As promised, here is a continued preview of my novel, Tiger Kingdom & The Book of Destiny. Full novel available on December 16. I hope you enjoy Chapter 1: Tiger’s Escape.
Chapter 1. Tiger’s Escape
I could hear the paws of the tigers
pounding the pavement, the heaving sound
of their breath against
the chilly Autumn air.
I could see their golden eyes,
striped coats glinting
in the night shadows
as they ran.
I climbed into bed, freeing the sheet
from underneath Jack’s iron grasp.
I tried to press my eyes closed tight
yet lay there for hours,
eyes opening to the streets below,
still seeing tiger stripes blazing
in the light of the street lamp,
still hearing the sounds of leaves rustling
as they rushed past in the night,
the wind moving steadily
through the trees.
The wailing of the sirens woke me. “Jack, Jack!” I cried. “Wake up!” Beside me, my brother groaned and stirred from his sleep.
“Hmph.” He grunted and turned over, putting his pillow over his head. “I’m sleepin’, Suz. What is it?”
“Don’t you hear the sirens?” I pulled the pillow away from him and whispered excitedly in his ear. “I saw them. In the street!” I pointed below.
Jack sat up abruptly, flipping on the lamp, his eyes wide, as if his senses were suddenly aware of the sirens blaring around them. “Saw who?” he questioned me, getting up from his bed and looking out the porch screen to the street beyond. “Who’s in the street?”
“The tigers! I saw them running past the house just minutes ago. I thought I was dreaming…but then…”
“Tigers? You mean those big, ferocious beasts that live in the jungle?” Jack snorted. “You were dreaming, sis. It’s probably just a policeman chasing a speeder. Go back to bed.” And with that, he fell back into bed and resumed his previous position. “Hey, where’s my pillow?”
“I’m not giving it back until you go talk to Mama and Daddy with me. They’ll want to know about the tigers.” I stubbornly held his pillow to my chest.
“Wake them up over a dream you had?” He rolled his eyes at me. “It was just a dream! And you’re just scared of sirens! Now give it back, and go back to sleep.” He reached out his long arms and grabbed for the pillow, catching its corner and swiftly releasing it from my hands. “Goodnight.” He winked at me in his victory, turned over on his side and flipped off the lamp.
I stood in the dark, frowning at my brother’s obvious lack of faith in his twin sister, not to mention in his sense of adventure. The tigers had been real, I was sure of it. Where were they now?
Copyright Stacie Eirich November 3, 2016
Reader Qs: Do you think Suzie’s vision of the tigers was a dream, or was it real? What do you imagine will happen next? I’d love to hear your answers in the comments! 🙂
Thank you for reading! I hope you’ve enjoyed Chapter 1. Throughout November I’ll be celebrating National Novel Writing Month by completing my manuscript & getting it ready for publication! It’s an arduous process but a very fulfilling one as well. I wish all writers out there good luck with their NaNoWriMo projects — may your days be filled with fruitful words.
My next post will reveal my gorgeous novel cover AND my fabulous illustrator! So excited to share this with you — and grateful to be inspired by the artistry of others.
Happy November – National Novel Writing Month! -Stacie