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The P.A.W.S. Saga Book 10
BY DEBBIE MANBER KUPFER
A single feather of rainbow hues was the inspiration.
The Great Zog of Manus Wu gazed down at it and decided it was a sign. The time of the gathering of the avians was almost nigh. Of course it could have been because he was molting, but what would be poetic or prophetic about that? And the Great Zog was convinced he was a prophet, a wielder of magic.
He decided they would come here. And he would announce their arrival. Birds from around the globe would flock and glory in their feathered beauty and his, of course.
And thus the first Madarak was born.
This year Madarak or Bird Con as it’s colloquially called is taking place in Nashville and bird shapeshifters and animagus from around the globe are descending upon the convention grounds. Some like Jenny and Tessa fly in on their own wings. Others like Oswald and 104 year old Gloria Ainsworth fly on a first class jet. While Alaskan friends, Jayda and Timothy, hitch a ride in a self-driving car? What could possibly go wrong?
“I told you we should fly!” Timothy pouted.
The first ride out of Nome had been easy and they’d pretty much slept the whole way to Juneau. Crossing Alaska so easily had made them complacent. Maybe this whole endeavor wasn’t a lost cause after all. But the moment they crossed into Canada, their luck changed. It took them several hours to get a ride as far as Bear Lake and then nothing. They’d been standing on the corner of the highway with their scribbled sign now for much of the day and no one had even slowed down. At this rate they would never make it to Nashville for Madarak Bird Con.
“What, fly all the way from frickin’ Alaska? Are you out of your mind?” Jayda shook her head. Tim could be such a pain sometimes.
“Well, we wouldn’t do it all the way there, we’d take breaks. There’s still two weeks to go until Bird Con. Plenty of time.” Timothy stretched and his form flickered for a moment.
Jayda noticed and put her hand on his shoulder. “No, don’t you go changing on me now. Look, that car is stopping!”
The door opened. “Hop in, guys!” The girl had rainbow-colored streaks in her hair and a huge smile on her face.
“See!” whispered Jayda and they climbed into the car that took off immediately.
Maybe this was a good idea after all, thought Timothy.
They settled down on the back seat next to the rainbow-haired girl who held out her hand. “Hi, I’m Audrey.”
“Um, thanks… Timothy, and this is Jayda.” He gazed over to the driver’s seat and noticed with a sudden shock that it was empty. “Wait? Where’s the driver?”
“Oh we don’t have one. It’s a self-driving car. Driverless.” Audrey beamed.
“Oh, but aren’t you at least supposed to be up front?” asked Jayda. “What if there’s an accident or something?”
“Oh, no need. Safe as houses this. I came all the way up here on it from Nunavut.” Audrey paused and stretched, letting out a yawn. “And um… anyway I can’t drive. Failed my test. Gave up. You know how it is.”
Timothy tightened his seat belt and noticed Jayda doing the same. Maybe they could make some excuse and get off soon and get another ride. “I don’t think we should…” he began.
“No … need!” Audrey placed her hand on his. “It’ll be fine. And you want to get to Nashville, right? I’m going all the way there and I need company.”
Timothy gazed into Audrey’s green eyes and was instantly calmed. She was right. It was going to be fine. Why was he even worried?
Debbie Manber Kupfer grew up in the London. She has lived in Israel, New York and North Carolina and somehow ended up in St. Louis. She lives with her family including two very opinionated felines.
She works as a writer, editor, and puzzle constructor. She is the author of the young adult fantasy series, P.A.W.S. which features a secret international organization of shapeshifters with headquarters in the Jewel Box in Forest Park.
She has also written several children’s picture books including Adana the Earth Dragon and Esmeralda Grunch and the Red Tulip. She is the editor of the charity anthology, Catstruck! and the Sins of Time horror series and has stories in several anthologies including Fauxpocalypse, 13 Candles, Winter Wishes, and Shades of Fear.
When not writing or editing fiction she writes puzzles for Penny Press magazines and has also published a book of puzzles, Paws 4 Logic with her son, Joey.
She believes that with enough tea and dark chocolate you can achieve anything!
Links to Debbie’s websites, blogs, books, #ad etc.:
Visit Debbie Manber Kupfer on her website
Special Giveaway: Debbie will give away an ebook copy of MADARAK to one lucky reader who comments on her Karen’s Killer Book Bench blog.
Thanks, Debbie, for sharing your book with us!
Don’t miss the chance to read this book!