Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Tease!

A little minute ago, I posted a teaser from my current WiP, which I have since titled, ZERO.  Today's Teaser Tuesday post is a continuation of that scene.  Enjoy!

The head guard nods to his men, and everyone is back in motion. They grab us at random, picking up one and then thrusting her aside in favor of someone else. Fauna is tossed aside for Elle. She is taken from the shack, her arms and legs flailing as she fights to remain with her sister. Others follow in Elle’s footsteps. I count seven girls taken before the guards make their way to the corner where Leda and I are huddled.


She clutches at me, her fingernails digging painfully into my sides, drawing tiny rivers of blood. I do not cry out. I think that if I am perfectly still, completely silent, they will leave us be. They are just weeding us out. They do this every so often. There used to be sixty of us in this run-down room. When the mood strikes them, they come in and take the trouble-makers away.

Leda and I never speak out against the guards, never do anything to bring unwanted eyes upon us. This should make us safe.

Apparently, Leda is not the only one who readily believes lies.

The guard that I detest the most—the one with the dark, angry eyes and lips twisted up in a perpetual sneer, the one who is always the first to raise a hand, to dole out cruel punishments for even the smallest infractions, like taking a moment to wipe the sweat from one’s brow—marches over to where Leda and I huddle. The light on his hat flickers, and the strobe effect temporarily blinds me. I pull away from Leda to shield my face from the brightness. It’s only for the space of a moment, no more than a fraction of second.

But, it is enough.

“Thia!” Leda screams as she’s pulled from my side. Her fingernails claw at my arm as the guard yanks on her again. I try to hold on. I really do, but she is gone, and I’m left grasping at nothing but air. “Thia!”

“No!” I leap to my feet, moving faster than I have in days, weeks, months, years. They have taken everything! They can’t have her, too. I won’t let them. I’d die first. “Leda!”

I feel rather than see countless pairs of eyes—guards and prisoners alike—swing over to me, the quiet one. The girl who never argues. The girl who always does what is required.

Not anymore.

I come alive, my body humming with an electric current I haven’t felt since they first came for us, when Mama and Papa were still there, when we were still a family. They’d separated us then. I can’t—won’t—let them do so again.

I lunge at the man dragging my sister toward the door. She will not be leaving this cabin without me. That is the only truth I am sure of. I land on his back and begin to pummel.

He drops my sister and, with an outraged roar, turns on me. A fist, the size and hardness of the rocks they make us carry everyday, connects with my stomach, just below my ribcage. It is followed by its twin, only this one lands on my back.

Pain—hot and sharp—pierces me, cuts me down to my knees. “Run, Leda,” I gasp between each blow he lands. Everything goes sideways, and my vision blurs. The floor rushes up to greet my face. My forehead lands inches from his steel-toed boots. This is my end, I think. It will only take one good kick. Pull his leg back and drive his booted toe straight into my brain.

He starts to do just that.

Closing my eyes is not an option. I want to see Death coming. I need to see it. I don’t know why, but I just do.

“Stop.”

The command is spoken in their language, that harsh tongue that always sounds just a little bit angry, and of course, the guard listens. It is, after all, their language, and none of us speaks it.

As far as they know.

 
Sooo?  What do we think of my alien book so far? yes? no? maybe so?