The results of Karin Tabke's First Line contest are delayed this week, but hopefully they'll be up be the end of the day. I'll report tomorrow whether or not I made the cut.
Here's an excerpt from my WIP, a steampunk urban fantasy called Mystic Taxi:
He felt a tap on his shoulder and turned to see Gerald holding a small atomizer bottle. Henry grabbed it and squeezed the bulb to release a fine mist into the air. It smelled tropical. Coconut and orchids? It reminded him of those fruity drinks human women liked so much.
The hose with the vegetable sprayer swayed from side to side, its energy waning. The scent seemed to be working. It started to retreat back to its hole beside the sink when it stiffened as if something attracted its attention.
Henry glanced behind him and saw Gerald standing out in the open.
Henry whirled back around just as the sprayer swiped at a butcher knife lying on the counter. It flipped it up and batted it like a baseball. The knife shot through the air, going straight for Gerald's head. Henry tried to block its path but was impaled through the chest.
He grunted, Gerald gasped, and the sprayer retreated in a flash to its hole.
"You malicious little Snit." Henry was ticked off now. He grabbed the old coffee maker and flipped up its lid. Eyes hot, he directed his will at the unruly demon, and within seconds a thin blue mist swirled up from the hole beside the sink. It drifted lazily to the coffee maker and disappeared inside. Henry snapped the lid shut, wiped his thumb across his chest where the knife still protruded, and jabbed it onto the machine to leave his mark.
"My brand. My will. And so you are bound."