Age Group: Young Adult
Release Date: February 1, 2015
Amazon ♥ B & N
"I'll tell you a weird thing about apocalypses - a thing I didn't even know until I was in one: they seem pretty bad, don't they? Well, take it from me: they can always get worse."
Three months after the killer rain first fell, Ruby is beginning to realise her father might be dead . . . and that she cannot survive alone.
When a chance encounter lands her back in the army camp, Ruby thinks she is safe - at a price. Being forced to live with Darius Spratt is bad enough, but if Ruby wants to stay she must keep her eyes - and her mouth - shut.
It's not going to happen. When she realizes what is going on - the army is trying to find a cure by experimenting on human subjects - Ruby flips out . . . and makes an even more shocking discovery: she's not useless at all. The Storm begins . . .
The next part of this story—my story—is one I can only stretch out so far. And that is an outrageous shame because it is really fairly, utterly, completely, and totally brilliant. So it is the worst kind of crying shame indeed that I cannot make this stretch out further.
From my SAS days, I had a bunch of cars parked, waiting and ready, supplies stacked in trunks. These were my getaway cars, which I’d acquired weeks (months?) ago in a state of paranoia about what I’d do if someone-anyone who wasn’t my dad turned up at the house.
Anyway, none of them would start, except the one that had hardly any gas in it because I might have used it for other activities—looting expeditions and the like.
Ha HA! Luckily this had happened to me before, cars mysteriously not starting, and it was what had forced me to study car maintenance.
Apparently, like phones, cars have batteries; apparently, like phones, car batteries run down.
“Are you sure about this?” Saskia asked as I popped hoods.
HA HA HA! Sure I was sure!
I jump-started the car.
That’s it. That’s my moment of triumph.
Once you’ve jump-started, you do not stop. You need to charge up the battery of the car you’re in, so you need to keep going.
There is no point crying about whether you’re doing the right thing. Or just plain crying for what you’re leaving behind. You just have to go. I cranked up that motor and speed-wove out of Dartbridge, but I could feel my head and my heart were still at home. Sask was also quiet, and it made me think of something.
“Hey, do you need to go and get stuff from your place?” I asked her.
“What’s the point?” she said.
I got what she meant—or at least I thought I did. I felt like…it was just too sad and awful having anything that reminded you of the past when your head was already stuffed full of it. There was this silence for a few minutes.
“I just feel like…like it’s contaminated or something,” she said.
Huh? I thought and glanced at her, worried she might not be as un-crazy as she looked and that this would pile even more pressure on me to pull myself together.
“My house. Someone broke in,” she said. “Can you believe that?! Someone broke in.”
For the benefit of those of you who have not come across my first journal, which is placed in a prominent position on the “THIS MONTH’S HOT READS” shelves in Dartbridge Public Library (in fact, after I did some rearranging, it is now the only item on the “THIS MONTH’S HOT READS” shelves of Dartbridge Public Library), I should tell you that the person in question was me. I broke into her house and stole her mom’s dog. It was a bit of an awkward moment. Until—Hold on a minute, I thought. And who left sweet little Darling the Chihuahua locked inside?
“Maybe they were trying to get your dog out,” I blurted.
“What?” said Saskia.
“Your dog…you had a dog, didn’t you? I mean, maybe someone saw it and—”
“That’s ridiculous,” said Saskia. “Who in their right mind would have bothered about a dog?!”
“Well…” Me. I bothered. I bothered a lot about a lot of dogs.
“…the cat flap,” Saskia was saying.
“The cat flap. It’s in the wall, like, right next to the kitchen door? I mean, if the dog was even still there, they could have just opened that up and coaxed her out, but no… Ruby, someone smashed in through the patio doors.”
I could feel this nervous, guilty sweat between my palms and the steering wheel.
“They went into the house. They touched stuff. My stuff. I never want to go back there,” she said. “Never.”
Welcome to The Rain (H2O in the US) and The Storm . . . I’m Virginia and I – did not write this story. Ruby did. She’s my main character and she wrote a story about what happens when a totally ordinary (and utterly unique, because everyone is) British teenager finds herself caught up in a global apocalypse.
Her story is a sci-fi apocalyptic/dystopian horror-thriller – with comedy, unsuitable footwear and a bacterium from outer space. It is also a story about love; love for your home, for your family, for your friends; love for strangers . . . for the planet we live on . . . and for the wrong guy. (Possibly.) We hope you enjoy it!