Born with an overwhelming healing power, Celeste Reed has lived for
thirty years within the confines of her ability. The slightest
contact with her bare skin pulls her awareness into another’s body and
compels her to heal, whether the injury is a paper cut or a subdural
Then one morning, Celeste awakens and her power is gone. She’s normal.
Abruptly unemployed and ostracized from the guild of super-powered
peers, Celeste remains a curiosity to the government authority that
honed her skills for their benefit. For her, the consequences are
personal: a confrontation with the parents of the dying child she was
supposed to heal, a mortgage that needs paying, and abandonment by
most of her friends and comrades. However, being normal is not
without benefits, including less federal interference and the
introduction of true, unencumbered human touch for the first time.
But when a fellow guildsman suffers from a similar loss of power -
this time fatal – the government reasserts control of her life.
Whether or not her curative touch returns, Celeste isn’t willing to
let go of her new-found freedoms so easily- even if it means never
NORMAL is a 93,000-word near-future urban fantasy novel. My various
publication credits include Niteblade Fantasy and Horror Magazine,
Crossed Genres, Six Sentences, and runner-up in the WOW! Women on
Writing Summer 2008 Flash Fiction Contest. Nonfiction works include
The Ultimate Cat Lover (HCI Books) and the forthcoming Chicken Soup
for the Soul: What I Learned from the Cat.
Thank you for your consideration. I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Sometime within the next thirty minutes, Acacia Levine’s new heart
would arrive in a small commuter plane and touch down at a local
airfield. Toted in a warm, oxygenated portable chamber, that heart
would provide a dying ten-month-old girl with a real chance at life.
Acacia was probably already prepped for surgery and waiting. This was
the big day.
The notification call had knocked me out of a deep sleep at
sometime around five in the morning, just as the first sunbeams set my
bedroom blinds aglow. The hospital never seemed to confirm donor
organs at a sensible time of the day - not that I really minded. I’d
been on call for the Levine case for over a month now and visited the
little girl several times. Almost a year old, and she had never known
life outside of a hospital. Every tremor of her little heart depended
on the intravenous medication that kept her ductus open and
functional. I had soothed her with my touch and bolstered her frail
body as best I could, but she wouldn’t last much longer like this.
She needed that heart. Everything depended on the success of the
transplant operation today; that meant that everything depended on me.
And there I was ten minutes after the phone call, still sprawled in a
tangle of sheets and staring up at the ceiling. I needed to snap out
of my daze and get the day started.