Dawn Brazil
​​Young Adult Author

V.O.L.T - VILLAGE OF LOST THINGS

YA High Fantasy Standalone novel...

Here is a snippet of the first chapter...unpublished and unedited

  
The world is shrieks of light, chaos, and madness beyond what the ears hear and the eyes see. It’s wrapped in white, soft all over, and a cacophony of sounds. Yet silent at the same time. I place my head between my legs to smother the world’s intrusiveness.

Waiting patiently isn’t a virtue I possess, however. Neither is telling the truth, but I do attempt both on occasion. Biting my nails alleviates the stress threatening to suffocate me when I have to wait. Lying is my defense when pressure chokes the life from me.

Right now, I must employ a measure of both, as I never have before.

I stand, nearly nose-dive to the wood floor in my living room, but straighten before I collide with the floor. With my long legs, I pace from the black sofa to the enormous bay window overlooking the front of our house. I peer out for the tenth time in the span of a few minutes.

My patience wears thinner than the floors in our fifty-year-old house.

I’m hopeful Ryan’s beaten-up car will come spluttering to a stop in our circular driveway. My hope is dashed as oil stained concrete is the only thing visible from the window.                        
“Come on. Texas.” I run my hands through my mop of thick unruly hair and bite the nail on my index finger to the skin.

Ryan received letters from his two top schools today. He should have been here hours ago. I pretend to watch television to draw my mind away from the letters, school… being alone. The last time Mom called to check in on me, I wasn’t sure what was on the TV. It’s a western, I think, which is ridiculous. I’d never watch a western.

My lip trembles as I slip to the threat of loneliness, forever. I slam a fist into that idea right away.

I race to the kitchen to grab a drink for my parched throat. The screen hatch opens and slams closed as the bottle touches my full lips. Ryan knowing how much this bothers me isn’t good. He’ll tease me ceaselessly.

I scramble from the kitchen, run head first for the sofa, and dive on it right before he enters the family room. I’ll get caught having a panic attack. Not today.

“Hey,” I shout. My breaths burst into the air as if I ran a lap around the house.

The senseless part about me running around like a lunatic is he already knows how anxious I am for this information. Yet, he took his sweet time getting here.

“Hey Pea. Where you at?” He strolls deeper into the family room with a bunch of lavender lilies and two manila envelopes in hand.

 “Someone getting married?” I joke. He releases a soft chuckle and hands the flowers to me.       
                                              
“You know I’m not the sort of girl that gets a kick out of flowers. It’s a nice gift but…” I stare awkwardly at them. Am I supposed to put them in water or something?    

“Actually,” he says with a fully committed grin that makes my heart leap in my chest, like it wants to meld with his. “I know you don’t like them. I thought they were appropriate though. They’re a representation of our relationship. A symbol of us returning to one another – returning to happiness. The guy at the flower shop explained it all.”
                    
“Returning to happiness. Oh, I see. So, you anticipate bad news. Is that it?” The flowers are nice but a sorry replacement for him. I place the flowers on the table in front of us. “I’ve always associated lilies with death and funerals.” I shove my left index finger into my mouth. I’m a wreck with worry and he’s picking out flowers.
                           
“Wow. That’s nasty,” he says, pulling my finger from my mouth and shaking his head in disapproval.

“Can we do this now, please?” I groan.

“Stop whining. It’s not like you.” I frown up at him. His returning grin is glorious. “I have two envelopes - one from Yale, one from Harvard. Which should I open first?” He asks.

“Um.” I purse my lips. When is anyone ever ready for bad news? The envelopes he hold contain the report of our future – either together, or apart. So I’m justified in my freaking out. I think.

I’ve already been accepted into Harvard. “Let’s not procrastinate,” I say. “Open the Harvard envelope first.” I wipe the sweat away that accumulates on my palms. I take a deep breath. It doesn’t matter the school we attend in the fall. Our love can endure a four-year hiatus while we educate ourselves.

Yeah, there goes that lying… Is it worst when you lie to yourself?

“Harvard it is.” He places the Yale envelope on the mahogany coffee table and takes a seat beside me on the brown sectional. His hand collapses around mine. He squeezes tight.
“No matter what school we attend in the fall, I’ll always love you. Always be there for you. You won’t ever be alone.”       
              
I smile with the assurance his statement is true. While other seventeen-year olds might cringe at the thought of loving someone forever, we are unabashed in our love.

I’ve known him my entire existence. First as neighbors, he arrived six months before me. We became playmates (forcibly, initially, by our parents), later, classmates in school.  
          
Our families’ social engagements meant we were assured many opportunities outside school to interact. When we entered our final year in junior high, we could no longer deny our feelings. We’ve never regretted the decision. Faced with the threat of being apart for the first time in our lives, I give the threat the respect it deserves.  

I have a consuming fear of it.