Bartender. Best Drinks in Hong Kong. Destiny Slinger. Jake.
He’s the man behind the bar in The Martini of Destiny, the barkeep behind your choices and your fates, but just who is Jake Hongkong?
“Jake turned away from the bar and its view of the pub, and instead examined the bottles on the shelves lining the back wall. In the mirror behind the bottles he glimpsed his reflection; his brown eyes glinted bright but muted, as if under a haze, like a lamp whose shade needed dusting. No gray wove through his short black hair. Beneath his white button-down shirt and his black trousers, his body still looked trim and felt strong—part of the benefits of the job, The Management had told him. Sometimes it still seemed strange to him, the Brazilian amongst so many Asians, but after all these years he had blended in as well as he could. Then again, no Jake or Jade ever really blended in. They just became a sort of invisible, known but not noted, vital but humdrum, like a traffic light or an artery.” — The Martini of Destiny
A quiet man with a tight smile, Jake doesn’t have an easy time as the longest-serving Jake or Jade. Sometimes he thinks he’s seen too much, done too much and influenced too many. The stone he rolls between his fingers, his one reminder of home, is the only thing that keeps his thoughts from getting too dark and keeps the enormity of his tasks from crushing him.
“The glass looked like a mountain inverted, a peak held in the hand. Jake Hongkong mixed the martini with the mastery of years. In a blur he topped it off with the final ingredient, a few drops from the special black bottle in the unseeable cabinet behind a panel of the woodwork below the back liquor shelves. The drink looked and smelled the same, but for the man about to drink it, he did not know how different his life was going to become.” — The Martini of Destiny
Still, when you’re a Jake, and especially the Jake of the Independent City-Nation of Hong Kong, World’s Greatest City, your tasks are always enormous. But no amount of experience can prepare Jake for what happens after he serves Hong Kong’s best martini to a doubting man—and after a ghost not only skips out on his bar tab, but steals the one thing Jake considers precious.
About The Martini of Destiny
A special martini gives courage to a doubting man, a ghost doesn’t pay for his pints, a destiny-slinging bartender questions everything, and the world will never be the same. The first Rucksack Universe Novella E-book, The Martini of Destiny is available June 20, 2013. About The Martini of Destiny » Special Features & Launch News » Photo: Renée S. Suen