Length: 162 pages
Suddenly aware of the pain in her wrist, Silver pulls out a strip of gauze given to her by the surgeon and wraps it tightly around her oozing stitches. Better than nothing, she surmises. Her fingers wet with her own blood, she backhands some stray wisps of dark blonde hair away from her face. Always in a pony tail, her hair could go days without brushing and you’d barely even notice. She’s beautiful, of course, but not like the girls in Old World magazines. Raised for the Hunter Division, she’s tall and strong. Her shoulders carry a strength that could put some lesser men to shame, and her face hasn’t seen a lick of make-up since her sixteenth birthday.
Sharp, silver eyes look out upon the world with a new found cynicism, and her lips are fully prepared never to smile again.
Fuck ‘em, she thinks.
Fuck Omega, and the lies they’ve smeared her with. Fuck truth and justice, and all the things she’s ever fought for. Fuck love, and all the pain that’s brought her. Fuck dying, like they hope she will.
She’s armed, and ready. With steel boots, a steel blade, a stone cold heart and three full clips of hollow points, she’s got enough to take on the Fringe District … for today, at least—and she’s not prepared to go down without a fight. This place is rough, like the worst neighborhood you’ve ever been to, times a thousand. It wouldn’t be uncommon for an easier mark to be killed in the street for the hat on their head, or the loaf of bread in their hand.
Fortunately, though, Silver’s no fool. Combat trained from the age of five, she can take on a man twice her size, and her agility and stamina will out-maneuver him every time. She has that, and confidence—in the bucket loads.
Reaching the foot of the bridge, Silver receives her first welcome: a barrage of signs and graffiti intended to drive away those who have come to gloat, or to abuse. Since its inception, the Fringe District has been more than just a prison land, and within it the prisoners—the banished—run rampant.
Success of the banished population, on such a scale, was simply not anticipated; longevity was not considered. In a place crawling with disease, and with the complete lack of an established healthcare system, the predicted mortality rate was high. Breeding was not part of the plan, and by the time it became a noticeable problem, it was already too late. The Fringer population was thriving, despite their circumstances.
Stricter penalties in the Sentinel District ensure more banishments each successive year, but births in the prison District still outnumber new inmates at a growing ratio of 1000:1.
Hope of something better was abandoned long ago. Behind every depraved, grotesque, and often illegal action you may witness, there is one prime motivator: survival, at all costs.
An every-man-for-himself mentality exists here in the extreme, and this desperation is routinely exploited by the Hunters and Police Division Agents who frequent these parts for their own entertainment.
Everything prohibited in Omega’s superficial utopia, the Sentinel District, is available in the Fringe if you’re willing to pay for it, or if you have the strength to take it by force. Though, it should be said, this approach seldom has a happy ending for the aggressor, and the row of decapitated heads on spikes at the entrance to the Fringe is a testament to that. You cross these people—the Fringers—at your own risk, because they will retaliate.
Keira Michelle Telford was born and raised in the UK. She spent the early part of her childhood in Worcestershire, before the family moved to Wales where she lived for most of her teenage years. In 2006, she moved to Canada. She currently resides in beautiful British Columbia, where she lives with her husband and 9 guinea pigs.
Jan. 22nd- Kaidans Seduction (Book Soundtrack Post/Giveaway)
Jan. 24th- Simply Ali (Book Soundtrack Post/Giveaway)
Jan. 27th- Love in a Book (Author Guest Post/Giveaway)
Feb. 4th- Books & Beauty (Excerpt)
Feb. 5th- 1889 labs (Character Guest Post)
Feb. 12th- Laurie’s Thoughts and Reviews (Review)
Feb. 17th- I am, Indeed (Book Soundtrack/Giveaway)
Feb. 18th- Musings of a Writing Reader (Extended Excerpt Post/Giveaway)
Feb. 27th- The Avid Reader (Review)
Feb. 28th- Paranormal Romance Fans for Life (Author Guest Post/Giveaway)
Mar. 1st- Books Amour (Character Guest Post/Giveaway)
Mar. 6th- Cabin Goddess (Review/Author Interview)
Mar. 6th- Cabin Goddess (Author Interview)
Mar. 8th- A Bibliophiles Thoughts on Books (Review/Giveaway)
Mar. 16th- Sweet n’ Sassi (Review/Giveaway)
Mar. 21st- I am, Indeed (Review)
Mar. 23rd- Simply Infatuated (Book Soundtrack Post)
Mar. 24th- Tamara’s One Stop Indie Shop (Author Interview)
Mar. 25th- Bookluvrs Haven (Review/Giveaway)
Me, Them & Us
I’m often asked how much of my own personality ends up in my characters, and the truth is: all of me. Not just in one character, or even in one book, but overall, there’s a little bit of me in all of them.
Ella ‘Silver’ Cross is my arrogance, my defiance, my addiction, my strength, and my greatest weakness. She’s cocky and sarcastic, and quite often speaks before she thinks. She genuinely doesn’t care if people like her or not, and she’d never compromise herself just to fit in with a crowd. In short, she lives her life the way she wants to live it and makes no apologies. A tomboy at heart, she doesn’t see the point in painting her nails or putting on make-up. To be honest, she barely sees the point in brushing her hair. She considers her sexuality, like political allegiance and food cravings, as fluid and subject to change at any given moment. If she loves a girl, she loves a girl. If she loves a boy, she loves a boy. She doesn’t much care to be pigeonholed. She has some not-so-great traits, too, of course. She curses like a sailor and is prone to being grumpy, vindictive, and vengeful. She can be cruel, though she recognizes her capacity for cruelty and tries to keep it at bay. Worse still, she has a very addictive personality, and should be kept away from anything that comes with even the remotest risk of dependency.
Alex is my heart—the soppy, romantic part that believes in eternal love. He’s the little puppy part of me that just wants to be loved. He feels most secure when attention’s being lavished upon him by the one he loves (Silver), and when she’s cold and distant, he feels anxious and uneasy. He can sometimes lack self-confidence, which tends to make other people think of him as meek, but he’s a tower of strength when he needs to be. He’s also smart. Like, geek smart. He likes to learn new things and he LOVES books. He craves the acquisition of knowledge, and his curiosity is limitless. On the negative side, he can be rather doubtful of his own abilities. He often under-sells himself, and finds it hard to see in himself the things that other people see and appreciate.
Luka is my guilty pleasure, lusting after women in a way that only a lovable rogue like him could get away with. He’s incredibly sexual, and proud of it, but his determination to enjoy himself and to be seen as something of a playboy has many negative repercussions, and also hides a deeper weakness. For a start, it’s a type of escapism—it’s a distraction. He fills his mind with other things so that he doesn’t have to deal with the fact that he’s often too afraid to go after what he really wants (Silver). He puts on a big show in the hope that nobody will be able to see through the façade and discover how unhappy and unfulfilled he really is. He makes out that he’s carefree, but in all honesty, he’s full of regrets and concerns.
Maydevine is my sense and reason, and my level-headedness. He’s practical and logical, and almost Vulcan in his approach to problem-solving. To some people, this can seem cold and unfeeling. In reality, he has emotions—he just keeps them well concealed. He sees emotion as a sort of weakness, and he hates to appear weak in front of others. Pretending not to be driven by emotion has become something of a habit over the years. Unfortunately, this puts up barriers between himself and the people who want to be close to him. He finds it hard to let people in, and the older he gets, the gruffer he becomes.
Then, there’s Alice. Alice is my manipulation and my selfishness. She puts on an act and gives people what they want, all the while hiding her true identity. She’s a real Walter Mitty kind of character. I don’t even think she knows who she really is anymore, and, perhaps, neither do I.
I’m so much of these people and they’re so much of me, the lines are eternally blurred between my thoughts and theirs. As much as I discover new things about each of them every time I write about them, I’m also discovering new things about myself. (Some things I like, some things I don’t). Writing is a cathartic experience for me, I suppose. Maybe I’m the real Walter Mitty here. Maybe I’m all of these people and more, and I have some kind of undiagnosed dissociative identity disorder. Who knows? Ultimately, as long as I’m at peace with all of these clamoring voices, I’m more than happy for them to stick around, and I’m sure there’s plenty more yet that we’ll learn from each other.