Genre: YA speculative fiction
Word count: 84,000
After a global disaster strikes, seventeen-year-old Lizzie Wallace is kidnapped from the rubble of her high school in
Her repeated failure at growing their food cements her belief that she doesn't belong. Even her growing attraction to her chosen mate, Brand, doesn't stop her from plotting to escape and return to the family she knows is frantic about her. But when desperate looters breach the silo and murder her kidnapper, Lizzie learns the truth about why she was chosen. Now she must decide: Stay to defend the silo and her friends or fight her way back to her family in
The first explosion rocks the room, sending my books flying off the desk. The second makes the ground tremble and the lights flicker. Ms. Clark drops the dry eraser and grabs the corner of her large desk. I brace for a third and don't have to wait long. This one flings the glass specimen jars from the walls, smashing them onto the concrete floor. The smells of formaldehyde and death fill the science class.
"Everyone remain calm," Ms. Clark says.
"Should we get under our desks?" I ask.
Ms. Clark, now frozen in place, doesn’t respond. I don’t wait for an answer, crawling under my desk.
“Lizzie,” Christopher calls to me, but in the chaos I can’t find him. Bodies swarm everywhere in panic. Doesn’t anyone remember the drills we’ve been practicing for a decade now? We’ve been hearing about The Big One since we could walk. They’ve trained us for this. Get under your desks, curl into a little rock, and remain calm until the earthquake stops.
Only this isn’t stopping. The ground shakes again and the lights go out. Screams and sobs reverberate over the din of the creaking building, its beams groaning in protest.
I feel a hand on my arm, strong and warm. I don’t even have to look to know whose it is. I have every callous on Christopher's hand memorized, including the wart he keeps cutting off that stubbornly grows back on the inside of his thumb. I grab his hand, lacing my fingers through his, and squeeze tight.