It's been a while since I've given all of you a teaser, so I wanted to remedy that today. This is from STRICKEN, Book One of the War Scrolls. I hope you enjoy it. And remember, I'm blogging all month at aydenmorgen.com/blog for the A to Z Challenge! <3
"Dude, come on!" Dom boomed.
Aubrey jumped, startled.
"Keep it down," he barked.
Dom grunted, lifting a middle finger in the air. His eyes didn't leave the television screen.
Killian frowned, his gaze narrowing on Dom.
"It's fine," Aubrey said before he could open his mouth to fuss at his brother. "Really."
Killian hesitated a moment before turning back to her. "If he gets too loud for you, you can tell him to shut up."
"He's fine." Aubrey smiled a little. "It reminds me of how things used to be, you know? Aaron and his friends were always so loud when they played video games. I'd forgotten what that was like."
"You never played?"
Aubrey shook her head. "I preferred books. I still do."
"Ah. Well, you're welcome to browse my shelves if you need something to read," he offered.
"Thanks." Aubrey hesitated. "I've snooped a little. You have eclectic tastes."
Killian shrugged. "I like variety."
They fell silent for a moment, watching Abriel and Dom battle on the screen. Aubrey had no idea what they were playing, but it looked like some sort of war game. People were running all over the place, weapons strapped to their bodies. Smoke drifted up from various places on screen. Mangled bodies littered the field where one of their characters was running, a grenade in his hand.
She shivered and turned away only to find Killian watching her again.
"Do you want them to turn it off?" he asked.
"No, that's fine," she said. "I just… Do you guys really enjoy this kind of stuff?"
"I don't think anyone enjoys war."
"So why play?"
"It keeps us sharp." Killian shrugged.
"Does it bother you?"
"What? War? Or war games?" she asked.
She thought about it a moment. "Not really. I guess I just don't see the point. Isn't the world violent enough already? There's so much death and destruction. Why add to it unless you have to?"
"I think it makes humans feel safe," Killian said.
Aubrey's eyes widened.
"As you said, there's so much death and destruction." He turned his body toward her, leaning in. "Feeling like you have some measure of control over that, that you can control it, makes it seem a little less overwhelming to most humans. And since your people can't control what happens outside of their homes, they bring it inside, try to figure it out the best way they can."
"I guess. I still don't get it though."
"I know you don't," he said softly. Emotion danced through his eyes, so quickly she couldn't catch them. But they warmed her, and made her ache, too. As if she craved something from him she didn't quite understand. That same vast, bright thing that had called to her in the elevator so many days ago. His gaze locked with hers. "That's not necessarily a bad thing."
ALL FALLS DOWN is now available on Amazon. FALL– The Ragnarök Prophesies: Book Two is now available at Amazon | Barnes and Noble | KOBO. FADE - The Ragnarök Prophesies: Book Two is available at: Amazon US | UK | DE | FR | IT | ES | Barnes and Noble | Kobo | Books-a-Million.