The original version of this book…
…was written by yours truly in 2004. It took a decade before I was ready to write the sequel…
Unfortunately the sequel’s ending was so convoluted that I found it impossible to get around the difficulties that I’d engineered into the plot. A third tale seemed unlikely. Then, nine years on, I came up with a scenario that might lead to an opening in the canopy of my imagination. I might – just MIGHT – find myself in a position to concoct another bamboozling story featuring the teen-aged protagonists from the first two books. Gosh, I hope so: they are a joy to write. If my aging brain can fire on all thrusters, I plan to put aside the next Earplug Adventure, and begin the completion of the trilogy with Silent Existence. Wish me luck: the last time I tried writing a third part of a trilogy was the aborted follow-up to Present Imperfect in 2016…
I now include a tiny morsel from the second book. It has to be tiny because almost every potential extract gives too much away about (not only this book, but also) the original story.
“You’re different.” Tasman said to me immediately following our welcome back by the others.
“No I’m not.” I insisted as I watched our arsenal being taken away.
“From each other I mean.” He explained. “The two of you. You and Felicity. If I was in a darkened room with you both, I’d know one from the other.”
“In what way are we different?” I inquired with truthful interest.
“She‘s more…vulnerable.” He answered. “It’s why I urged her to seek out the alternative version of me. She needs his help.”
“Obviously.” I said as I began collecting up all the used harnesses. “I need you; ergo she needs her…” I almost said ‘Tasman’, but I quickly realised that Dexter and Shane were within earshot as they battled with a recalcitrant trolley upon which they were attempting to carry six bombs at once. “…Brian.” I finished.
“Two Brian’s, eh?” Kylie’s head appeared around the door frame. She winked. “I wonder if he’s such a whizz with the alien technology too.”
As remarks go, Kylie’s couldn’t have been more innocuous; but her words struck the same chords in both Tasman and I. We looked at each other; back to Kylie as she entered the room to collect another explosive device; then back at each other again.
“We’ve been so dumb.” I said to him.
“Speak for yourselves.” Kylie said as she passed us.
“I’m not arguing.” Tasman replied to me.
Kylie held aloft a bomb.
“No one’s dumb.” She said. “Not unless they drop one of these on their foot.”
I ignored her.
“We’ve not seen the woods for the trees.” I said.
“The obvious has eluded us all this time.” Tasman said by way of agreement.
“Sorry.” Kylie said as she laid the explosive device down again. “What’s this obvious thing that neither you have missed?”
© Paul Trevor Nolan 2014
P.S These books (plus Captive Echo) remain available as e-books. Check out HERE to have a look.