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Here is the first TEASER DAY of GRAPEMO 2014. I've posted these in no particular order, other than in the order I happened to receive them.

Thank you all for sharing!

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Mialie S

Ahhhhhhhhh! Doodle Dog tried with all his might to stand his ground. The friendly leaves he loved to chase were caught up in an incredibly blustery way on a quite-more-than-windy day! The little floppy-eared puppy bowed his head against the constant gusts keeping him from crossing his favorite meadow at his usual steady speed. Instead, he took one step at a time (there was not much else he COULD do!), pushing against the bullying breeze as clouds of leaves swirled around him. As he put one paw in front of the other, Doodle Dog felt the harsh currents getting stronger and stronger, blowing and blowing and BLOWING him backwards. It reminded him of the story he’d heard about three little pigs and how their house was almost blown over! Doodle Dog looked around the meadow, as well as he could see through the curtain of red and yellow and brown leaves blocking his view, and didn’t see any houses nearby to be blown over. Whew! Doodle Dog kept going slowly but surely, but was knocked sideways as a new group of bright orange leaves was tossed at him only to take another step or two and be knocked right back where he had been by a jumble of crunchy greenish leaves coming from his other side. WHAP!

Well, all right, then! Doodle Dog thought. Apparently it WASN’T a very good day to be outside, but he couldn’t very well do anything about it now, could he?

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Startled, Yawa spun around and found herself nose to nose with a boy. One of the fancy dressed ones she had to travel along with on this African field trip. uhg.

“What are you talking about? I stole nothing,” she said keeping her left hand in her pockets.

“Did too. I saw you pick up that coin in the dirt. It belongs to the site, not in your pocket. Put it back,” the boy said crossing his arms on his chest.

He was obviously a few years older than Yawa but she was confident she could take him out if needed.

Nobody tells Yawa what to do.

“No,” she spat and took off running in the opposite direction.

A cloud of red dirt lifted from where her slim feet pounded as she ran.

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Emelia took the arm of one of the bearded, frock-coated creatures—what had they called them? Sgolin—and steadied him as he caught his balance on one of the slick stepping stones across the river. He nodded, keen gaze measuring hers before darting away. “Keep together, keep moving,” she encouraged. “Once we’re across, head for the trees.”

“There’s not enough time,” a voice whimpered from among those waiting to cross.

“We’ll be fine,” Emelia called above the rising murmurs. “Be careful, the rocks are slippery. Just keep moving.”

A hand touched her shoulder. “I can help.” The confidence in PilaNe’s voice eased the constriction in Emelia’s chest.

PilaNe waved her hand. “Wyba miro. Miro.” She frowned, mouth drawing to a thin line, then shook her head. “The elder tongue, of course.” Eyes closed, she lifted her palm above the river. “Iryea sawapindua. Iryea.”

Startled cries and shouts rose from those cautiously traversing the river, the waters rippling and splashing as hundreds of stones broke the surface, crowded together to form a wide, if uneven, path above the flow.

“Quickly now,” PilaNe urged. “Everyone—”

A sharp crack echoed from the cliffs behind them. Emelia whirled, staring beyond the river where the first plumes of smoke rose toward an azure sky swarming with golden ovoids. Aramyr’s fleet. Screams, sobs, and cries of alarm filled the air around her.

Realization stole her heart, then instinct and necessity rushed to fill the void. “Let’s go,” she barked, pulled an elderly man up onto the bank, then motioned to the wide flow crowding the passage. “Into the trees, hurry.”

A troop? flock? of Gracka hopped across the stones to her side, eyes wide and the feathers that topped their heads fluffed or rising in crests. A sharp look and she cut off an endless volley of questions before it could begin.

“Stories are for survivors. Want some? Run.”

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Lucas had an overwhelming urge to hold her. He fought it, and instead asked, “What do I call you?”

She thought for a moment, then looked up at Luke and said, “I do not have a name.”

He stewed over this information. Before he could think of something to say, she spoke.

“Would you name us, Lucas?”

He was so taken aback by this request, that he responded without thinking, “Me.”

“Yes. You. You have found us. You have taken care of us. We would like you to name us.”

Lucas let out a shaky chuckle and said, “No, that’s not what I meant. You said ‘Name us’. You mean ‘name me‘.”

“Oh,” she said. “Lucas, will you give me a name?”

Lucas looked at her. Studied her. He thought about the fantastic and impossible way she had fallen into his life. The way, he knew, she had altered it forever. He thought about who she might be. He thought about who he was, in general and at this particularly desolate time in his life. He thought about how she would affect him, how she already had.

And, all at once, he knew what to call her.

“Hope,” he said, and he looked at her with a woeful desperation. And something else, something powerful and dangerous, underneath. “You’re my Hope.”

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Patti M

“Trey, get out to the car.” My mother spouted at me, her head hanging through the half-open door to my room. The doctors told her I could hear but she still made sure I saw her lips every time she talked. It’s like she hoped I was deaf, just so she wouldn’t feel like she had some crazy 15 year-old kid for a son. She left my bedroom after I nodded.

Huh. Yeah. My bedroom. More like the room at the top of the stairs to the left, just past the bathroom, at 877 North Royal Street in the bustling city of Green, Ohio. That’s what it was now. Not my room anymore, I thought as I picked at the paint chips on the wall where my posters used to be. It’s just a room now; an empty room, in an empty house.

The view outside my window looked better today than it ever had. Why didn’t I notice what a cool road we were living on? Guess it’s not so cool until you have to leave. Stupid friend of Mom’s. Stupid Moltenville, Ohio. Stupid castle. Who buys a castle anyhow? Why is it our responsibility to live there and help run it? Stupid me, taking those online classes instead of going to that special school. Wouldn’t have been so easy for us to move. Stupid me. Stupid everything.

I crumbled a small piece of paint from my wall between my fingers and popped it out into the toilet on my way down the hall. At the bottom of the steps mom and Brandy waited, glaring at me. What else is new? My big sister didn’t look at me, she glared at me.

“Come on,” she said. I looked away, pretending I didn’t hear how she ended that phrase. The way she always did. “Freak.” I heard just fine and she knew that too.

There’s no way to explain why I don’t talk. Well, there is. But I won’t tell them. It’s stupid too and I don’t need any more reasons to see doctors and psychologists and counselors, or any other stupid person to fix me. Doctors said I could hear and should be able to talk just fine. My medical file says mute, but as far as my sister thought, it should read freak.

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Feb. 4th, 2014 05:42 pm (UTC)
Great start!
A lovely group of teasers to get us all started. So glad ya'll were brave enough to share. Well done!


Jeannine Garsee

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