Pitch-a-Week Part 24: Zobop Bebop… plus an added invitation to dance

A note: This is a piece I’m currently working on, and I’m planning to devote the next two months of writing to this and nothing else. Thus, Pitch-A-Week will lie fallow until I’m done, and is open for guest pitchers until January 1. New idea, riff on one of my pitches, doesn’t matter. If you’re interested in having your idea read and laudedby tens of readers, please let me know through the comments or by the usual means.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got a novel to write.

High Concept: Ex-con gang boss gets back in the game to clear his name and reputation. Zombies are involved. Think “Superfly” meets “Divine Horsemen.”

Genre: Cinematic occult neo-noir

Plot: It all started with the girl.

Sixteen-year-old Valentine “Teenie” Belno, sworn from birth to serve as cheval to Erzuli, was raped and murdered in a back alley in the warehouse district, leaving a late-night party. Her escort for the evening was a low-level drug dealer with a street corner to his name. He was jointed and left on the street to die in pieces with an intricately painted handkerchief covering his face.

The case was open and shut, especially given the presence of the handkerchief. It was a “zobop flag,” similar to those used more than two decades ago by known racketeer Narcisse Desamours.

In his prime, Narcisse Desamours ran the East Side rackets with an iron fist and a coco macaque. The racketeer and his zobop army fought a bloody three-way street war, slinging curses and bullets in the shadows of the city.   

Desamours’ reign lasted three years before bad luck and bad lawyers found him doing 20 years for racketeering. Desamours returned to find his street soldiers locked up, dead or cursed and the streets themselves mystically and materially unfriendly. He went as straight as he could, working odd jobs and running quick scams to get by. Thus, getting dragged out of bed at three in the morning and interrogated was a surprise, as was the revelation that someone was putting his tools to use on a person known to be protected by higher powers.

After his release from holding, Desamours begins to investigate the matter, ignoring warnings from the police, from Mafia consigliere and Enochian sorcerer Frankie Five-Angels and from Erzuli herself. The bokkor learns that this murder is the beginning of a much deeper, older game than he’d imagined, one that calls on him to take up his old trade and bloody his hands to win.

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