Since it seems most people bookmark this site and only visit on Tuesdays (comic day), I’m going to assume no one will see this post until I link to it in next week’s comic post. That’s okay, the few of you who follow me via Twitter, Facebook, and the RSS will see it now. You’re special.
Here is the first installment of a new short story I’ve been working on for the last few weeks. The story’s not done yet, but I thought I’d put portions of it up online, so I can motivate myself to finish it in a timely manner.
If you like it and want to see more, let me know! If you have thoughts about the story, leave a comment on my webzone. To find more of my writing on the site, click the “Extras” button at the top of this page, or search keyword: “writing.”
The Legend of Jonas Stone by Adam Casalino
Part 1: The Prologue
Jonas crouched under the bed. The thick blanket he normally used for warmth was wrapped around him, a vain layer of protection from the chaos without. The rumbling had long ago stopped, so had the screaming, but Jonas stayed hidden. He was alone, huddled together with only his fears. The nightmares that once plagued his sleep had somehow come alive, and there was no one to help.
He would have stayed under that bed forever, but the growing heat from the last of the fires pushed him to seek fresh air. His bedroom was a wreck. What little he could see as he stumbled through the smoky blackness told him all his possessions were gone. His toys, his books, the clothes and everything else his mother and father had given him, were lost. The fire and falling debris had destroyed it all.
The rest of the house was no better. Jonas, still cloaked in his blanket, rushed from room to room. The once familiar setting was unrecognizable. There was no one else in the house. His family must have gone outside. He searched for a means of escape. The front door was blocked with rubble, the windows gapping maws with jagged glass teeth. He climbed atop what was left of the kitchen counter and squeezed through the small eyelet that was above the sink. It was now the second time his small size saved his life.
Once outside, Jonas was greeted with the usual harsh cold to which he was accustomed. He was thankful he held onto his blanket. He feet were unshod, however, and they quickly grew numb as he traipsed through the snow. Billowing columns of smoke obscured the land surrounding the house. Jonas could see little. He called out for his family. The must be nearby.
He tried to find front of the house. Through the smoke he could see the low stone fence and the winding trail to the road. He could faintly make out the white mountains that overlooked their fields. He turned left, the direction of the speeder lot. Maybe they made it to the speeders, to go for help. Maybe they got away safely.
The last he saw of any of his family was his sister Emily, who carried him to his room as the sky went black and the strange men appeared. He tripped over something, something hidden by the smoke and snow. It looked like his sister’s silver-blue coat, the one with the fur collar. But what was inside was not his sister. It looked like a person, a person terribly burned. It didn’t speak or try to move. An unlucky gust of wind pushed more smoke away and he could see other burned people, still wearing clothes that looked like his family’s. Another was on the ground reaching for the one in Emily’s coat. The rest were sitting in a broken speeder.
Jonas sat down in the snow. Slowly it began to dawn on him that these people were his family. Someone had killed them and destroyed their home. Jonas, the youngest of the family, was the only one who survived. Cold and alone, he started to cry.
This week’s short story is the thrilling conclusion to “Beyond the White Stars.”
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Download the epub version of the full story (make sure you right-click).
“Beyond the White Stars, Part 3” by Adam Casalino
The deafening silence was first broken by the sound of pinging metal. Small particles were pelting the cruiser. Henry was still in utter darkness. After a few minutes he let get go of his gun and tried the ship’s computer. It came to life. He had no control over the engines, but he was able to activate the navigation maps. The captain stared at the maps in confusion. He was outside known space.
Henry shook his head and closed the console. A light outside the ship appeared. It was a small circle of white that grew slowly, illuminating the entire chamber. He was in a great warehouse-sized room. The walls were of a smooth, dark metal. Shelving lined them and were filled with unfamiliar-looking machinery. Some of this moved off the shelves unassisted, and circled the cruiser. Henry assumed they were scanning him for some purpose.
A current of air that had been encircling the ship ceased. For the first time he realized he was floating in the center of the chamber. Slowly the cruiser began to move. It descended and came to rest on a small platform. The hatch opened and Henry tightened his oxygen mask.
Continue reading ““Beyond the White Stars, part 3” – Short Thursdays”