Fiction/Young Adult Fiction/Action Adventure & Fantasy
This is not the Santa Claus story you might be expecting.
Christopher Nicholas is an average fifteen year-old teenager…at least he thinks he is. But to be average he’d have to ignore his unique ability to see people’s names above them, or the way he seems to be able to know what is really in someone’s heart. Then, there is the fact that as he is about to turn sixteen, everything he thinks he knows about his life is about to be turned upside down.
Christopher Nicholas is the last surviving heir to a very old and powerful promise. And, he has a choice to make. He can choose to continue to live his life the way he wants as the world around him falls into darkness and a dark and evil force known as Legion achieves their plans to finally take over everything. Or, he can choose to accept who he is as the only one who can stop them and bring light back where only dark exists. He can choose to become THE HEIR OF CLAUS.
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“Umm…what was that,” asked Moe.
Silas’ posture straightened. A grim and nervous seriousness overtook the relaxed, confident expression he had had on his face. His eyes stared over my head toward the embattled corner where Alejandra and I first met. “How certain were you that the door on the wardrobe was latched?”
The question was directed at Alejandra. I didn’t expect to see fear in the face of the young woman like I did just then. The color in her cheeks drained a little. Her eyes were wide and filled with nervous uncertainty. “Not very,” she answered.
“Were you followed?”
Alejandra shook her head once. “No. I…I don’t think so. The park was abandoned. It didn’t look like it had been used or occupied for many years. I followed The Brute’s instructions and waited for an hour out of plain sight before drawing the door that led me here.”
I glanced at Moe. I mouthed the words The Brute, curious about the random name dropped into the conversation. Moe could only shrug his shoulders again.
Silas breathed slowly. “What about between the doors? Did you see anything?”
“Between them? No, no. There wasn’t anything between them. I didn’t even see a gap or space of any kind to look for anything…”
The floors and walls trembled again. It felt like the entire floor of the house was being pushed and pulled and then bounced against by something tremendous-a mountain maybe?
“If only that were true,” Silas said as the jarring quake faded. “Many of the darkest creatures in the armies of Legion came from the corrupted spaces between the doorways.”
“Wait, the what,” I asked.
The hallway rocked again. The small pieces of decoration on the nearby table slipped to the floor. Glass shattered somewhere in the cold shadows farther up the hallway. The plaster on the wall nearby cracked open. A thin shower of dust rained down from the ceiling. Each of our breaths caught when we gained our balance then heard the ear-splitting tear and then crash of something heavy and wooden being destroyed. All of us were looking in the direction of the battle-scarred corner. Each of use knew the terrible sound we had heard was the sound of the wardrobe Silas had mentioned being ripped open.
“What is happening,” Moe asked softly.
“If I had to guess,” Silas said as the floors and walls shook again. It lasted longer this time, jumping in intensity for a heart-stopping second. “…I would say that we’re listening to a very big round peg trying to fit itself into a rectangle.
“Is it going to get through,” asked Alejandra.
More wood exploded somewhere in the room unseen but not far off.
“Yes,” Silas said simply. His stare was focused solely on the right-hand turn less than a dozen feet away.
“What do we do,” I asked, looking squarely at the old elf.
Silas finally took his eyes off the nearby corner. He looked only at me. “We run.”
About the Author:
J. A. Adkins is a guy you probably haven’t met yet. He’s a writer, artist, and retail veteran. Born in Texas, this wandering scribe dreams big, inspired to create new stories and the media to present them with. His hope is to fuel new dreamers and creators, even if that begins one page at a time. You might not know J. A. yet, but you will. Look for J. A. on Instagram: @wanderingblaze or on Twitter: @rebelscribe
Interview with the Author:
How many books do you currently have published?
I’ve self-published 4 books. Three of them are novellas and one, The Heir of Claus, is a full-length novel.
What has been your favorite book to write so far? Why?
My favorite book to write so far has been the The Heir of Claus. It actually started off as a story I didn’t want to really write but became a project that continually tested the limits of my imagination and story-telling abilities and surprised me every day as the plot unfolded in new ways I hadn’t forseen.
Are you currently working on a book? Will this be your next release?
I am. I’m currently working on the sequel to The Heir of Claus, called Heart of Ice. I hope to have it ready for release by the end of 2018. But my next release will be a second edition of another book called AN EPIC!…or Something as well as its second volume.
What do you enjoy most about writing?
What I enjoy most about writing is the creation process itself. Fleshing out ideas and seeing how they develop is so much fun.
Do you ever get writer’s block? If so, how do you deal with it?
I do get writer’s block. It tends to happen when I’m overthinking a concept. I can see the idea in my head, but can’t figure out how to translate it onto the page. I tend to deal with it by going back and re-reading previous chapters to re-sync my narrative voice, etc. I listen to music, or sometimes just step away and go hiking or go see a movie.
Have you ever had one of your characters to take a twist you weren’t expecting and surprise you?
I have, in both Heir of Claus and my other major project, AN EPIC!…or Something. In AN EPIC!…, that story is being told by myself and a few other friends. I have very little control over the characters and can be surprised by the direction my co-writers take them.
Which of your characters is your personal favorite? Least favorite? Why?
My favorite character is probably Christopher from The Heir of Claus. His personal conflicts are easy to identify with. He’s flawed and just trying to figure things out while trying to balance his personal expectations and the expectations of the world around him. He’s a hero, but he’s also not one. My least favorite is probably the main character from the first book I self published, The Dangerous Life of Arthur Gale. That character and book need a lot of attention and care to get them to a level I’m much more satisfied with.
So far, what has been your favorite scene to write?
My favorite scenes to write are any of the scenes with Christopher and his aunt in the The Heir of Claus. I think about the dynamics of a mother/son relationship and the extra strain of it being a mom who isn’t a mom and son who isn’t really her son. I think about my mom a lot when I write those scenes, are good times and bad, as well as all the sacrifices she made for me and the family.
What lessons have you learned since becoming a writer? Do you have any tips for new writers?
The main lesson I have learned is persistence. You just have to keep going, even when you feel like you’re up against that mental and physical wall. The biggest obstacle holding you back is yourself. A little bit of writing everyday goes a long way.
If you were to recommend your books to a stranger, which book would you advise them to start with? Why? I would recommend The Heir of Claus to start with. It is a fun and fairly fast-paced book that I think has something for everyone, from struggling to understand belief and religion to dealing with teenage angst in a strange new time. Plus, it’s the first in an exciting five book series.
Now it’s time to get to know you! What are some of your favorite books to read?
I love reading both fiction and non-fiction. Lately, I have been reading more non-fiction, especially books on early American history. But I also love reading the Disc World novels by Terry Pratchett and the Michael Vey books by Richard Paul Evans.
What about television shows? Movies?
My favorite TV shows include Seinfeld, Arrested Development, Battlestar Galactica, and Stargate SG-1. My favorite movies include Contact, the Dark Knight Trilogy, and the original Ghostbusters.
Is there a book that you have read that you feel has made a big impact on your life? Why?
There are two, actually: The Demon Haunted World by Carl Sagan and Strength to Love by Dr. Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.. The Demon Haunted World was a book I first picked up in high school and taught me a lot about to intelligently and honestly question the world around me. Strength to Love is such an enlightening and up-lifting book. I re-read it regularly.
Can readers find you at any live events, such as book signings or conventions?
Not yet. But that is something I’m looking to change over the upcoming year.