TITLE: White Sky
GENRE: Science Fiction (Literary crossover)
Raised as an orphan in a village on a small planetary colony, Jem has never met his own people — the invaders who banished the villagers to the isolated settlement. His skill with a bow brings him confidence and pride — and more distrust from the villagers. When he’s blamed for the murder of two elders, survival may mean leaving to seek the people he knows only from tales of their arrogance and cruelty.
As far as Omalda could see, the white tundra passing beneath the cruiser stretched out ahead. Endless, silent, empty. Occasional patches of mottled brown or grayish-green made the surface appear rippled, like water. She imagined herself in the belly of an enormous seabird that searched for fish swimming beneath strange white waves. Although the speed they traveled was slow relative to what the vehicle was capable of, the surreal landscape swept rapidly below them. And yet how great a distance it would be, Omalda thought, if one were walking across it.
“Glad I’m not down there,” Aldas said, echoing her thoughts. He was looking through his binoculars; twisting in his seat to follow something in the white world beyond the curve of the window, he bumped Omalda with his elbow. “I’m sorry, did I . . .” he began, turning back to her.
She gave his arm a playful shove. “It’s all right,” she assured him. She leaned over, pulling against her harness, to look out the window on his side, her shoulder pressing against the solid muscle of his upper arm. “See anything interesting yet?”
“No . . . but I thought I saw something moving, and then I lost it.” He spoke slowly as he concentrated on moving the sight line of the binoculars across the tundra.