Most of this will be cut from the book, per my agent's suggestion. Here's your once in a lifetime opportunity to read it before it becomes hard drive chow. Ha! :)
The following is an excerpt from my steampunk urban fantasy, Mystic Taxi:
Eunice prayed her old ticker would keep on ticking as adrenalin sung through her veins. The lever at her back still hadn't moved an inch and Jasper's thug was plodding down the stairs toward her.
Sylvester leapt from her arms.
She lunged to grab him, but she wasn't fast enough. The clockwork cat scuttled across the floor on its wood and cable legs, the visible gears on its sides spinning to make it move. It sprang for the stairs and landed on the step just below her tormentor. The spawnster's heel slid across the cat's metal back and kept on going, both his feet leaving the stairs while gravity forced him to crash-land on his butt. He continued sliding down feet first, his head thumping against every step along the way. He collapsed in a lump at the bottom.
Dear, oh, dear. Eunice choked in a relieved breath, thankful to her faithful cat for saving her from the brute, but there was nothing to celebrate yet. Hellspawn recuperated fast, and this one would be good as new before she could say Cock Robin. In fact, he was already stirring. Think, think, think, Eunice. She needed a spell that would paralyze him, but all her spells were in the upstairs pantry. The only one close at hand was the potion she'd been working on. The Snit antidote. What would it do to a spawnster? There was no time to consider. She'd have to take a chance.
The spawnster sat up slowly, his rat-like whiskers protruding from the sides of his face like antennae. He twitched the long wiry hairs and shook his head like a dog shaking water from its back.
Eunice grabbed the beaker, its contents still boiling, and threw it at the ratman. He screamed as his shirt erupted into flame, but it couldn't be the fire that hurt him. Spawnsters thrived in fire. Even so, he was definitely hurt because his scream abruptly changed to sobs.
"Goodness me, Sylvester," Eunice said to her mechanical pet. "I do abhor torture. I only meant to stop him from coming after me. The poor thing."
But the spawnster shook his head. "It's not my body that hurts," he said between sobs. "It's my heart. I've been such a bad, bad spawnster. Evil. Cruel." He wailed and Eunice plucked a lace-edged hanky from her apron pocket. Careful not to get too close, she reluctantly handed it to him. "Thank you," the ratman said, and blew his nose.