Last week, a man from the government showed up in the village. This week, Snow finds out who it is. Okay, okay, I can’t stand it any longer! I’ve got to say who it is. His name is Finley, and he is my male MC. I actually still remember the exact moment I came up with him. I was brushing my teeth and trying to decide where I should take Snow’s story. I knew I wanted to add in a second main character, but I wasn’t sure who. Suddenly, I had it. I remember thinking, “I should have a really arrogant guy be the second main character who comes to Northolt and takes Snow for the government.” I was so excited I ran out of the bathroom, grabbed a green index card and scribbled the idea down in purple colored pencil. Finley’s evolved a lot since he was just a scribbled note, but he’s still arrogant and believes he’s perfect. 😉
I step closer, just enough so I can make out my dad and three other figures in the fog. Two of them are large and tall, imposing dark shapes in the blur of the frozen cloud. They have to be NAUFA soldiers. The third figure in front of the others, is shorter and smaller but strangely seems to be in charge. He steps closer to my dad and says something so softly I can’t hear, and then I see my dad’s arm fly out and hear the sickening sound of fist hitting jaw. The man reels back. The two large figures rush forward and grab my dad. The one strikes him across the face, and Dad stumbles back. The other brings his rifle down on Dad’s back, and I see my dad fall. Kiska barks and runs forward charging the soldiers. The one soldier swings his rifle around and knocks her in the head, and she runs off with a whimper. I cover my mouth with my hand, suppressing a cry. The soldiers continue to hit my dad, even though he’s on the ground. “Enough!” the man’s voice stops the beating.
“What do you want?” I hear Dad’s voice through the fog, his figure doubled over, kneeling in the snow. “I’ll give you anything. Just leave my daughter alone.”
The man’s laugh is full of scorn. “What could you have in this pitiful outpost that NAUFA would want? Besides, she’s not your daughter. She belongs to NAUFA, and I’m just here to retrieve what is ours.” The soldiers roughly haul Dad to his feet, and I know I have to do something. I can’t watch them hurt my dad anymore.
I run from my hiding spot over to my dad. “Let him go!” I shout. “Let him go!” I look at my dad’s face, bruised and bloody, his one eye swollen shut, and I feel anger seethe up in me. “Snow, no,” I hear my dad say but I don’t pay attention. I run at the one soldier and push him with all of my strength. He lets go of Dad, more out of surprise than from my blow. The soldier moves to grab hold of me, but the leader laughs and waves him away. I turn to face this man, ready to fight him, too. He has an ugly bruise forming on his jaw, but his eyes flash triumphantly. He smiles slightly. “Ah. Just who we need. Looks like you’re coming with us, girl.”
“Who are you?” I demand.
“The name’s Finley, and NAUFA assigned me to your case. I’m here to take you away from this godforsaken place.” He pushes his bangs back, and adjusts his oversized, grey coat.
“I’m not going anywhere!”
Finley smiles reassuringly. “We’d really prefer that you’d come voluntarily. It makes the process so much easier when the subject cooperates and does as she is told” He adds, “But you really do not have a choice. You’re coming with me.” Finley takes a step forward and grips my arm. From the fog comes a deep growl. Kiska, her head low and teeth bared, advances toward Finley, snarling at him low and deep with a ferocity I’ve never heard from her before. Finley lets go of me and backs up slightly, startled. Kiska barks and lunges towards him. Finley scrambles backwards, but not fast enough, and Kiska’s jaws grab his arm. Suddenly, there’s a bright flash of light, and a deafening explosion fills the air.
Thanks for reading!