The Atrocities(taster chapters)

here are a couple of taster chapters for my book The Atrocities.

" Magical Neutralization Forces have been deployed. The Nexus will Fall."

Books are outlawed, possessing them is a death sentence. Helping an Atrocity is a death sentence. Death is the penalty for those who refuse to conform. Nightclubs are highly illegal. Death comes for those who own them, but the Magical underground is stronger than the corporations think.

The corporations are gaining power everyday. Propaganda replaces News. Hit lists are published every year and T.V is now a money grabbing scam.

But the revolution is beginning. Alicia is out of the Library. The Nexus is singing. And the Corporations want you to believe that everything is fine.

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1. Chapter One

Chapter One Bianca sighed softly as her Grandfather lead her into the cellar of his small two bedroomed town house, his silence was beginning to annoy her. Why would he allow her to enter the one place in the house that had been forbidden territory for 16 years? Maybe he kept wine down there? But why would it be forbidden, the prohibition had been lifted 2 years ago. Books was the more plausible probability, but if he did have books down there, he would have been killed, along with the rest of her family. The Inspectors would have found them by now. “I’ve been protecting her for 50 years, now it’s time that you stepped up to the task.” Her grandfather told her in Spanish as he leads her down the stairs into the cellar. There was nothing in the cellar but dusty old bottles of Vino de Meza and boxes filled with Christmas decorations and the costume that she had hidden under the floorboards. Bianca followed her grandfather to the back wall and watched in fascination as he took a small key out of his pocket and placed it in a small indentation in the brick work. A door shaped section of the wall dissolved. Beyond the hole in the wall lay a cavernous library, filled from floor to ceiling with books. Candles sent orange light dancing around the shadows. “Abuelo?” She questioned as gazed around the foreign land that had been hidden in her grandfather’s cellar. “Si, Nieta?” Her grandfather smiled as he watched her stare open mouthed at the vastness of the library. Bianca muttered several curses in Spanish. “Mind your tongue, Nieta.” Bianca smiled at his admonishment, she found it hilarious that her grandfather cursed like a sailor but never liked to hear his granddaughter curse, especially when her girlfriend was present. “I’ve never seen such beauty before.” Bianca whispered as she admired the rows of books, her fingers dancing over the spines that had faded with age. The shadows moved. “Carlos, it’s time to pass on the Pearl.” An unfamiliar voice sounded. Bianca turned to see a tall, athletic woman with red ombre hair and pale grey eyes step into the pale light of the burning candles. Her black jeans were torn in several places and she tugged at her faded Guns and Roses jumper, that had obviously been cut to expose her toned stomach. “This is Alicia. She is the one I have been hiding for all these years. If the Corporations found out, she would die.” Her grandfather stated, his dark gaze was guarded. “You’re not telling me the whole truth.” Bianca stated, folding her arms. “He will die, when he passes on the Pearl.” Alicia interjected. Bianca’s eyes widened and she turned on her grandfather. “You can’t give me the Pearl. Can’t you see. She is killing you, keep the Pearl and live.” She urged. Carlos raised a calloused hand to his granddaughter’s face, gently touching the youthful skin that he had yearned for. “I was dying anyway Nieta, the Cancer was already killing me.” Carlos dropped the Pearl into Bianca’s hand and almost instantly, he began to dissolve into pale golden light. Bianca watched with tears streaming down her face as her grandfather became a young man once more. “Maria?” the last words to leave his lips was the name of his first love. Bianca let out a scream of anguish and turned on Alicia, just as a key dropped into her pocket. “You killed him!” She threw a book at her. Alicia dodged the unwilling projectile and simply observed Bianca’s rage. “Find someone else to carry your stupid Pearl, I’m not going to be your next victim.” Bianca hurled the Pearl at her. Alicia caught it and held it as if it was an expensive porcelain ornament. “The Pearl is my life. It is unfortunate that it drains the life of those who choose to protect me. The woman who protected me before your grandfather was called Maria Arias, she was his first love and his only true love. She died whilst birthing their child and now here you are.” Alicia calmly stated. “This Maria was my grandfather’s first love, so what. My mother is not Maria’s child; Catrina is her mother.” Bianca growled through her tears, clutching another book and debating whether to throw it at Alicia’s head. “Fatima Arias is Maria’s child.” Alicia continued, watching as Bianca replaced the heavy book back on the shelf. “Your real mother.” “Aunt Fatima? She died when I was a baby, she can’t…” Bianca trailed off, suddenly realising that her mother was not her biological mother. “I’m Rosa Arias. The girl that Aunt Fatima had before she died. My mother lied to me my whole life, even my name is not my own.” Alicia regarded her in silence. “Rosa Arias.” She whispered. “Alicia, I can’t be the woman my grandmother was, even if look like her. I am not her. I can keep the Pearl for you, but the library must stay hidden.” Alicia stayed silent. “Come with me. You can’t stay down here forever.” “I will come with you. But what will you tell the Corporations?” Alicia was sceptical and rightly so. A library that could walk and talk would be the number one target on the long hit list that the corporations published each year. “I’ll them that you’re from the East District.” Bianca stated as she rose to her feet and lead Alicia to the hole in the wall. “Rosa?” Bianca turned sharply, her honey gaze narrowed into an angry glare. “Rosa Arias, might be my real name but I have spent my whole life as Bianca Gonzales, don’t expect me to be someone I am not.” She turned her back on Alicia and marched out of the Library with Alicia hot on her heels. The wall sealed shut behind them, trapping Alicia in a world she was yet to discover. Bianca slammed the living room door closed, shutting herself off from the strange woman who was now living in her grandfather’s attic. The spare bed used to be hers when she was little, now it was a stranger’s. Alicia would have to go. Bianca was not going to let this woman ruin her life any more than she already had. She had surrendered two black bin liners full of old clothes to Alicia and left her to sort through them. Bianca suddenly had a thought. She unlocked the cellar and quickly walked down the wooden stairs into the dusty room. She pulled up the loose floorboards under the stairs and freed the sexy police officer costume that she had worn at her friend’s hen party from its dark hiding place. Alicia might want it; she was never going to wear it again. There was a back alley strip club in the darker part of the West District, they always wanted strippers. Bianca grinned, Alicia might not be in her life much longer. Alicia entered the club via the back entrance. Bianca had told her about a friend who ran a strip club and she was looking for a new stripper and Bianca had also given her back the Pearl. Alicia had the costume in one hand and in her ear a small communications device had been placed, allowing her to speak to anyone in the West Province. The woman that guided her into the club was tall and her pale skin was covered in tattoos, her short blonde hair was wild and her blue eyes closely regarded her every move. Her figure was curved like a pear, with narrow shoulders and wide hips. Muscular arms rippled with strength twice that of her own. “This is where you will be entertaining, our guests often get bored with the drinks and conversation so make it a good show.” The woman’s voice was like steel and honey “My name is Val, I’m responsible for you girls. No one lays a finger on you.” Val placed a hand on the small of her back and guided her towards a small door. “The dressing room is at the end of the hall on your right. If you need anything just ask.” Val opened the door and let her through into the well-lit corridor. Alicia’s shoes squeaked on the polished floor as she walked. She didn’t look like a stripper, her peach coloured leather jacket and torn dark blue jeans combined with her comfortable black boots gave her the appearance of a well-educated young woman, no one would believe that she was starting work as a stripper in a back alley night club. Alicia sighed, she hated Bianca for forcing her to leave the comfort of the library and even more so for getting her this job. She was jolted out of her thoughts when she walked into a tall muscular man. “Sorry, I didn’t see you.” Alicia quickly apologised. The man shrugged and continued to walk down the corridor, his bulky frame vanishing from sight when he exited through the same door she had come through. “Hey, new girl.” A voice called from the open door next to her. Alicia looked up to see a young woman about her age leaning against the door frame smoking an e-cigarette. Her long brown hair fell about her shoulders in luscious waves and she was wearing a simple plaid shirt over a pair of denim hot pants and fishnet stockings, her feet were clad in a pair of fuchsia pink high heels that matched her shirt. “I’m Kitty, the fellas out there know me as Lady Godiva. Let’s see your costume then.” Kitty turned off her cigarette and peered inside the simple plastic bag that she was carrying her costume in. “I’d be able to see it better if you were wearing it.” She remarked before she ushered Alicia into the dressing room. “Right, that’s your spot, next to me. The new girls are always trained by me.” Alicia noticed that Kitty had a tattoo gracing that back of her hand, it was the only thing that broke her golden skin. “Hurry up and get your costume on, I’ve got to train you quickly.” Her impatience prompted Alicia to begin stripping off her clothes. Kitty focused on a slim handheld tablet whilst she dressed. “Is the costume okay?” Alicia’s question startled Kitty. The pale violet eyes widened in surprise at the sight of her before she whipped out a slim silver file and began working on her already perfect nails. “It’s more than okay. As long as you can get out of that skirt easily it won’t be a problem. Now first things first. The door to the stage is over there. Now when you’re up there, remember to bring out the sex appeal. They’ve gotta be drooling before the next girl comes on.” Kitty explained as she filed her perfectly manicured nails. “And just how do I do that?” Alicia questioned. Kitty glanced up briefly and then returned her attention to her nails. “Just watch the other girls Officer A and you’ll be fine. And don’t tell anyone that two Atrocities are working here. We’ve gotta blend in you and I.” Kitty stated calmly. “The others will be here soon, don’t worry about a thing, Val looks out for us and we all look out for each other here, there’s too many guys out there and self defence training is mandatory. Val teaches us every Wednesday at 9am.” Just as those words left her lips several women walked in and began to change into their various costumes. Alicia was exhausted. She had spun around that pole countless times and danced to the music whilst taking off her costume. The people in the club were all drunk and half of them were passed out. Some of the women there probably enjoyed the show more than the men did. She was falling asleep at her dressing table when Kitty nudged her. “Val just got a call from the City Police, Bianca has been arrested. Apparently she was hiding a Library in the basement of her house.” Alicia quickly checked her pocket, sure enough the Pearl was still there. “Val is taking you home.”
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