TITLE: Brink of Life
GENRE: YA Science Fiction
Leroy Splinter was eight years old the first time he was arrested. Six years later, he could still see the scar around his right wrist from where the rusting handcuff had broken skin.
Every day, the scar was a reminder to keep out of trouble, and it did a pretty good job.
Dusk was slowly putting on its navy blue cloak and turning into night, and the few streaks of pink and yellow looked like paths that stars had left behind on the way to their positions in the sky. A tilted barn loomed beyond a patch of pumpkin remains, its stripping white paint dressing itself in the fading sunlight like a matron in her old prom dress. Two figures leaned against the door. Ray Splinter was thin, tanned, and wrinkly like a raisin. In a fraying straw hat, a maroon flannel shirt, and patchy jeans, he looked just like a hunched, long-nosed scarecrow. His expression was blissful as he tilted his worn visage upwards, chewing lazily on a piece of grass. Leroy stood next to his father, his wide brown eyes fixed on the outer woods. His straight, fair hair stuck out haphazardly from his royal blue cap as though someone had stuffed the hat with dried straw. His shirt was wearing thin and his large overalls fell in bunches over his toes, but he’d always had other things to worry about.
Leroy untangled a yard of twine from his left wrist that he’d wrapped around it for convenience.