Here is an excerpt of something new that I am working on. I'm still fleshing this out, still trying to figure out plot and characters and so forth, and will be doing so for the next few months. Either way, here is a short sample of what I've been up to. Hopefully I can share more of this soon!
"Where do you want to go kid?"
Marcus looked over his options. So many options, each promising adventure, intrigue, and new experiences.
"Hey, I don't got all day. Pick one and get in. Line's backing up here."
He continued to waffle between the difference choices. There were a few he wouldn't dream of taking, but then there were others that looked too good to pass up. Marcus approached one of the doors, but then backed away and peered at another one.
A small picture hung on each of the doors, advertising in bold colors and letters the wonders to be found beyond. Sure, getting there would be terrible, but he wouldn't remember any of that.
"Hey kid," the old man sitting at the entrance jumped up out of his chair and approached Marcus. "I said get a move on. You realize this is the apocalypse, right? You understand that word a--poc--a--lypse?"
Marcus looked up at the man who now stood over him. Gray and wrinkled were the only two words that came to mind, though reeking of cigarette smoke was a very close third. He was probably younger than he looked, but he didn't have long for this world. None of them did.
"Pick a door you little--"
"Marcus," Jonny interrupted the angry man, "make a decision. We need to get moving."
"But, where will you go?" Marcus asked.
"I'll follow you in. Don't worry. Pick whichever one looks good to you." Jonny's smile was comforting, as always, and gave Marcus the courage to turn back to the doors. The old man let the rest of his insult out in a great puff of air before returning to his post and glaring at Marcus.
He was torn between the door that promised highland mountain adventure and the one that advertised an endless paradise island vacation. The dichotomy of the two choices was exhilarating, almost too much to handle. He closed his eyes, heard the antagonized sigh of the doorman, spun in a circle and held his arm out to a door.
He ended up pointing at the swamp land, but that was closest to the highland mountain door, so he finally walked over to the door and grasped the handle. He grasped but did not turn it, frozen temporarily in that final bastion of the world he had known all his life. This is where it all ended. He knew the word apocalypse, and it wasn't a good thing. He looked over his shoulder to see the angry man, then Jonny still smiling at him, but there was something different about his smile.
"Go on Marcus, I'll follow you through," Jonny said, his voice pitching slightly. Maybe he was coming down with a cold.
Marcus turned the handle to the great pleasure of the doorman, and walked inside, closing the door behind him. The light from the room outside was completely shut out when the door closed. It was impossibly dark and quiet, and Marcus could soon hear his own heart beating louder than he could stand.
One of the floor panels in the middle of the room burst into light, providing some illumination. He could see the room now, a small hexagonal shape with a slightly raised floor panel in the middle. There was a sign on the far wall instructing him to stand on the lighted pedestal and wait for the light to turn green.
Marcus marched up onto the platform and stood up straight, the way Jonny had shown him. Shoulders back, head high, don't let them see your fear. He only wished that those same things would make him feel less afraid. He could hide the fear from everyone but himself.
His last thoughts were of Jonny, a hope that he would come through after him, a dream of creating a new home with him in the mountains, then nothing.
Jonny watched his little brother walk through the door to the mountains, waiting for the door to fully close before the tears fell down his cheeks. He was just a kid, he didn't understand what was happening. It was best that way. Better to let him think that everything would be fine. It was better that most people believed what those signs said, that they carelessly walk into those doors, not knowing it was all a lie.
"Next," the doorman said, not bothering to glance at Jonny, or anyone for that matter. His sole purpose was to keep the line moving.
Jonny swallowed and stepped over the threshold and into the door room. It was arranged as a semi-circle, with flat surfaces along its arc that held doors to each of the "new world" locations. He knew what was behind those doors but he moved forward anyway.
Marcus went through the mountain door, and though it really wouldn't matter which one Jonny walked through, he made good on his word and walked through the mountain door. At least he would go out with a small piece of honesty. He let more tears fall unbidden from his eyes as he turned the handle and walked through.