Once Upon a Time by Gail Koger
Once upon a time I was a 9-1-1 dispatcher. Thirty-one years of wild requests, screwy questions, bizarre behavior and outrageous demands have left me with a permanent twitch and an uncontrollable craving for chocolate. Don’t get me wrong. Working as a 9-1-1 dispatcher can be very rewarding. BUT - some days I felt like the whole world was nuts. I mean, c’mon who in their right mind calls 9-1-1 for the winning lottery numbers? Huh?
A professional 9-1-1 dispatcher must be able to deal with rapidly changing situations and maintain her calm at all times. And some days that can be pretty darn hard. I was reaching for my stash of chocolate when my next call came in. Her voice low and worried, a woman announced, “There’s a strange woman in my bathroom taking a bubble bath.” A bubble bath? Are you kidding me? “You have no idea who she is, ma’am?” The woman said, “No. I really had to pee and when I opened the bathroom door this bitch yelled, ‘Close the damned door. I’m taking a bath here!’ So, I grabbed her clothes and called 9-1-1.” Our well-scrubbed burglar got whisked to jail. Some days catching the bad guys is too easy. Some days eating a handful of Tylenol is easy, too.
Most citizens of our fair cities have absolutely no idea of what an officer can or cannot do. They aren’t plumbers, electricians, alligator wrestlers (don’t ask) or allowed to shoot down low flying aircraft.
A career as a 9-1-1 dispatcher is demanding, exasperating, satisfying and fun. Yeah, fun. Catching a burglar or bank robber rocks. A short happy dance is permitted. You’ve made a difference. Made the world a safer place for a short time. We don’t always win but when we do, there’s nothing like it. Chocolate anyone?
To keep from hitting myself repeatedly in the head with my phone, I took up writing. My current book is Shenanigans, a paranormal romantic comedy.
Kandi Cain inherited her Dr. Doolittle abilities from her grandmother and became a psychic pet detective. To her dismay, she just acquired the power to communicate with the spirit world, but dead people give her the willies.
Just when Kandi thought her life couldn’t get more complicated, the neighbor from hell moved in next door. The nasty guy’s name is Dutch Callaghan. How can someone so gorgeous be such a dick? Kandi could chalk some of it up to his job. Dutch is a Phoenix PD homicide cop.
Kandi’s current case is rescuing a Yorkie from a brutal dog fighting ring. Little does she know her dog napping suspect is involved in a series of brutal murders. Disguised as an elderly nun, Kandi rescues the Yorkie and, in the process, blows the hell out of Dutch’s undercover operation.
Kandi now finds herself a person of interest in her client’s murder and her sexy-as-hell, pain-in-the-butt neighbor is in hot pursuit of the Ninja Nun. Is Dutch about to slap the cuffs on? Only time will tell.
Dutch’s office was a chaotic mess. My gaze roved over the piles of paper covering his desk to the fast food containers spilling from the trash can to the wanted posters and bloody crime scene photos plastered all over the walls. Did he have hoarder tendencies or was he just a slob? I eyed the ketchup splattered computer screen. Slob. “Charming décor.”
Dutch rumbled from behind me. “It’s the maid’s day off.”
I glanced over my shoulder and my jaw dropped. Whoa! Dutch was wearing a sharp, black business suit and his beard was gone.
“I have court today.” He explained as he ushered me into his office.
“Oh.” I studied Dutch’s colorfully bruised face. “Did the security guards give you that shiner?”
Dutch removed a gym bag and ballistic vest from the chair beside his desk. “Cut the innocent act. You know damn well how I got these bruises.”
“Right. The mysterious Ninja Nun kicked your butt,” I responded.
“You’re a real riot.” Dutch pointed at the chair and ordered, “Sit.”
“I’m not a dog. I don’t fetch, heel or roll over on command.”
“Do you do everything the hard way?”
I countered, “Are you always an ass?”
“Please, sit,” Dutch said, his teeth bared in the semblance of a smile.
I sat. “See? Being polite works so much better.”
“Uh huh.” Dutch’s hand closed around an empty soda can, crushing it into an itty-bitty ball. For a moment the feral glint in his eyes had me worried. A sigh of relief escaped me when Dutch dropped the crumpled can in the overflowing trash.
Since Loose Id went out of business, I now self-publish through Amazon.
Bio: Howdy. My name is Gail Koger and once upon a time I was a 9-1-1 dispatcher. I took up writing science fiction romance and paranormal romance to keep from killing people. So far, it has worked.