In his 2006 novel, How to Read a Novel: A User’s Guide , John Sutherland surmised that in order to determine whether or not you’ll enjoy a book, you should flip to page sixty-nine and read that page only. If you like that page, there’s a pretty good chance you’ll like the rest of the novel too. Why? According to him, a lot of action seems to happen right around then for novels.
For my 69 test this week, I am going to use my book Ethereal Underground. I don't know if this is the best page in the novel but shows a part of Annalise's new found emotions. Enjoy Page 69!
It was normal for Leon to sleep that long after battle, after protecting his charges at times, but never her. She understood his concern, but she wasn’t sure what to say to make him feel better. There was no way she could stand it if he hated her, if he was even disappointed in her. There had never been a time that she had ever been less than honest with him, and she wasn’t sure where to begin. Even as she spoke, her thoughts drifted back to those beautiful eyes in that boy’s face. His face had been youthful, but the way he carried himself shown that he was a man and had seen many battles. It was something she had to tell her counterpart, he would know what to do. Maybe it was what was meant to happen, a prophecy maybe. She continued to try to convince herself that maybe this was supposed to happen, and that her counterpart would understand. Even though she felt an overwhelming sense of sadness at betraying what she had always known.
“Leon…” she started, but stopped, not wanting to let the words flow form her mouth for fear of his rejection.
“Anna….please tell me. What happened to you for you to become so tired? In two days’ time, I have not left your side. Finlay has been covering my charges as I tended to you. There is no reason for you to be like this and he would not answer any of my questions. Also, the council has been here…but I would not let them in,” he explained, still looking to her for answers.
The Elders were looking for her. They knew what she had done and they had come to punish her. Annalise had known there was no way for her to get out of this, no way they would not have noticed the soul missing. She wasn’t sure what happened to the person once they were brought back to life when they were supposed to die. Not sure what kind of kink she had put in the way of the world, she was scared to even think about it. It was possible she had thrown everyone’s futures off. She was terrified to know that Leon had asked the Elders to leave.