by BookTown Member Ami R Blackwelder
Set in Alaska in 2060, when April enters her Sophomore year at University, she thought Robert might be the love of her life, but as she discovers, she is hiding something inside her, something the rest of the world believes to have died out.
She struggles with who she was and who she is becoming as she learns of a family she never knew existed and of enemies she will have to outrun, outfight or outwit to survive.
As my hand rose a careful inch, the figure returned and latched four steel cuffs around each of my limbs. Steel is a bastard to break.
‘This will hurt.’ The voice was a soft female sound, but scratchy.
She poked a long iron rod into my leg and released an electrical current far greater than the first. Sharp pain. My body reacted in violence. Fur grew from my skin and claws grew from my nails.
‘Stop! Stop!’ I begged. My ears honed in on her stepping away and into conversation with another also garbed in a white trench coat.
‘Her features are surprisingly similar to your own,’ a male voice remarked.
‘Designed that way to blend with our race.’ The female voice spoke with certainty.
‘But still, the similarity is remarkable. She could be your sister, your daughter.’ The male voice stepped out of the room. The female figure returned to my cot, her heels clicking on the marble floor. I tilted my head in her direction, away from Diamond.
‘Why...why are you doing this?’
‘We have to study your transformation, the monster inside you.’
She showed no emotion.
‘I’m not a monster.’ I shook my head and body in refusal at the rod piercing my leg again, and again my body convulsed. My human skin faded, replaced by a growing wolf.
‘I’m not a monster!’ I declared to her, to myself. ‘I’m April!’
Her head jerked back at those words, and she lowered the iron rod. At her incredulous expression, I felt the power shift to me, though I didn’t know why. My bones quieted, the fur retreated into my skin and the claws recoiled. ‘I’m April!’
The physician pulled away from me and the cloud that once covered my mind lifted. Her strong blue eyes became clear and a thought burrowed between her brows that hindered her movement. Her alabaster coloring contrasted the darkness of the previous room and she questioned herself in quiet.
‘She can’t be.’ She stood still, backed away and then approached again. ‘She would be about this age.
She resembles me. Her name is...April.’ Each thought she declared aloud became my world. I only heard her voice.
I only smelled her skin. I only saw her eyes. The name tag hung on the right side of her coat and dangled over me, Melissa Marn, and a word formed on my lips…
Her face became as clear as my own and our stare locked on each other’s, caught in space and time.