Merlin’s Children (excerpt)

Merlin’s Children by RP Rawnsley

England: Whitby, North Yorkshire.

Seven days change me forever. I, Tess Bowden, risk everything I know, everything I am, everything I hope to be for a scarred young warrior from another world. It’s the week I discover my powers. The week I nearly die. The week I learn to kill.

Weird thing is, I’m a violence-hating science-nerd. And a big-time Marvel fan.

So… What the Hulk?

It begins.

Monday morning, mid-October. Blustery, cold and wet. I’m late for school, munching cold toast on the go, tired and cranky from staying up too late studying for my mock exams. Grey hoodie pulled up, I hustle through the winding streets of Whitby old town. Higgledy-piggledy shops and houses, hidden courtyards, and dark ginnels running down to the shore.

I leg it past the steep, stone curve of the 199 Steps—stairway to windswept cliffs and brooding abbey ruins. Seagulls cry and wheel overhead, scavenging for scraps. I scarf down the last of my toast before they dive-bomb me, and scoot round the corner onto Church Street, books clutched to my chest.

Something scuttles across the narrow street smack under my feet. Blood-red eyes gleam. Bony fingers tweak my ankle.


I stumble and my books spill over the wet cobbles. Muttering under my breath, I bend down and pick them up, hair swinging in front of my face. My glasses slide down my nose. I push them back, arms full of damp books, thoughts full of curses.

The demon cackles from a shop doorway.

I hate demons. And I’m plagued with the rare–and annoying–ability to see them.

Lucky me.


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