Dust 2 a new world order, p.1
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       Dust 2_A New World Order, p.1

           S. E. Smith
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Dust 2_A New World Order


  Dust 2: A New World Order

  S.E. Smith

  Contents

  Acknowledgments

  Copyright

  Synopsis

  Cast of Characters

  Prologue

  Chapter 1

  Chapter 2

  Chapter 3

  Chapter 4

  Chapter 5

  Chapter 6

  Chapter 7

  Chapter 8

  Chapter 9

  Chapter 10

  Chapter 11

  Chapter 12

  Chapter 13

  Chapter 14

  Chapter 15

  Chapter 16

  Chapter 17

  Chapter 18

  Chapter 19

  Chapter 20

  Epilogue

  Sample of Capture of the Defiance

  Additional Books and Information

  About the Author

  Acknowledgments

  I would like to thank my husband Steve for believing in me and being proud enough of me to give me the courage to follow my dream. I would also like to give a special thank you to my sister and best friend, Linda, who not only encouraged me to write, but who also read the manuscript. Also to my other friends who believe in me: Julie, Jackie, Christel, Sally, Jolanda, Lisa, Laurelle, Debbie, and Narelle. The girls that keep me going!

  And a special thanks to Paul Heitsch, David Brenin, Samantha Cook, Suzanne Elise Freeman, and PJ Ochlan—the awesome voices behind my audiobooks!

  —S.E. Smith

  Montana Publishing

  Young Adult

  DUST 2: A New World Order

  Copyright © 2018 by Susan E. Smith

  First E-Book Published June 2018

  Cover Design by Melody Simmons

  ALL RIGHTS RESERVED: This literary work may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, including electronic or photographic reproduction, in whole or in part, without express written permission from the author.

  All characters, places, and events in this book are fictitious or have been used fictitiously, and are not to be construed as real. Any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, actual events, locales, or organizations are strictly coincidental.

  Summary: Dust is on edge. He is increasingly uncertain of the changes inside him and the journey to search for his aunt and uncle is incredibly treacherous.

  ISBN: (Paperback) 978-1-944125-17-2

  ISBN: (eBook) 978-1-942562-80-1

  Published in the United States by Montana Publishing.

  {1. Post-Apocalyptic—Fiction. 2. Science Fiction—Fiction. 3. Paranormal—Fiction. 4. Young Adult—Fiction.—5. Romance—6. Horror}

  www.montanapublishinghouse.com

  Synopsis

  It can always get worse…

  A new world order is coming, one that will pit one species against another. Life is about to become very hazardous—for anyone who gets in Dust’s way.

  With every day that passes, Dust is more afraid of what he will become. His powers are growing far beyond what he can predict, and he is reluctant to tell his make-shift family that he isn’t sure when—or if—it will ever stop. His goal is to get Portland, Oregon and find his aunt and uncle. Ideally he would get there alone, because he’s far too much of a danger to the people around him, but they aren’t willing to give up on him, and an old enemy isn’t far behind. When they reach Portland, Dust discovers a line has been drawn between those who have been changed and the unchanged ones who want to control them.

  Can Dust protect his new family from being used or will the power within him become a force that will not only destroy his enemies, but the ones he loves?

  Internationally acclaimed S.E. Smith presents a new action-packed story to transport readers out of this world! Brimming with her signature humor, vivid landscapes, and beloved characters, this book is sure to be another fan favorite.

  Cast of Characters

  Dust—

  sixteen years old

  powers: evolving powers; unknown capabilities and potential

  Sammy—

  seventeen years old

  Unchanged human survivor

  Todd—

  seven, almost eight years old

  Sammy’s little brother

  Unchanged human survivor

  Josie—

  eighteen years old,

  powers: ability to control fire

  Randolph—

  twenty-two years old

  Josie’s older brother

  powers: ability to sense those who have been changed

  Daciana—

  also known as the She-Devil

  powers: an evolving wolf-like creature with the ability to shift among her many abilities

  Beau—

  Josie and Randolph’s father

  deceased

  Martha—

  older woman; early fifties

  Unchanged human survivor

  Raymond –

  older man; late fifties

  Unchanged human survivor

  Denise—

  young woman, early twenties

  Unchanged human survivor

  General Andrew McCullon—

  Commander of the Cheyenne Mountain Complex in Colorado

  Unchanged human survivor

  Major Alisa Mendoza—

  Major at Cheyenne Mountain Complex

  Right hand to General McCullon

  powers: truth sensor; limited electrical discharge

  General Michael Troyfield–

  Commander of Asylum—former Portland Air National Guard Base in Portland, Oregon

  Unchanged human survivor

  Dan Brown—

  Dust’s uncle on his mother’s side

  Unchanged human survivor

  Spouse—Margery Rose Brown

  Margery Rose Brown—

  Dust’s aunt by marriage

  Spouse—Dan Brown

  powers: control certain elements

  Soldiers on Dust and Josie’s helicopter:

  Brian Daniels

  Dave Matthews

  Eric Bowling

  Unchanged human survivors

  Tommy Rutland—

  maintenance crew—Cheyenne Complex

  Unchanged human survivor (military)

  Chuck—

  Maintenance crew—Cheyenne Complex

  Unchanged human survivor (military)

  Dr. Lucy Parson—

  Medical Doctor—Cheyenne Complex

  Unchanged human survivor (military)

  Matt-

  medical tech—Cheyenne Complex

  Unchanged human survivor (military)

  Dr. Trista Yearly—

  Mt. Hood Community College

  Medical doctor (civilian)

  Dr. Hartley—

  Asylum

  Medical doctor/Research scientist (civilian working for the military)

  Unchanged human survivor

  Dr. Hilda Zimmerman—

  Daciana's creator

  Great Bend, Kansas

  Medical doctor/Research scientist (civilian working for the military)

  Deceased—killed during initial comet impact

  Rebecca—

  Mt. Hood Community College

  Powers: projects visions of the future

  3 years old

  Prologue

  In the Darkness:

  Dust’s dark silhouette stood in sharp contrast against the flames of a burning building that was slowly collapsing under the intense heat. His hands were clenched by his sides as he fought for control over the waves of emotion and power sweeping through him. Unable to contain the grief welling up inside him any longer, he tilted his head back and released a savage cry as his body s
hook.

  He was alone—completely and utterly alone with his heartfelt, tortured grief and the ghosts that haunted his soul.

  Soon, the eerie quiet of the night was broken only by the sound of the crackling fire and the fading echo of his mournful cry. At one time, the grief-stricken howl might have been mistaken for the cry of a wolf or a coyote. The cadence of the desolate tone drifted on the light breeze with the same long, haunting melody.

  His grief cut more sharply than a surgeon’s honed blade, and the ground trembled as his agony radiated outward, causing the earth to roll with the intensity.

  A supernatural force spread outward from him, the type of power only imagined by authors and artists in the time he called Before… but this was After…. This was a new world where such powers existed in a few of the survivors.

  The burning building in front of him trembled and collapsed to the ground. The only thing left standing were parts of the metal frame. He slowly sank to his knees and bowed his head. Around him the dust from the dirt parking lot danced as if trying to distract him. He couldn’t help but think that his name fit what he had become—dust that floated on the wind; changing, shifting, growing, and fading away. It had all led him here, kneeling on the hard-packed dirt in the middle of nowhere. Dust closed his eyes as another wave of pain struck him and he drew in deep breaths as the waves kept coming.

  Finally, he lifted his head and stared at the dying flames of the old warehouse. Smoke swirled upward in tight circles on the breeze and filled the darkening sky, but it wasn’t the smoke that made his eyes burn—it was the memory of the diesel bus driving away.

  The acute feeling of loss was more intense than what he’d felt the day his world had changed—the day fragments of a comet had hit the Earth, the beginning of the After. With that single catastrophic event, he had lost everything—and yet, this pain felt so much worse.

  Dust shook his head slowly as the taunting voice of the creature he had battled minutes before echoed through his head. He had given a name to the creature. Why, he was not sure. Perhaps it was so he wouldn’t lose his own humanity—or to create humanity in her.

  Daciana was different from Dust. He didn’t know her origins or how she had evolved. She’d been called several names before he’d given her this new one—She-Devil, wolf, Lycan. Now she had more than one form.

  His battle with Daciana had caused an unexpected change in himself. One he didn’t yet understand, but he knew he was now something more dangerous than he’d been before.

  “The female, she will not accept what you have become,” Daciana had warned him in a sing-song voice. It had hurt more than the sharp tips of her claws, because she was right.

  “What am I? What have I become?” he wondered out loud in a strained voice.

  He lifted his hands up and stared at them. Was he destined to become an unnatural creature whose only thought was to destroy what was left of humanity and the Earth? That fear was what had pushed him to send Josie and Sammy away.

  Josie—who had also changed into something else—into one of the Others after the catastrophic events and those like Sammy—the unchanged human girl who had saved his life and given him hope and purpose.

  A sudden rage rushed through him, and he rose to his feet. A look of determination flashed in his eyes. He was not a monster! Lifting his arms, he held his hands out and released the power flowing through him.

  “I am not a monster!” he defiantly repeated to the empty yard in a loud, savage voice.

  His eyes glowed with a dark, swirling green, fueled by the intense supernatural power inside himself. Dust turned his attention to the destroyed building where Josie had freed Todd, Sammy’s seven-year-old brother, while he and Sammy had distracted Daciana. He poured his feelings of sorrow and loss outward.

  Swirling waves of energy soared up and formed a dense cloud. They shifted, changing in composition as the cloud enveloped the building. Instead of slamming into the structure and destroying the remainder of the twisted metal framework, those streams of power combined with the fire and began to glow like a welder’s torch, while additional streams of energy picked up the torn and mangled pieces of paneling. As if by magic, they unbuckled and stiffened back into normal sheets. The pieces were lifted and connected back together as the fiery red whips of molten energy welded the seams.

  Sweat beaded on Dust’s brow and ran down his temples as he took a step forward. He concentrated on what the building looked like before his battle with Daciana. He didn’t want to destroy like Daciana had. He wanted to build and heal their ravaged planet. He wanted to prove that there could be something better out in the world for his kind than death and destruction.

  Tears of anguish streamed down his face as he continued to use his power. They were for everything he had lost. The comet had taken everything away from him, and yet in some ways, it had given him more than he could have imagined.

  He had created a new family made up of young and old, unchanged humans and Others. They were survivors, fighters, friends, and—something more. Together, they were finding their way across a vast and altered landscape into the unknown…they had been doing it together.

  Dust raised his arm and wiped his damp cheek against the sleeve of his shirt. Now he was alone again. He swallowed and stared at the newly rebuilt warehouse.

  His body trembled—this time with an intense hunger. The craving was different than before. He unconsciously ran his tongue over his teeth. They felt normal. For a moment he wondered if he had imagined that they changed when he was fighting against Daciana.

  The brief hope running through him faded when he caught a scent carried on the breeze. Turning, he focused on it, automatically summoning the animal to come to him. His eyes widened when he saw a small coterie of prairie dogs slowly emerge from the darkness. His lips parted in a gasp when he felt his teeth lengthen again. Fear and revulsion swept through him and he released another guttural cry.

  Shaken by the changes coursing through him, he took off running across the uneven ground. When he tripped on a low tussock of wild grass and started to fall, long wings appeared behind him and lifted him into the air. This time, they were not made of sand, but were real wings from his very thoughts.

  A desperate need surged through him to put as much space between himself and his new family as he could. He must protect them at all costs. His fear gave him strength, and he swept up into the night sky heading as far away from the old gym and the only family he had as quickly as he could.

  Chapter One

  The old gym:

  “Perhaps it’s for the best,” Randolph murmured, looking out across the empty landscape before he glanced at Sammy.

  She turned on Josie’s brother so quickly that Randolph stumbled backwards several steps, her eyes blazing with fury. She didn’t give a damn what Randolph or any of the others thought. They were talking about Dust. Dust! The guy who had saved all of their lives more than once! The quiet, unassuming teen who had a huge heart and would never, ever have thought of leaving any one of them behind.

  “Perhaps he should have left your sorry butt for the She-Devil and her pack,” Sammy angrily retorted, prodding Randolph’s chest with the end of her bow.

  “Now, Sammy, there’s no need to get angry. Of course we won’t leave Dust behind,” Raymond calmly stated.

  “I agree. That boy is a blessing to have on our side. We would have died back in our hometown if it hadn’t been for him,” Martha said with a firm nod.

  “I second that,” Denise quietly said, shooting Randolph an accusing look.

  Sammy turned when she felt a tug on her arm. Her little brother looked up at her. She instinctively wrapped a comforting arm around his shoulders when tears filled his eyes.

  “What if the She-Devil hurt him?” Todd asked with a worried expression.

  Josie shook her head and crossed her arms. “I don’t think you need to worry about Dust, Todd. He is freakin’ awesome,” she reassured the young boy with a wink. “The question
is: why are we waiting to go after him?”

  “We’ll go in the morning. We need light to see him and it will be less dangerous,” Raymond said, looking at Sammy. “We can’t know for sure what happened. We need to do what we can to protect ourselves if we are to help Dust.”

  Sammy reluctantly nodded. At the moment, they were in the girls’ locker room with the doors barred as best as they could manage. They would need to refill the old bus with diesel and pack up anything of use before they left. No one knew what lay ahead of them. Even with Randolph and Josie’s powers, their guns, and Sammy’s bow, there was no telling what else was out there waiting.

  “First thing in the morning,” she agreed, pulling Todd closer when he yawned.

  “I’ll take first watch,” Randolph quietly volunteered.

  “Thank you,” Sammy murmured.

  She turned and guided Todd over to where she had arranged several exercise mats earlier. The soft sounds of footsteps indicated that she and Todd were not alone. Looking over her shoulder, she saw Josie’s worried gaze on Todd.

 
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