Short Story for R&M

The girls at R&M's Fab Book Reviews asked me to do a guest post! I wasn't sure how to go about it, so I wrote a fun little short story featuring myself and several of my characters! It fits in between The Rapture of Avery Maye and Blood of Eirny! I hope you all enjoy it! I had tons of fun writing it!

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Ema carefully climbed down the ladder into the darkness below. Crystals embedded into the rock wall behind the ladder glowed brightly enough to illuminate her path, but not enough to blind her. Upon reaching the bottom, she carefully placed her feet on the stone floor. Behind her, she heard a man clear his throat, causing her to yelp in surprise.

She turned around to find a tall man with sun-tanned skin, bluish black hair, and glittering ice blue eyes carrying something small in front of his stomach that she couldn’t see in the dim light. She held her hand over her chest in a sad attempt at calming her heart rate. “Good grief, Alec! What are you doing here?”

A grin spread across his face. “Ruthi and MaryAnn told me that you were posting on their blog today. They expressed a desire for my presence. How could I possibly turn them down?”

“A desire for your presence or a desire for you in general?”

He chuckled to himself. “Does it matter?” He held out the object he had been carrying, a hot cup of her favorite tea. “I brought this for you.”

Ema shook her head, trying to hide her smile. She carefully took the cup from his hands. “Oh, geez. Well, I guess you can stay.”

“Good! Because I planned on it anyways!”

Ema sighed as she walked past him. “I figured as much.” She crossed to a large, round table that sat in the center of the room. In the center of the table rested a bowl full of glowing crystals, like the ones that lined the walls. “I’m glad you finally got around to building this table. It’s definitely going to come in handy.”

“I’ll let our guests in,” Alec said, opening one of four doors on the far side of the room.

“What guests? I thought I would just record this and broadcast it on YouTube or something ...”

“You could do that … But Ruthi and MaryAnn clued Darian in on this little blog takeover, too, and Darian decided to bring them here. Showoff.”

Ema sat her cup of tea on the table and dropped into the nearest chair. Once seated, she lifted the cup to her lips and took a small sip, while admiring the carvings along the side of the table top. Wings and stars. Hmm, she thought. Fitting.

Within moments, a man with shoulder-length brown hair and deep green eyes appeared through a portal inside the small room on the other side of the door that Alec held open. Several people appeared directly behind him. Ema recognized a few faces, but many of them were new. They were all visitors of the R&M’s Fab Book Reviews blog. They all piled into the large room.

“Hi, Darian. I’m glad you could make it,” Ema greeted sweetly.

Darian smiled at her, looking a bit more ragged than usual. Ema assumed it had to do with Avery’s prolonged absence, so she didn’t comment. Instead, she patted the table in front of the chair next to her.

“Come in. Take a seat.” Alec gestured to the table. “Except that one!” he called, as a woman attempted to sit in the chair on Ema’s other side. “That one is mine.”

Ema rolled her eyes, as the woman quickly stood up and went to a different chair on the other side of the table.

Alec quickly sat in the chair the woman had vacated and leaned up against Ema, smiling devilishly.

Ema tensed up. “Alec, didn’t we have this talk about personal space?”

“We might have. I seem to forget,” he teased, refusing to move back.

“Yeah, I’ll bet you do.”

After the last of the R&M guests entered the room, a sandy blond-haired man peeked in from the door behind them.

“Come on in Dillon.” Ema sighed, as she waved him in. “Is anyone else in there?”

“Krystle and Darcie are in here,” Dillon replied.

“Oh, Lord help us. Bring them too, but they better play nice.”

An unnaturally pale woman with black hair and black eyes strode into the room. Close behind her, a woman with light brown hair and dark eyes glared holes through the back of the black-haired woman’s head.

Ema gestured to the black-haired woman. “This is Darcie.” She gestured to the brown-haired woman. “And this is Krystle. Pull up chairs and get yourselves settled. We don’t have much time.”

Darian, Dillon, Krystle, and Darcie quickly grabbed chairs near Avery and Alec.

After inhaling a deep, cleansing breath, Ema smiled. “Hey, everyone!” she began. “Welcome to Eirny! In case you didn’t notice, we are currently sitting underneath the castle. My name is Ema Volf, and I was asked by the lovely ladies at R&M if I wanted to do a guest blog! I more or less said, ‘Darn right I do!’ So here I am! You might have heard of me, before this moment, or you might not have! Either way, you’ve heard of me now, yes? Ha! Anyways, let me tell you more about myself! I am the author of the book The Rapture of Avery Maye! It is the first book in the series called Chronicles of Eirny! It’s a science-fantasy novel written for the YA crowd, but really could be read by anyone! Heck, I’m 27 and LOVE kid, teen, and YA books!”

“Of course!” Alec interrupted. “They’re amazing!”

Ema gave him an awkward look. “Since when do you read? Avery is always the one reading to you!”

“Hey! I read that one book, that one time!”

“Right … So, R&M readers, I would like to introduce you to several characters in my book. They apparently enjoy stalking me until I go mad.”

“But you’re not there quite yet, so I’d say we’re failing,” Alec teased.

“I’m pretty close, I assure you,” she grumbled. “Anyways, I wasn’t expecting any of my characters to be here. They like to surprise me like that. So I suppose I can let them answer questions and chat for a bit. I think I’ll start with Dillon.”

Dillon gave a shy smile and shifted uncomfortably in his chair. He disliked crowds, but he stayed out of support for Ema.

“I have to say, Dillon, I was really impressed by you this book. You stepped up to the plate and helped Xuna out in a major way. What made you decide to take on such a major role in that situation? Many guys walk away from their own children. You picked up half of the responsibility for another man’s child like it was no big thing.”

“What else could I do?” Dillon asked. “Her father is no longer capable. Xuna is my friend, and I love her. I also love our daughter, even if she’s not technically mine.”

“So you’re still not together?”

“I’m waiting patiently, but I’m not sure now is the right time to discuss it with her, all things considered.”

Ema nodded. “Fair enough. Do you hold any resentment toward Felton, the baby’s father?”

“No. It wasn’t his fault.”

Ema briefly looked in Darcie’s direction just in time to see her look away from the table. “Darcie, how does that make you feel?”

“Fan-freaking-tastic,” Darcie growled. “It’s always nice to be reminded of your mistakes.”

“How are you holding up without your brother?”

Darcie’s eye twitched. “As well as can be expected. I don’t usually miss him, if that’s what you’re asking. I don’t have to clean up his messes anymore. Now I just have to deal with my own.”

Ema nodded. “That definitely seems easier.”


“Are you happier on Eirny than you were elsewhere?”

“Overall. I don’t always know how to react to people. But I don’t think they know how to react to me, either.”

“Perhaps if you weren’t so prickly …” Krystle suggested.

“Yeah, like you have any room to talk!” Darcie yelled.

Ema put a hand up in each of their directions. “Alright enough!” she interrupted. “I think Ruthi from R&M had a question. Go ahead Ruthi.”

Ruthi smiled deviously from across the table. “Krystle, I wanted to ask you. You have had to deal with the attraction between your best friend and the man you care about.”

Darian cleared his throat, before speaking up. “I don’t think it’s really an attraction anymore. She seems quite content now.”

“Oh hush, Darian. You can’t be in denial forever. Or maybe you can. Either way. Krystle,” Ruthi glared at Darian for interrupting, “how is that affecting your friendship?”

Krystle visibly tensed at the question. “It’s not. We are still friends no matter what.” She clenched her teeth. “And when she gets back from wherever she went without telling us, I can show her exactly how good of friends we are. By smacking her upside her darn head for leaving without telling us!” She slammed her hand down on the table top, causing most of the people in the room to jump.

Ema attempted to suppress a laugh. “I take it you’re a bit upset about Avery’s absence?” she asked. “I’m sure she had a good reason.”

“There’s no good reason why she couldn’t tell us! And I’ve had to listen to these two obsess over where she is!” Krystle pointed to Darian and Alec.

“You sure you aren’t worried about her, as well?”

“Of course I am!” she yelled. “She just vanished without a trace!” Krystle covered her face with her hands, attempting to calm down.

Ema peeked at Alec beside her to find his jaw clenched and his eyes downcast. “I see,” she said quietly. She then turned her attention to Darian, paying especially close attention to his pale complexion and worry lines. “You seem to be affected by this the most. Why?”

Darian sighed, sadly. “Avery and I have a connection that none of the other characters really understand. She keeps me tied to this world. Without her, everything changes. I mean that literally. I can no longer see colors. I can hear you, but you sound monotone and dull.”

“I thought that was over once she arrived.”

“It was. However, since she’s been gone, this curse has returned. My best guess is that she went somewhere generally associated with death. Perhaps that distance causes my body to believe that she is dead, when she really is not.”

“Right,” Alec interjected. “Can we talk about something lighter please?”

“I have another question!” Ruthi offered.

Ema nodded. “Go ahead, Ruthi!”

“How did you come up with the idea for this book?”

Ema smiled. “Light enough, Alec?” she asked.

Alec nodded in approval.

“Well, one night I had a dream that I woke up in a place that appeared to be my childhood home. Dreams that start with you waking up are always fun, anyways. But I walked through my house and noticed something odd. There were people in my living room, my kitchen, my parents’ room ... I didn’t know these people, at all. I told them all to leave, but they wouldn’t go. I was so mad that I ran out the door into my backyard. It looked the same as my old backyard. The pool was there. It was nighttime and warm. I’m guessing it was summer in that dream. Anyways everything looked the same, until I looked up. The sky looked very different. The moon was there, and it looked normal. But, to the right, there was also a giant planet that looked a lot like Jupiter. It was close enough that I could even see the bands without a telescope. To the left, a diamond-shaped chunk of earth that looked like a floating, tree-covered mountain was hanging over my neighbor’s yard.”

“That must have been pretty trippy,” Alec said.

“A little. I wasn’t scared. In the dream, I felt more sad than scared. Anyways, one of my friends came up behind me and told me that everyone in the house lived there. I asked where we were, and he told me that we were on another planet. I woke up and wrote that dream down in my dream journal. Oddly enough, I kept having more dreams about the same place, but different parts of it. Eventually I decided to just write it down. Naturally, I changed a few details, made up a history, and added a cooler cast.” Ema winked at her characters sitting around her.

MaryAnn cleared her throat. “Well, I know we could talk all day, but this post is getting awfully long …”

“Oh, MaryAnn! Always keeping us on track!” Ema laughed. “Alright! I think we can wrap it up! Thank you all for joining us! Make sure to check out my book, The Rapture of Avery Maye! It’s on sale now on Amazon, Smashwords, and CreateSpace! I’m including the links below! And while you’re here, there are refreshments in the garden! Pick your own! They taste way better than anything you have on Earth, trust me!”

As Darian led the R&M crowd back out through the portal, Alec rested his arm on Ema’s shoulder.

Ema watched him from the corner of her eye.

“So, Ema,” he said. “I think you should write me into a romance novel.”

Ema laughed and shook her head, before turning to the ladder on the wall and climbing out of the room. Her laughter echoed around the room, as Alec watched her from below.

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