Hey, S. M. Boyce here again. This is a continuation of the first 6 chapters of the Fairhaven Chronicles, a magical series inspired by west coast wilderness. If you haven’t read them already, be sure to check out the preceeding chapters first to understand what’s going on here!
Chapter 1: http://oriceran.com/glow-snippet-1/
Chapter 2: http://oriceran.com/glow-snippet-2/
Chapter 3: http://oriceran.com/glow-snippet-3/
Chapter 4: http://oriceran.com/glow-snippet-4/
Chapter 5: http://oriceran.com/glow-snippet-5/
Glow: The Revelations of Oriceran, The Fairhaven Chronicles, Book 1
By S. M. Boyce & Martha Carr
About four hours after the incident outside the bank, Audrey reclined the passenger seat of her car and set her sock-clad feet on the dash. The warm summer day filtered through the sedan’s open windows as they cruised on the southbound I-5 freeway. She was grateful Victoria had been willing to listen to reason. Now, a few hours and a supplies trip later, they had already put fifty miles between them and the psycho killer stalking Victoria.
Victoria drove, one elbow on the driver-side door as she rested her head against her fist. She stared through the windshield, head bobbing a little bit to the slow and catchy song on the radio. This moment, right here, was the antidote to everything they had experienced thus far. Peace. Quiet. A luxurious moment of calm.
It was great to see her friend happy, if only for a brief window of time.
Audrey glanced through the back window at the empty road behind them as they sped toward Olympia, Washington. Their hometown had long ago disappeared over the horizon. And after the day Audrey had had, good fucking riddance.
Her stomach rumbled. “Hey, you want to stop for Mexican in a bit?”
“And have to deal with you farting for an hour after? No thanks.”
“Mean. So mean.”
Audrey tapped a drum solo against her door, humming along with the vaguely familiar song on the radio. She recognized the chorus, but that was about it.
Unfortunately, only the letter from Mr. and Mrs. Brie and the bag of crystals had survived Luak’s attack. It meant they didn’t have the directions to Fairhaven anymore, and that spelled trouble. Thankfully, Victoria had scribbled what little she could remember from her scan of the spiral notebook on the back of the letter. It wasn’t much, but it would work.
Funny, Audrey was usually the jackass, not the optimistic one.
Still humming, Audrey tilted her head ever so slightly to look at a passing sign and caught the vague gray silhouette of someone in her backseat in her peripheral vision. She screamed, turning in her seat to find a man with skin as white as the lines in the road beneath them. He had pointed ears not unlike Luak’s, and long blond hair fell like silk threads over his shoulders. He slumped in her backseat, legs spread as he examined his nails.
Audrey, on impulse, grabbed one of the full water bottles under her feet and threw it at him. He didn’t flinch, didn’t even move. It sailed straight through him, rebounding off the backseat cushion.
Victoria slammed on the brakes. The car skidded, wheels screeching, drifting a bit as she slowed to a stop on the empty highway. She spun, unbuckling her seatbelt as she put some distance between her and the stranger who had appeared so suddenly in the car with them.
“Who the hell are you?” Victoria cocked her arm as if ready to throw a punch.
Audrey gestured at the strange man in her backseat. “What, you think you can punch him? Did you not see the water bottle sail right through him?”
“Yeah, I missed that. I was busy not driving off the road.”
“Can the sarcasm, V. This magic shit is freaking me out!”
“It’s not like I—”
“Carry on. Don’t mind me,” he interrupted.
Audrey hesitated, and Victoria lowered her arm as they both studied him. He took a deep breath and let out a long, slow sigh, never taking his eyes off the windshield.
“Who are you?” Victoria repeated.
“I’m really quite harmless. My name is Shiloh, and I’m connected to that,” without looking away from his nails, he pointed toward the blade embedded in her arm.
Victoria frowned, rubbing the dagger with her thumb unconsciously as he spoke. “What do you mean?”
“I go where you go. I see what you see. I’m connected to you, and you to me.”
Audrey frowned. “What are you, a freaking ghost poet?”
Victoria shushed her and returned her attention to Shiloh. “You’re connected to this thing? What is it?”
“Does it matter? You’ll probably die soon, just like all the others.”
“Hey!” Audrey shouted.
Shiloh shrugged and looked out the backseat window. “Just my luck, too. Not a big fan of people, and yet I meet so many.”
Audrey looked at Victoria, shrugging her shoulders a bit as they did the thing where they could talk without speaking. What the hell is up with this guy?
Victoria scoffed and rolled her eyes. Hell if I know.
Audrey nodded subtly toward him. Think he’s dangerous?
Victoria hesitated, eyeing the bored man. She pursed her lips, eyebrows raised. I have no fucking clue.
Their moment of panic gone, he did in fact seem fairly harmless. Altogether useless, but harmless. Audrey sank back into her seat, tilting a bit toward the front windshield but never letting Shiloh out of her sight. He continued to sulk, chin almost to his chest as he sat in silence.
Victoria slumped in her seat and tugged her seatbelt back on, shifting the car into drive and slowly accelerating again. They drove in silence with only the music to keep them company, its steady rhythm pumping through the speakers. Every now and then Audrey would look behind her, and she caught Victoria doing the same.
“I don’t like this song,” Shiloh said, lying down and stretching out across the backseat as though he owned the car. He set his feet by one of the windows, ankles crossed.
For a second, no one did anything. Then, slowly, Victoria changed the station. A heavy metal song came on, the vocalist screaming as the drummer banged out a solo. Shiloh began to gently bob his head, always out of tempo.
Victoria and Audrey glanced at each other, and Audrey couldn’t help herself. She laughed.
One magical artifact fused with her best friend? Check. One psycho serial killer on their tail? Check. One weird-as-hell ghost-elf haunting their car?
Why the fuck not?
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