Friday, December 4, 2015

Slaying Shadows (Translucent #4), Teaser 2

In just two weeks, Slaying Shadows (Translucent #4) is hitting shelves! Are you ready to find out what happens to Leona now that she's *spoiler alert for those of you who haven't read book three* met her double?

I can't wait to share the fourth book in the Translucent series with you, and the wait may in fact be killing me. ;) For now, I'll leave you with teaser #2!

Slaying Shadows Teaser #2
As I stared, mesmerized, at the naked body taking shape in front of me—at my body—my flesh began to crawl.

Dark matter had replicated me perfectly—the heart-shaped birthmark on the side of my rib cage, the faint dusting of freckles on my shoulders, the tiny vertical pinch of my belly button. Every mole, every scar, every imperfection.

That it had copied me in such detail could only mean it had intimate knowledge of my body, of my anatomy. I squirmed, suddenly skeeved out in my own skin. Dark matter had explored me through and through.

She deposited the dark matter in our contact lens case before fetching her shorts and tank top and pulling them on.

“Can you please wear something else?” I said. “So we’re not exactly the same?”

“No. This is what I want to wear.”

“Fine. I’ll change.” I rummaged around in my dresser and yanked out a pair of black skinny jeans and a silvery boatneck sweater, then dug out a pair of high heeled ankle boots from my closet—just the kind of peacock-like outfit I hated.

“We’re going to need to figure out the logistics of this,” she said, watching me.

“What logistics?” I searched the room for a place to change in privacy.

“You and me. Being the same person and all. You trying to freak out my parents.”

I came up short. “Could you, uh . . . look away?”

“Just change. Who cares?”

I care,” I said. “I don’t want you looking at me . . . because, ew . . . that’s just weird.”

“You’re pathetic.” She averted her eyes.

I scrambled out of my clothes and tugged on my new ones.

“Who’s going to go to school tomorrow?” she said. “Do you want me to go to school, or do you want to go to school? Or should we switch off? Or should we both go, and you take even periods, and I’ll take odd periods?”

“I don’t know. Fuck school.”

“Alright, I’ll go to school.” She peeked in my direction.

“No, I’ll go to school.” I laced up my boots. “You’re not going anywhere near a school.”

“Fine, then I get to live here.”

“In my house?” I glared at her. “Nuh-uh.”

“Unless you’d rather I go to school?”

“Alright, Jeez. Keep my freaking bedroom. It sucks anyway. I’ll stay at Megan’s . . . and I get the cell phone.”

“Then I get the car.”

“How is that fair? You can’t have my house and my car?”

“Fine, keep your stupid car . . . but I get Emory.”

“You can’t claim a person,” I sneered.

“He’s my boyfriend.”

“You mean, was?”

“Uh, thanks to you, asshole.”

“You dated him for four days.”

“And I got farther than you got in four months.”

My lip curled. “You’re sick.”

“I want Emory,” she spat.

“Good luck with that. Then I get Megan.”

“No way, you can’t have my best friend,” she said.

“Okay.” I shrugged. “Then you can’t have Emory.”

“Fine.” She put her hands on her hips. “Take her.

“I will.”

We both glared at each other for a moment, and then abruptly broke the staring contest to survey the room for anything else we had to divvy up.

“Dark matter?” she said tentatively.

I peered sharply at her. “What about it?”

“I mean, we should get rid of it, right? Neither one of us should have it.”

“Yeah,” I croaked, holding out my hand. “Give it to me. I’ll get rid of it.”

Reluctantly, she placed the contact lens case in my palm. My fingers closed around it, and I stuffed it in the tiny pockets of my jeans. A muscle twitched in her jaw before she finally tore her eyes off my hand.

A twinge of unease crept over me.

Why were we cooperating like this at all? My own motivations made sense. I knew why I couldn’t kill her—I’d given my word to Major Connor, and the military needed to study her—but why was she cooperating with me? Presumably if she was a copy of me—and especially if she had a monster inside her—she would want to kill me at the first opportunity.

Was she acting like this to disarm me?

I’d have to watch my back.

Something buzzed near my feet—the cell phone still in the pockets of my shorts, a text message.

She glanced over, curious.

I dug it out, giving her a back-off look. “Cell phone’s mine, remember?”

“Yeah, but who is it? It depends on who it is, right?”

The text was from Emory. My insides froze. Why was he texting? Was he even texting me, or was he texting her?

“Is it Emory?” she said.

“No, it’s not Emory.”

“Then who is it, huh?”

“Uh . . . it’s Megan.”

“Oh my God, you totally hesitated. Give it to me!” She lunged for the phone in my hand.

I scrambled away from her, holding the phone out of reach. “Yeah, so what? So what if he texts me? It’s still my phone.”

“You’re already cheating. It’s literally been two seconds, and you’re already cheating.”

“It’s a stupid system anyway. You can’t claim a freaking person—” I broke away from her long enough to read the text. When I did, my heart did something funny.

Emory: I left my letterman jacket at your house. Bring it to school tomorrow and leave it in Mr. Delaney’s room. I don’t want to have to see you.

She read it over my shoulder, and her gaze slid to the foot of her bed, where the green and white jacket was stuffed between the mattress and the wall. Her lip quivered, and a fresh tear bobbed on her lower eyelid.

“I’ve got school, so I’ll take it to him.” I grabbed the jacket and hurried out before she could say anything else. The dreamy scent of his cologne rose off the white leather sleeves, arousing a painful rush of nostalgia and longing. On the verge of tears myself, I squeezed the jacket to my chest, trying to hold on to something I couldn’t put my finger on, something I’d never had, a whisper of another life.

***

Slaying Shadows releases on December 17. If you'd like to get an email in the book comes out, please join my mailing list here. And make sure to add it on Goodreads, which you can do here!

Happy reading!
Dan

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