Seventeen year old Michael Anderson and his deaf kid brother, Danny, find themselves in mortal danger after their parents are kidnapped. Michael discovers Danny has a special gift—he knows what happens after a person dies—and now others want to know too. The brothers must outwit and outrun Samuel Herrington, a lethal biophysicist, the FBI, and even fellow Americans in a harrowing cross-country chase, because whoever gets to Danny first will have the power to rule the world.
Day 4—Thursday, 5:00 a.m.
He felt old. Not the kind of old where someone simpers along in a blessed Alzheimer’s oblivion and nurses tend to your every need, but the kind of old that nightmares bring. The old that if he closed his eyes to go to bed for the night, there would be the lingering fear he might not wake up in the morning—that this might be his last cognizant night on Earth.
Michael was so terrified he couldn’t breathe. His safe, little world had shifted out of its comfortable orbit the moment his parents were kidnapped, propelling him to places he never dreamed imaginable. Suddenly, there was horror everywhere and nothing was what it appeared to be. How could life go so terribly wrong in just a few hours? He had had no time to think. He couldn’t plan, but just reacted to what was happening. A storm, more volatile and dangerous than a level five tornado had turned his world inside out and all he could do was attack it head-on, swallowing his fear and living strictly on the adrenaline pumping furiously throughout his body, hoping against hope his luck wouldn’t run out.
The only thing he knew was that now his little brother was his responsibility. An innocent six-year old who for some reason the world wanted to claim as its own to exploit.
Michael wouldn’t let them win. He would protect his brother with his life.
He glanced at Danny, who had fallen asleep in the passenger seat. He could see his brother’s furrowed brow and pale face in the flickering glow of the highway lamplights. Michael felt like they’d been through a war, racing right along with the military guys in the Middle East right now.
Just as the rain began hitting the windshield, Danny started to whimper.
“Don’t worry. I won’t let anything happen to you.” He wondered if he could fulfill that simple promise. He took one hand off the wheel and patted his brother’s head. Danny immediately calmed. Still, he wouldn’t have responded even if Michael had shouted. Danny was deaf, and that, among other things, was one of the reasons they were in this car fleeing across the country. They were running far away from their home, trying desperately to get to a small town in northern California. Mr. Daley had said there was a man there who could help them. Daley was Michael’s high school biology teacher and the only person in Rockland County who wasn’t out for the glory, the money, the prize of scientific discovery, or the chance to see the light.
Copyright© Elyse Salpeter. All rights reserved.