GENRE: YA Fantasy
Malora Mooreland smiled at her long-lost uncle. His name was Augustus
Caliban. He eyed her warily, like he expected her to morph into a
psychotic clown at any minute. He did not smile back.
"So you're related to my mom, huh?" she said. They sat side-by-side in
SFO, waiting for their flight. She was devouring her second scoop of
cookie dough ice-cream.
"That is correct," he said. "As we discussed exhaustively. All morning."
He barely moved his mouth when he spoke, she noticed. His eyes were
these black, staring things, two cold pits in his long, stern face.
His skin was gray, almost-- colorless. Although Malora was a
pale-skinned redhead herself, she liked to think she looked less
ghoulish than him.
"So how'd you find out about me?" she asked.
"A will. Your mother's will. Unearthed recently."
"Wow... and they didn't find it 'til I was fourteen, huh?" She tossed
the remains of her ice cream into the nearest garbage can. "That kind
"Indeed," Caliban said, "all those years we could have spent together..."
Malora sent him a long, careful look. She'd almost swear he sounded relieved.
I'm not that... 'uncouth', am I? she wondered. He'd called her that a
few hours earlier when they were introduced.
"Are you certain this uncouth creature is Malora Mooreland?"
So she'd forgotten to brush her hair this morning, and she'd worn the
wrinkled shirt she spilled soda on the other day... She was 'couth' in
other respects, wasn't she?
It would help if she knew what 'uncouth' meant.