UtopYA Countdown Day 5

ISBN: 13:  978-1-93404-59-7
Publisher: Sapphire Star Publishing
Category: Young Adult
Genre: Dystopian/Paranormal Romance
Available: June 6, 2013
Citizens who report to work on time, obey the Overlord’s laws, and stay off the Synbot’s radar, live long lives. Long, dull, monotonous lives.

It’s not a bad plan for someone with a hidden, emotion-based ability to trigger earthquakes. In a world pitted against her, sixteen-year-old Rena Moon strives for a life beyond working herself to death at the factory. Seeing an alternative, she risks selling relics from the forbidden lands at Market. It becomes the worst decision she ever made. Someone kidnaps her best friend in exchange for the one thing that would end her oppression. 

Driven by loyalty, Rena and seventeen-year-old Nevan Jelani, soulful composer, green thumb extraordinaire, and the secret love of her life, plot to rescue her friend and reclaim her salvage. Still, the thought lingers whether Nevan is a true hero or another thief waiting for his chance at her loot. Events spin wildly, deepening Rena’s suspicions and pushing her limit of control. With more than her chance for freedom at stake, she must decide if she’s willing to kill to protect what’s precious to her. For once, the Overlord isn’t holding all the power, but can Rena live with being reduced to what she’s trying so hard to escape?

Guest Post by Rena Moon, character from EDGE OF TRUTH
Okay, looks like everyone is here for our Behind The Scenes Tour of Hollowcrest. We can’t stay in one place too long, so let’s start walking. Remember, if the Overlord finds out about this…bad things for us. If I sense trouble heading our way, I’ll let you know and if I say run, you RUN! Scatter like dead leaves, cause that's what you'll be if you get caught: dead.

Any questions? You, in the blue shirt.

How will I sense trouble? Using my sixteen years of experience with Synbots, and you better hope we don’t run into any.

All right, back to our tour. Since Quad 1 is across from the nest of Eden biodomes, it’s heavily patrolled. Going there is too risky. We don’t want to get caught without a permit for a public gathering. Anything in Q1 that faces Eden is required by law to remain in pristine condition, at least on the surface.

From any other angle, it looks like this neighborhood, which is Quad 3, where my family lives. I’ll probably live the rest of my Dustie life here. I can’t earn wages until next year, and I owe more than two years worth. Me and fines, we’re like this. It’s ridiculous, but we’ll talk later. Let’s keep moving.

Since Q3 is closest to the factories, mostly Dusties live here, though we have a few people from other occupational tracks, too. The houses are well kept because most of us are trained to use tools at an early age. You may notice resourceful additions to some buildings, like the one across the street with a rain collection barrel. The lawns on the other hand…they could use an Aggie.

Wait for this guy to pass, then we’ll go. And spread out a little. Try not to look too suspicious. Off of the grass, Blue Shirt. That’s 2,000 units gone.

We’ll take a shortcut through Quad 4, where most of the people who work at the Market stay. They’re great at repurposing things as you can tell by the amount of stuff in their yards and the creative roofing materials. My favorite building is the one covered in hubcaps. There are a few old solar panels fixed on some roofs as well. 

Okay, let’s head to one of my favorite places, you’re gonna—

Wait! Everybody be still. Stop moving. I need to…listen.

False alarm. It’s only my best friend Blaze. Psst. Over here.

“Sweet Mother, Rena. Who are all these people?”

Friends. Giving them a tour. Walk and talk.

“They’re not allowed to be here.”

What the Overlord doesn’t know…

“He’ll find out soon enough.”

Don’t worry, Blaze. We’re almost done. We’re going to see Nevan. I mean, going to Quad 2. Come with?

“I don’t know. This is a pretty big group of people. Conduct Ordinance 19 says—”

The Synbots aren’t patrolling this area right now. We’ll be fine. Promise.

“Okay, I’ll go to keep you out of trouble.”

Yeah, right. Trouble follows me like a lonely puppy needing affection.

“Maybe I should head home, instead. Kidding. Looks like we made it without getting busted.”

Did you doubt me? Everyone, this is the most beautiful neighborhood. Any grass that manages to grow here is always green because this is where the Aggies live. They’re experts at growing things. Most people have a small garden. Like that guy up the block with his dreads pulled back. Notice how careful he is with the plant, both strong and gentle.

“Great. Now, she’s blushing.”

I am not.

“Is that the Nevan guy you mentioned earlier?”

Blue Shirt, step back in line. Q&A time is over.

“Um, Rena. Nevan just glanced in our direction.”

Sweet Mother, what if he comes over here?

“Looks like you’re safe. He’s going inside. But why would he risk leaving his gardening tools unguarded?”

Shh. Quiet.

“But we—”

Something’s wrong.

“You offered a tour of Hollowcrest, not just the Quads.”

Remember when I said I’d tell you if I sensed trouble? This tremor…Sweet Mother. The Syns are coming!


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