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Mercury is Thicker than Water: Book 1

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        “Run, Marty! Run!” An elderly woman’s hoarse screams rang out across the darkened field.
A stripe of orange firelight stretched over a patch of once luscious, beautiful red roses that had been crushed into the musky soil by the hooves of the Mabanar Army. The light was spilling through a broken, splintered oaken door.
“Shut her up!” A gruff voice barked.
The woman’s desperate cries were suddenly cut short and there was a dull thud as her lifeless body fell to the thread-bare rug covering the dirty floor.
Marty, a 14 year-old boy with unruly black hair that had been bleached purple by his many hours spent in the sun, ran across his grandmother’s field as fast as his lanky legs could carry him. What have I done? Marty morosely thought to himself as he leaped over the minuscule creek that was trickling across the field.
Although Marty looks like an average human boy, he was just the opposite. He was one of the last remaining Shabnovs. Shabnovs are similar to people, but they blood of mercury and the ability to read the mind of any creature within a one mile radius of it.
The Mabanar ruler, King Garrison Malenm, put out a reward of four-hundred thousand kimbs (the equivalent of one million American dollars) for every Shabnov. They must be caught alive. However, the reason of their capture is unknown. Marty’s father, Cable, had recently been apprehended. In his head, Marty ran over the reasons that he had been hunted for the past eight months. He didn’t know what happened to the poor Shabnovs that had been seized and he wasn’t sure he wanted to know.
Marty kept running. He ran across the fields of the neighboring farms and finally stopped in a minute alcove of pine trees. Sweat was dripping down his forehead and the back of his neck. Laying on his belly, he crept forward to the edge of the hidden area and slowly brushed a low-hanging branch aside. Mabanar soldiers were searching the farm houses that Marty had run past while he was running. After they had been confirmed empty, the soldiers burned the old houses to the ground.
The soil and rooting pine needles beneath him gave off an earthy, forest smell that Marty found soothing. His heart rate slowed and he was able to think more clearly.
He missed his Appaloosa horse, Anne Belle. She has a silky white coat with rusty-red spots that dapple her rump. Anne Belle was the closest thing Marty had to a mother, although she was more of a best friend.
Anne Belle was supposed to check the grove every night at midnight, which means that she should appear in a few minutes. Marty crawled back towards the thicker, darkened party of the trees. He leaned against a tree and sat there, quietly hidden in the mud. His legs went numb and the chill of the night seemed to creep into the mercuric marrow of his bones. The moon had begun to descend into the blackness of the western horizon, and there was a pink haze in the east as the sun slowly rose.
        “Where could Anne Belle be?” Marty muttered, his cold tongue slurring the words. He reached out with his mind in a vain attempt to find his horse. The sun was now hovering above the mountains and the sky lightened, making Marty’s hiding place visible.
Anne Belle! He pleaded with his mind.        “Run, Marty! Run!” An elderly woman’s hoarse screams rang out across the darkened field.
A stripe of orange firelight stretched over a patch of once luscious, beautiful red roses that had been crushed into the musky soil by the hooves of the Mabanar Army. The light was spilling through a broken, splintered oaken door.
“Shut her up!” A gruff voice barked.
The woman’s desperate cries were suddenly cut short and there was a dull thud as her lifeless body fell to the thread-bare rug covering the dirty floor.
Marty, a 14 year-old boy with unruly black hair that had been bleached purple by his many hours spent in the sun, ran across his grandmother’s field as fast as his lanky legs could carry him. What have I done? Marty morosely thought to himself as he leaped over the minuscule creek that was trickling across the field.
Although Marty looks like an average human boy, he was just the opposite. He was one of the last remaining Shabnovs. Shabnovs are similar to people, but they blood of mercury and the ability to read the mind of any creature within a one mile radius of it.
The Mabanar ruler, King Garrison Malenm, put out a reward of four-hundred thousand kimbs (the equivalent of one million American dollars) for every Shabnov. They must be caught alive. However, the reason of their capture is unknown. Marty’s father, Cable, had recently been apprehended. In his head, Marty ran over the reasons that he had been hunted for the past eight months. He didn’t know what happened to the poor Shabnovs that had been seized and he wasn’t sure he wanted to know.
Marty kept running. He ran across the fields of the neighboring farms and finally stopped in a minute alcove of pine trees. Sweat was dripping down his forehead and the back of his neck. Laying on his belly, he crept forward to the edge of the hidden area and slowly brushed a low-hanging branch aside. Mabanar soldiers were searching the farm houses that Marty had run past while he was running. After they had been confirmed empty, the soldiers burned the old houses to the ground.
The soil and rooting pine needles beneath him gave off an earthy, forest smell that Marty found soothing. His heart rate slowed and he was able to think more clearly.
He missed his Appaloosa horse, Anne Belle. She has a silky white coat with rusty-red spots that dapple her rump. Anne Belle was the closest thing Marty had to a mother, although she was more of a best friend.
Anne Belle was supposed to check the grove every night at midnight, which means that she should appear in a few minutes. Marty crawled back towards the thicker, darkened party of the trees. He leaned against a tree and sat there, quietly hidden in the mud. His legs went numb and the chill of the night seemed to creep into the mercuric marrow of his bones. The moon had begun to descend into the blackness of the western horizon, and there was a pink haze in the east as the sun slowly rose.
        “Where could Anne Belle be?” Marty muttered, his cold tongue slurring the words. He reached out with his mind in a vain attempt to find his horse. The sun was now hovering above the mountains and the sky lightened, making Marty’s hiding place visible.
Anne Belle! He pleaded with his mind.
I’m coming. My leg is hurt though. Anne Belle’s conscious weakly replied.
        “Anne Belle! What happened?” Marty whimpered quietly as the mare limped towards him.



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