Girl with all the Pain
(Aliens, Tequila & Us #4)
By Michael Herman
Publication Date: February 23rd 2018
Genres: Science Fiction, Thriller, Young Adult
Sometimes an ugly duckling becomes more than just a swan.
In the streets of Santiago, Chile, a young homeless girl named Isabel screams a scream of rage that is the last sound the gang tormenting her ever hears.
Deep within the city, a family feels her cry and sets out to find her for their sake as well as hers.
Never straying far from Isabel, Skunk Mountain, a homeless pile of walking filth, visible to only the neighborhood kids, maintains a guardian presence that is key to her survival in a world where, beneath the very ground they walk, a dark ancient intelligent entity prepares to unleash forces that will devastate Chile.
Sometimes that swan has claws and teeth.
Girl with all the Pain is the first of the Global Invasion Chronicles.
The Aliens, Tequila & Us series is prologue to Girl with all the Pain
If you are interested in mass extinction events, Chinchorro mummies, alien creatures, tequila, Pisco Sours, Very Large Telescopes, foreign tongues, evolution theories, witchcraft beliefs, Santiago Chile, underground caves, vineyards, million dollar concept bikes, interstellar space travel, abandoned mines, the Atacama Desert, Russian ATVs, Himmler’s Nazis Lebensborn, predictions of future times, earthquakes, orchids, avatars, and people with mutant powers, then this is the book for you.
Kind reviews go far and help keep up the spirit while I work to bring the second Global Invasion Chronicle to life.
Tonight she crouches down on all fours at the base of the majestic Madonna, and stares down into the surrounding city, where she can see the church where Sister Mary and she met earlier today. Its high spire with the cross at the top stands out amid the lower surrounding buildings.
Her big friend is at her side, tall and dark and full of scent. He too looks out over the city, just as the Madonna does; focused on the distant horizon.
Isabel presses her feline head against his leg and makes a low throaty purring sound that ends with a small chirp. He lowers his eyes to her black-furred body, sleek and rippled with wildcat muscle, and fixes his gaze on her glowing yellow cat eyes. She lets out a snarl that ends in a small roar as an acknowledgment to his attention. Her black furred tail twitches back and forth.
Dropping to his knee, he runs his hand over her soft animal fur. The familiarity of his caress soothes and relaxes her, prompting her eyes to close in comfort. But she senses that this state of well-being is to be short-lived. Guilt and accusing eyes are close at hand.
Their odor assaults her before their arrival. And when she feels their angry and sullen presence, she intuits them gathering below her, some sitting and some standing in the garden, all watching her.
When she opens her eyes, their forms, like ivory statues, are stark under the bright moonlight, every sorrowful one of them, all accusing. The boy–frowning and bitter–who choked her is flanked by his two younger friends, who appear confused and unhappy. The boys who taunted her on the roof are spread out like pieces on a chess board. They are somber and still. The one who struck her and held her, glares up at her with angry eyes. They are here because of her and she knows it. Yet, looking out at them, she feels no sympathy for them, nor does she give in to guilt. In fact, she feels nothing for them, neither anger nor concern nor fear.
Their lot is to only look on in silence because they exist in the Puimapu. Only when they are united with themselves will they be allowed to speak as a Nakmapu. This she knows. It is a belief carried over from her ancient past, and she knows it for what it is and loves it for what it gives her. It is what makes her Mapuche.
“Ignore them,” the big man next to her says. “They are of little consequence now.”
When he stands and resumes his watch out over the city, her ears twitch and turn until she fixates on what is commanding his undivided attention. She feels it under her feet; a low rumble, deep below the ground, originating somewhere to the north, on the other side of the mountain, in the opposite direction to which he is looking. And then she understands. His attention to it is not with his eyes or ears, but his mind. He is focused on something many miles from where they stand; something far away, something so massive that its presence is heard only subliminally and completely out of normal hearing range.
She pads around to the other side of the Madonna and looks out to the north. The emanation is a grinding and scraping, as if the earthen plate the countryside stands on were being dragged and pushed, rubbing against an underlying stratum, tearing and crushing. The vibrations are so deep, so far below the earth that they are almost lost to the world she and her friend inhabit. Only the two of them detect the effects of the movement.
Her large friend is now at her side, looking off in the same direction as she. He seats himself beside her, wraps his arm around her animal ribs and pats her like a pet.
“It is in preparation, but time for It is running out. Soon, very soon we will have our moment.”
Her tail waves back and forth and she pants in the evening air. She turns and looks up into his face. He looks down into her eyes and says, “The change is upon you. Already you flex your will. When you learn to control it, you will be at your strongest. I do not look forward to that time because I may lose you forever.”
She lets out a throaty purr that ends with a high-pitched chirp. She is impatient for the completion of the change. She is impatient to regain herself. She is impatient to be what she once was.
He strokes her fur and smiles down at her.
“Soon,” he repeats as if reading her thoughts. “Soon.”
When he isn't doing construction or creating 3D simulations for the AEC industry, Michael Herman writes from his small urban hillside farm in California where he types away to the sounds of chickens, coyotes, the occasional fox and his household pets.
From one bookaholic to another, I hope I’ve helped you find your next fix.
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