Here’s an except from my young adult fantasy novel Sevara: Dawn of Hope – on Amazon now: http://amzn.com/B0115CWE2S
Sevara left her backpack in the sand. The fabric against her body made her sweat even more. Sevara had already shed her jacket, keeping only the folded letter she got from Abigail. There would be no hospital, no learning, no need to escape. She walked across the sand and hard mud, looking for shelter, stopping only when she couldn’t stand the heat any longer. But even sitting in the sun was unbearable. She continued to walk, but felt her legs begin to swell. She couldn’t bend her knees as easily as she used to, and her fingers also became fat. Her arms and neck were bright red, and her lips cracked.
At some point, she stopped walking. She put the sun at her back and sat in the sand. She waited for the sun to set, hoping that it would allow her to travel. Once it was dark and cool, she stood up. Her head began to spin, and she bent over and waited for it to subside. Her head cleared, and she started to walk. She moved much slower than she expected, every step taking three times as long as it normally would. She was scared more by her body failing her than anything else. But all she could do was put one foot in front of another.
Her brain became cloudy, and she began to question everything. Did the Chancellor know that she was to die this way, or did one of his henchmen make the decision? Was Almos really a spy, or was he innocent? How did he know her mother? What happened to the boy in yellow, Jacob? Who killed her parents? Why was she still alive? Soft sand beneath her feet twisted her ankles with every step. On rocky ground it was worse, and she found it difficult to step over even small stones. She had planned on walking the whole night, but within a few hours she couldn’t go any further. She needed to sleep, but dared not to. She pushed forward methodically.
She felt the dawn sun pierce her eyelids. At some point in the night, she had collapsed from exhaustion and gone to sleep. She panicked and tried to stand, but got dizzy and fell on her side. She took a few more breaths and stood up slowly. This time she remained standing and looked ahead. She couldn’t even see Plexus over the horizon.
By noon she stopped sweating. By one o’clock she was on her hands and knees. She took her father’s letter from her pocket and spread it on the hot sand. The sand was so hot that the frail paper began to char, but she didn’t care. She knew she didn’t have long to live.
The words on the paper began to expand and shrink. The pieces themselves seemed to stretch, and she knew that the blood rushing to her head was distorting her vision. Her neck was stiff now, and she could no longer feel her face. She assembled the pieces of the letter so that the sentences lined up, and put all her energy and will into reading the letter one last time.
She could tell that it written by a man. He started with “To my daughter Alonya.” Who was she? The words stopped making sense from there, as usual. The ink came in and out of focus, and as the heat drained her life, she could sense the fragments of her father’s ideas rather than read them, as if she could touch pieces of his memories. She was unaware of when she stopped reading and when she began hallucinating, but she could see her ancestral home in the mountains, a great dining room table that used to be a door, and a twin sister named Alonya. Sevara lay down and put her head on her arm. She no longer had the strength to keep her head up. She looked at the words sideways, and saw images she had never seen before. Two men came into the house on embassy row, while mother and father crouched in a hiding space. The men were blind, or perhaps blinded, searching the house with listening devices. She heard Alonya crying, and then felt warm splatters of blood on her face. Father apologized for something, his eyes filled with tears. Then the earth began to spin.
Sevara couldn’t look at the paper anymore. Her eyes couldn’t focus or even move side to side, there wasn’t moisture left to even close them. They dilated, and all she saw was a brown blur. A breeze lifted the pieces of the letter into the air and put them down again in a different order. Then, as life left her, the wind lifted the letter again and the pieces swirled in a cloud before her before being borne away by the wind. In that moment, Sevara could see a tall bearded man stumbling through the snow with two tiny babies in his arms, one alive and one dead.
That’s it! I can’t post any more previews, sorry! But I hope you’ve enjoyed the previews. This is almost the first third of the book! You can check out the whole novel on Amazon right now. There’s a paperback and a digital version for your Kindle: http://amzn.com/B0115CWE2S