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Authors: Sally Green

Tags: #Juvenile Fiction, #Fantasy & Magic, #Social Issues, #Adolescence, #Violence

Half Wild

BOOK: Half Wild
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VIKING

Published by the Penguin Group

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A Penguin Random House Company

First published in the United States of America by Viking, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA) LLC, 2015

Published simultaneously in the UK by Penguin Books Ltd

Copyright © 2015 by Half Bad Books Limited

Penguin supports copyright. Copyright fuels creativity, encourages diverse voices, promotes free speech, and creates a vibrant culture. Thank you for buying an authorized edition of this book and for complying with copyright laws by not reproducing, scanning, or distributing any part of it in any form without permission. You are supporting writers and allowing Penguin to continue to publish books for every reader.

IBRARY OF CONGRESS CATALOGING-IN-PUBLICATION DATA

Green, Sally (Novelist)

Half wild / Sally Green.

pages cm.—(The half bad trilogy ; 2)

Summary: In a modern-day England where two warring factions of witches live amongst humans, seventeen-year-old Nathan has come into his own unique magical Gift, but he is on the run with the Hunters close behind, and they will stop at nothing until they have captured Nathan and destroyed his father.

ISBN 978-0-698-14885-7

[1. Witches—Fiction. 2. Fathers and sons—Fiction. 3. England—Fiction.] I. Title.

PZ7.G826323Hat 2015 [Fic]—dc23 2014044805

Version_1

CONTENTS

Title Page

Copyright

Ddedication

Also by Sally Green

Epigraph

PART ONE:
RED

a new day

waiting

me and annalise

getting darker

not waiting

you’re not dead, are you?

nesbitt

kieran and partner

one last look

PART TWO:
GIFTS

van dal

the amulet

a proposition

nightsmoke

rain

slovakia

magical mumbo-jumbo

telling gabriel

using my soul

the first stake

the second stake

the third stake

PART THREE:
ON THE ROAD

do obama

barcelona

my teacher and guardian

isch

pilot

on the road

the map

the shape of a word

PART FOUR:
THE BUNKER DIARIES

being positive again

we make our plan

mercury’s bunker

we

pink

kissing

the locked drawer

annalise not breathing

getting stronger

digging

the fairborn is mine

scars

the burial

mapping

not resisting

dresden, wolfgang, and marcus

the cut

PART FIVE:
RIVERS OF BLOOD

die rote kürbisflasche

peanuts

marcus

the alliance

rivers of blood

the forager

the first attack

blondine

a walk

with arran

laughter

the meeting

connor

slowing time

seeing jessica

red

Acknowledgments

For Indy

BOOKS BY SALLY GREEN

Half Bad

Half Wild

You’ll feel my heavy spirit chill your chest,
And climb your throat on sobs

Wild with all Regrets
, Wilfred Owen

A New Day

a crossbill calls

another bird replies, not a crossbill

the first bird takes over again

and again

the crossbill—

shit, it’s morning

i’ve been asleep

it’s morning, very early

shit, shit, shit

need to wake up              need to wake up

can’t believe i’ve been asl—

c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h

SHIT!

the noise is here. HERE!

c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h

that level of noise means, oh shit, someone with a mobile is close. very close. i can’t believe i’ve been asleep with hunters on my tail. and her. the fast one. she was close last night.

c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h

THINK! THINK!

c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h

it’s a mobile phone, for sure it’s a mobile phone. the noise is in my head, not in my ears, it’s to the upper right side, inside, constant, like an electrical interference, pure hiss, mobile hiss, loud, three-or-four-meters-away loud.

c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h

ok, right, lots of people have mobiles. if it’s a hunter, that hunter, and she could see me, i’d be dead by now.

i’m not dead.

she can’t see me.

c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h

the noise isn’t getting louder. she’s not moving closer. but she’s not moving away either.

am i hidden by something?

i’m lying on my side, face pressed into the ground. totally still. can’t see anything but earth. got to move a little.

but not yet. think first.

stay calm and work it out.

c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h

there’s no breeze, no sun, just a faint light. it’s early. the sun must be behind the mountain still. the ground is cool but dry, no dew. there’s the smell of earth and pine and . . . there’s another smell.

what is that smell?

and there’s a taste.

a bad taste.

it tastes like . . . oh no—

don’t think about it

don’t think about it

don’t think about it

don’t think about it

think about something else

Think about where you are.

c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h

You’re lying on the ground, in the early morning, and the air is cool. You’re cold. You’re cold because . . . you’re naked. You’re naked and the top half of you is wet. Your chest, your arms . . . your face are wet.

And you move the fingers of your left hand, the tiniest of movements, and they’re sticky. Sticking together. Like they’re coated with drying, sugary juice. But it’s not juice—don’t think about it don’t think about it don’t think about it don’t think about it

DON’T THINK ABOUT IT!

THINK ABOUT SOMETHING ELSE!

c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h

THINK ABOUT STAYING ALIVE!

You’ve got to move. The Hunters are on your tail. That fast one was close. She was very close last night. What happened last night?

what happened?

NO! FORGET THAT.

c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h

THINK ABOUT STAYING ALIVE.

WORK OUT WHAT TO DO.

You can look, move your head a fraction to see more. The ground by your face is covered with pine needles. Brown pine needles. But the brown isn’t from the pine. It’s the color of dried blood. Your left arm is extended. It’s streaked in it. Crusted with dried brown. But your hand isn’t streaked in it, it’s thick with it.

Red.

c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h

You can find a stream and wash. Wash it all off.

c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h

You need to go. For your own safety you have to get out of here. You need to get moving. Get away.

c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h

The mobile phone is close, not changing. It won’t be coming closer.

But you have to look. You have to check.

Turn your head to the other side.

You can do it.

It looks a bit like a log. Please be a log please be a log please be a log please

It’s not a log . . . It’s black and red. Black boots. Black trousers. One bent leg, one straight. Black jacket. Her face is turned away.

She has short light-brown hair.

It’s sopping with blood.

She’s lying as still as a log.

Still wet.

Still oozing.

Not fast anymore.

The mobile phone is hers.

c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h c h

And as you raise your head you see the wound that is her throat, and it is jagged and bloody and deep and

red

BOOK: Half Wild
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