So I am close to finishing editing my second novel, Power Play, so I thought I share an excerpt. Enjoy fellow readers, writers, and novelists.
Katrina raised her hand, her fingers arcing with electricity, and blasted one of the dummies we had set up around the junkyard. The blast had looked bigger than usual. I wondered if she had been eating her veggies or something and I was thinking that maybe I should try some of her mother’s cooking. It may have helped me out with my little problem.
Marion eyed another dummy and flexed his palm. Flames started to curl off the tips of his fingers and formed into a ball. He lobbed it at another dummy, causing it to erupt into a small bonfire.
Fleana smiled, reveling in the display of fireworks. I felt the wind picking up and my heart raced as the next dummy levitated five feet in the air. Fleana twitched her nose and the dummy went sky high.
You might be wondering why we were abusing a couple of poor, defenseless dummies. Even more importantly, you may be wondering how a couple of teenagers have superpowers. Well, its kind of a long story and it would probably take all day to catch you up on how all this nonsense, which quite frankly is still new to us, happened. Fortunately, I have time on my hands. We’re what you call BioticAbiotics—living nonliving things. This stuff sort of comes with the territory. Don’t worry, you’ll catch on. Technically, our “powers” were supposed to be used to support the planet so that everything including us could survive, but my friends and I use them kind of like a super power.
Fleana trained her eyes on me. “You sure you don’t want to try this?”
I shifted my feet. My pals had been trying to convince me for a week to try using my abilities. “I don’t know guys I’m just not feeling it.”
“It’s been three months now, Spikes. You have to try,” Katrina reasoned. “we need to practice for the new school we’ll be attending. I heard Level Placement is brutal.”
I guess I should explain. My friends and I would be attending Levels Academy in two days—A school that both our parents and older siblings had attended for BioticAbiotics. I shuddered thinking about a school full of hormonal teenagers that were just like us. I certainly wasn’t looking forward to it after what happened just three months ago. I just couldn’t imagine the reactions from the students and faculty.
What happened? Well, I’m going to make this short and simple: Three months ago, my friends and I had no idea what we even were, so when our powers (BioticAbiotics call them traits or characteristics) had actually showed up, we sort of panicked, not unlike anything else that happens during puberty. Don’t get me wrong, it was cool and all, but we managed to get into serious trouble with them. When our parents had finally told us what was going on with us, let’s just say that in hindsight, blowing up the lab we were born in was probably not the best way of getting information. Word of our actions had hit the local news across town and unless they had poor reception in the troposphere, I’m pretty sure most of the student body and faculty had heard of our blunder. And here I thought I was done with all the embarrassing stuff that happens in school.
Attending Levels meant that my friends and I were going to meet some challenges, but my biggest challenge would be getting my traits to work properly. What can I say? Some people mature slower than others even if you were born at the same time.
“Okay, I’ll try.” I told them.
I thrust out my palm but nothing happened. On my second try, my hand grew cold and a ball of steam condensed in my palm. It was the first solid ball I had made in the past two weeks. I lobbed it a dummy causing frost to cake over it. Despite it working sometimes, my power were pretty meager at that point. Nowhere near as big and powerful as my pals’.
I turned my head to my friends. “How’s that?”
“Not bad,” Fleana said encouragingly. “but it needs a little more oomph!”
Fleana was a part time cheerleader. She’s always positive and sometimes, if you’re not watching carefully enough, that’s how she often gets away with things. You wouldn’t suspect her to do any wrong. Thankfully, that part of her rarely shows up.
I went to try again with much better results. The next dummy turned into a popsicle.
Fleana clapped merrily. “There you go! Try again!”
So I did that for about three more times, which is more effort than I put in three months, and made the dummies I shot into miniature snowmen. My friends cheered, encouraging me to keep going, but the moment was short lived. On my next try, nothing happened. I tried several more times but no luck. I shook my head.
Kat came up to me and placed her hand on my back. “It’s okay. It’ll show up again. It’s better to try and fail than to not try at all.”
That’s Katrina for you. Always sensible, always responsible, and she always has a sweet spot when it comes to wounded puppies.
“I know, I know,” I said. “I just wish it would show up before school starts.”
“When it happens, it happens.” Marion reasoned. “You can’t rush these things.”
If you ever needed a level head to talk to then Marion’s your man. He always seems to be on top of things, never worried about anything.
Fleana looked at her watch and her eyes widened. “It’s late! I have to get home or mom will kill me!”
She jumped in the air and flew straight to our apartment. Flying’s become Fleana’s main source of transportation even when it’s not necessary. Our apartment was only a couple blocks away and Surrealton’s so small that driving from one place to another is seen as redundant.
“Show off.” Kat said. “But it is getting late. We should get going.” I heard her mutter. “Mom would be checking off supplies again.”
We began marching home, prepared to face the challenge of packing for school.
When I walked through the doors of my apartment room, my dad looked up from his paper and asked. “Where have you been?”
I told him. “With my friends at the junkyard.”
“Getting in some training before school, huh? Good thinking you might wanna bulk up. Standards are much higher now than from the time I went there.”
That didn’t make me feel much better. I had lied to my dad a week earlier about my abilities developing past latency. I was hoping they would’ve developed any day now so that it wouldn’t have to be such a lie. Obviously, that hadn’t been the case so it just left me in a worse spot.
The phone rang and dad picked it up. “Hello…yes…oh, okay. He’ll be there in the morning.”
He hung up. “That was Dr. Norman. He wants to do one final check up tomorrow morning. You okay going by yourself?”
“Sure.” I said.
Dr. Norman was the family doctor for my friends and me ever since the day we were born in Solarana Labs as asexual test tube babies. It’s kind of a weird story. A couple of months ago, I had accidentally frozen his arm when he tried to give me a shot, but thankfully he had forgiven me for that. Not a lot of people would.
As I walked down the hallway to my room, I bumped into my older brother, Nathan. He held my backpack in his hand.
He dropped it into my arms and it weighed a ton. “Here, everything’s accounted for.”
“Thanks bro. But I could’ve done that myself.” I grunted.
“Oh, I know. I just wanted to save you the trouble.”
Translation: he wanted me to reflect good on him. Nathan was going to be a teacher’s assistant at my new school for college credit and well, he’s a bit of an overachiever. He’s always pushing me to do my best. Not that I didn’t appreciate his help or anything, but it can be a bit overbearing sometimes and with my traits still on the fritz, I just wasn’t looking forward to one of his lectures about how eating more vegetables or ice cubes or whatever is essential to the proper functioning of traits. Older siblings can be a pain, even if they’re adopted.
After dinner, I slumped onto my bed hoping things would get better by tomorrow. But somewhere in the back of my mind, I knew things were about to get a whole lot worse somehow.