Hey guys this post might be a little messy because I have to do it quick because my laptop is about to die! So this tour is for The Weight of Night Tour by C.L. Stegall and today I have for you an excerpt! But before I share it with you here's a little about the book!
St. Anne's was quiet as a church, the white walls running cleanly into the distance. It was a large edifice and yet it was a quiet, solemn place. The name on the piece of paper Hough had offered her read only "Rose", with this address.
Alexis stared down the long hallway, wondering what room Rose was in. As she did so, the information made its way into her mind and she knew just where she was going. She began walking, her tennis shoes making soft squeaking noises on the recently waxed floor. The smell of pine cleaner was lingering in the night air; one of the fluorescent lights above her flickered every few seconds. When she came to Room 114, she stopped.
The door was solid steel with a small window just above her eye level. There was a metal cover latched into place over the window. She eased open the latch and let the metal covering swing down to one side. Alexis stood on her toes to look through the wired glass, to see one blue eye and one green eye staring back at her. Startled, she stepped back. The eyes belonged to a young face and continued to stare at her. She began to move back to the door when the face disappeared inside the room.
Sitting on the small bed, staring back at her was a girl close to Alexis' own age with short brown hair. She got the distinct impression that Rose had been waiting for her. She tried the door but, of course, it was locked. She took a couple of steps back into the hallway and then thought about the inside of the room, where she wanted to be. She stepped forward, through time and space, to appear on the other side of the door, inside the room looking down at Rose. The girl showed no surprise whatsoever at Alexis' ability.
"Hi," Rose said with a soft but lilting voice.
"Hi, Rose. I'm Alexis."
"I've come to ask you a few questions, if that's all right." She saw Rose glance around the room, then pat the mattress to indicate that Alexis sit next to her. Alexis obliged.
"Why?" Rose asked.
"Well," Alexis began, "I need to find out some things, things you might know."
"I know lots of things," Rose said, her smile bright and beaming. Then, her shoulders slumped and she said, "But, they don't make much sense."
"That's okay, sweetie," Alexis said, feeling a sudden sadness for the girl with the multi-colored eyes. "I won't take up too much of your time, I promise."
"I've got all the time in the world," Rose replied. "You're welcome to as much of it as you like."
"Thanks." Alexis shifted on the bed to face Rose. "Do you know who I am?"
"You're Alexis. You said so."
"Yes, that's true. But, do you know that I'm also Progeny?"
"You mean your mom or dad is... is... special?" It seemed she was fighting for the word she needed.
"Yes. My mother is a goddess. Is your mom special?"
"Yeah. She's the smartest."
Alexis stared at Rose for a second, putting it all together. Rose's mom was Athena. That would explain the professor stating that Rose was once one of the brightest minds around. And, all that knowledge was jumbled up inside of this little girl's head like so many leaves in a tornado.
"That's great," Alexis replied. "Rose, do you know anyone else like you and me? Anyone else with parents who are special?"
Alexis watched as Rose thought long and hard about the question. She would close her eyes for long seconds, opening them in a rush as if she had just remembered something important only to seem crestfallen when she lost the thought. She turned back to Alexis.
"I think I do, but I can't remember. Do you like butterflies?"
"Yes," Alexis said, smiling, "I do."
"Me, too." Rose stood and began padding back and forth in the small white-walled room. "I used to... I used to... catch them." Alexis found it endearing and cute how the girl's nose crinkled up when she was trying to grasp the right word. "I'd always let them go. It's not right to bottle up beings or kill them."
Alexis tried asking herself questions surrounding Rose. She got a haze of strange images and scenes that made no sense. From what she could determine, Rose had had an accident and was taken to the hospital over a year ago. After that, it seemed that the beautiful mind that Rose once had became a fractured fairy tale. Still, the simplicity in which Rose lived was almost enviable. A sudden thought popped into Alexis' head and she looked up at Rose, who was touching the wall with her fingers and whispering something about big leaves and fuzzy kitties.
"Rose," Alexis said, trying to get her attention once again. "Rose."
"Are you happy?"
"Happy?" Her nose crinkled in thought.
"Yes. Happy. Do you enjoy living here?"
"Sometimes." She turned away from the wall to face Alexis with an open, thoughtful expression. Her eyes were big and bright, although the green one seemed a little bigger than the blue by just a little. "They're nice to me. Most of them."
"Most of them? Is there someone who isn't very nice to you?"
"James. Is he mean to you?" Alexis wondered who could be mean to someone such as Rose. "Does he hurt you?"
"I think he likes me. But," she stopped. Her breathing seemed a little faster than it had been and she whispered, "He yells at me. I know I'm a good girl, though."
"You're definitely a good girl, Rose." Alexis was asking questions in her mind about this James character. He worked nights here at the sanitarium; in fact, he was here tonight. Alexis wasn't sure why it upset her that someone would be mean to Rose. In fact, she didn't realize just how much it upset her until Rose drew a deep, awestruck breath.
"Oooh, you're beautiful! So pretty and bright."
Alexis looked down at her hands and saw that she had begun to glow, the effusive light eking out of her skin like a soft mist. She smiled at Rose's reaction and calmed herself.
"Thank you, Rose." She stood and moved to gently hug the girl. "Don't worry, James won't yell at you again. I promise." With that, she turned to go.
"Tell Aaron I said hi." Rose had moved back to sit on her bed, but Alexis stopped and turned around.
"Aaron? Who's that?"
"The boy you're going to go see. In the woods by the river."
"Aaron lives by a river?"
"No, silly!" Rose laughed and it sounded like music. "He just works there. He lives somewhere else. I'm not sure where."
"Aaron." Alexis began asking questions about who Rose might know named Aaron. The answers came back hazy, and she knew she was onto something. "Is he progeny, too?"
"His daddy is special," Rose stated. "But, he's not nice. Aaron was nice to me, though."
"And, Aaron is in the woods?"
"Yep. Over the ocean. Big forest. Lots of fighting. Aaron visits me sometimes." She looked down and began playing with a loose thread on her pants.
"So, Aaron lives in the forest across the ocean," Alexis said aloud, thinking to herself.
"What?" Rose looked up at her, her nose crinkling.
"Aaron. You were just talking about him."
"Is he a friend of yours?"
Alexis realized that Rose's focus had gone once again. She smiled and said goodbye. She promised that she would visit Rose again.
Stepping through the ether to end up back in the hallway, Alexis decided she would pay a visit to James and see what information she could get out of him. He had some explaining to do, anyway. She began walking down the long hallway toward the nurses' station.
Did you guys enjoy the excerpt? I'm sorry if it's small blogger isn't really cooperating with me today! Make sure you check out the rest of the tour here!