For those of you who follow me on Twitter, you may have seen this gem come across your feed some weeks back:

So fun when that happens. And maybe a little concerning, but mostly fun! Hell, I haven’t had more than 10 full nights of sleep in nearly 2 years–it should be no surprise that I’ve written things I don’t remember. I’m pretty sure I’ve eaten meals I don’t remember too.

Anyway, want that mystery scene?  Well, part of it at least?  No telling if I’ll ever do anything more with it, so I thought it might be fun to share. Even if I ever get around to telling Carrie’s story, this scene may not make it into the final version.  So here you go–exclusive content! 

Carrie pulled her car up beside her brother’s, put it in park, then pulled the key from the ignition.  Gravel crunched underfoot as she got out and shut the door behind her, the resounding slam a dead thud without much nearby for the sound to bounce off of.  The soles of her canvas flats were thin; she felt every rock as she crossed the driveway toward the front door, leaving her luggage in the car.  No need to haul it all in now, in any case.  It had been a while since she’d come for a visit, but with her parents traveling, Arizona seemed as good a place as any to spend her spring break.  She hadn’t seen her newest nephew more than a few times.  Well, not that Joaquin was actually her nephew, Drake being her cousin, not her brother.  But she loved him like a brother, so he and Leah’s son was more nephew than second cousin to her.  One of those rare relationships that surpassed blood relation.  In any case, she was glad to get to be visiting now.  And glad to see Drake’s car parked along the far side of the house as she jogged up the walk. 

Collin and Ferris were expecting her, so she opened the door after a perfunctory knock.  “Hey—“

“We aren’t reporting them.”  It was Ferris’ voice, unusually terse.  “I’m sorry, not doing it.”

“What?  Are you kidding?”

“Nope, definitely not kidding.”

“Ferris—“  That was Collin, his voice all sooth and smoothing, but Leah cut him off.   

“Ferris, we promised we would tell Mythological Affairs of any and all new shifters.  I have to report to them every year with the numbers.”

Ferris sighed, exasperated.  “I don’t expect you to get it—“

“Why because Joaquin is only a baby?  Because I only have one kid that I’ll have to report one day?”

“Because you weren’t there!”


When Ferris went on, her voice was lower, but it hadn’t lost its bite. “You weren’t there, Leah.  And neither was Drake.  I don’t hold that against you—lord knows you did tremendous things for us from the outside, and lord knows you lost as much as anybody did over the course of that year—but you weren’t there, with us.  You have no idea what it was like.  I will not put my children’s name on a list that could be held against them.  I love you like a sister—I’d do anything for you—but if you ask me to choose between you and my children, it will be my kids.  Every time.  I will do anything to keep them from having to live what we lived.  Do you understand?  Anything, Leah.”  She drew a breath.  “Hi, Carrie.”


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