Do make sure you drop by to visit the lovely Sarah at Feeling Fictional tomorrow for her stop of the tour and if you want to catch up with the earlier tour stops then you can start at My Favourite Books.
Heat thrummed under my skin, pulsing, demanding to be let out, making me twist and bend with the strength of it.
“Run!” Aimi had said. “Run, Suzume!”
I must run.
As if a star had exploded in my mind, I knew it. I pulled the heat and the brightness out, drew it around me like a cloak. It surrounded me and I felt as though I changed: became small and fleet. My clothes seemed to fall away. My feet were silent on the grass. I was like a hare.
Run, little white hare. Run and run, and no one will catch you.
The trees towered around me. Leaf-shadows dappled my naked back. The only sound was the soft hum of my own heart. Black shapes moved around me, but they did not see me. They were too slow.
Soon I was out of the trees again and by the squat, brick-built kitchen. It was set a little way from the house.
As I saw it I seemed to burst upwards, out of the small, silent place, and suddenly there was noise again, and fear. Men shouted behind me. My breath rasped. I was shaking, exhausted, as if I had run a hundred miles, and my mind was fogged with grief.
All I knew was that I had to hide.
I went through the open doors of the kitchen. The interior was dark and deserted. The fires had gone out. The massive, low stove, built of stones and clay, sat in the centre of the room.
I went down on my knees, the packed earth floor ripping away skin as I scrambled into the biggest hearth. I burrowed into the ashes. Sparks glowed around me like dying orange suns. They burned and stung my hands, my arms, my back, my belly. Black debris rose around me like a pall of smoke.
The space inside the fireplace was just big enough to hold me, if I curled up tight: pressing legs tightly to my torso, burying my face in my knees.
I closed my eyes, and waited.
So, what do you think of that? Beautiful, right? Now, as promised, I've got a great giveaway for any readers of Writing from the Tub who are UK residents - sorry international peeps, I'll do another giveaway for you soon!
Ooh look at the pretty prizes! There's a whole bunch of swag up for grabs, as well as a beautiful Japanese fan signed by Rachel - I'm jealous I can't enter!
- To enter click here to fill out the form.
- No extra entries or any of that and the contest will run from today until the 16/7/11.
- The winner will be announced on the blog and notified by email - if I don't receive a response wtihin 72 hours I'll select a new winner.