Indian Summer Book Excerpt
“Um, Jai?” He made a noise to indicate that he was listening. “The snakes out here, are they poisonous?”
“Only a couple of them. You only really have to worry about kraits. They are very poisonous, but they are usually nocturnal, so we don’t have to worry.” She swore she could hear her heart beating.
“These kraits, do they have stripes?” Her voice sounded high pitched. Any part of her outfit that wasn’t already drenched in sweat before definitely was now. Training told her not to make any sudden movements and to remain calm, but it still took every bit of self-control she could muster to keep from running. Jai must have picked up on the urgency in her voice because he started walking toward her. She put a hand up to stop him. As much as she longed to have his strong body gripping her again, there was no reason to put him in danger.
“Don’t make any sudden movements.”
She rolled her eyes. He really did think she was new to the field. If she had been the type to make a sudden movement, she would have done it when she first saw the snake, not minutes later.
“Is it moving away?”
Cara shook her head. Her whole body was shaking and it wasn’t from dehydration. Spiders and rodents she was fine with, but snakes freaked her out. She had only ever seen one before, and that one wasn’t poisonous. It also hadn’t been this close. “Nope, it isn’t going anywhere.” Closing her eyes, she tried to remember the words to a poem she had memorized back in high school. It was a technique she used to calm herself down, usually when turbulence got too rough. Right now, it didn’t seem to do her any good.
“You’re going to have to move then.” She swallowed hard. He was right, but she wasn’t convinced her legs would be able to make the movement. Inching her right foot backward, she used her toe to make sure the ground behind her was solid. The snake moved. She froze. It had only moved a fraction of an inch, but she was convinced that it was in reaction to her own movement.
Rocks crackled as Jai approached her. She knew she should tell him to stay away. It would be bad enough if she was bitten, but if they both got bitten it would be worse. Besides, if one of them was going to face the snake it had better be her. She had no idea how to drive his manual car or where the nearest hospital was. She would wind up sitting out there trying to get the car to start while watching him die. Still, it made her feel better to know that he was close by. She closed her eyes again and tried to find the courage to take another step. The longer she just stood there, the more her legs felt like they would never move again. Plus, she couldn’t just stand there all night.
In a flash of khaki, Jai came running past her carrying a huge stick. In one fluid movement, he lifted the krait onto the end and flung both the snake and the branch far off into the grass. She watched as her nightmare sailed through the air.
Emily Cale Author Bio
Emily Cale spent the majority of her childhood as a visitor to the worlds of her favorite authors. With encouragement from her English teachers, she put pen to paper and began imagining her own stories. Preferring the fascinating lives of her characters, she majored in creative writing. When not lost in a manuscript or a good book, she enjoys crocheting, rock climbing, and playing board games. She currently lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, with her husband and a very spoiled cat
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