Get excited for a special interview with Chameleon Moon author RoAnna Sylver this Thursday! I’m super excited to have her on the blog talking about her debut novel with dystopic fantasy and queer characters.
Here’s an excerpt from the novel itself. Enjoy:
“It’s finally happened, babies. Parole is burning. They say we started out in a blaze of glory, and now we’re all going down in flames.”
Sidewalks split apart into huge cracks, and giant craters devoured cars and buildings and people like hungry jaws. Black smoke and tongues of flame licked up from the crevices as the asphalt crumbled, and everywhere screams cut through the terrible noise of the collapsing city. And a sunny girl’s voice issued from every radio, every frequency, every speaker. She talked quickly, desperately, a rapid-fire barrage of comfort and direction, and every single person in the city shut up and listened.
“But it’s gonna be okay, I promise, because I’m going to talk you through this. The center of the city is gone, so you have to get to the edges of Parole lickety-quick; get away from the crater but do not try to break through the fences—”
Not everybody listened. Hordes of desperate, hopeful souls tried to escape—but they were locked in. They flung themselves against electric fences and barbed wire and stormed the wall of masked men with guns and riot shields. Gunshots joined the awful roar, and bodies fell into the incinerator below. There weren’t enough safe places left, and the fire found them.
“I repeat, do not try to break through the gates! They are all over the city exits, and they will kill you if you try to break out. This is what they’ve been waiting for! If you ever thought the law was on your side, let this open your eyes. We’re on our own now.”
There was no escape as the streets sank into the lake of fire. The gates stayed shut, and the quarantine held strong.
“If you can, get to the Emerald Bar, off Gold Brick Highway—if it’s even still standing! My friends are there, they’ll help you. Somehow we’re gonna make it through this together.”
The officers in the gas masks stood firm and unmoving beside the closed gates and fences, not letting a single soul pass through them. And above, blades spinning in a deafening roar, helicopters hovered. Their searchlights traveled over the devastation, white columns of light cutting through the carbon monoxide smoke.
“And whatever you do, sweeties, stay out of the light! They’re shooting anyone they see in the spotlight, so get down and stay down. Just try not to fall into the fire, okay?”
The Eyes in the Sky saw it all, and even as the skyscrapers and bridges collapsed and crushed the life out of the smoke-drowned Parole, they never blinked.
“I know it’s scary, but I’ll be right here with you, just listen to my voice. I’m your Radio Angel, and we’re gonna make it through this, I promise this will all be okay; do you hear me? Just get to the Emerald—”
An explosion shook the ground. The broadcast erupted into static snow, and her voice cut off. The radio fell silent, and instead of a comforting voice there were collapsing buildings, helicopter blades, gunshots, and screams.
Nobody knew what had started the catastrophe, why tonight of all nights they were falling into the lake of fire. Nobody knew that it began in a dingy underground pub on a smoke-filled night like any other. And nobody knew that it all started with a song.