Nebador Archives presents an epic young-adult science fiction adventure - Book Two

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Kibi and the Search for Happiness
2010
Rini and the Old Slave
2010
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2011
First Taste of Freedom
2011
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2012
What're Friends For?
2012
Sata's Strength
2012
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2012
Buna's Search
2013
The Magic Needle
2014
Still Voices
2016
Floating Away
2016
The Lonely Space Dragon
2016


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NEBADOR Book Two: Journey

Ilika and his nine students make their way through the countryside as he teaches them. Tested by needy people, burned by steam, pounded by the ocean at high tide, and attacked by wild animals, they must find reserves of courage they didn't know they had.

a lonely beach along a wild seashore
original cover art commissioned to artist Rachael Hedges

A disaster threatens to end their journey when it catches them in three separate groups. They all come to the first mountain pass transformed, hardly recognizing the people they once were.
Book Two front cover Book Two back cover

Letter to Readers

Dramatic Audiobook

Audiobook Chapter 13 (8MB)

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Where to Get It

Screenplay 1 (including free download)


Chapter 32: Trial by Teeth

    "I was awakened by a mischievous dream!" Kibi announced as they sat around the unlit campfire circle eating crackers and dried fruit. "But ... I can't remember it."
    "Anyway, nice sentence!" Ilika declared. "Passive voice and implicit personification."
    Sata joined in the game. "I dreamed that Death came out of the ocean, and flowers bloomed everywhere He went."
    "Wow! Explicit personification and irony, not to mention some interesting spiritual concepts."
    The rest joined in the process, with various degrees of success.
    "I'm so hungry, I could eat a bear!" Miko said with a grin.
    "Excellent exaggeration for emphasis, Miko."
    When the language game was over, Sata brought up the concern they all shared. "What are we going to do about the fox?"
    Ilika glanced at the beautiful creature, still sitting beside a tall tree, both fur and bark of a similar reddish-brown. "Are you sure we need to do anything?"
    "Well," Boro began, "since we offered it food, even though it didn't like our stew, it's gotten more friendly ..."
    "So we have to decide if we want to invite it to come with us ..." Sata continued.
    "And," Mati jumped in, "we have to think about what to do when we go into a town."
    "Foxes eat meat," Neti explained, "and all we've had were fish and mushrooms and things like that."
    Ilika looked thoughtful. "So it would probably want to hunt its own food. Do any of you object to inviting it to come with us?"
    They all shook their heads.
    "Do any of you object to forcing it to come with us?"
    They all slowly nodded.
    "I feel the same as you. Invite, yes. Force, no. Same deal we offered Kit. I can't imagine it wanting to go anywhere near a town."
    "I agree," Kibi said. "If it did come with us, we'd have to go around the towns, and send small groups in for shopping, like we did at Port Town."

    By mid-morning they had refreshed themselves at the stream, packed everything, and were ready to go. The fox continued to sit about fifty feet from the camp, watching every movement with keen eyes.
    Mati mounted her faithful donkey. Almost everyone spoke to the fox in a friendly voice, inviting it to join them on their journey. Only Toli and Miko were too embarrassed to add their voices to the invitation, but they smiled.
    The group began walking as close to northward as the terrain allowed, Mati and Toli at the front, the rest spread out in a loose line behind. Those at the rear soon passed word up that the fox was indeed following, about a hundred feet back. This, combined with the good weather and the easy traveling among the towering trees, put them all in a happy and carefree mood.

    The fox had never seen people like these before. They didn't appear to be in the forest to cut down trees or trap animals, like all other humans in her experience. They ate differently too, with not a whiff of the usual burnt meat or rotten fruit juice. They were interesting, and she remained curious enough to follow at a safe distance.

    By now, Miko had noticed that his scrapes and scratches, though still itching, were starting to heal, and he too was happy. Neti still handed him sour berries whenever she found them, and he grumbled a little, but then smiled and kissed her ... and ate the berries.
    The great forest was proving to be the safest, most gentle place they had yet visited in their travels, perhaps in their entire lives, with no one to steal from them or arrest them, nothing to burn them, and no high tide. Even the creatures of the forest seemed merely curious.
    With Miko and Neti bringing up the rear, those in the middle of the line of walkers began to frolic, play little games of tag, speak in passive voice, or personify the most unlikely things, including some that Tera left behind on the ground. Peals of laughter repeatedly echoed through the trees.
    The forest floor gently rose and fell as they moved north, and sometimes the lead pair would be out of sight for a moment. As they played and joked with each other, those in the middle tended to dally, or even stop to share something funny. No one noticed when the fox gave a little yip and disappeared.
    Rini's full attention was suddenly captured by the sight of Toli running back over the next rise and cowering behind a big log, gasping for breath. Rini couldn't see Mati. His heart started pounding as he dropped his bedroll, slipped off his saddlebags, and ran forward.

    None of those in the lead were prepared for the huge snarling timber wolf, easily half the size of a donkey, that sprang into their path. Tera leapt back a yard when the beast appeared, then tried to turn and run for her life. Mati immediately pulled the reins tight and commanded her to stop and stay.
    As soon as Rini could see over the rise, he veered to the nearest tree and ripped a low branch from the trunk with one determined heave.
    After fighting her own panic for a moment, words came to Mati, words spoken by her teacher weeks before. Both your lives may depend on YOU keeping your wits ... maybe running ... maybe calling for help ... maybe attacking the predator.
    Somehow she knew that turning her back on the wolf was not an option. The present stalemate existed because an even larger creature was facing the wolf, without showing fear.
    Mati opened her mouth to call for help, then closed it, remembering that she was over a hill from the others. She had no idea where Toli had gone.


illustration by Amanda Herman

    Growling and showing huge yellow teeth, the wolf took a measured step forward with its ears laid back.
    Suddenly Rini appeared at Tera's side, the jagged end of his broken branch thrusting forward.
    Mati knitted her brow and urged Tera forward a step.
    Tera was halfway between courage and terror, her lungs heaving with deep, forceful breaths, when she felt the command to move forward. On shaking legs she took a step, then pawed the air with one front foot and opened her mouth, letting all her teeth show.

    This was what the wolf hated. He knew very well that a pack had great power. He knew because he was once part of a pack, and they always had plenty to eat. Then he accidentally broke some silly taboo and the alpha female chased him away. Now he was alone, and could hardly find anything to eat. For a moment, when the tall human ran away, the wolf thought he might have an easy meal, maybe even a feast if he could bring down the donkey.
    Now there were two of them again, and this male, while small, showed no sign of running. Even the stupid donkey was getting courageous, and the wolf glimpsed other humans running up behind. It was now or never.
    The desperate wolf leapt toward the female on the donkey.
    About three-quarters of the way to the prize, something caught him in the shoulder and sent him flying off to the side.
    The wolf knew this hunt was over, and fully intended to run as soon as he landed, but suddenly a high-pitched sound pierced every muscle in his body. A heartbeat later, everything was dark.


The setting of Book Two, the western half of the kingdom:

the western half of the kingdom

Book Two front cover:

Book Two front cover

Book Two back cover:

Book Two back cover

Letter to Readers

Dramatic Audiobook

Audiobook Chapter 13 (8MB)

Comments

Illustrations

Deep Learning Notes

Where to Get It

Screenplay 1 (including free download)

NEBADOR
Book by Book

the narrow streets of a medieval walled city
Book One:
The Test
Spring 2010

English

Português

Français

Letter to Readers

Dramatic Audiobook

Audiobook Chapter 1 (6MB)

Comments

Illustrations

Deep Learning

Where to Get It

Screenplay 1

a lonely beach along a wild seashore
Book Two:
Journey
Summer 2010

English

Letter to Readers

Dramatic Audiobook

Audiobook Chapter 13 (8MB)

Comments

Illustrations

Deep Learning

Where to Get It

Screenplay 1

the colorful aurora above majestic mountains
Book Three:
Selection
Fall 2010

English

Letter to Readers

Dramatic Audiobook

Audiobook Chapter 5 (13MB)

Comments

Illustrations

Deep Learning

Where to Get It

Screenplay 1

stranded on a frigid ice continent
Book Four:
Flight Training
Spring 2011

English

Letter to Readers

Comments

Illustrations

Deep Learning

Where to Get It

fascinating planets with strange life forms
Book Five:
Back to the Stars
Fall 2011

English

Letter to Readers

Comments

Illustrations

Deep Learning

Where to Get It

a shining jewel floating in the blackness of space
Book Six:
Star Station
Summer 2012

English

Letter to Readers

Comments

Illustrations

Deep Learning

Where to Get It

unseen guests at an event of universe importance
Book Seven:
The Local Universe
Summer 2013

English

Letter to Readers

Comments

Illustrations

Where to Get It

stillness and silence where movement and sound should be
Book Eight:
Witness
Summer 2014

English

Letter to Readers

Comments

Illustrations

Where to Get It

Heather's meeting circle at a top-secret military facility
Book Nine:
A Cry for Help
Summer 2015

English

Letter to Readers

Comments

Illustrations

Where to Get It

a strange eco-system deep underground
Book Ten:
Stories from Sonmatia
Summer 2016

English

Letter to Readers

Comments

Where to Get It

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by J. Z. Colby
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