Monday, March 8, 2010

ORACLE Excerpt

I thought I'd do an excerpt from my first book (ORACLE - YA Sci Fi) today since I don't remember the last time I posted one. This part is from chapter 3, and let's just say Lexi's having a really rough day. She was almost hit by lightning in the desert, woke up in a cave with a very badly broken arm, had a knife held to her throat and then been squeezed so hard she couldn't breathe and passed out. Here's the next section, let me know what you think.:)

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It felt like she was floating on a giant cotton ball. Afraid to move, she searched her mind for answers until visions of the cave flooded back. Her mind was clear. All pain was gone. She sighed, not sure whether she should be celebrating yet or not. This whole wondering if she was dead thing was getting old fast.

Lexi opened her eyes only a crack, not entirely convinced she wanted to know where she was. The walls of the round room were a light silver hue with a large expanse of shimmering glass on one side. Above her, the rounded ceiling reminded her of a dome on top of a cylinder. Everything was recognizable, but also strangely foreign.

She pulled aside the blood caked clothing from her left arm. Okay, so obviously all that stuff in the cave wasn’t a hallucination. But under the shredded cloth her arm looked perfect, as though she’d never broken it. Lifting her eyes, she drew in a breath so quick it choked her. Once again, she wasn’t alone.

The boy, Cam, was in the other bed. Lexi scrambled out of the covers, and backed against the wall. Her eyes scanned the room, looking for a door. There didn’t appear to be one. She unhooked a metal pole from the side of her bed and brandished it in front of her, wild and desperate.

Cam’s arms were folded behind his head. His body reclined back against the pillow. One gray eye opened slowly, took in her posture, and then closed again. “Relax. You’ll give yourself a heart attack. They might have healed you, but you’ve put your body through a lot. You could try being nicer to it.”

Lexi nearly choked. “Thanks for the tip. I seem to recall you weren’t exactly nice to my body either. Still have your knife with you?” She growled through clenched teeth.

His eyes opened, wide and innocent. “Knife? What knife? I’m hurt, Twitchy, really hurt. I’d think a girl could at least thank me for saving her life.”

She blinked. “T—twitchy?”

“Yeah, I made it up. Forgot your real name,” he said with a shrug. “You twitch around a lot in your sleep. It was either that, or Fingers. You’ve got the longest, skinniest fingers I’ve ever seen.”

She rolled her eyes. Of course he knew her name. He was just giving her a hard time. The urge to hit him with the pole was intense. It didn’t matter if he threatened her anymore. Only two minutes she’d been awake and already he was driving her crazy.

“Yeah, girls love having all their flaws pointed out in nicknames. You must get all the ladies.”

“Sorry to disappoint you, Twitchy. I only date older women.”

Her grip tightened on her improvised weapon as she took a step forward.

A door appeared in the wall on the opposite side of the room and an older woman in an ivory jumpsuit entered. She had silver and white streaks in her hair, light blue eyes, and a sea-green jewel on each temple. Lexi stepped back again, no longer sure who was the greater threat.

The pole was ripped from her hands and flew through the air to the woman. She caught it and laid it on the floor in one fluid motion. Lexi gasped and took a step backward, her emotions churning within her head, each one fighting for dominance.

“That’s quite enough, Lexi. Thank you.”

“Who are you?”

“All your questions will be answered in due time. Please take a seat.” She gestured to Lexi’s bed and waited.

After a moment’s hesitation, Lexi walked back and sat down—ignoring the smirk that twisted Cam’s dirty face.

“Thank you. My name is Aya. There’s much that I must tell you, so please listen well. I trust your injuries are no longer bothering you?”

Aya looked straight at her, paying no attention to the insane escapee in the bed beside her. Lexi glanced at Cam, his eyes were closed again.

She sighed and turned back to Aya, her expression dubious. “Are you saying? What—that this lunatic is right?”

“Hey now, no name calling, Twitchy.”

Ignoring Cam was becoming easier. “You healed me?”

“Yes.” Aya nodded.

“How long have I been out?”

“Not long, it’s evening.”

Lexi raised one eyebrow. “It’s the same day?”

“Yes, well at least here it is.”

“Sure, okay.” Lexi nodded after a long pause, and rubbed her fingers against her knees. “So, did you use a normal wand or bring in a fairy to do the trick?”

Aya’s smile wavered for a moment, and her eyes hardened slightly. Lexi didn’t blink, refusing to lower her gaze. She was getting really tired of being messed with.

“This is the least of the things I will ask you to believe. You aren’t new to the incredible. Why are you fighting it?”

Lexi flinched, and turned her eyes back to her entwined fingers. “I—I don’t know what you mean.”

Aya frowned. “Yes, you do.” Her statement left no room to argue, but Lexi shook her head anyway. With a sigh, Aya moved closer to the bed, staring at her intently.

At first, Lexi felt only uncomfortable under her gaze. Then an intense pressure began building behind her forehead. It wasn’t painful, just weird—like a fountain bubbling up in her brain.

“Stop that. What are you doing?” Lexi leaned back into the pillows, but she couldn’t turn away. Her voice sounded small behind the geyser filling her mind.

The memory crashed over her, pulling her under and tying her up with its motion. Her secret expanded on the wall for everyone to see.

╦ ╦ ╦

A young girl with dark curls sat on a pink, ruffled bedspread. Her pajamas were blue with pink bows. She bounced in place, unable to control her excitement. A blonde girl sat across from her, grinning expectantly.

“Just tell me. What’s so exciting?”

Lexi took a deep breath, but couldn’t contain her grin. “I’ve wanted to tell someone for so long, but I just—didn’t. You’re the only one I really want to tell, Jo.”

Jo giggled, “All right, so tell me.”

“I—well, I can move things.” Her voice was so soft, it was barely audible. She leaned forward until a single dark curl fell across her face. Blowing it out of the way, she looked at her friend, waiting for a response.

“What do you mean, silly? Of course, you can move things.”

“But I can move things without touching them—just, you know, by thinking it.”

Jo looked at her for a moment, before laughing again. “Be serious!”

Lexi's brow furrowed. "No, I am serious. I’ll show you." She concentrated on a delicate glass ballerina on Jo's dresser. Jo laughed, but followed her friend’s gaze. The figurine lifted a couple of inches and hovered gracefully in the air. Biting her lip, Lexi focused harder and made the beautiful dancer spin in a tight circle.

Jo’s piercing scream tore through the room and Lexi jumped backward, her concentration broken. She’d expected Jo to be surprised, but not scared. The tiny ballerina fell back to the dresser and shattered.

She looked at Jo and blinked. Her friend backed into a corner of the room and stared at Lexi in horror.

“Jo?” Lexi whispered, her eyes wide. Her feet moved forward of their own volition, but stopped when her friend’s face went pale and she recoiled farther into the corner. Watching her felt like a bucket of ice water had been dumped down Lexi’s spine.

As if through a haze, she watched Jo’s fingernails scratch at the walls around her, frantically searching for a way out. Lexi’s best friend, her only friend, was desperate to escape her.

Lexi backed away, shaking her head, dazed. Scrambling for her Strawberry Shortcake backpack, she ran from the house. Her feet bare, and her pajamas damp with her tears.

8 comments:

  1. Wow! This was awesome. I hope I get to read the whole book sometime! :)

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  2. Twitchy...I love Cam so much!!

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  3. Cam is awesome and I have to say, Jenn, I love your use of dialogue. It's just so fun!

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  4. Whoa. This is the first time I've read an excerpt and it was awesome! TFS!

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  5. Hee hee, I love the "Twitchy" nickname! Way to go Jenn. This is very good. =)

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  6. I remember the ballerina scene from an earlier post. I really like Cam. I'm glad she didn't beat him up with the pole.

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  7. Thanks guys! Cam and Lexi are almost hypnotizing for me. I love watching them in action. I'm glad you liked it too!:)

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