ExcerptKyla sat back against the rock wall, trying to work out the stiffness that had settled in overnight, and took a good look at her visitor. The pearled light of morning revealed a look of innocence common only among sleeping children. His hair, beneath the blood and grime, appeared to be a rich strawberry blond. She guessed they were about the same age, but the face she saw beneath the bruises and swelling looked no older than a child’s. Lost in her thoughts, Kyla almost missed the fact that the man was waking up.The one eye that wasn’t swollen fluttered opened and then squeezed shut again. His face contorted with pain. He had yet to notice her, and Kyla decided to let him make that discovery in his own time.He rolled to his uninjured side and slowly sat up. Blinking several times, he put a hand to his head and grimaced. He looked dazed, confused and utterly miserable. His hand strayed to his hip, obviously looking for the knife she had taken from him. When he couldn’t find it, he panicked, looking all around him until he saw the dying embers of her hard-earned fire.“Who made the fire?”“That would be me,” she said in a small voice.His gaze leveled on her with a directness that made Kyla uneasy. Suspicion and the slightest hint of fear replaced the innocence that had accompanied him in sleep. He made a sudden move to get to his feet, and Kyla watched in concern as his eyes lost all focus and he collapsed to his knees. She was at his side in an instant.“Who are you?” he asked without looking at her. His voice sounded weak.“Funny, I was about to ask you the same thing.”He swayed and would have fallen on his face if not for her support. An inquisition didn’t seem like such a good idea.
“I’m Kyla. How ’bout you sit down before you fall down?” She eased him against the rock wall.He looked lost, and a little scared as he stared at her, then looked down at himself and the bloody dressing on his arm.
“Are you all right?” Kyla asked. The one eye that looked back at her was gray and shone brightly with the fever that still possessed him.“Where am I?” he asked, ignoring her question.“The middle of nowhere.” Kyla forced a smile. Now that he was awake, she wasn’t sure what to do with him. “I found you here yesterday afternoon. I thought you were dead.”“Not yet.” He stared past her to the green all around him, an unreadable expression on his face.Before Kyla could ask him what he was looking at, Tristan came crashing through the bushes, growling for all he was worth and planting himself between Kyla and the young man. He went for the knife no longer at his hip and winced with the pain the slight movement caused him. Kyla grabbed the big dog and brought him under control.“This is Tristan,” she explained, a little embarrassed by the dog’s possessiveness. “He won’t hurt you. Actually, he’s the one who found you. I would’ve never known you were there if it wasn’t for Tris.”The dog sat between the two, growling softly in his throat. The man raised his eyebrows and looked at the white teeth and mass of brown fur in front of him.“I’m glad he wasn’t hungry,” he said with no hint of a smile.“Who are you?” Kyla finally asked. “And what the hell happened to you?© Ann Simko
Keeper of The Dream
Author: Ann Simko
Publisher: Lyrical Press
The plan is simple: Save the world, erase your own existence.
Thrown thirty-five years into the past, Derry and Taylor Brandon have the chance to alter the events that ended humanity. Easy, right? All they have to do is track down a father that hasn’t conceived them yet and convince him of who they are and that he has a hand in destroying the world. Then they'll be able to fight the man who has tormented them in their own time--and now in the past--and confront and conquer their personal demons along the way.
Piece of cake