My heart is hammering wildly in my chest as I drive past the shops and the police station. A line from an old movie floats up in my memory. I see dead people.
There, at the restaurant on the corner, are two bodies on the pavement. A man and a woman. From the look of it, he had her in his arms before she died. I swallow the lump in my throat, terrified.
Putting my foot hard on the pedal, I speed around the corner with screeching tires. I don’t know what is going on and I just want to get away from here. Haring down the road, I fix my eyes in front of me, ignoring the crazy world around me. When I finally reach the Murray & Roberts building, I zoom into the underground parking, coming to a squealing stop right in front of the elevator.
I sit there for a moment, breathing heavily. I don’t know what to think. Am I still hallucinating from the fever I had?
“Pull yourself together,” I tell myself.
Shaking, I climb out of the car and look around the deserted parking. Besides my Polo, there are only four other cars here. I see Stephan’s SUV and hope moves my feet towards the elevator.
I push the button, but the light does not come on. Of course, no electricity. I climb the stairs to the first floor where the reception is. It is empty, not even the security guard is by the entrance door.
Closing the door again, I carry on up the stairs to the second floor to where the offices are. An eerie silence greets me as I open the door to the large, open-plan office. The only light comes from the windows and the shadows I cast on the office desk dividers as I walk past is just creepy.
I drop my bag and rush into Stephan’s private office. My boss is slumped over his desk, head tilted at an uncomfortable angle.
“Stephan.” I touch his shoulder. It is cold, even through his shirt. “Stef?”
Bracing myself, I take him by the shoulders and push him back in his chair. A scream escapes me when I see his bloated face and I suddenly become intensely aware of the smell. I gag.
Crying, I run from his office, past the deserted work stations, and back down the stairs. Only when I am back in my car and the doors are locked, do I stop to think about what I just saw.
He’s dead. They’re all dead. My head reels. This must be some kind of nightmare.
With shaking fingers, I start my car, my thoughts turning to my parents.
The monsters never rest. They lurk, waiting for me to go to sleep.
Already, I have lost everything in my fight with the monsters that haunt my dreams, but my nightmares are about to become a reality when I am kidnapped by a shadowy government agency called the IDA.
Drafted into the IDA’s army of dreamers, the monsters become more real than they have ever been before. I am beginning to learn who, or what, I am – and the responsibility it brings with it.
This is a fight we cannot lose because if we lose, we loseEVERYTHING.
Born in Germany in 1976, International Bestselling Author Toni Cox moved to South Africa in 1991. Although she has spent much of her working career in the timber wholesale business, she is also an accomplished horse rider, has a diploma in project management, photography, and nutrition, and has a passion for books and all things fantasy.
From a young age, her dream had always been to put her imagination into words. When she was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis in 2013, she decided life is too short not to follow her dream. With the support of her husband and three children, she began writing book 1 of the Elemental Trilogy in January 2015.
Toni Cox writes Epic Fantasy, YA Fantasy, Sci-Fi Fantasy, Urban Fantasy, Dystopian Fantasy, Paranormal Fantasy, and Dark Fantasy. She is a firm believer in dragons.