readers want is a heroine they can believe in.”

She put one foot on his chest and pushed him back onto the sofa. Shaking, he stared up past her magnificent thighs to her perfect, aristocratic face.

“Are you the author they want, or not?”

© Kari Fay

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