Excerpt from Daniel Everhart and the Skylands of Caterra: Guarinot
The doorbell echoes through the hallway and into the kitchen. “Who could be here at this time of morning?” Mom dries her hands on a towel and heads to the front door.
“Wait. It might be a trap.”
“Don’t be silly. Bad people aren’t up until after noon.”
She’s clearly misplaced her voice of reason.
“Who told you that?” I ask.
“I just know.” Mom disappears around the corner, and I hear the front door open and close.
A moment later Mom reenters the kitchen with a letter.
“Who’s it from?”
“Don’t know. But it’s addressed to you.”
“What?” I look over her shoulder at the envelope. My hands still have jelly on them, from my toast. “Open it!”
She tears the top edge, lifts out a piece of paper, and places it flat on the table. Her hands begin to tremble, and she drops to the nearest chair.
In the top left corner is the date August 31, 2038. In the middle of the page is the word “Bestar.” At the bottom, the letters D-P-E.
“That’s it?” I ask.
Mom looks like she’s struggling to breathe, and her color has gone from rose-pink to ash-white.
“Mom? Are you okay?”
“This is your father’s handwriting. Look at the date. He wrote this on your fifth birthday.”
Now it’s my turn to sink into a chair. “What? But . . . what?”
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