Published: April 10th, 2015
Teleportation. Telepathy. Superior strength and speed. Abilities she never wanted. Abilities she must learn to control.
Emily Heart used to have a normal life. A life filled with family, friends, and a warm bed to sleep in. But that was before the night of The Taking. The night when she was abducted and genetically transformed against her will.
Now she's lost everything and living on the streets of Glassford Park, struggling to stay alive one more day. But it won’t be easy. Not when a gang wants to kill her, cops want to arrest her, and a reporter wants to expose her.
However, Emily’s problems don’t end there. Any uncontrolled burst of emotion can send her jumping randomly across time and space, arriving naked and alone. If she's not careful, she could travel to infinity and beyond, never to be heard from again.
Emily doesn't quite know what she is, or what she's capable of, but she knows what she can't afford to do -- feel anything.
And she can’t afford to make any mistakes.
From the Journal of Emily Heart, the Glassford Girl
How to Survive a Time Jump
Living on the streets as a time jumper doesn’t have to be torture if you remember to always keep your cool, plan each move carefully, and trust your logic. The first instinct is to run, but don’t. That’ll only draw attention to yourself. If you’re not in immediate danger, then stop, look, listen, and most of all, think!
Sounds easy, doesn’t it? Well, it’s not. Especially for a newbie. A zillion things can go wrong, but if you can stay calm and focus, it’ll keep you alive. That usually means starting with a chill pill, because a major panic attack will only make the situation worse. I know, ladies. That was me when I first started. I was such a complete spaz. It’s so embarrassing now that I think back on it.
It’s also important to memorize my simple Post Jump To Do List and put it into action as soon as you land: clothes, food, and shelter. In that order. Remember, only living cells can be transported across time and space, so you won’t be able to take any clothes or supplies with you when you jump.
You can’t plan ahead and build a stash either. Time jumps can take you months or even years ahead, and you’ll usually come out in some other part of the city. By the time you get back to your stuff, it won’t be there. So don’t bother. It’s a giant waste of time. One thing I’ve learned over the years is that homeless people develop a special kind of uber radar for finding things. Trust me, they WILL find your stash. No matter where you hide it. And you can forget about keeping your bling safe.
I know this all sounds insane, but eventually you’ll learn to fly by the seat of your pants, even though you won’t have any.
A sense of humor helps, too, since everyone’s gonna notice you’re not wearing any clothes after a jump. Forget modesty, too. Focus on survival and ignore everything else.
I still remember the first time I jumped. I came out in the burning hot parking lot of a huge shopping center in Phoenix with a curious rent a cop standing over me. The mall guard turned out to be a really nice guy and helped me a lot, but still. You never know who’s gonna be around. Being naked in public takes some getting used to; however, once you do, it serves as quite the distraction for eye witnesses when they try to tell their story to the cops. After all, who remembers a girl’s face when she’d naked?
But you need to realize up front, this won’t be easy. Everywhere you turn, there will be creepers. Always gawking. Pointing. Drooling. Totally grosses me out, but what’s a girl to do? Eventually, you’ll get used to it, just like I did. There’s nothing you can do about it, so just deal and move on.
Being naked is the most natural thing there is, though it can wreak havoc on your feet, especially in the city. OMG, what I wouldn’t give for a pedicure and a foot massage. Some nail polish would be nice, too, and some makeup, but that’s a whole other story.
Truth is, I never liked my Sasquatch feet anyway, but now that I’m a veteran time jumper, they’re even more hideous. Ugly feet run in my family and my mom’s were the worst. I guess that’s why they invented shoes—to cover up the nasty.
Which reminds me, the worst part about time jumping is not having socks. My feet are always cold when I come out of a jump, no matter where I end up and believe me, you can end up anywhere. Been there, done that if you know what I mean.
One time I came out of a jump and found myself face to face with a pissed off orangutan at the Phoenix Zoo. He snarled at me with his big, ugly face, and then threw crap at me—literally—and it stuck in my hair!
IN MY HAIR!
Granted, my hair is always a hot mess and I would gladly trade a kidney for a good hairbrush, but come on, really? Poop in your hair? Do you know how hard it is to get that @#^! out when you’re homeless?
And the smell! You know what I’m talking about—that funky jungle stink that seems to take on a life of its own. Makes me want to hurl just thinking about it.
So let this be a warning. If you come out of a jump and find yourself staring at a giant primate armed with a handful of smelly stuff, remember to DUCK!
There aren’t exactly bathtubs for the homeless on every street corner, so avoid the zoo at all costs. Oh, and stay away from police stations, too. Cops don’t have a sense of humor when it comes to girls running around in public in their birthday suit.
Anyway, always being cold after a jump is something you must be prepared for when you first arrive somewhere. I think it has something to do with the compression of space-time through a quantum fold, at least that’s what I read in a physics book at the public library couple months back. There’s no heat when you’re transported through time, so my poor little piggy’s always come out as ice cubes when I wake up. Even in the middle of the blistering hot summers in Phoenix. Luckily, it passes quickly and so does the nausea, so just give it time.
Homeless shelters are where most rookies head for when they first arrive. Don’t. Those people are impossible to deal with. There’s too much competition for an already sucky selection of clothes, and the people that run the place ask WAY too many questions. I’ll pass, thank you very much.
Instead, I look for the nearest church. Especially if it’s St. Bob’s or whatever. Catholics are the best people to hit up for free stuff. They’re always looking to help someone out, like it’s their religion or something. Go figure. But they usually have boxes and boxes of nice stuff sitting around, and they’re just waiting to give it all away. Free stuff is like gold—never pass it up.
When you get there, grab a few things that fit and don’t worry about fashion. If it’s warm and doesn’t smell like orangutan (if you know what I mean) —be thankful. I don’t recommend carrying a suitcase around ‘cause it screams HOMELESS GIRL. Actually, it screams DUMB HOMELESS GIRL. It’s like walking around with a great big sign that says COME HURT ME.
The streets are filled with evil around every corner, so there’s no reason to go out of your way to attract it. Be smart. Stay off the radar. Layer on a few outfits and get moving. Don’t hang around any longer than necessary because even the nice church people will eventually get nosey.
It seems like everyone wants to help the poor homeless girl—always trying to fix you or change your life. Little do they know, time jumpers can’t be fixed and we don’t need help! We’re just fine the way we are. Once you’re dressed, get out as fast as you can and don’t forget a good pair of shoes and socks for the road. Comfort over style is one of my rules, and I have many rules I live by. But I’ll save that list for another time.
Once you’ve covered all your goodies with some clothes, it’s time to think about food and water.
Water is easy—faucets are everywhere in the city, so keep your eyes open and head down. When you pass a trash can, dig around and see if you can find something to use as a water bottle. People always throw them away, so it shouldn’t take long to find something useful. Keep it filled every chance you get. Just be sure to wash it out good the first time. Oh, and never, and I mean never, share it with the old homeless man who reminds you of your grandpa. Can you say backwash?
Food is a little tougher.
My favorite place—a Mexican food restaurant.
They put so much food on a plate for everyone, there’s plenty of leftovers that get thrown away. A quick trip around back and you can usually score a fresh meal from the dumpster, assuming you don’t mind sharing it with a bunch of hungry fly’s.
Enchiladas are my fave, but I don’t recommend the beans. Being homeless with bad case of gas—and I’m talking about kill a horse kind of gas—won’t earn you any brownie points with the normals. Eventually you’ll need help from one of them, so try not to offend their sense of smell.
Special Emily Tip: If you happen to stumble across some unused wet-naps in the dumpster, snag ‘em. You can trade them for almost anything.
Way back in the early days, finding a specific kind of restaurant was easy. I’d just find the nearest phone booth, grab the yellow pages and turn to the restaurant section. Now that cell phones are all the rage, it’s almost impossible to find a pay phone anymore—let along yellow pages.
Since I don’t recommend talking to anyone or asking for directions, that leaves you with two options: wandering around like a crazy person, or using the Internet. Public libraries are the best choice for getting online, especially if you’re a skilled, ninja chick like me. It didn’t take me long to learn how to sneak past the old Nazi lady at the front desk.
Let’s just say, this girl has skills. J
In an upcoming entry, I’ll show you seven handy tricks for sneaking into places using my famous stealth moves. For now, just find a group of chatty Kathy’s and slip inside with them. That usually works.
Once you’re past the entrance, you’ll need to head to the back and sweet talk the tech guy. Every girl should already know how to do that, so I won’t go into detail. LOL. Boys as soooo predictable—and gullible. Soon you’ll be using a computer station without a library card any time you want. Just use your imagination, girls. That’s all I’m gonna say. Wink. Wink.
One last tip before I end this journal entry.
Most people don’t realize this, but good luck trying to prove your identity when you’re a homeless time jumper who doesn’t age and can’t bring anything along when the blue fire comes. I’ve been traveling for thirty years now and my records are long gone. Yours will be, too. Anonymity is both your friend and your foe. So be prepared to deal with it. You won’t be able to get a job or stay in a motel like a normal person without proper ID, so you’ll have to get creative if you need cash or a place to stay.
That’s it for now. Next time, I’ll show you how to find shelter and hunker down for the night. Like they say, it’s all about location, location, location.
Remember, street urchins are everywhere, so stay safe and stay strong!
And never, ever give up!
About the author:
Jay J. Falconer is an independent author, publisher, blogger, editor, engineer and Sci-Fi junkie who lives in the mountains of northern Arizona where the brisk, clean air and stunning mountain views inspire his workday. He makes his online home at: www.JayFalconer.com and is an active member author with BookBreeze.com.
Mr. Falconer is the author of the critically acclaimed Narrows of Time Series and The Emily Heart Time Jumper Series, and is currently developing an all new apocalyptic Sci-Fi series called Redfall, The Flames of Tomorrow, due to be released in 2015.
Be sure to watch the video trailer for the Author's Narrows of Time book series by cutting and pasting this link: http://youtu.be/QXic3vkwC1U
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