Yay! I finally have the okay to release an excerpt from my upcoming story Last Winter Red, which will be released December 3rd as part of J.Taylor Publishing’s Make Believe Anthology.
This is super-exciting stuff!
This is the first time I’ve seen my manuscript in a pretty long time, which is a little nerve-wracking, since it’s been in the hands of editors. I haven’t even approved the finals yet. **GACK**
Soooo… without further ado, here is the premier of the first 500 words of Last Winter Red.
Enjoy! (This is me, holding my breath)
Four Days Before Spring
Any less than forty-five vials wouldn’t be enough. Emily tucked the crimson cloth around the containers in her basket and continued down the long, stark corridor leading to Terra’s south exit. As usual, the hallway was empty; no one else would be foolish enough to leave the city, especially a few days before spring when the weather was so unpredictable.
The soft patter of footsteps came as her mother rounded the corner. The woman’s red dress stood out from the white walls and gray ceramic tiles, swishing at her ankles until she stopped. Her eyes narrowed, gaze settling on her daughter’s basket.
Emily continued toward the exit. “We’re not having this conversation again, Mother.”
“You can’t keep going out there. It isn’t safe.”
Emily reached the door and unlatched the lock. “I have to. The people outside need this medicine.”
“But what if you catch the disease?”
Emily sighed and released the latch. “I told you they medicate me each time I go to the village. I’ll be fine.”
Black ringlets fell over her mother’s brow as she shook her head. “You’re my oldest daughter. You should be setting an example, not traipsing around outside with the vermin.”
Pulling her crimson cloak over her hair, Emily tucked in her own dark tresses. “These people need my help.”
“You couldn’t care less about those people. It’s that renegade doctor you’re helping. It always has been.”
Emily lowered her gaze. Her mother knew her all too well. “My husband is dead, Mother. I need to find someone else.”
“That is the duty of the scribes. They’ll assign you another.”
“Who? When? I’m twenty-three years old. You already had four children by the time you were my age. If they were going to find another husband for me, they would have done so. I will not spend the rest of my life alone like a sorry Gray.” Emily struggled against tears threatening to break free. “George is a good man … a doctor and a Red. When his work is done, he will come back with me.”
“Did he tell you that?”
Emily blinked. “Not in so many words…”
“You are placing your life in danger for something that may never happen.”
“You taught me it’s our duty as Reds to be fruitful … to support the growth of humanity.” Emily quaked with angry resentment. “I have no children to show to the Council. I am nothing. I need to find a new husband.”
Her mother’s countenance didn’t change, and she offered no words of encouragement.
“I’m going, Mother. And this time, I’m not coming back alone.” Emily pushed the door open. A chill slapped her face.
“What if he’s contracted the disease?”
Emily’s hand tensed on the doorframe. “If he hadn’t been careful, he’d have been dead by now.” She stepped out and slammed the door before her mother could offer further argument.
Whooooosh… Okay, that was me breathing again.
Now I’m cringing. **GACK***
So…. What did you think? 😐
If you liked this, you may want to hop over to see what my lovely and talented co-authors have for you. They might just have a little excerpt for you to read, too!