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Albert Camus

Don't walk behind me; I may not lead. Don't walk in front of me; I may not follow. Just walk beside me and be my friend.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

is the world ready to listen? - Regress: The Alliance Chronicles #1 by S.F. Benson

Tru Shepard is a teenager committing acts of treason living in war-torn New Detroit circa 2025. The New Order, a government run by scientists and technologists, has banned creativity in favor of STEM education. In the eyes of the American Republic’s leaders, creativity is a waste of time which doesn’t foster a strong society. Besides Creatives have a tendency to speak out against the government.

Description:

Cover Designer: Regina Wamba at Mae I Design and Photography

Tru Shepard is a teenager committing acts of treason living in war-torn New Detroit circa 2025. The New Order, a government run by scientists and technologists, has banned creativity in favor of STEM education. In the eyes of the American Republic’s leaders, creativity is a waste of time which doesn’t foster a strong society. Besides Creatives have a tendency to speak out against the government.

Tru gambles with her life every time she steps foot in the Underground, a restricted warehouse district where Creatives congregate. She breaks the city-wide curfew to hang out with friends enjoying banned music and expressing herself on ancient sketchpads. Recently, the New Order has issued sweeps of the sector to find renegades.

But being picked up by the NDPD, New Detroit Police Department, is the least of her concerns. In ten days Tru will be seventeen, the age scientists consider a government-mandated inoculation to be totally safe. Although officials claim the vaccine is the country’s best defense against another worldwide pandemic, stories circulate amongst Creatives about individuals who lose their abilities after its administration.

Tru has her Inoculation Day orders. Failure to report is punishable by death, but if she can’t express herself artistically, she’d prefer dying.

Just when she despairs on what to do Zared Aoki, someone from her past, enters her life. He may be just as dangerous as the vaccination Tru needs to avoid. He claims to know the real reason behind the vaccine—a government project tampering with the fundamental design of humanity.

The two set out to prove the true nature of the vaccine and alert the public to its devastating effects. But is the world ready to listen?

EXCERPT




I lost track of how much time passed. A pleasant warmth, cozy and inviting, replaced the cold. My head jerked back. Zared sat beside me with the blanket draped around our shoulders. When did he move? It didn’t matter. I won. 

My half-open eyes met his. “What are you doing?” 

“Dealing with it.” His voice sounded scruffy. 

“No funny stuff.” It was more of a personal warning. My gaze fixated on his mouth. As a kid I never had the opportunity to kiss his perfectly shaped lips—slightly full with a deep dip on the upper lip. Would they be moist and soft? Or hot and spicy? Would it be possible to reignite feelings I’d forgotten about? When we moved away I thought my crush disappeared as well. Wrong. 

“I don’t plan on it.” 

I reached around inside my purse. My hand landed on the leather sheath containing the double-edged knife I always kept with me. What if he told the truth about living on the streets? A hard life changed people. I pulled it out and tucked the weapon into my waistband. 

Zared’s eyes followed my movements. “The latest in fashion accessories?” 

I winked and patted the blade. “I don’t leave home without it.” 

He raised his eyebrows. “Can you use it?” 

I grinned. “Care to find out?” 

“Not particularly. Y’know, you never answered my question.” 

“Which one?” 

“Will you help me?” 

“Can’t we talk about something else?” 

“Do I have your help?” 

He didn’t know how to change a subject. I played with my jacket zipper. “With what?” 

“Exposing the New Order.” 

I folded my arms over my stomach. “Did I hear you right?” 

His brown eyes locked on to mine. “Yeah. You in or out?” 

“Seriously?” 

“Seriously.” He leaned closer brushing against me. The heady scent of sandalwood drew me to him like the first notes played on a Stradivarius. Intriguing. Arousing. A tingle raced down my spine. 

“What makes you think we can do that?” Good looking and dumb. Questioning the government was stupid. Challenging it was a death wish. Now I sounded like Ko. 

“Trust me. It's possible.” 

I shook my head. “No, no, no. Exposing the government will take a lot more than trust.” 

“I know things. Valuable things. We can do this. Together.” Listening to him speak reminded me of a small kid with a new toy. Enthusiasm shone in his eyes like a Fourth of July sparkler. 

How do we do the impossible? He must have watched too many movies. We were teens. Just a couple of kids. We challenged our parents, our teachers. Not the leaders of the country. 

“I don’t know.” 

His smile revealed deep dimples. Sorry gorgeous, my help required a lot more than devastating looks. 

“Promise me you’ll think on it.” His voice was smoky, suggestive. Just what did he want me to think about? 

He had a crazy, somewhat credulous idea. But, what he contemplated was dangerous. Riskier than anything I’d ever done. People who went against the government were traitors. They were tortured and killed. We couldn’t do this. It gave a whole new meaning to the word wrong. 

“I’m going to sleep.” 

“Tru?” 

“What?” 

“Will you think on it?” 

“Fine! I’ll think on it. Go to sleep.”

About the author:
SF Benson resides in Georgia with her husband, a human daughter, and a couple of miniature fur kids (two female short-haired guinea pigs). 
At one time she wrangled a household which included three Samoyeds, saltwater fish, a hamster, and three guinea pigs. 

When she’s not busy playing Doctor Doolittle, she enjoys answering the question “what if” by writing mostly Dystopian/science fiction and paranormal stories for young adults and new adults. 
And if a spare moment happens, she morphs into a bookworm and devours a few books simultaneously.


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