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Humans and Demons and Elves [MultiFormat]
eBook by Donaya Haymond

eBook Category: Young Adult/Fantasy
eBook Description: A young Elf must enter a frightening world: 21st Century America. The Elves of North America use dimension-bending magic to conceal their woodland villages from humans, though it fails to protect them from the beautiful-but-deadly Eudemons. Edofine is less prejudiced than many, even befriending an Archaedemon, whose people are known for switching sides in the ancient conflict. But when young Edofine's clan is destroyed, he has only one person to turn to: his cousin Kryvek, who was adopted by humans who established the Official Magics-Humans Institute (OMHI). Will Edofine be able to adjust to human society? Can the OMHI help him despite facing its own crisis? Could he possibly be falling in love with Kryvek's friend Lira, a half-Elf half-Eudemon working for the OMHI? His life has fallen to pieces, and the reconstruction is full of surprises. Excerpt: "One more time. You turn these knobs, and water comes out. One knob has hot water and one has cold water. You adjust the amount depending on your preference." "And then what do I do?" Edofine stood inside the shower, gingerly poking the pipes. He was still in full Elf regalia, complete with dead leaves and grass stains. "Cover yourself with soap and stand under the water so that it washes off. Do you think you can handle that?" "You do this every day?" "Yes." "What a waste of time and water." "Way to be sanctimonious, kid. I am merely teaching you how to conform to local hygienic standards. When you live indoors in small apartments, washing frequently becomes very important. Some even enjoy it. I'll leave you alone now to get acquainted with it." Kryvek was growing annoyed with having to explain these basic things to his cousin. He knew Edofine wasn't being obtuse on purpose, but helping him was like having a child to take care of. Kryvek's stomach growled again and he looked at his watch for the fourth time in ten minutes. Panic rose in Edofine's throat, which, coupled with his hunger and disorientation, made him worried he might vomit. "You cannot leave me. What if I do something wrong and I scald myself? What if the magic governing these pipes breaks down? Anything could happen." Kryvek was about to dismiss Edofine's fears, but he saw the hurt in Edofine's drooping shoulders and bowed head and changed his mind. "All right. I'll stand right here in the doorway and talk you through the process. First take your clothes off." Standing in the shower, Edofine disrobed. Kryvek noted many scars and bruises underneath the grime. "You have to put the clothes outside of the shower, otherwise they'll get wet." "Ah." "Now turn the hot knob?" "Aiee!" "I meant turn it while standing sort of away from the stream of water, so it wouldn't hit you full force. No, don't turn it off! Turn on some of the cold!" "I think you are trying to kill me?"

eBook Publisher: Eternal Press/Damnation Books LLC/Eternal Press, Published: 2011, 2011
Fictionwise Release Date: July 2011




Prologue

Orphans and Hitchhikers and Enemies

Five minutes after eating their s'mores, the Fletchers heard cries. They didn't sound like a baby's wails, or like calls for help, but they were interspersed with snatches of song in a language none of them recognized. The very air wept with the grief choked out of every sob. The occasional shriek turned into a soprano crescendo.

Christine Fletcher reacted first. Ever since her mother learned she never could never have children again, she treasured Christine as a woman on a diet treasures her one chocolate of the week. Her looks left something to be desired; face excessively round with baby fat, and eyes small and beady. The brown bowl haircut failed to be silky, instead being reminiscent of a dandelion. Behind the chubby exterior, though, lay a keen mind, a vivid imagination, and she was naturally compassionate to all that grew.

"Daddy," Christine said, "I think someone needs help." She wiped her sticky fingers on her shorts and stood.

"You stay back here with your mother," Mister Fletcher replied, pointing his flashlight at the darkening wood. "It could be dangerous."

"I think she can handle it," Mrs. Fletcher argued.

"If anything happened to her, you would blame me."

"Nothing will happen. It's not like someone's screaming while being attacked by a bear."

Christine stamped her foot. "C'mon! Somebody's really sad right now, and we need to do something!"

Eventually Christine ended up going with her dad, on the condition that she held his hand the entire time. The night hung heavy with summer, and they continually slapped their exposed skin for mosquitoes. Along the path, Christine noticed wild roses growing in increasingly dense clumps. Eventually they came upon a dome of thorns, the size of a tent. Someone crouched in among the plants, singing in broken phrases. The entire shelter shook with the quivering form within.

Mister Fletcher had no idea what was going on, but he shone his flashlight into the dense growth. "Um, excuse me," he said, loudly, "are you all right? Is there anything that we can do?"

The person inside squeaked a C sharp, and a round hole appeared in the rosebush wall. Out came the head of a boy marred with bleeding scratches. His hair was a strange shade, brown and silver at the same time, a mixture of earth and starlight. The eyes were silver and large as an owl's with amazement. It was impossible to tell how long he had been crying, as his skin was coppery and too dark to discern any red blotches. The overall effect was of supernatural perfection; gorgeous as no regular teenage boy had any right to look. After a moment of stunned amazement, he hissed, "Humans go away now!" Then he receded into his enclosure again.


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