Genre: Middle Grade YA Fantasy
Jonah Zackar stood at the woodpile, listening to the howling wind and remembering the warning Old Blind Alice had given him, last time he'd been out her way.
Her scratchy voice had added a creepiness factor to her words. "When birch branches clack in the wind, and rattle like dead men's bones, that means the little hairy men are searching." She'd trembled and pulled her afghan tight against the Alaskan chill. "Looking for victims," she'd whispered. "Wind makes 'em hungered."
Jonah squinted through the gap between his beaver fur hat and the wool scarf, which was wrapped across the bottom half of his face. All around, thin birch trees bowed, forced down by the unrelenting gale.
Out of the corner of his eye, Jonah caught a flash of color skittering across the snowy ground. He whipped around and stared.
Still the fine hairs on the nape of his neck stood up.
He shook the feeling off, telling himself to stop being silly. The movement he'd seen must have been twigs being blown about. He didn't believe in all that mumbo jumbo talk about little hairy men. He didn't believe they were out there, watching, with mouths watering, waiting for the perfect time to spring. What he did believe in was his uncle's temper. If he didn't get the wood in soon, he'd be a victim alright--Unc's victim. Moving clumsily, all bundled up in his thick fur parka and mittens, he shoved a piece of firewood into his bag.
Last weeks contributor was author Shelly Tucker. Shelly has recently set up a blog at www.shellytucker.com, titled "Faith in the Desert". Please stop by and encourage her in this new endeavor.