Authors: Jodie B. Cooper
Tags: #young adult, #paranormal romance, #hea, #dragons, #romance, #fantasy, #adventure, #zombies, #shape shifters, #teen love
A Dark Fire YA Novel
By Jodie B. Cooper
Copyright 2013 by Jodie B. Cooper
License Notes: See last page
This e-book contains minor curse words and sexual innuendo.
16+ is the recommended reading age.
Contained in this e-book:
Emma: A Dark Fire YA Novel
- 71,000 words
Exile: The Prequel
(Sídhí Summer Camp series #3) - 23,800 words
Sídhí Glossary - 1,900 words
I Thank God
Without God’s grace, this book would not be possible.
“I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.”
PHILIPPIANS 4:13 (KJV)
Thank you, thank you! You know who you are!!
Thanks for all you do! You are awesome!
Thank you for choosing to read
: A Dark Fire YA Novel.
As with Sídhí (my first YA series), the Dark Fire series will center on a single couple with returning secondary characters. Each book in the Dark Fire series will be a standalone story and will be named after the female protagonist (primary character).
The bonus e-book,
Exile: The Prequel,
is the first 23,800 words of Sarah’s story (Sídhí Summer Camp series #3 - coming fall 2013). It is
a complete story. It is a (long) excerpt.
I hope you enjoy Emma and Tyler’s story!
Jodie B. Cooper
- excerpts for all books!
Table of Contents: Emma
Exile: The Prequel
- 23,8000 words (PLUS 1,900 word Sídhí glossary!)
Chapter - Tuatha Dé Danann: Day of Arrival
It was a gorgeous day on Tuatha Dé Danann, a perfect day with birds singing and flowers blooming. Sparkling dust swirled on the upper air currents, coloring the afternoon sky with a brush of purple.
Tyler inhaled the energy-laced air of rich faerie dust, savoring the refreshing scent of late spring. Humming a tune under his breath, he glanced around the grove of trees and sighed with resignation. The gorgeous day was not destined to be fun, not when he was tromping through a fruit orchard, northeast of Capital City, following the obvious trail Professor Morgan left behind.
Morgan taught Natural Observation, a required class at Academy. The test was not about tracking. No, taking a test that measured his tracking ability would have been a breeze to pass for a wér-dragon like Tyler.
The observation test was about seeing the environment around him.
School wasn’t even in session. That was what really irritated him. The whole test was a pre-term exam that placed each student in the proper learning level.
He was determined to pass the test on his first attempt and get high marks.
Between one heartbeat and the next, storm clouds burst across the sky. Darkest of black clouds, spiked with swirls of purplish-red faerie dust, covered the sky with an ominous forewarning.
Lightning burst in jagged spears through the clouds. Thunder boomed. The world as he knew it disappeared, abruptly changing from normal to wacked-out crazy.
In the distance, he heard a faint scream. Ignoring the sound wasn’t a problem, not when a brown branch covered with green needles swayed an inch from his nose, a branch that had not been there a second ago. Fearing an attack, his muscles tensed, preparing to shift into wér-dragon, an in-between shape that wasn’t quite human, but not quite dragon either. A moment ticked by, nothing attacked.
Dual hearts racing, he quickly searched the area for a hint of what happened. Eerie looking green trees filled the forest. Here and there, he spotted the light blue leaves of a fat pomona tree; the fruit orchard stood intermingled with the weird green trees. Some of the alien looking trees were taller than the tallest of shroum trees and covered with broad fluttering leaves where shroum heads should be sprouting.
He carefully touched the branch swaying less than an inch away from his startled face. Green needles sprouted along each branch. He flexed a needle-shaped leaf between his fingers, bending it in half. A sharp smell drifted to him. He knew no druid created the unique tree.
The druids of the Celtic Nations tinkered with every living object they managed to get their grasping hands on, willy-nilly changing plants and beasts into unique works of art.
Working with dorcha energy was an ability that came natural to druids but when druids manipulated the dorcha within plants, changing a plant’s color or shape, it left a scent behind. The pungent smell coming from the bent green needle was different. The tree didn’t have the clean underlying scent of something changed by dark energy.
The missing scent could only mean one thing. The tree was natural. The freakish concept shook his world.
He’d never seen a naturally growing green plant, no one younger than a thousand years had, not since the last gateway between Earth and Tuatha collapsed for lack of dorcha energy on Earth.
Faerie tales were the only thing remaining from Earth. Most of those were silly stories created by The Brothers Grimm. Only those two elves could have created eerie stories about mortals killing dragons or about a Tuathan mating with an Earthling and living happily ever after. Just thinking about those strange faerie tales, he shuddered.
The sudden appearance of the forest had to be some kind of pre-attack by the Southerners, the people who lived west and south of the Gulf of Life on the continent of Wormwood.
He heard another cry, a very feminine sound filled with fear. He growled, knowing his return home was about to be delayed.
He inhaled the warm breeze. Searching for the girl’s scent, he tasted each individual smell. A sickening odor reached him. Vampires!
Chapter - Earth: Day of Arrival
Wind rustled through the trees surrounding the forest trail. The breeze coupled with sunny skies created the perfect weather for the first week of summer vacation. Pulling her phone out of her hip pocket, Emma sent a quick text message to her best friend.
LOL, blueberries aren’t in season until next month
, Kayla replied.
There could be berries this early.
Snort! You keep thinking that.
Berries n cool whip will be awesome!
Moments later, a few notes of her favorite song played. Answering her phone, she eagerly asked, “Hey, what’s up?”
“You know Dad. He gets this emergency call at two in the wretched morning and ten minutes later, we’re in the car heading west,” Kayla said with a heavy sigh.
Emma grinned at her dramatics. Kayla might fuss and groan, but she loved going with her parents. During the school year, she stayed with Emma when her dad got called-out. She wasn’t quite sure what he did, but she knew he worked in software development for some huge company, something to do with security.
“Where did your parents drag you to this time?”
Kyla snorted. “We’re on our way to Carlsbad, New Mexico.”
Her good mood deserted her. She had really been looking forward to the weekend.
“Is Saturday still on?” Emma asked without much hope.
“Absolutely, Mom said we should be home by the weekend,” Kayla said excitedly. “Dad bought me The Lord of the Ring series on blue ray!”
Emma laughed. “We’ll have to flip a coin. I just ordered the Twilight set from Amazon with next day shipping.”
Kayla chuckled. “You hit below the belt.”
“Thanks, I try.”
Kayla groaned. “My phone’s beeping low battery. I’ve got to run, see you in a few.”
Emma said bye, and hit the lock button on her keys. Slipping the phone in her hip pocket, she emerged from the forest, entering the sunny meadow with a spring in her step.
Looking forward to proving Kayla wrong, she grinned and made a beeline toward blueberry bushes growing along the far edge. She was halfway across the meadow when her world turned upside-down. One minute the sky was bright blue, the next moment it was not.
Storm clouds boiled across the afternoon sky. Lightning flickered. Thunder boomed. Clouds engulfed the entire sky in a heartbeat. Dark and intense, the storm filled the air with menacing presence, flickering with an unearthly reddish-purple glow. Lightning streaked across the sky in a jagged display. Thunder boomed in an unceasing roll of bone jarring noise.
Fear shot through her, tightening her chest in mind chilling shock.
She didn’t have time to dwell on the freaky spring weather, not when a giant tree popped into existence, nearly on top of her.
Emma screamed and stumbled backward. She hit the hard packed trail with a bone-jarring thump, cutting off her screech of shock; her teeth snapped together barely missing the tip of her tongue.
She looked up. The longer she looked at the weird tree that nearly squished her, the bigger her eyes grew. Holy crap! Ten more steps and her favorite pizza topping would’ve crushed her to death. She sucked in a harsh breath, choking a desperate urge to scream her head off.
The giant tree had an odd rubbery looking bark that was blue with black and yellow splotches. Sharp, six-inch thorns swirled-up the trunk. The tree didn’t have leaves; mushroom heads covered each branch.
The heads spread across the thick branches, displaying vivid blue colors, ranging from baby blue buds to dark purple beach-ball sized heads.
She scrunched her dark eyes shut and jerked them back open. The blue tree trunk did not disappear.
Weird sounds surrounded her. Singing, buzzing, and chirping created an unnatural symphony of normal and alien.
Her heart raced faster and faster as her eyes darted around the meadow. She couldn’t grasp what in the heck was going on.
Her mind supplied the only reasonable excuse, settling on complete disbelief. She must’ve never gotten out of bed that morning; she had to be dreaming. There was no other answer.
The buzzing sound grew louder. From her position on the ground, she couldn’t see past all the tree limbs, but it looked like a swarm of monster-sized wasps lived among the mushroom heads.
The wasp-like insects made her decision easy. It was time to make tracks and go home. Home was a thirty-minute walk through the forest. At a flat-out run, she bet she could make the distance in fifteen.
A beam of sunshine hit the grass inches from her foot. She looked up, just in time to watch the eerie storm clouds break apart. Sunshine streamed through the holes. Within a few blinks, there were only a few wispy streaks of white, not a single storm cloud remained in the sky.
Okay, now that was beyond freaky. She was so ready to go home.
Inching ever backward, her hand reached for a solid handhold. Her fingers never touched the rocky path. Instead, they brushed something soft and squishy.
She yanked her hand away, but the move didn’t help. Stuck like glue, the red blob clung to her palm. Heart racing, panic overwhelmed her. Shrieking at the top of her lungs, she frantically shook her hand in a desperate attempt to dislodge the weird thing, but it didn’t budge.
Quick as a snake, the previously lifeless blob moved, latching onto her index finger. As if a needle had been jabbed into the slender digit, sharp pain shot through her pointing finger.
“Ouch!” Emma cried, and slammed her palm downward.
“Stop!” A tiny wail demanded.
Emma jerked to a halt. Her hand hovered inches from a mound of rocks, ready to smash her palm down at a moment’s notice.
“Stop that! You’re making me dizzy!” A small, high-pitched voice squealed.
She spread her fingers and a tiny head popped through.
Emma’s jaw dropped open. Her ears began ringing and she feared she might actually faint. The red wasps weren’t bugs. She had a real life fairy in the palm of her hand, one that talked to her.