Hidden from Sight

Welcome to February and Build-a-World month! I’ve been working for a while now on the research for a new book, and I’m having to invent a whole planet or two to make it happen. For the next couple of weeks, I’ll be posting short stories from the history of this new world and I’ll throw in a few informational posts about what you might find if you travel there. All questions and comments are welcome! 


Ashanti knew exactly what her day was going to look like.

In five minutes, the chime of her alarm would sound. She would get up, brush her teeth, put on a fresh jumpsuit. In the mess, she would get a tube of strong hot tea and drink it while she looked over the previous day’s reports. There would be just enough time when she was finished to wake Lil and get her ready for school before reporting to the lab section. She had tests running, but none of them were very interesting. She had calculations waiting to be finished, but they were just double checks of previous work. Worst of all, it was her day to be shadowed by the apprentice astrophysicist. Jim was a nice enough kid and certainly brilliant, but he had a tendency to hum without realizing he was doing it. By the end of the day, Ashanti would be tearing her hair out, but she’d take deep breaths as she walked to dinner in the family cabin. Hiram always collected the food after he had picked Lil up from her class. They would eat and trade boring stories about their boring days. If they were lucky, Lil would have something amusing to report from the children. There would be a blessed hour with her violin while Lil played nearby. Then bedtime stories. Ashanti would read her novel when Lil had been tucked in. Hiram would interrupt her from time to time with comments on his own book. When she’d had enough, she’d say goodnight. She’d fall asleep. It would all start over again the next day.

When Ashanti’s father had told her she would see the stars, would colonize a whole new planet, she had thought it would be exciting. How naive she had been.

Ashanti sat up and turned off the alarm before it could chime. There. One thing that was different from yesterday, at least.

For a brief moment, she considered skipping her teeth-brushing, but she banished the thought sternly. What was wrong with her? She wasn’t a petulant 18-year-old. She was forty-five, a scientist, a mother, a leader of a historic community. She brushed her teeth.

The mess was empty when she walked in, but Michele and Irina came in while she waited for her tea to heat. They nodded at her and went straight for the coffee. Luckily, they weren’t morning talkers. 

Ashanti set her tea on the corner table and keyed open her tablet. Then she sat for a few minutes, not ready to face the reports. Absentmindedly, she sipped at her tea and burnt her tongue. The pain felt almost good. 

Ashanti shook her head. This wasn’t like her. She loved this ship. She loved the future they were headed toward. She loved her work. She loved her community. She had been helping to lead them for the last twenty-five years without faltering. True, when she had turned forty, there had been a brief bout of depression, but that was normal. She spent a few hours talking with friends and wrote longer-than-usual entries in her journal. Then a few weeks later, she found out she was pregnant with Lil, and there was enough excitement in her life to banish any boredom.

All the reports in her inbox were marked green except one. The astronomers had sent her something with a red flag. They did that every few months. Gil was an excitable guy, and they were traveling through space no one else had visited. The last time he had sent one, it had been…

Ashanti froze. Slowly she lowered the tablet. 

The last time.

The last time she had felt this way…

She picked up the tea and sipped carefully, determined not to jump to conclusions. She would go get Lil up and off to school. Then she would visit Mia on the way to the lab. She would not hurry. She would not do anything to alarm anyone. She would not read those reports, either. They could wait.

Dr. Mia Lang was only thirty-two years old and still technically an apprentice to her distinguished father, but Ashanti always preferred to visit Mia on the rare occasions she needed a doctor. George was not as brilliant with people as he was with diseases.

“You were right,” Mia said as the results of the blood test scrolled across her screen. “You’re probably not even two weeks along based on these levels. How did you know?”

From long force of habit, Ashanti kept all of her emotions contained and addressed the question. “I recognized the feeling.”

Mia grinned. “That’s impressive for something that’s only happened once before. Congratulations.”

“Thank you,” Ashanti said, and she meant it, though her answering smile was all she would allow herself. 

“Are you going to go straight to Hiram?” 

“I think this might be worth interrupting his work, don’t you?”

“If you don’t, I will,” Mia said with a laugh. “And would you like to be the one to tell my father, or can I do that?”

“Oh, I think you’ve earned that right.”

“He was sure it wasn’t going to happen without in vitro,” Mia said. 

“Between you and me, I was about six months from telling him he was right, but there’s no need for him to know that now.”

“Absolutely not. He needs to be wrong from time to time. Keeps him from getting a big head.”

“Thank you, Mia. Really.”

“Hey, it was you and Hiram who made the decision. I carried out your wishes, just like the charter says.”

“Yes, but the charter doesn’t say anything about being kind. That was all you.”

Mia smiled. “Congratulations.”

Ashanti walked out of the tiny medical bay and down toward the governor’s office. A second child. Hiram would be so happy they were finally fulfilling their responsibility. The charter didn’t demand the colonists to have children, but the Plan depended on most doing so. Two to three children per couple was ideal. There was plenty of genetic material on board to make that possible for anyone, but Ashanti had wanted to hold out for natural conception. It wasn’t a spiritual or ethical issue. She just knew herself. She didn’t easily connect with people. Without the full biological experience, she wasn’t sure she would properly bond with her child. Not that she had ever said that out loud to anyone.

Hiram had supported her without understanding her real motivation. He had his own reasons for not rushing to have more children. According to the charter, one of their children would one day take his place as governor. They would not arrive at Theta Prime for another thirty-three years. The younger that new leader was when they arrived, the better for the colony. This timing was perfect. Hiram would be pleased, though he would almost surely express it with trite platitudes. 

Ashanti sighed. She wasn’t being completely fair. Hiram was a good man. He was kind and he was fair and he was determined to lead the colony to a successful life on Theta Prime. It wasn’t his fault if he wasn’t terribly original. It wasn’t his fault that he sometimes seemed to be all training and no personality. His ability to stay the course and execute the Plan made him perfect for his position. Most days she appreciated his dependability and calm. On a space ship, predictability was gold.

It was just at moments like this that she wondered. Was it possible to be too dependable? Was there no room for spontaneous feeling?

When the door to the governor’s office opened, Hiram was not behind his desk. He was standing with a cluster of admins and he didn’t look surprised to see her.

“You saw it?” he said as soon as Ashanti stepped inside. 

She had been so focused on her own news that she didn’t register the question at first.

“What do you think?”

“About what?” 

It was Hiram’s turn to look confused.

“This is huge,” said Gil from the corner. She hadn’t even seen him there. 

Ashanti took a deep breath to clear her head. “I think I missed something.”

“You didn’t read the astronomy report?”

“No, I…”

“They found another habitable planet.”

“Two habitable planets,” said Gil.

“Possibly,” Hiram said.

Ashanti pushed her own news aside. It could wait until they were alone.

“Where?” she asked. 

“2.43 light years away!” crowed Gil.

Ashanti raised an eyebrow. “That would mean…”

“With deceleration time, we have about six months to decide if we want to pursue it.”

“That’s not enough time for thorough studies,” Ashanti said.

“Wait til you see it,” said Gil. “We won’t even need six months. I’ve never seen anything so perfect.”

If there was one thing Ashanti’s father had taught her, it was that things that seemed too good to be true, were. He had learned that on the supposed utopia of the Lunar Scientific Colony.

“We’ll take every minute we have before making a decision,” said Hiram. “We’re putting the whole scientific team on this in every minute that can be spared. I have no intention of changing a plan that was seventy years in the making on a whim.”

Ashanti studied her husband’s face. Something was different. There was a thrum of excitement in his voice that belied his cautious words, and his eyes didn’t quite meet hers. 

“How have we never seen this planet before?” she asked.

“Planets. Plural. They were hidden from view of Earth by a cluster of stars and only came into our field of study four days ago. Believe me, we ran two dozen studies and ten thousand equations before I wrote that report. We’ve been staring at only this day and night. It’s a complete game-changer.”

She had thought Gil was excitable before. The manic look he wore now made the other times look calm.

“I’ll read the report and get my people on it immediately,” she said. 

“I’m making a ship-wide announcement tonight at the gathering,” Hiram said. “Full disclosure and all hands on deck is the only way we’re going to collect enough data to be reasonably sure of our course.”

“Agreed.”

Ashanti turned to go before they all noticed that her head was spinning. Had anyone ever been more wrong about a day than she was this morning?

“Ashanti.” Hiram put a hand on her arm. “If you didn’t read the report, then you came here for something else. Did you need something?”

The fact that he would ask that, would notice, even with something so huge on his mind was what made her husband such a great leader. It was the reason she had come to love him in her fashion, in spite of her doubts.

“It can wait. This can’t.”

He nodded. “No family dinner tonight with the gathering. Tea afterwards, maybe?”

Ashanti smiled. “You might want to make it coffee. I don’t think any of us are going to get much sleep.”

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Checking In

Hello, friends! 

You may have noticed that things have been very quiet around here for the last month. Since the publication of The Shattered Heart, I’ve taken a little writing break. Now that The Book of Sight series is done, it’s time to contemplate other projects, and I’m having a lot of fun doing that. A whole new fantasy series is brewing in the back of my mind, not to mention a stand-alone sci-fi novel and a couple of shorter children’s books. 

I’ll be back in this space in February for my first ever “Build a World” experiment. I hope you all join me and pitch in any ideas you have. In the meantime, if you want to know what I’m reading and thinking about these days, check out my Tumblr. It’s full of random tidbits, and I update it pretty regularly.

See you in another couple of weeks! 

Deb

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Winners!


Our big Book of Sight giveaway has come to an end, and we have our winners!!!

I entered the emails of all of the newsletter subscribers into RandomResult and we came up with the lucky two.

Congratulations to sagler and ruthann!

The winners have been emailed and will each be receiving an entire set of The Book of Sight to give away for Christmas or keep for themselves!

If you weren’t one of the lucky two, there’s still time to get yourself a set before the snow falls and the holiday fever sets in! You can get them in paperback or ebook, and if you buy the whole set together, there’s a discount!

Happy Christmas, everyone. Hope it’s merry and bright.

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A piece of sky


I said the sky was falling
And my mother told me no
She says that is impossible
But I know that ain’t so

It fell in tiny pieces
That splashed my hands and feet
And then ran back together
And pooled up in the street

It fell and fell all morning
Like it would never stop
And I started to be worried
There’d be none left up on top

But when I woke from napping
The sun was bright up in the blue
There was lots of sky left up there
But was some left down here, too?

I slipped outside and looked around
And then I saw a glimmer
A piece of sky lay on the street
And shone with sky-ish shimmer

The same blue as the sky above
It lay there flat and still
It even had some fluffy clouds
That floated through at will

It looked so far away from home
So lonely on the ground
Like that one time I ran away
And prayed I would be found

So I got out my shiny rock
Reached out and dropped it in
It seemed to like my gift because
It paid me back with ten

The water droplets sprayed my legs
I smiled at my new friend
I ran and gathered other stones
That I could give to him

We traded stones for water drops
‘Til, with my sneaky grin,
I tackled him with all my might
He soaked me to the skin

My giggles must have gotten loud
‘Cause then mom came outside
She told me to go change my clothes
I turned and waved good-bye

Next day that piece of sky was gone
I guess that he went home
At night he must have missed the stars
Night’s hard when you’re alone

But I’m sure someday he’ll come back
If only for a day
‘Cause now I know why he fell down
He wanted time to play

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It’s Here!

tsh-pinterestrelease

The Shattered Heart is here!

Buy it straight from me, or get it on Amazon.

Either way you don’t want to miss this. Things are going down.

shattered-heartsplosion

Happy Christmas shopping, everyone!

 

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The Shattered Heart – Final Deleted Scene


It’s only 2 days until you can read The Shattered Heart for yourself! In the meantime, here’s one last deleted scene that takes place just a couple of months before The Shattered Heart begins. Warning: it’s about to get real.

Somehow Adam drove from home to the edge of town without even noticing.

When he got in his car, planning a quick visit to the Gylf, he had started thinking through all of his questions again. When Alex had been attacked last fall, they had assumed Candice’s pet was crazed from the loss of its mistress, but after Dom and Logan had nearly lost their feet to frostbite, they were forced to admit that someone was still out to get them. Even though the papers they had taken from Candice’s cave had seemed useless, they were still the closest thing the Circle had to a clue about their enemy. Adam had been puzzling over them for the last few months without making much progress.

Candice’s notebook mostly just outlined her plan for attacking them last summer. The margins were filled with hateful comments. It wasn’t a pleasant read. Adam was more interested in the stack of letters that had been tucked inside. Someone was communicating with Candice on a regular basis, but it was impossible to tell who. The letters were written in come kind of code that mingled banal phrases about the weather with nonsense words. Nothing Adam had tried so far had helped him make sense of them. His latest attempt was to make a list of all the words that had to do with plants and animals and ask the Gylf what they knew about those things. It was a long shot, but Adam was desperate. So far, the worst damage they’d received was Logan losing all the toenails in his right foot, but it was pure luck that nothing worse had happened.

They couldn’t count on luck forever.

Adam slammed on the brakes when he realized that he had just driven past the Gylf forest. The road was deserted out here, so he backed along it until he came to the spot where he usually parked.

“You’re an idiot,” he muttered to himself. “You should know better than to think and drive.”

Grabbing his notepad off the passenger seat, Adam jumped out of the car. He figured he had about an hour before his mom would be expecting him for dinner. Being late wasn’t an option.

The grass by the side of the road had grown tall, and Adam pushed through it impatiently. It was a relief to reach the edge of the forest. Under the trees, he knew the going would be easier. They all walked the path often enough to keep it clear.

Adam rounded the first big tree trunk and, out of habit, ducked under the low-hanging branches on the other side.

Two steps later, the ground erupted in front of him as a thousand stinging insects swarmed out toward his face.

Adam threw his hands up in a futile protective gesture. His notepad dropped unnoticed on the forest floor.

All the world was buzzing and dozens of pain points erupted on Adam’s arms and neck as he was stung over and over. There was no defense but to get away.

Adam ran, fleeing up the path toward the Gylf’s home, batting away insects as he went, forgetting everything but the instinct to get to safety.

The pain on his arms and neck spread down his back and then to his face. It was getting harder to see, and he realized his eyes were swelling shut.

Adam tripped on a branch and stumbled to his knees. Standing up again was impossible, so he curled into a ball, his face tucked into his legs, his arms covering his head. He could still hear buzzing all around, mixed with smacking noises that made no sense to his fuzzy brian.

He waited for more stings.

He waited to die.

The next thing he felt was the pressure of tiny hands pushing his arms aside. Through the slits that were his eyes, he saw several Gylf examining his injuries with concern.

“All is well now, Adam,” a soothing voice said. “Your attackers are gone. Terfol is being brought. He will tend to your wounds.”

Adam tried to express his thanks, but only a croaking sound came out.

“Hush,” said the voice. “Do not try to speak. Rest now.”

Adam slipped into a dark dream, only surfacing from time to time. Once he felt something cool being pressed against his neck. Another time, he heard many voices. He thought he recognized Logan’s, but he slipped away again before he could be sure.

When Adam came fully awake, it was dark in the woods. A fire crackled nearby, and he saw dark figures sitting around it. His eyes opened a little further than before, and the unbearable pain of earlier was reduced to a dull ache and some itchiness. He tried to lift his head, but that proved impossible.

“He’s awake,” Eve said. “Hey, Champ. How you feeling?”

A grunt was all Adam could manage.

“That’s about what we figured,” Eve said. She and Alex crouched over him, working together to lift his head slightly and drizzle water into his mouth.

“How long…” he managed once he had swallowed some.

“A few hours,” Alex said. “It’s about 10 o’clock. Don’t worry. Your mom thinks you’re spending the night at Logan’s house.”

“Thanks…Those things…”

“Yeah, they did a number on you,” Eve said, “but the Gylf say you’re going to be okay. Luckily for you, you ran right into a group of them taking care of an abandoned baby fox. They fought off the stingers…and paid the price for it.”

“Price…?”

“It’s nothing you need to worry about now,” Alex said. “Terfol wants you to rest tonight. If you do, he thinks the swelling will be down by tomorrow, and you can go home.”

She turned away, but Adam grabbed her arm. “Alex…?”

She sighed and shook her head.

“A few of them got stung,” Eve said. “Terra got it the worst. She was hit several times. She…she didn’t make it.”

Adam dropped his hand. Alex’s shoulders were shaking.

“It’s not your fault, Adam.” Eve’s voice was angry. “If the Gylf hadn’t been here, it would be you that would be dead. No one is blaming you. It’s whoever is sending these attacks. They don’t care who gets hurt.”

Her words washed over Adam with no meaning.

Terra. He thought of her dark hair and expressive eyes. She was the first Gylf he had ever met. How could she just be gone?

He should have seen this coming. He should have known. He should have taken it all more seriously. He should have…

“We’re going to find who did this,” Eve said. “We will.”

Yes, they would.

“We’re going to find them, and we’re going to end them.”

Adam closed his eyes and held onto her words with all his might.


Just two more days! 

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The Shattered Heart – Deleted Scene 2


It’s just a little over a week until The Shattered Heart comes out! For those who are waiting, here’s part two of the deleted scenes that lead us up to the big day. If you missed part one, you can find it here. Now grab a cup of tea or cocoa. Things are about to get cold.

Dominic slid his shovel under the snow and lifted it up, tossing the frozen mess to the side in one motion. He had forgotten how long his grandparents’ driveway was. He forgot every year, until the first snowfall came along to remind him, but it had been longer this time. The first snowfall had come weeks ago, and Dom hadn’t been there to clear it away.

“I already said thank-you, but I should say it again,” he said to Logan, who wielded his own snow shovel a few feet away. “Not just for today. All the other times, too.”

“It’s nothing,” Logan said, still working.

Dom stopped him with a hand on his shoulder. He gestured at the half-cleared driveway. “This is not nothing.”

Logan grinned. “True. But it feels like nothing when she gives you those cookies at the end.”

Dom picked up his shovel again. Cookies sounded good. Not that he hadn’t been stuffed full of all of his favorite foods since he came home three days ago, but Abuela’s cinnamon sugar cookies were perfection.

There was no more talking for a long time. The only sound was the scrape of the shovels on the pavement and the soft plop of the wet snow on the banks as the two boys moved slowly farther away from the house.

If Logan hadn’t stopped mid-motion and straightened up, Dom might not have even noticed the tiny figure at the end of the drive. It was the size of a little girl and dressed all in white with a blue hood covering its head. If not for that hood, it would have been impossible to see against the snow.

Dom knew instantly that it wasn’t a little girl.

“What the…?” Logan said.

“Watch out!” Dom yelled.

It was too late. The tiny figure had raised its arms and streams of liquid shot toward them.

Dom ducked his head, but that wasn’t where the stranger was aiming. Before he knew what had happened, Dom’s feet and legs were soaked with water which instantly froze into ice.

Dom tried to yank his foot away from the ground, but it was already frozen in place and the streams of liquid from his attacker were still coming, thickening the ice with every second.

Dom reached down with his hands, only to have one of them take the brunt of the attack. Immediately his fingers were numb.

He straightened and used his other hand to hurl the shovel toward the source of the water. It was too far, and the shovel dropped into the snow without a sound, but it seemed to scare his enemy, at least. The streams of water stopped. The little figure darted away, its blue hood disappearing behind a snow bank.

“You okay?” Logan grunted.

“It got my hand,” Dom said. “You?”

“Can’t feel my feet,” said Logan.

“Me either.”

They were both encased in a four-inch layer of ice from the knee down.

“We have to get out of this,” Logan said. “We’ll get frostbite.”

“Use your shovel,” said Dom.

Logan began to beat at his own feet with the plastic tool. Luckily, it was a quality snow shovel, with a metal tip along the edge for clean snow removal. It chipped away at the ice until Logan was able to pull one leg out. Dom watched him, beating his frozen hand against his chest until the ice cracked and he could take off his glove. Then he pulled his arm up inside his coat, warming his hand against his own skin.

As soon as Logan had both feet free he stumbled to his knees. “I still can’t feel them at all,” he said as he started to work on Dom’s legs.

“As soon as I’m loose, we’ll get in the house. Abuela has a fire going.”

“I don’t think I can walk,” Logan said.

“Then we’ll crawl. There’s no way to get warm out here.”

“Wait. There is something,”Logan said. Dom’s right foot was free now. “In my pocket. Leaves from the wine tree.”

“You have some here?”

“I always bring them when I shovel. Hand warmers.”

“Get them out then. Give me the shovel. I can finish this.”

“You only have one hand. And I’m almost…there!” Logan fell back, panting and dropped the shovel.

Dom tried to take a step and tumbled sideways into the snow bank. “I think you were right about the walking.”

“Here.” Logan shoved a handful of red leaves into Dom’s good hand.

Both boys stripped off their boots and socks and crumpled the leaves, pressing them against their bare skin.

“Socks back on now?” Logan asked.

“Yes,” Dom sighed. Though the crumpled leaves had felt hot in his hand, his feet still felt nothing. He tried not to panic.

“What was that thing?” said Logan in the tone of someone who was trying to distract himself.

“No idea, but it wasn’t a friend.”

They sat in silence for a minute before Logan said. “I think I can feel my toes a little.”

Dom concentrated on his feet. He tried to wiggle them. They moved just the tiniest bit.

“It’s working,” he said.

“You ready to try walking again?”

Dom nodded.

“Who’s going to help who?” Said Logan.

Dom slid his feet over to brace against Logan’s and held out his hand. “We’re going to have to pull each other up at the same time.”

Logan gripped Dom’s hand tightly. “Easy peasy, right?”

“We’ve done harder things,” Dom answered.

“On three then. One…two…

“Three!”

If you enjoyed this short trip into the world of The Book of Sight, sign up for my newsletter to get even more deleted scenes and special sneak peeks. Plus, if you sign up before December 5, you’ll be eligible to win an entire set of The Book of Sight series! (Click through for details.)

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The Shattered Heart – Deleted Scene 1


For those of you who are anxiously awaiting the release of Book 5, The Shattered Heart, I’ve got a little treat today. This story was originally a part of Chapter 1 of TSH, but it was cut to move the action along. This scene, along with two others that I’ll share later, takes place in the year that passed between the end of The Poisoned Cure and the beginning of The Shattered Heart. SPOILER ALERT: If you haven’t read The Poisoned Cure yet, don’t read the below. Instead, go get it already!
Alex loved fall. The days were still warm, but the nights were crisp and cold. She got to wear her jeans every day again, and on the best days, her dad would build a fire in the fireplace. Even her mounds of homework didn’t seem that bad when there was a fire to sit by while she worked on it.

When Adam dropped her off after school, Alex took her time walking toward the front door, making sure to crunch all the leaves on the path as she went. She pulled her key out and waved at Adam. He beeped the horn as he drove away. He was proud of his car, even though it was just a little hatchback from a previous decade. Adam had worked just as hard to convince his parents to let him buy it as he had to earn the money for it. Alex was happy to let him feel proud. Now that Dom was off training with the Messengers and Eve was taking community college classes, Alex and Logan would have been riding the bus home without Adam to drive them.

The key stuck in the lock as it always did, but Alex leaned into the door and gave the key a practiced twist. It clicked into place and the door popped open all in one motion. Alex stepped into the dim entry and closed the door with a nudge from her backpack.

When she turned around, something launched itself at her head.

Claws were raking at her face before she could even react. Alex threw her hands up and felt something furry. It bit her finger hard. Alex batted it away.

For a second she could only think of her pounding heart and the throbbing on her cheek and her hand. Then the creature leaped up again, this time sinking its teeth into her shoulder. Alex twisted in a circle, trying unsuccessfully to dislodge it. When she finally got a grip on the flailing thing and ripped it away, it took a little piece of her with it.

Alex yelled in pain, but there was no one to hear. Her dad’s studio in the backyard was too far away.

The creature twisted out of her hands and disappeared into the shadows of the darkened house.

Alex tried to think through the pain. She needed a weapon.

The living room was just ahead. Alex sprinted to the fireplace and grabbed the metal poker from the stand of fireplace tools. Even as her hands closed around its handle, she felt the creature jump onto her back. Her backpack protected her from the claws, but the furiously snapping jaws were right by her ear.

Alex dropped to the ground, and the thing tumbled off to the side. She whirled around, weapon held high. The creature darted forward again, and Alex swung. She felt the poker make contact with a crunch. The creature dropped onto the carpet, motionless.

The poker slid out of Alex’s hand. She was shaking all over, but at the moment her pain was masked behind a flood of adrenalin.

She stared at the thing that had attacked her. It looked small now that it was lying still, hardly bigger than a possum. It even had little hands like a possum, though the rest of it was covered in fur.

Alex recognized those tiny hands. If she could just get her brain to work, she would remember where she had seen them before. In the woods somewhere. This last summer? No, it was longer ago than that. If Eve were here, she would know.

That was it. Eve had talked to it. She had wanted to follow it. When they were looking for Logan a few years ago. But when they didn’t it had attacked them, and they knew it had been sent by the Breaker.

Candice.

Against her will, Alex saw the Breaker’s last shuddering breaths, saw her lifeless body on the cave floor.

Alex’s legs gave way, and she slipped to the floor.

This animal belonged to Candice. It was attacking her because she had killed its owner. Or had someone sent it?

Alex’s trembling was getting worse. She couldn’t feel her hands or feet. Vaguely she realized that she was going into shock.

She stared at the limp creature on her carpet. Was it dead or just knocked out? She couldn’t tell if it was breathing.

How was she going to get it out of here?

She needed help. Walking to her dad’s studio was impossible at the moment, but she could fumble off her backpack and pull out her cell phone. Her dad might not have his phone on him, but he wasn’t who she really needed anyway.

Her hands were so unsteady, she almost couldn’t punch the auto dial button.

“What’s up?” Adam’s carefree voice was jarring.

“I need you to come back,” Alex said, suddenly aware that she was breathing too quickly.

“What’s wrong? Alex?” When she didn’t answer, he cursed under his breath. “I’m turning around now. I’ll be there in two minutes. Stay on the line. Are you okay?”

“I don’t know,” Alex said.

“Right. Well…okay. You will be soon. I’m almost there.”


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The Shattered Heart Cover Reveal

This is a good day. I know, it’s election day in an awful election year, but still, this is a good day.

Want to know why?

This is the day I get to show you the cover of The Shattered Heart!

This is my favorite day of every book launch. For real. As happy as I’ll be when you get to actually read the book, that part is also nerve-wracking. This? This is just fun.

It’s beautiful.

You’re going to love it.

Before I show you, can I tell you what I like best about this cover? It has no hearts. Also nothing shattered. So…mystery. But! When you read the book, the cover is going to make perfect sense. It’s like an inside joke, just between you and me, except not that funny.

What do you call an inside joke that’s not a joke?

I just Googled it and found nothing helpful.

But I do think I’ve delayed long enough now.

Are you ready?

Presenting The Shattered Heart with cover design by the talented Matt Hasenbalg!

 

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!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Want to see the back, too?

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!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And even more exciting, the whole series together:

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Seriously, Matt outdid himself, didn’t he? He designed every one of those beauties. It’s been a privilege to work with him.

Speaking of beauty…that set up there? That’s what two lucky people are going to win in our giveaway! Check out the details and make sure you’re signed up!

Want to pin this and let everyone know what you want for Christmas? Here you go!

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We’re 23 days away!!

 

Posted in The Book of Sight, Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Let the Countdown Begin!

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It’s officially one month until the launch of The Shattered Heart!  Time to get excited!

We’re going to have all sorts of little goodies throughout the next month, including a cover reveal (I can’t wait for you guys to see the cover) and a few deleted scenes from The Shattered Heart. But today, we have something even more exciting…

Free Stuff!

In honor of the completion of the Book of Sight series, I’m giving two lucky winners a full set of all five books! All you have to do to register for the giveaway is to sign up for my newsletter. That means everyone who is already signed up is already registered!  The beauty of signing up for the newsletter is that you won’t just be eligible to win a set of books, but you’ll also get fun exclusive content delivered right to your inbox, along with all the updates. So in a way, everyone wins.

We’ll leave the door open for new contestants until December 6.  Then, two winners will be chosen randomly using a random result generator. Sorry, if you’re related to me, you can’t win, and all participants have to live in the United States. But that means better odds for the rest of you! Once we have our winners, I’ll announce them right here and send the winners a notification. If you win, you’ll need to respond by email, and I’ll drop all five of these beauties in the mail. They should arrive just in time for Christmas!

Give them away to someone special or keep them for yourself. They’re awfully pretty.

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Legal necessities: No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. The odds of winning depend on the number of participants. Value of giveaway is $000.

Posted in The Book of Sight, Uncategorized | 3 Comments