Dark Alchemy

By Laura Bickle

Stephen King's The Gunslinger meets Breaking Bad in Laura Bickle's novel Dark Alchemy.

Some secrets and techniques are higher left buried …

Geologist Petra Dee arrives in Wyoming looking clues to her father's disappearance years in the past. What she reveals as a substitute is Temperance, a loss of life western city with a gold rush prior and a meth-infested current. yet lower than the airborne dirt and dust and quiet, an outdated strength is moving. whilst our bodies begin turning up—desiccated and twisted skeletons that Petra cannot scientifically explain—her investigations land her in the course of a covert conflict among the town's strongest pursuits. Petra's father wasn't the one one looking for the alchemical secrets and techniques of Temperance, and people nonetheless taking a look are actually able to kill. Armed with not anything yet shaky alliances, a couple of old weapons, and a relic she does not comprehend, the one factor Petra is familiar with needless to say is that she and her coyote sidekick are going to need to circulation fast—or die next.

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She appeared again on the coyote, to discover that he’d vanished like a gasp of smoke within the sere panorama. She held her breath. She couldn’t listen him relocating within the undergrowth. He was once long gone, swallowed into black. Petra laid down the gun and reached into the opening, hoping that there has been not anything within that will chunk her. Snakes will be simply ideal. Blackened wooden crumbled below her contact. A tarnished steel plate used to be jammed within the part of what gave the impression of an previous development beam, grew to become up at a strange perspective. Petra dug into the flaking wooden to unfastened it. The steel was once in regards to the dimension of her palm, around and ornately engraved. She rubbed at it together with her filthy hand, and her center leapt into her mouth. It appeared like a compass with numbers and the cardinal instructions carved round the rim, and within the heart was once a picture of a lion devouring the sunlight. Her hands fluttered as much as her necklace. No, it couldn’t be. Too rattling bizarre. She stood up yelled for the coyote. “Hey, come again right here! ” Her voice startled the within reach crickets into silence. The steel lower into her palm, however the coyote didn’t resolution her with up to a yip. bankruptcy Temperance Petra woke at sunrise and squinted at her diver’s watch. Six thirty. gentle crept into the trailer, illuminating the unusual medallion she’d left at the ground subsequent to her mattress after she’d staggered within the evening ahead of. She had sought after it shut handy, suspicious that it is going to dissolve within the morning like a muzzy dream. however it remained. She bought as much as rinse the worst of the filth off the medallion within the rest room sink. notwithstanding pitted and scuffed from age, the compass gleamed gentle and yellow. She may now see that its numbers have been out of series among the cardinal instructions, with seven rays emanating just like the spokes of a wheel from the heart, and there have been Latin phrases she didn’t realize surrounding the lion. The rays corresponded to not one of the cardinal instructions, seeming to fan out randomly to the sting. She scraped the sting of it opposed to the glass of the lavatory window. The steel didn’t scratch the glass, even though the window left a small mark at the rim of the artifact. Gold. The nook of Petra’s mouth grew to become upward. although the outdated prospectors during this city had failed, she appeared to have struck it fortunate in lower than an afternoon. She shook her head. No such factor as good fortune. If she believed in it, she’d need to think that the single success she’d ever attracted were undesirable. after which she’d need to think that there has been a cause the boys at the rig had referred to as her “Jinx,” and it wasn’t simply because of outdated superstitions approximately ladies at sea. She tucked the artifact into the trailer wall along with her cash, then grew to become her awareness to the tiny tub. It used to be slightly two-­thirds the dimensions of a typical bath, with a hand-held bathe set. yet a scorching bathtub used to be a luxurious. She’d made do with lukewarm four-­minute showers at sea, figuring out dozen males have been ready in line for her to get the hell out so they might take their turns. She unscrewed the faucet, which spat brown water for a �couple of seconds sooner than grudgingly emitting a skinny flow of sizzling water.

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