Reviews for Ricochet
Ersatz Einstein chapter 9 . 4/16
Grammatical errors ("a the jersey," "but Coop what would happen if Jimmy guess," etc.) aside, the character relations in this chapter were excellent. The half-awkward, half-understanding dialogue between Jimmy and Joe reflects their new-partner status nicely, and the time you're giving to the remaining effects of Jimmy's religious upbringing adds some depth to him as a character. As always, the exchange between Robin and Coop was an adorably light patch. The narration had just the right touch of personality ("whatever the magic eight ball dictated").
NoComparison chapter 17 . 1/19
So so sorry for my complete lack of reviewing in these past few months. I've been busy as hell. I'm back now, though and excited to continue reading. _

Well, this was certainly an interesting chapter and interesting development. I like Coop's interaction with Danny here, not sure if both men are dead or if Danny is dead and trying to make a comatose Coop decide between coming back to life and entering the realm of the dead. There seems to be a bit of tension between them both, as is evident in the scene where Coop walks in on Danny and Hank kissing. I get the impression that there's some bad blood between them...?

Jimmy went through some problems in this chapter too. It's clear he's under a lot of stress due to Coop's shooting. The emotions of the characters are always well describes and easy to connect to with each new chapter.

Mentioning how Adam would 'keep everything inside' and later deal with his grief, does make me think Coop is dead, the word grief makes me think of death.. You wouldn't grieve if the person in question was alive with a chance of recovery, would you...?

anyway I really like this, and I look forward to reading on.

-NC :)
Igenlode Wordsmith chapter 14 . 1/12
Coop makes the quite natural assumption that he must be dead... and having found that death actually seems to be quite a calm and unfrightening experience - "a quiet summer afternoon with an endless, cornflower blue sky" - decides that perhaps being dead is the best solution to all his problems, after all. (Ironically, much the same conclusion that McCree had taken without bothering to consult him at all!)

In fact, the way he puts it, he's got a point. But then he clearly does want to live, because he went to an enormous amount of trouble to prevent Jimmy's being tormented by guilt at his death, and if he dies now it isn't going to help matters much in that respect...


"Jimmy looked the kid with admiration" - missing word

"Sure, Coop!" Danny bounded to his feet "I'll go grab you a glass. Just wait here!" - missing full stop after 'feet'

"I'm fine, man. Just this damn lip of mine hurts like a son of a bitch! Jimmy whispered - missing closing quote after 'bitch!'

"Heaven mustn't be a strict as Father Mack taught me" - 'as strict'

Other comments:

I like Danny's 'ghost magic' - after all, if you're existing in a figment of imagination, why put up with inconvenient realism?

"Danny let out a sharp exhale" - 'exhale' is a verb: either 'Danny let out a sharp exhalation' or 'Danny exhaled sharply'

"Jimmy and Joe headed down a taupe and purple hallway" - all these colour-described rooms (e.g. Coop's white and brown living room and green bathroom) come across to me with an odd, artificial effect. It sounds like something out of an interior decorating brochure, but doesn't actually help me visualise the room at all. You could have written 'a dingy shade of peeling taupe paint made the hallway even more unattractive', for example, which would seem more natural from the point of view of a character observing his environment and gives some idea of what the place looks like; but people don't as a rule walk around and think to themselves "I'm heading down a taupe and purple hall" or "I've entered a sea-green bedroom".

"Joe watched tensely from the doorway. No longer distracted, he began to remember how much he hated this hospital" - more hints: Joe clearly does have a backstory of his own associated with this place...

I like the way that Coop is worried about his cat's presence in the afterlife: a quite natural implication leading on from what Danny has just told him, after all.

There's a nice transition at the start of the chapter between Joe remembering his exams and Jimmy remembering Coop as a rookie: a neat piece of structure.

"A year previous, Jimmy had first met Coop" - probably "A year previously", unless again it's supposed to be narrated in dialect

Jimmy's injured knees seize up after waiting too long: ouch. An all too familiar consequence of injury in that area...
Igenlode Wordsmith chapter 13 . 1/12
A ghost's point of view?

Now, this is a very unexpected twist: all Coop's flashback memories of the morning before the wedding are actually taking place in his 'point of death' situation... which does make a lot more sense of the chronology so far. (I was starting to wonder how Coop had appeared so relaxed in the first chapters if he had been through all this that morning!) It also explains how a ghost can interact in such a very physical way with the door, cat etc. - they are all equally figments of Coop's imagination.


"Thank you" said Joe gratefully - missing comma

"Sure," Coop. I'll meet you in the living room when you're ready," - there's an extra closing quote after "Sure"

Pretty women always made him fluster - probably 'flustered': you fluster other people but become flustered yourself

Other comments:

"Backing as far from the door as was possible, shaving cream dripped from Coop's face and onto his bare chest" - this looks like a classic 'dangling participle' (e.g. "Flying south for the winter, I saw swallows overhead"). It's not the shaving cream that is backing away, but that's what the sentence actually says here.

"four people who had ever come to know Coop's true self" - aha, more hints: we know Danny and Jimmy, but who are the others? Furthermore, who is Harold going to turn out to be...?

Wouldn't Jimmy's lip be likely to have clotted after all this time, rather than still dripping freely? In addition to the twenty minutes waiting here and the "twenty slow minutes" Joe spent waiting for him outside the stationhouse, there's all the drive time and the time spent waiting for McCree at the scene of the crime...

"Jimmy sat down in silence, all emotion an alien sensation. His eyes became hard, blue stones" - yet he was slumped in relief the last time we heard, and is embarrassed a couple of sentences later, neither of which seem like stony, emotionless behaviour. I'm confused.

"As Jimmy hesitated, Jimmy brushed a stray curl of hair out of his eyes" - I did comment elsewhere on the reluctance of this story to use pronouns, but in this sentence the effect is so strange-looking that it actually comes across as a mistake: the automatic assumption is that the author meant to type 'Joe brushed a stray curl' and got the wrong name, which I don't think is the intended case.
Igenlode Wordsmith chapter 12 . 1/12
So the previous chapter with the two lead-ins was actually the same flashback being remembered by two different people at two different times - Coop in the morning and Jimmy at night? No wonder I was confused...

Congratulations to Coop on succeeding in avoiding cutting himself after seeing a ghost when shaving... possibly the worst possible moment for it to happen!

And we finally know what it was that Murphy overheard. I'm not clear why Coop declares that they are "the lucky ones", though: does he reckon they're more likely to stay in love than everyone else whose worn-out marriages he regards with such scorn? And if he isn't proposing that Jimmy should leave his wife and children, what on earth is he proposing...?

The image of Danny as quiet and well-mannered is an echo of Jimmy... or perhaps the other way round, so far as Coop is concerned.


"Eying Coop's tense shoulders" - Eyeing

"Pale and trembling, Coop breathed slow, deep breathes" - breaths

"being a good police officer, and pursuing woman" - women, presumably (unless it's Woman in the abstract?)

Other comments:

"Robin hopped back up onto his master's lap and quickly laid down" - as before, I assume 'lay down' is meant here. Robin would have 'laid down a mouse' at his master's feet', however.

"Joe's eyes returned to the road. With a painful jolt, the streets became familiar as Joe entered the old haunts of the neighbourhoods surrounding Pennsylvania General Hospital" - now why is this neighbourhood familiar and painful to Joe, I wonder?

"Allan was the only person close to him whom understood how" - "who understood how". "The only person whom he understood", but "the only person who understood him" - 'who' and 'whom' follows the same pattern as 'he' and 'him'.

"Breathing heavily and sitting motionless, Jimmy appeared to have fled the Earth to be with the man he cherished" - this was a bit confusing, because Coop isn't dead, and the first thing we're told about is Jimmy's heavy breathing, which isn't normally associated with appearing (even rhetorically) to be dead either: assuming that 'fled the Earth' means 'died', that is.

If Coop actually remembers Jimmy's kissing him on the forehead, he clearly wasn't anywhere near as "sound asleep and snoring" as in Jimmy's own memory of that evening!

I like the mental image of Coop crawling under the table on hands and knees to apologise to his cat...
Igenlode Wordsmith chapter 11 . 1/12
The kiss comes as a natural enough progression: Coop is overtired, overwrought, and only a few inches away from someone he's been lusting after for weeks, and fury and love lie proverbially side by side on the spectrum. And the quarrel is very convincing, with Jimmy feeling guilty about accepting dirty money and Coop carrying the guilt for deaths in Vietnam: both are pushed beyond what they would normally find acceptable.

I appreciated Coop's comeback "You're right! That was fun!": accuse a man of enjoying violence, and there's an inevitable irony in his response... Jimmy deserved that.

I did feel that the actual description of the kiss was probably the weakest part of this chapter. I'm not a slash fan, so I'm not objecting to a lack of hot, steamy action: but "Jimmy's soft lips felt like burning fire",'deep sense of longing', 'soft, passionate kiss', 'wander over Jimmy's back', 'removed his lips from Jimmy's' - all these strike me as very generic soft-romance-novel phrases. I got much more feeling of an actual connection between the two from the next section, when Coop starts sobbing into Jimmy's shirt and is embarrassed about it.

So Jimmy *is* on McCree's payroll despite never having received direct orders to stay away from Burke? I'd got the opposite impression from the previous chapter.


"had crept of bed to the den" - presumably a missing 'out'

"Well, you sure know how to make a man happy, Jimmy" remarked Coop twenty minutes later - missing comma after 'Jimmy'

Coop glanced admirably at Eileen's collection of fine china - admiringly

But you gotta do what you gotta do when talking doesn't exactly with the types of people we gotta deal with - unless Coop is extremely drunk and incoherent, I think there's a word missing somewhere in here

Other comments:

"Coop laid down on his bed" - 'laid' is the past tense of the verb 'to lay' [an egg]: 'lay' is the past tense of the verb 'to lie' [down]. Unless this is intended as deliberate dialect, I think 'Coop lay down' is meant here.

In the final section we are told that the flashback was "fond recollection": but a few lines later, its resumption is apparently "guilt" and "torture", which took me aback. I suppose that remembering happy times under the circumstances might come across as torture, but the start of the section gives a totally different impression of Jimmy's state of mind.

"If you do exist, God, you sure had a twisted sense of humour when you made me" - very effective phrase here, giving a good idea of Coop's wry character and of his impossible situation
Igenlode Wordsmith chapter 10 . 1/12
I love the arrest scene: the 'smart talk' from both sides, the slick action - I'm guessing this is the sort of thing actually seen on the series?

And the banter inside the police station is well done, too: we are really getting a sense of the 'public' face of Coop's personality, which up to now the reader has heard about more than actually seen.

The 'bent cop' set-up is a classic for this era, of course, so perhaps it's less surprising that if McCree is a 'villain' already (and has previously clashed with Coop), he subsequently goes over the top when deciding how to deal with Serge's revelations. I find it odd that Jimmy and Coop have apparently never been told that Burke is off-limits simply because they transferred into the precinct after the original deal, though: surely for his own protection McCree needs to make sure that all officers who might transgress his arrangement with Burke are in the know?

With Coop this short of sleep and emotionally fraught, things are certainly set up for an explosion of some kind when he and Jimmy finally get off-duty...


"Both were shocked when the red and white cruiser come from around the corner" - came

Other comments:

"procession of drugs is illegal" - possession?

"What the hell is he doing backing down?" - why is Jimmy so surprised here when his friend finally accepts his protest of "It was only a joke"? The 'backed-down' Coop is then described as "acting more himself", after all...

"black haired man that" - "man who"

the "blond" here is evidently female, so should be "blonde", the feminine version of the word: it's a French adjective and has different forms for male and female

"Okay, Jimmy!" declared Coop. "We're moving in!" as he put the car into drive/"Ah," said Coop, looking around. "Let me see..." as he gripped his baton firmly in his right hand - technically speaking, this is the same use of dialogue attribution in both places, but the first looks obviously wrong to me while I feel that you can get away with the second one...

"Coop pushed hard, making Burke's head smash into the roof of the car. "Watch your head!" Coop called as Burke began moaning, trying to rub his head." - the word 'head' occurs too many times in succession to be ideal here

"The short ride back to the station was filled with groans and complaints[...] Jimmy and Coop were relieved to get back to the station, pushing Burke in front of them." - these two sentences taken together do sound rather as if Burke is being propelled along in front of the patrol car!

"a man dressed in drag from a raid on a bathhouse" - from what I've heard about bathhouses, they tended to involve people taking advantage of generally-accepted nudity rather than dressing up as women, but I'm certainly no expert...

"I'll make sure we get clearance on all politically sensitive suspects" - what makes Burke 'political'? Or is this just a phrase, i.e. to mean "all suspects whom I suspect our lieutenant might get annoyed at us for arresting"?
Igenlode Wordsmith chapter 9 . 1/12
Aha, so I was right after all about the baseball subtext - it's always gratifying when that happens!

And Danny is finally clarified - from the previous mention I thought he had to be either a father-figure or a former lover. I like the way that this story ties chapters together with running detail in this way, bringing elements back in that were hinted at in earlier sections.

The scene where Coop and Jimmy are both ranting against homosexuals and feeling inwardly guilty about it is effective (and one place where mixing points of view like this arguably pays off well, however disorienting I normally find it).

I have to say that I was inwardly cringing at the prospect of policemen working thirty-six hour shifts (twenty-four hours on hair-trigger duty was unthinkable enough), so when Coop insisted on driving I was anticipating disaster: no wonder the day was described as "oddly" trouble-free!


"what the closeness they had once shared" - presumably either "what closeness they had once shared" or "the closeness"?

"But Coop what would happen if Jimmy guess the real truth" - "if Jimmy were to guess"? "if Jimmy guessed"? "Coop knew what would happen"?

Three years ago, he had even still slept with his teddy bear. But tonight had shed the aura of youth that had clung to him - good

"he and Eileen's marriage" - "his and Eileen's marriage", i.e. "his marriage" and "Eileen's marriage"

"how his happiness had began" - "had begun"

Other comments:

"Joe's mouth sneered" - I don't think 'sneered' (implying hatred/contempt) is the word you meant here; Malone is frustrated, not contemptuous, and in the previous paragraph he was worried about Jimmy

"No point ruining two pairs of pants" - I didn't understand the suggestion about 'ruining' his clothes by changing into them: he's not anticipating any more clothes-shredding incidents between here and the hospital, is he? (Or is it the idea that his knees might start bleeding again and stain his clean trousers?)

"what had happened that night in the backyard with Coop and since had simply been lust, the intimacy Jimmy had missed having with his wife" - I wasn't clear about how to interpret "had missed having" here. Is the intended implication that Jimmy was kissing Coop because he felt deprived of affection from Eileen due to the breakdown in their marriage (which is what it actually sounded like to me), or that by marrying her he had 'missed out' on ever having any real (i.e. homosexual) intimacy?

"Tonight had been a clear message from God that what he and Coop were doing was vile" - I'd interpreted Jimmy's attitude in previous chapters as being that they had been given a second chance and ought to seize it with both hands: although this is a more realistic conclusion for him to draw, under the circumstances...

You seem to have two passages that appear intended as 'lead-ins' to a flashback sequence:
"he leaned back against the leather seat with closed eyes, hoping for happy memories" (Jimmy)
"reminiscing for the hundredth time how his happiness had began" (Coop)
However, the actual flashback is then written from Jimmy's point of view, so I'm confused by the intervening lead-in from Coop.

"his long claws making clicking noises on the linoleum floor" - this sounds like a description of a dog: cats have notoriously soundless paws with retractable claws. (While individual cats *can* have claws that fail to retract properly on one or more feet - I own one myself - there has been no indication that Robin is in any way abnormal, so it comes across as a misunderstanding.)

"Owen Murphy walked over to Jimmy and Coop chuckling" - this sounds as if it is Coop and/or Jimmy chuckling; probably needs a comma after "Coop" to clarify

"While Coop and Murphy couldn't be described as friends, both harboured a secret respect for each other as policemen" - another hint that Murphy is not as hostile as Jimmy has perceived

"but kept averted his gaze from Jimmy's curious eyes" - awkward phrasing: again, is this stuck in mid-edit between "kept his gaze averted" and "averted his gaze from Jimmy's curious eyes"?

"he would be joining those he bashed in drunken camaraderie" - another potentially confusing sentence which makes it sound as though Jimmy has habitually formed part of a drunken crowd out 'gay-bashing' a group whom he would, "if society were different", be joining. While this is a plausible interpretation I assume it's not the one intended, so it might be better to rearrange the sentence to eliminate it...

"Coop felt each time that he denied was a savage insult to Danny's memory" - I read this as a missing word/phrase after "denied": is it the actual *times* being denied here? (If so, it's unintentionally confusing.)

Coop's face tightened, angry cracks forming across his forehead - I like this imagery!
Igenlode Wordsmith chapter 8 . 1/11
The trouble with using italics to indicate flashback is that you've actually got nested flashbacks here...

This is certainly an unexpected revelation so far as Coop is concerned: all Jimmy's memories of time spent together so far have involved beer and cards!
I like Coop teaching Jimmy what a 'monologue' is... The contrast between Hamlet and dialogue like "I figured I'd join the force after I was done school" is amusing: Coop is not as ill-educated as he chooses to sound.

More baseball hints... but apparently there isn't actually any kind of locker-room angst associated with Coop's decision to drop the game and disappoint his father, just frustration with having had to play for his tuition. I have to admit I'd started to expect a big sinister backstory! (Though I'm not sure the brush-off version Coop tells Jimmy - "after four years of college ball, I was sick of it" - entirely marries up with a situation where "baseball had not only been a passion, but his entire existence", so there may be more to this one yet.)

Typos in this chapter:


"Eying" - "Eyeing"

"why had he hadn't drunk more"

"if Coop didn't have a least three helpings"

"Coop had come to long sharing his visions of living a different kind of life"

"beer and smashed glassed"

"things about you playing being a good pitcher in high school" - were "playing" and "being a good pitcher" intended as alternative edits here?

"Coop was well aware the power of his talent" - missing 'of'?

"Robin's great listener" - missing 'a'?

Other comments:

"the sobs he had fiercely suppressed for the past forty minutes since Coop had radioed he had been shot won" - this is grammatically correct, but very convoluted to read. The actual main clause here is simply "the sobs won", with an amazingly extended dependent clause hanging in the middle. The end result is the amalgam "he had been shot won", which looks like a mistake: is there some way of rearranging this sentence to put the principal subject ("the sobs") nearer its verb?

"Snatches of gunshots, a radio crackly with static, and the frantic sobs of a tormented man in agony" - it's not clear that this is supposed to be a wartime flashback nightmare. (I actually interpreted it first of all as Coop waking up in the emergency room in the hospital, the current location we had for him, and secondly as Coop waking up after going to sleep in front of the television.)

"Jimmy's son's baptism some three weeks before" - isn't this a reference to Tommy's christening at St Anthony's? If so, I'm puzzled that Coop appears to be associating it with waking up too late for the service: nothing like that was mentioned in the two flashback scenes of the quarrel, and surely the incident would be branded painfully in his mind as the cause of the break with his father, not with something as harmless as oversleeping...

(It must be the same christening, as Coop is heading off to the wedding three weeks later.)

"Entering the yellow walled kitchen with a blue and yellow checkered floor, Coop walked into the front hall" - to me, this makes it sounds rather as if Coop has multiple kitchens with different colour-schemes to pick from...

I think that again it's probably a point-of-view thing at heart; the action is being seen through Coop's eyes at this point, and he wouldn't describe his kitchen as "the yellow walled kitchen with a blue and yellow floor" - it would just be "my kitchen" by default, taken for granted. So in order to incorporate the description you'd have to use something like "The sun was striking colour from the yellow walls of the kitchen as Coop walked through on his way to pick up the milk": some reason for him to notice.

"wringing his hands around a cushion" - I'm finding this hard to visualise. Wringing your hands would normally imply twisting your hands over and over each other, so the cushion would make that difficult. Presumably he's twisting his hands in the cushion cover?

"If you want it to be so private, why do you share it with your cat?" - I love this line!
Igenlode Wordsmith chapter 7 . 1/11
I hadn't pegged McCree for such a good actor! (Presumably the surprise at learning Jimmy had not been in the car with Coop was also an act...) He is in complete command of the crime scene without giving away the slightest clue that he is in fact himself the perpetrator.

The vomit scene is well handled (again): with humour, with realism (Winters' excuses) and without unnecessary graphic description - it's worth comparing these to the 'wound' scenes earlier.

Poor Malone: he can't do anything right. (And it's an interesting shift of perception: things that in Jimmy's eyes were no problem at all suddenly turn into a litany of failure under the lash of McCree's tongue.)


"That thing ain't gonna without stitches" - missing word?

Other comments:

There are a couple of sentences that seem to slip into the present tense. "McCree's angry eyes land upon Jimmy's face and he was about to go into another tirade"/"But the glaring streetlights made seeing the stars impossible and tonight's horrible scenes flood before Jimmy with each weary blink" - although the second one may parse as "The streetlights made seeing the stars impossible and [made] tonight's scenes flood before Jimmy", in which case it might be better to avoid the potential ambiguity.

"Although the guys had all welcomed him warmly to the precinct over the past week, he remained uncertain if the guys now considered him part of the brotherhood" - I think this is effectively another case of name-repetition, as I mentioned on another chapter, but "guys" twice in one sentence does read oddly: I see no reason not simply to use "they" in the second half.

"The jackass always has to be the hero," said McCree, shaking his head in disgust. The self-righteous jackass couldn't even die without a dramatic exit - I'm not clear if this last sentence is supposed to be spoken aloud (in which case the quotes seem to be missing) or thought by McCree (in which case it should probably have been italicized). But if it's a thought, then this is a slip out of Jimmy's point of view...

"made seasoned officers like he and Murphy almost break down" - should be "like him and Murphy": the implied phrase is "officers like him and officers like Murphy". (I think this one confuses people because they get taught never to say "Joe and me went to the park" but rather "Joe and I went to the park": but this is only true when the pronoun is the subject of the verb, e.g. "I went". When it's a direct or indirect object it needs to change as normal.)

"We're brothers that are here to put" - should probably be "brothers who are here", since brothers are animate human beings and not inanimate objects.


It makes sense that seeing Coop almost die would re-evaluate Jimmy's priorities: losing his job seems like nothing compared to losing his friend without a chance to heal their estrangement. But I hope he's going to be careful...
Ersatz Einstein chapter 8 . 1/11
Although the grammatical errors early on ("why had he hadn't") made it difficult to get into the story, the clear scene descriptions made things easy to visualize (especially the domestic ones, like eating cereal and talking to Robin). The argument when jimmy picked up the notebook felt a little unrealistic ooc on both sides, since I'd think that Coop would turn his temper to getting the book back instead of throwing his bottle at the wall and that Jimmy would have the sense to put it down. Nevertheless, I get that it makes your point and moves the plot forward. The shift into the conversation about Vietnam was perfectly awkward, though. I'm a little confused, though. Is the description of the morning of the wedding a flashback, or is it just a leap in time in the narration? If the former, who's having it?
Ersatz Einstein chapter 7 . 1/11
There were a couple of redundancies ("real truth," "guys" appearing twice in the same sentence). On the other hand, you had some truly original phrasing in this one ("tortured skin" was particularly interesting, but the bit about the streetlights was also a standout). The ending felt a little tacked-on, especially after you went into detail about Malone's issues as a rookie on the force. The conversation between Jimmy and Malone itself was well-done, and given how emotion-based it was, it was surprisingly... what's the word? Sap-free? Un-saccharine?
Ersatz Einstein chapter 6 . 1/11
You had some awkward and unusual phrasing choices ("the familiar fear once more crept about in the shadows"). There was a bit of an odd contradiction when you explained Jimmy's shift in attitude both as a result of how he naturally reacts to adrenalin and as his training kicking in. Which is it? Your italicization of thoughts was a little inconsistent in places. (For example, "Fuck, why couldn't you guys have just let it go" should probably have been italicized).
The descriptions of people's smaller internal conflicts (Malone's decision of whether or not to interfere and Murphy's of whether or not to attack him for it) were appropriately short and sharp. Also, your description of the paramedics and the situation once they arrive had a sped-up, confused feel that suited the situation exceptionally well. The last action of defiance at the end of the chapter capped it off nicely while balancing events inside and outside of Jimmy's head. (Generally speaking, you're really good at ending chapters with the right phrase that's neither clich├ęd nor hackneyed.)
StrawberryDuckFeathers chapter 2 . 1/11
. For the Story of the Week . . Rather fandom-blind! .

I like the title reference, when he ricochets thoughts of Coop. If I remember correctly, ricochet is when something bounces off something, so the thoughts he's trying to hide have every chance of coming straight back. I loved when Malone picked up a favourite phrase of Coop's. Maybe he's been spying on them a bit, perhaps worried that they might have something going on? I like that they sit in silence, implying some awkwardness between Jimmy and Malone, as well as Jimmy probably being both deep in thought about his feelings for Coop, and also frightened about what would happen should anyone find out. I like that Coop's caught up in his thoughts as well, driving around aimlessly, seemingly very distracted. I love the fact that his father wasn't there, since it makes it seem like Jimmy is one of his only positive males to look up to in his life. In the flashback, the heavy steps and the worries that Serge would blast him make his dad sound incredibly stern and scary. I feel really sorry for Coop, especially because he has to cover something up that isn't even a problem. In fact, I seriously hated Serge whilst reading his dialogue, so good job on making him well-written enough to make a reader feel emotions for the character. Although it'd be dangerous to do so, I like that Coop sticks up for himself, because he, and hopefully the audience, knows that he's not in the wrong. It's sad when he starts to believe the bullcrap his dad is telling him as well, but then he's also probably scared of (apparently) 'putting shame on his family.' His shift to confidence was great character development at the end. Good on coop for doing what /he/ wants to do, and not his dad. No concrit for this one, and it's great so far. Keep it up. :)
Igenlode Wordsmith chapter 6 . 1/10
Every time Malone or Murphy is mentioned for the first time in a chapter, we get given their full names - Owen Murphy, Joseph Malone. Is there a reason for this? It's starting to look a bit odd now that we know quite well who they are, and especially when (as here) the character is actually mentioned by surname alone in the dialogue several paragraphs before being 'introduced'.

Jimmy is really going over the top here, actually kicking Murphy for trying to stop him shaking Coop's corpse; frankly, Murphy appears to me to be behaving with incredible forbearance. Given that it is Jimmy attacking his fellow officer, I'm a bit surprised that Malone weighs in to pull Murphy off, rather than the other man! None of them at this point have the slightest reason to believe that yelling and manhandling a dead body is likely to reincarnate it - if they have any respect for Coop, I'd expect them to be yanking Jimmy away.

...and the final part of the very physical resurrection, with bouncy rubber this time. That's that, I trust (and hope I can be forgiven for it).

Murphy at least is getting suspicious as to the true course of events - I don't think McCree is going to get away with this for long. And apparently we can say that Murphy definitely wasn't in on the scheme: I'm glad.

Winters is assuming (naturally enough) that the change of partners was McCree's responsibility; but of course it wasn't, and questions may be asked. How many people actually know about the quarrel with Coop at the police station earlier that evening? Murphy? McCree?


"andMalone sprinted over"

"He wasn't sure whether he to punch the little scarecrow" - I think there's a missing word here

"Coop's chalky face ghastly highlighted by the bright red streaks of blood running down his face filled his vision" - I think the problem with this sentence is that 'ghastly' would need to be an adverb (i.e. 'highlighted in a ghastly manner') for it to work grammatically. Otherwise, you've got a long list of descriptions of Coop's face - chalky, ghastly, highlighted by streaks of blood - that need to be punctuated in some manner, probably with commas, in order to split them up.

"Get the saline, scissors and oxygen ready!" the lead firefighter yelped. Henderson, you drive! - missing open quote before "Henderson"

"Just a shame McCree told you take out Malone tonight" - is there a missing 'to' in here, or is the construction intended to imply "McCree told you: 'Take out Malone tonight'"?

"Jimmy came out of his stupour" - 'stupor' (even for us in the UK!)

"eying Jimmy up and down" - "eyeing"

Other comments:

I've only heard "firefighter" as a modern euphemism for 'fireman who may actually be a woman": was it a current term in the 1960s USA? (It wasn't over here.)

"But Malone swallowed back his nausea and did what he had sworn to do only mere weeks before" - what was it that he had he sworn: to obey a superior officer? Do his duty? Presumably not anything as specific as 'put pressure on the wound', which is of course what he is actually doing.

"why couldn't you guys have just let it go?" - I'm not clear from the context ("he had never imagined Serge and McCree would sort Coop out this way") whether 'you guys' refers to Serge and McCree (letting the rumours about Jimmy and Coop pass) or Jimmy and Coop (giving up their extra-special relationship). The following sentence suggests Jimmy and Coop, but the preceding one has already implied Serge and McCree.

"Jimmy suddenly became cognizant of his skinned knees" - is 'cognizant' a word in Jimmy's vocabulary? This sounds like the author speaking: at any rate it sticks out as being of a very different 'register' from "You look like you've taken a beating" and "Yeah, well, I fell rushing to get over to Coop"!

"He threw the handkerchief away from him like it was burning him and Jimmy walked over to join the other three officers to keep his mind off the whirlwind swirling inside him with fury" - I feel this long, involved sentence needs punctuattion and/or splitting up. (I also feel that 'like it was burning him' is a grammatical solecism, but as remarked above, Jimmy's grammar isn't always all that high-class anyway...)

Ah good, someone (the author!) has finally pointed out that squeezing and shaking Coop's body around like that was probably not a good idea :-) Grabbing at his shoulder nearly makes him black out...

"Emergencies and adrenalin always had a numbing effect on him" - we've seen this for Coop, but so far in the story Jimmy has demonstrated only panic in the face of emergency (demands for impossible speed, jumping out of the moving car, yanking an unconscious man to demand a response).

So Jimmy was in the army, too - also Vietnam?

"The nausea Malone had swallowed back for the past four minutes overcame his defenses. When he finished, he looked up at Jimmy with a pale face beginning to redden in shame" - I like this passage: a neat way to make it apparent that Malone throws up, and how he feels about it, without going into all the detail of warm fluids (sorry!), stringy bits, etc.
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