Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Excerpt from Guardian of Atlantis

Here's a teaser from Guardian of Atlantis. Check out the Kindle edition at Amazon if want to read the more.

I remember asking my mom why we had to move again. But she never gave me a reason.
“This is the last time we’ll move,” was all she told me as she wrapped the dishes and put them into a cardboard box.
That was five years, four houses, two apartments and six schools ago. But hey, who’s counting?
     --Raven Weir’s journal

Raven chewed on her bottom lip. She hated the first day of school, even more so when it fell in the middle of the school year like so many of her past first days had. But today was worse. Today was her sixteenth birthday. In all the books and movies, sixteenth birthdays were magical. Girls discovered they were princesses of lost countries, or fairies with wings, or they had powers that no one else did. They didn’t start new schools in the middle of the school year on their sixteenth birthdays.
“How about we go back home and I help you unpack?” Raven asked her mom. She tried the birthday strategy last night, but her mom shot that down really quick, telling her she’d already missed too many days because of the move.
“There’s not that much to do. Besides, you might as well get this over with,” said Suzanne Weir. “Do you want me to go in with you?”
Raven shook her head. It looked like she wasn’t getting out of going to school today, but she didn’t need her mom walking her in like she was a little kid. She stared at the students walking toward the huge two story brick building and sighed.
“Are you okay?” asked her mom.
“Unicorns? For a mascot? Mom, are they serious?”
“And what’s wrong with unicorns? They’re cute.”
“That’s the problem. School mascots shouldn’t be cute. They need to be tough and mean looking. Really! Pinewood High, Home of the Fighting Unicorns. My new mascot is a unicorn? How pathetic is that!”
“Does it really matter that much, or are you just looking for something to stall the inevitable?” asked her mom. “What’s really wrong?”
“Are you sure I can’t stay home? Just for a couple more days. It is my birthday. My sixteenth birthday.” Raven crossed her fingers, hoping maybe the birthday strategy would work this time. “I just don’t think I should go to school today. My stomach feels funny,” she added.
“You’re just having first day jitters. Go have a great day. You’ll be fine. And Raven, happy birthday.”
“You’re no help,” mumbled Raven as she got out of the car and slammed the door shut. “Just what I wanted, to be stared at on my birthday.”
Suzanne waved, but Raven just stuck out her tongue, even though it was a childish thing to do, but she was playing the new kid on her birthday. So much for a date for the prom or anything else. At least she had a chance for a date at her other school, but here? Not likely. She was the new oddity, but more so because her dad taught here before he died. Raven adjusted her book bag and stepped into the flow of students heading toward the building.
At least she already had her schedule and didn’t have to sit in the office waiting for it. One embarrassment off the list of embarrassing first day stuff she’d have to endure. Raven glanced at three girls standing just outside the glass doors. They were laughing and hugging each other.
“Maybe…” but Raven shoved the thought to the back of her mind as quick as she could. No use wishing for things like that even if it was her birthday. It wasn’t going to happen. She pulled the schedule out of her back pocket as she entered the building. Biology in Room 212 was the first class listed. Raven glanced at one of the doors on her right. Its number started with a one. “So I’ve just got to find the stairs,” she told herself. “Great, the new morning workout routine.”