Thursday, January 12, 2012

Drop the Needle #23

GENRE: YA Paranormal

After one of her close friends drowns, Nox confronts the Grim Reaper about why everyone in her life dies and why he needs her help.

"What am I?"

"Now, that is the million dollar question, isn't it?" Grim crowed. "Because we're the same brand, sweetness."

"I don't understand."

"You said you're afraid to watch people die. Why is that?"

"I don't like feeling powerless." She sighed. "But I don't suppose anyone does."

"Especially not those who have power." His eyes locked on hers. "Tell me, when the shades shrank back from you, how did you feel?"

Like she could juggle the cosmos, hold supernovas in her hand. "You lied to me. You said you scared off the shades at the beach."

"Did I lie?" He tipped her chin up with a touch of his fingertips. "What exactly did I say to you?"

"You said—you asked—if I thought the dead feared something other than a Reaper." She frowned. "Do they?"


"But they were afraid of me." Nox swallowed.

Grim raised an eyebrow.

"But, I'm not a Reaper."

"Not yet. But you will be." Sympathy painted his face. "When you die."

Nox's knees dropped to the ground.

"That's where the lightning comes from, the charge of a Reaper. I'm sorry I had to tell you now, sorry I couldn't … give you more time. I can't tell you how badly I wanted to." He knelt beside her. "You're going to have to get over watching people die, sweetness. You've only just begun."

"But, I can't be … how is that even possible?"

"It's what you were born to be. Don't believe me?" She vehemently shook her head. "Ask Haden. It's what he's been afraid to tell you."

The look on Haden's face, the fear in his eyes when Grim took her under the Veil.

Death conquers all, except me. Because I am Death.


  1. I love this concept! It's interesting to think that some are chosen to reap when they die, yet most don't learn this until after their death. Now she's going to have to carry this knowledge throughout her life.

  2. Great voice! This excerpt really read well - and quickly - I wish there was more :)

    The only thing which stuck out to me was how sympathetic death was at the end - which isnt an attribute I associate with the grim reaper. And the first lines of death's dialogue also sounded more sarcastic and less sympathetic. But maybe your death is different and this is just too small of an excerpt to tell - I would just make sure that death's personality in this section is consistent with the rest.

    Thank you for sharing and best of luck with this piece!

  3. Wow! I got chills at the end, completely swept me away. What an incredible concept!

  4. Good stuff! Nothing much to critique. If anything, the sentence 'Nox's knees dropped to the ground' seemed a bit off because really, she dropped to the ground, not her knees. Perhaps 'Nox dropped to her knees'? Other than that, I like it!

  5. I thought this worked pretty well. I loved the line - Like she could juggle the cosmos, hold supernovas in her hand.

    The line about her knees dropping was awkward. She would drop to her knees.

    And at the end, I wasn't sure if Haden was there, or if she was remembering the fear in his eyes.