This novel is limited to 100 free copies due to its part in Inkitt’s Novel Contest.
The doorbell rang once and woke her, and made her gasp. It was quiet, so utterly quiet. Behind the shadowy curtains large flakes of snow invaded the dark sky that reached across the plains and fell behind the Rocky Mountains—one with the night, one with the silence. She sat up and reached for her glasses on the small wooden tabletop at her side. Who is it that rings?
She stepped warily out of bed. The floor was cold under her bare feet. The kitchen door stood partially open, a warm glow seeping into the dim hallway from within. The domestic stepped from the light and walked towards her, attentive and alert.
“Miss?” it said.
“What time is it, Alon?” she asked.
The domestic looked pale in the obscurity. “It’s 3:42 AM. Should I answer the door, Miss?”
She looked towards the front door. Whoever stood behind it had not rung twice, and there was a deep silence inside the house. “Who is out there?”
“It’s a child, miss.”
“A child? What on Earth—” She stared once more at the door, vaguely distinguishable in the darkness against the furthermost wall, and then back at her domestic. “A child? At this hour?”
“Do you wish me to answer the door?”
“Turn on the lights,” she said, “I will get the door.” As she walked, she tucked her hands in her elbows and pressed her crossed arms against her nightgown. The chilly air, hanging motionless around her, made her shiver. She grabbed a silk shawl from the wooden coat rack below the staircase and wrapped it around her neck. The domestic followed her. She opened the door without a word.
Standing pale and quiet, his feet buried in the thin snow that rested on the doorstep, was a boy. He seemed no more than ten years old. He stared up at her patiently. His placid blue eyes seemed to glisten in the warm light that fell onto the elusive features of his face from behind the open door.
The boy said something in another language, and she did not understand. His voice was small and frail, yet composed.
The woman stared at the shadowy figure bundled in layers of snow-covered clothing, the whitish forehead and auburn curls tucked under a large fur hat. The child wore black aviator trousers and a well-tailored merino duffle coat.
She stood in the light of the entrance and her lips were parted slightly as though she were about to speak, but whatever words she wanted to say she could not find, and for a while she said nothing. The child’s eyes did not wonder from hers, even when briefly she turned her gaze towards the solidary night and the waves of snow that twirled in the silence.
He waited patiently. He held something in his hands—a small black cricket—cupped in both palms like a treasure. It did not move. It did not chirp. Maybe the cold had killed it, and maybe the boy had not realized.
“Domina, may I have a horse?” he said, with the same pale voice as light as an echo, an echo that the night had lifted with snowy arms and carried to her ears.
“Please, domina, will you give me a horse?”
ElNachoWOTC: The grammar is tight and easy too read while packing a great vocabulary and you use a lot of vivid imagery with your words. One of the biggest things I noticed right away is the gritty realism you managed to cram into this book while going into a lot of exotic fantasy material. Including issue...
kathryncoard: I really enjoyed this book. It was a fast paced book, that kept me interested . Yes, it was political commentary, which I found to be relevant to many things happening in the world. The snippets from the journal show the " boiled frog " analogy that is clearly relevant . Interesting that peop...
Tiffany Thomson: This story is not something I would normally pick up and read but I'm so glad I did, I wasn't able to put it down and my husband was yelling at me at 3am to put it down and go to bed (just waited for him to doze back off before picking it back up) I really hope Natalie brings out another book eit...
Chris Rolfe: BOY!!! I sure love what Aer-Ki Jyr did with this series. IMHO he captured the essence of what stargate is all about. Thru out the Stargate stories Aer-Ki wrote Stevens and John Shepard some of the main characters in his stories are pursued by a corrupt I.O.A.. All the while Stevens is changing in...
Dru83: This is perhaps my favorite part of the Olafson story just because it is here that were are introduced to his "gang". The characters are so diverse and complicated that each of them could just about spawn their own story. Eric's buddies are just so captivating and the plot just rolls along. Again...
CookieMonster911: The story overall was an adventure that is appealing to any age. The way the characters develop adds a more human characteristic to the novel. The writing style itself is amazing because you can learn every character's thoughts and emotions. The awkward love triangle and jerk moments adds to the ...
sujitha nair: What's so distinct about this story was that it could easily be real. Praveena can be your classmate, neighbor or that girl you saw at the coffee shop today. The important decisions she makes and the dilemmas she faces, remind us of our own twisted lives.
Charlie_8472: Recommended to me by a friend, I thought I'd give this a read. As a hobbyist blacksmith, the blurb certainly caught my attention. I found the sentence about them drinking, dancing and fighting a strange combination of activities, perhaps a reflection of the writer’s personality and humour. Howeve...
themyronus: Vanessa has made 'amazing' the norme. I didn't want to read this as I am waiting for the finished and polished book to come out. But then I decided to read one chapter for kicks...well hours later I finished what was posted. Fortunately, my memory is not to good and I hope I will read the book wi...
FreakyPoet: "you made me laugh, made me cry, both are hard to do. I spent most of the night reading your story, captivated. This is why you get full stars from me. Thanks for the great story!"
Sara Joy Bailey: "Full of depth and life. The plot was thrilling. The author's style flows naturally and the reader can easily slip into the pages of the story. Very well done."