Title: The One Apart
Author: Justine Avery
Only one obstacle stands in his way of enjoying a normal life. He remembers—every life he’s lived before.
Tres is about to be born… with the biggest burden any has ever had to bear. He is beginning again—as an ageless adult trapped in an infant body.
He and his teenage mother face life filled with extraordinary challenges as they strive to protect, nurture, and hide how truly different he is. But Tres alone must solve the greatest mystery of all: who is he? The answer is linked to the one question he’s too afraid to ask: why am I?
In his quest, Tres discovers that all is considerably more interconnected and dynamic than he could ever imagine—and fraught with far more danger. He cannot hide from the unseen threat stalking him since his birth.
Life as he knows it—as all know it—is in peril. And Tres is the only one aware.
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The One Apart by Justine Avery – Excerpt 1
Tres felt his body abruptly drop around him with overbearing weight, encapsulating him once again.
The mental images, the overpowering memories, finally faded. Only an ominous stillness remained.
Every cell within him began to twitch, infusing with energy—even as he felt immobile. Every joint, tendon, and bone ached under the pressure of being alive.
A deep sadness engulfed him. He pondered possible reasons. And, just as quickly, he was distracted by the presence of his own simple thoughts.
Thoughts. He realized his own thinking.
This mind—certain of its own newness—desired to explore, feel, do, be. Tres opened his eyes—tried to open his eyes. He found his eyelids fused shut.
He opened his mouth. Thick, warm syrup seeped inside his swallow. Intense fear washed over him, even as he knew exactly where—and how—he was.
Tres was aware, more aware than any had ever been. In this moment, he knew everything—and yet, nothing.
He was beginning again.
The One Apart by Justine Avery – Excerpt 2
A casual knock pre-empted the arrival of an attending nurse. Sancha heard the sounds of a metal cart rolled in, its wheels locked in place at her bedside. She took a quick puff of air and released it as the knuckles of her fists began to turn white.
She heard a rustling of linens, then Maria leaning toward her from her chair on the opposite side of the bed.
Something heavy and warm was laid against Sancha’s arm.
“Sancha…” Maria pleaded this time. “Please.”
Sancha squirmed against the uncomfortable pressure on her arm.
“I can’t let you live the rest of your life,” Maria whispered, “knowing you never even saw him.”
Sancha swallowed. Her breathing quickened. She rolled her lips between her teeth. And she opened her eyes—as slowly as humanly possible.
The brightest pair of crystalline blue eyes stared back at her.
They blinked tenderly, giving away how new to blinking they actually were. Their steady gaze pierced straight through to something rooted within Sancha.
The eyes blinked again, temporarily cutting off the intense connection before opening again to resume it. Sancha rested on her bed in silence, mesmerized by the novice rhythm of blinking resembling Morse code.
Every muscle in her body relaxed. Her mouth began to form an unthinkable smile. She couldn’t help herself.
The baby—her baby—beamed at her with his big, round eyes and flooded her with the total contentment and perfect peace that wafts only from brand-new life.
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~ Author Bio ~
Justine Avery is an award-winning author of stories large and small for all. Born in the American Midwest and raised all over the world, she is inherently an explorer, duly fascinated by everything around her and excitedly noting the stories that abound all around. As an avid reader of all genres, she weaves her own stories among them all. She has a predilection for writing speculative fiction and story twists and surprises she can’t even predict herself.
Avery has either lived in or explored all 50 states of the union, over 36 countries, and all but one continent; she lost count after moving 30-some times before the age of 20. She’s intentionally jumped out of airplanes and off the highest bungee jump in New Zealand, scuba dived unintentionally with sharks, designed websites, intranets, and technical manuals, bartered with indigenous Panamanians, welded automobile frames, observed at the Bujinkan Hombu Dojo in Noba, Japan, and masterminded prosperous internet businesses—to name a few adventures. She earned a Bachelor of Arts degree that life has never required, and at age 28, she sold everything she owned and quit corporate life—and her final “job”—to freelance and travel the world as she always dreamed of. And she’s never looked back.
Aside from her native English, Avery speaks a bit of Japanese and a bit more Spanish, her accent is an ever-evolving mixture of Midwestern American with notes of the Deep South and indiscriminate British vocabulary and rhythm, and she says “eh”—like the Kiwis, not the Canadians. She currently lives near Los Angeles with her husband, British film director Devon Avery, and their three adopted children: Becks, Sam, and Lia. She writes from wherever her curiosity takes her.
Avery loves to connect with fellow readers and creatives, explorers and imaginers, and cordially invites you to say “hello”—or konnichiwa.