Fractured Energy is the exciting third installment of Lynn Vroman’s YA/Science Fiction Energy Series! Fractured Energy is published with Untold Press, along with the other thrilling books in this series.
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About Fractured Energy:
When Cassondra took Wilma’s energy, Lena’s mission changed. Only revenge matters now.
For the past year, Lena and her small army have tried to finish what they started, beginning with Earth: close the lines between worlds and end Exemplar’s hold on humanity. Unfortunately, the task is daunting. But unlike before, Lena has no problem pulling the trigger. As soon as her army takes care of threats in Earth, Lena goes back to Arcus—only to find out where the next war will be.
Tarek will do anything to mend Lena’s heart, even while she pushes him away. Only death for a death seems to ease the pain tearing her apart. But as much as he desires to heal the woman he loves, Tarek has to make sure Arcus stays safe from extermination.
After an attack, refugees Tarek has sworn to protect are terrified Exemplian authority will destroy their new home. Not able to defeat Exemplar’s direct assault, only one solution remains—a solution that will more than likely end in catastrophe: take the war to Exemplar and shut down their power source.
Lena doesn’t see disaster for her army—she sees victory and demands to go, refusing to miss a chance to kill more Exemplians.
While Lena hopes to save Wilma’s energy during the impossible mission, Tarek fears Lena will lose more than the war.
If she fails, Lena may lose herself completely.
They thought hiding in plain sight a brilliant idea. Set up camp in large cities where thousands of unassuming witnesses kept them safe from open attacks. Perfect, right? Surely, the rogue army wouldn’t think to involve innocent people.
Their first mistake.
No matter how big the city or how many people saw us, we had no problem killing Exemplians.
We had Winston, the mind-scrubbing champion.
Cheveyo, Earth’s Warden, believed this was the last nest. We hoped the Exemplian pricks would give up after tonight and move on to another world, another world my small army would follow them to.
But this last trip to Earth… I wanted to make sure they remembered me. I looked toward the sky before opening the café door and turning off my contego suit so the glow wouldn’t show through my sweatshirt. Exemplian satellites no doubt pointed in my direction. Whatever. Wouldn’t want them to miss the show, anyway.
I tugged my hood lower to cover more of my face and walked in. After stomping snow from my boots, I trudged between tables, dodging internet addicts hunched over their computers. For show, really. The three Guides, a middle-aged man, woman, and a muscle head, sitting by the window knew what I was as soon as the tinkling bell announced my presence, probably before then.
I felt them, too. Their static crinkled in my head so loud, I had to grit my teeth and force myself to walk to the counter. From the mirrored wall behind the clerk, I watched them scrutinizing me over their TracFones and café au laits.
“Puis-je vous aider?” The clerk snapped his fingers in my face and asked a second time when I ignored him to keep staring in the mirror.
“Oh, um…café noir, s’il vous plait.”
With any luck, the barista wouldn’t ask me anything else. Winston only gave me the “Black coffee, please” line to memorize. While waiting for my order, I pretended to admire the pastries in the glass encasement under the counter.
We’d been tracking them in Quebec for the better part of two months. These nesters were craftier, moving from spot to spot, but still easy to find. That it took us under a couple months to get their schedules down made the Exemplian authority look sloppy.
When the guy handed over the coffee, I gave him a coin. He shook his head, saying a few more things I didn’t understand. I shrugged, getting the gist when he wagged the money in my face, speaking much slower. Funny. No matter how drawn out his words were, I wouldn’t get it.
I handed him a couple more coins then turned from the register, giving the Guide trio a nervous glance. The idiots were already on their phones–more than likely letting their Protectors know they were on the move–and collecting their stuff to follow. Exemplians thought anyone not born on their world a moron. More than likely, they probably figured I was some clueless recycled Guide, living another life, right here in freezing-as-fuck Quebec.
Their second mistake.
The trio had followed me all morning until I gave them the slip fifteen minutes ago. How fortunate were they that I happened to waltz into the very café they were in?
Seriously, total dumbasses.
My heart hurt. Dumbass. Every time I even thought about the word, Wilma’s face flashed in my mind. Her little pet name for me when I pissed her off. God, I missed her.
I walked down the busy street at a decent clip, brushing tears away. This wasn’t the time. Now, I’d make every single person who followed me pay a little more for her death.
Make them pay over and over…
I turned the corner, off Rue Saint-Jean, away from the crowd shopping for Christmas. Slush soaked through my boots, numbing my toes. The late evening drizzle infiltrated my thick hoodie, too, drenching me from hair to skin. I ignored it, used to physical discomfort, and stopped to take a few sips of my steaming drink, giving the Guides a chance to catch up. Gross. The rest of the coffee landed in a snowbank. Still hated it.
When the fuzz returned, I got moving. Cheery sounds of shoppers and holiday music wafted after me as I strode farther, careful not to go too fast, lest they lose me again.
The streetlamps broken by yours truly a few hours before helped keep them confused, giving me the edge I’d need. Cell phone lights glowed behind me, though not putting much of a dent in the black. Unfortunately, complete darkness didn’t hide the fuzz getting stronger in my head, something I had grown to hate yet tolerate. Hopefully their Protectors were close so we could end this soon.
Arrogance happened to be the main weakness all Synod Exemplians had. No matter how many nests we’d destroyed, every single idiot we encountered believed they were smart enough to take us on–once they figured out who we were.
That would be their third mistake.
Exemplians were a quick study, always predictable. After a while, their stupidity bore me. But killing them never got old. Ever.
I stumbled when I turned around, making sure they noticed. Their chins lifted, and they were close enough for me to see smiles on their faces. I loved this part. When they believed their nervous prey finally figured out people stalked her.
I moved faster toward the one unbroken streetlight in front of an alley crammed with industrial-sized garbage cans. The smell coming from the frozen trash was way more pleasant than the fuzz clogging my head. I pretended to talk on my phone, adding a lot of scared flavor to my voice. Stupid Guides ate it up, my fear giving them the courage to come closer.
As soon as they were a few feet in front of me, I slid back my hood and gave them a smile of my own.
“Oh, no.” One sputtered that a few times, stopping while the two others, though not smiling anymore, kept coming at me.
Don’t Forget the first two books:
Tainted Energy and Lost Energy
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Be sure to check out other books by Lynn Vroman
Beneath the Cape—The Superhero Anthology
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About Lynn Vroman:
Born in Pennsylvania, Lynn spent most of her childhood, especially during math class, daydreaming. The main result that came from honing her imagination skills was brilliantly failing algebra. Today, she still spends an obscene amount of time in her head, only now she writes down all the cool stuff.
With a degree in English Literature, Lynn used college as an excuse to read for four years straight. She lives in the Pocono Mountains with her husband, raising the four most incredible human beings on the planet. She writes young adult novels, both fantasy and contemporary.