Sneak Preview III: Scenes from The Padmin Stone

The moment stopped again. Again, this odd, tense stillness hung between us. My chest tightened. My throat closed up.

We needed to get outside and see Andie. How long had passed since her call? Fifteen minutes? Half an hour? Could’ve been an hour for all I knew.

“What do you mean by that?” I asked.

Cameron sat next to me, the coarseness of his own jeans brushing my naked thigh. “Just that he’s a dumbass,” he said.

“He emails me every so often, you know,” I said. “Maybe he’ll….”

“He’s not going to reconsider.”

I swallowed and forced my throat to open up. “I know.”

Finally, I managed to get my jeans completely on. I stood to zip and button them.

“He told me he felt bad about it,” Cameron added.

My jaw unhinged. “What?”

Cameron stood along with me. “I know he broke your heart. I hate him for that. But I think a little bit of his broke, too. If it makes you feel any better.”

“It doesn’t matter,” I snapped, turning away and grabbing my cell phone, socks, sneakers, and zip-up hoodie. “And that’s not true. I’ve never broken anyone’s heart.”

“That’s not true, either.” He paused a moment. “Maybe you have and you don’t even know it.”

Excerpt: Scenes from The Padmin Stone

“Fari is the reason we got all this training equipment here!” Shaw yelled. “You all saying we contributed nothing? Go back to the ocean and paddle boats around and swim naked with blassina all day or whatever you do in Tigan. See what I care! Pooski take you all!”

My head came up. “The sea serpent? I thought he was a joke.”

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Pooski concept sketch. Credit: Kristen Wilde

Shaw turned her glare on me first before yelling at Meska again. “He’s not a joke, and he’s going to unleash his wrath on your family, Meska, if you don’t start playing this game right!”

“All right, let’s all calm down,” Melli, acting as referee and disturbingly dressed in his training uniform, which no one wanted to see on an old man, said.

Shaw sat down with a thump and a growl.

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Pooski concept sketch. Credit: Tori McKenna

Excerpt: Scenes from The Padmin Stone

Excerpts Moodboard 1She spoke quietly, words I couldn’t make out or understand, to a man glimmering fuzzily behind a shimmery veil. The darkness hung thick around the veil…actually thick, like the man had emerged from sludge. Coldness begin to creep into my body, a sense of not right, and not just because this absolutely could not be happening, but because whatever I was seeing, it wasn’t good. It didn’t come from someplace good. It came from a place of wrong, a place of darkness, a place of….

Evil. Pure evil.

My head began to feel as thick as the sludge and started to prickle. I backed away, unable to take my eyes off the freakish scene, unable to move any faster.