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Shires Press Teaser Series: Navire des Dieux

Part Two

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About the Author: A member of SVC’s Shires Press Publishing Program for publishing his first book, Jose Ferreras (Creative Writing, Class of 2017) started writing this five-part series of “character teasers” to give sneak peeks into the main, supernatural personality of his novel, titled Decoded. Jose feels happiest when immersing himself in fantasy and supernatural writing. He hopes that this teaser series will encourage readers to pick up a copy of his book at Northshire Bookstore when it is officially released in May of 2017.

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Navire des Dieux, Part Two

by Jose Ferreras

 

Alexandria sat in the police station’s waiting room with her hands crossed on her lap. Her aunt was on her way to bring her home, and Alexandria couldn’t be anymore impatient. She had just spent the last eight hours answering endless questions about the men who had murdered her father and the day that had led up to it. She wanted nothing more than to escape from everything that was reality at this moment.

Her head popped up in curiosity as she heard a door open from behind the front desk and she watched as the police officer who had interviewed her stepped out and walked over to her. He sat down next to her carefully and said in a hushed tone, “listen, I thought that I should let you know that we plan to do whatever it takes to arrest the men who attacked your father. We have men on the streets as we speak, looking for-”

He was cut off by the sound of a voice coming from his portable radio: “10-26. Suspects detained.” Alexandria immediately stopped chewing on her bottom lip and studied the police officer’s face as he lifted the portable and responded quietly.

“Suspect count?” he asked and after a brief moment, the portable sounded and out came a rough, “Two. We’re bringing them in now.” The police officer placed the radio on his belt just as Alexandria’s dark-haired and wide-eyed aunt came into the police station.

Alexandria jumped up as her aunt ran over to her and pulled her into a tight hug. The two women were silent and just allowed themselves to find comfort in each other’s warmth as they both attempted to process the news. After a moment, Alexandria pulled away and turned towards the police officer, who had stood up to greet her aunt. He explained that two of the suspects were being brought in now for the murder and that they would keep Alexandria and her aunt involved when they heard more news.

Alexandria’s aunt smoothed out the sides of her sweater and said quietly, “Thank you, officer. I’m going to bring my niece home now. She must be exhausted after being here all night.” Alexandria’s aunt proceeded to take her by the arm to bring her outside to her car. She followed behind her aunt without arguing and got into the car carefully as she tried to process what would come next. She had not slept in almost 24 hours and wasn’t sure if it would be possible for her to fall asleep in the first place. She did know one thing, though — she needed to get out of the clothes she was wearing. She wanted no memory of the terrible night she had.

When she got back home, she rushed into her bedroom and slammed her door shut — she was in no mood to communicate with her aunt about the night’s event. She ripped her clothing right off of her body and instead of tossing it into her laundry basket, she wrapped it up and pushed it into a plastic bag to toss out later. She grabbed her bathrobe and made her way into her bathroom so that she could wash whatever grime had accumulated throughout the past 24-hours.

In the shower, water fell down her cheeks as she imagined she was crying, but she wasn’t.

She pulled her robe tight against her body and made her way up to her mirror to look at her appearance. There were very dark, prominent bags underneath her eyes and despite the fact that she had scrubbed her hair clean of the blood that sprayed her, she couldn’t get the picture of it out of her mind. She felt dirty.

Alexandria grabbed a pair of scissors from her medicine cabinet and brought it up to her hair to snip off the first bit of her golden locks.

When she exited the bathroom, she came out a different woman. Her hair was cut short — almost to the scalp of her head, and there was a look of death that was hidden beneath her emerald green eyes. She climbed into her bed and slid under the covers, which she brought over her head to shield herself from the light that streamed through the blinds of her window. She wanted nothing more at this moment but an escape from reality. And she received just that as her eyes fluttered close and she fell into a deep sleep…

“Isn’t there something you’re forgetting?” came a soft voice. Alexandria perked up in response to it and let her eyes flutter back open to find that she was no longer hidden under her blankets, but instead was standing outside, back in the clothes she had tossed out, in the spot that her father had been murdered before her eyes. She looked around curiously, searching for the man whom the voice belonged to.

Across the street from her stood a tall, older man with short, white hair and a thick, groomed beard. He stared directly at her, his eyes beckoning her to come to him. Still, she stood where she was and watched him eerily, unsure what to do. While the man didn’t seem particularly harmful, Alexandria wasn’t exactly ready to trust a random person. So, standing where she was, she called out to him: “Who are you?”

“Shouldn’t you be asking yourself that?” the man retorted.

You are curious about how you shot those beams of lights from your hands, yes? And how you took down those men who attacked you and your father?

“How do you know about that?” Alexandria asked as the man started to move closer to her. She stepped back from him, uncomfortable as she tried to figure how the man had spoken without her seeing his lips move.

You will find out soon enough. Use your powers for good, Alexandria.

“How do you know my name?”

Wake up — your aunt is coming.

Alexandria’s eyes flew open and she sat up in bed as she spun her head around and tried to figure out what it was that had just happened. She could hear her aunt tap on her bedroom door before she stepped into the room quietly. In a soft voice, her aunt spoke up: “It’s almost four in the afternoon — I figured that you would probably like some food after the night you had…” Alexandria’s eyes widened in confusion and she looked over at her alarm clock — somehow another eight hours had passed since she had gone to bed.

“Alex?” her aunt called softly, almost hesitantly. Alexandria glanced over at her and climbed out of bed as she tried to make sense of the time. Had she been asleep, dreaming? It sure didn’t feel that way. She walked over to the doorway and slid by her aunt with no words to make her way down to the kitchen. She was hungry. As she made her way down the stairs, she tried to avoid looking at the pictures that framed the walls of the staircase of her father and herself. Each picture she caved and looked at she saw splattered in her father’s blood. It was torture and she found her anxiety spiking in response.

When she had made it downstairs, she found herself easily startled as her cat meowed at the sight of her — the noise seemed almost unnatural. When Alexandria had jumped back, she threw her hands up in front of her protectively and was shocked to see the pictures from the wall in front of her fly right across the space in response. Her aunt, who had been following closely behind her let out a scream as the pictures crashed into the opposite wall and fell and grabbed hold of Alexandria, who was frozen at her spot at the bottom of the stairs.

The two women tried to process what it was that had just happened. Only one thing was on Alexandria’s mind:

What am I?

 

Want to read more Alexandria Eskil? Check out Jose’s full novel, Decoded, when it is available for pre-order at Northshire Bookstore in April, 2017.

 

Copyright © Jose Ferreras (2016) All Rights Reserved.

 

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