I hope you're enjoying Something Wicked Returns - we're this close to concluding the event. I have a special treat for you today and I'm so excited to share it. :)
For Something Wicked Returns, Ingrid Jonach has drafted an exclusive story that features characters from her debut YA novel When the World was Flat (and we were in love). Like the Simpsons Treehouse of Horror, we will see her characters in a much different, and much scarier light. Those who have read the book will understand how these characters came to be in this quite horrific reality.
The Tell-Tale Heart
by Ingrid Jonach
A lone streetlight flickered, catching a figure hurrying through the shadows. He was not breathless, even though he had been walking for at least an hour. He seemed on edge though, turning his head constantly from side to side as he moved past houses with overgrown yards and falling down porches.
He stopped as a cat ran across his path. There was no gasp and no thudding of his heart, but the whites of his eyes shone through the darkness. He shook his head at his own nervousness, but he had only walked another couple of steps when he came across the first body.
It was a teenage boy, discarded underneath a shrub like compost. He rolled the dead boy over, averting his eyes from the blood on his neck. A flicker of recognition passed across his face, as he took in the boy’s blond wavy hair and bright blue eyes in the wavering streetlight.
His head snapped up as he heard a noise from one of the houses. He waited a moment or two before continuing along the fenceline, his head down and back bent. He paused once more to step over the body of a vamp. It was a female, but unlike the boy she was not one of his friends. She had a stake driven through her heart and her mouth was open in horror, revealing her white incisors.
It had only been about ten or eleven months since the epidemic had reached Green Grove. Before that, vamps had been limited to the cities where the population, and therefore food supply, had been plentiful.
He startled when he heard the squeak of a rusty gate, as if remembering that he had to get home. His survival was at stake — literally. This was when they hunted, roaming the streets like packs of wild dogs. As if on cue, he heard footsteps on the sidewalk. He spun around, his own bright blue eyes searching the street, but it was empty.
He doubled his pace, before breaking into a run. He was used to running these days – his feet barely made a sound as he covered the sidewalk with long strides – but they were also used to running. Their footsteps grew louder and louder – telling him there was more than one hunter – until he heard another sound, like a train whooshing past his ear. It was an arrow. They had recently started using crossbows to bring down their victims.
He stumbled as a second arrow caught him in the back of the thigh. He grimaced, but more so in frustration than in pain as he yanked it out. A hand grabbed the back of his jacket and he instinctively swung around and plunged the arrow into the chest of his attacker, who crumpled to her knees. A girl, probably his own age, he realized as she lay down, as if to sleep, on the sidewalk.
The sound of footsteps indicated the others had caught up. He turned and leapt over a gate, before scaling a side fence, as if he was not wounded at all. He was spurred on by the angry shouts behind him, scaling fence after fence, crossing backyard after backyard. He dropped lightly into yet another backyard and remained crouched with his hand in the dirt until he was certain he had not been followed.
He knew this town like no other and it was only a few minutes before he had climbed over two further fences and landed in his own backyard. He walked straight through an abandoned vegetable patch and climbed in deftly through a side window. It was a bedroom, with photos tacked to the wall of a group of smiling girls.
He crept into the hallway and called out hesitantly. “Lillie?”
A figure stepped out of the kitchen. “Tom!” The moon peeked out from behind the clouds as she walked towards him, picking up the white of her incisors as she spoke. “If my heart were still beating I think it would have beat out of my chest by now,” she said, putting a hand to her neck. “There are so many humans out tonight!”
“One less,” he said, returning her smile, his own incisors scraping his bottom lip.
Title: When the World was Flat (and we were in love)
Genre/s: Young Adult, Contemporary Romance, Science Fiction
Publisher: Strange Chemistry
Date Published: September 3, 2013
Looking back, I wonder if I had an inkling that my life was about to go from ordinary to extraordinary.When sixteen-year-old Lillie Hart meets the gorgeous and mysterious Tom Windsor-Smith for the first time, it’s like fireworks — for her, anyway. Tom looks as if he would be more interested in watching paint dry; as if he is bored by her and by her small Nebraskan town in general.But as Lillie begins to break down the walls of his seemingly impenetrable exterior, she starts to suspect that he holds the answers to her reoccurring nightmares and to the impossible memories which keep bubbling to the surface of her mind — memories of the two of them, together and in love.When she at last learns the truth about their connection, Lillie discovers that Tom has been hiding an earth-shattering secret; a secret that is bigger — and much more terrifying and beautiful — than the both of them. She also discovers that once you finally understand that the world is round, there is no way to make it flat again.An epic and deeply original sci-fi romance, taking inspiration from Albert Einstein’s theories and the world-bending wonder of true love itself.
Ingrid Jonach writes books for kids and teens. Her debut young adult novel When the World was Flat (and we were in love) was released in September 2013 by global imprint Strange Chemistry.
She is also the author of the picture book A Lot of Things and the chapter books The Frank Frankie and Frankie goes to France published by Pan Macmillan Australia.
Ingrid has worked as a journalist and public relations consultant, and has a Bachelor of Arts in Professional Writing with Honors in Communications.
She lives down under — in Canberra, Australia — with her husband Craig and their pug dog Mooshi.
Ingrid has generously offered to sent out a signed paperback copy of When the World Was Flat (and we were in love) to one winner internationally. Just enter the Rafflecopter and keep your fingers crossed.a Rafflecopter giveaway