Today the blog tour for Estevan Vega's Arson stops here at Flipping Pages.
We get to go back in time and read the original first chapter of A Boy Called Arson. Not only is the name different but the first chapter from back then and the first chapter from the finished book are completely different.
Here you go!!
A Boy Called Arson
By: Estevan Vega
It was just a game.
Arson was never the type of kid to experiment with dangerous things. As a baby, the mere thought of playing with knives frightened him. It was strange the manner in which fear played with him, like a child plays with a pet, only with a certain sadistic charm. He admired fear, yes, as any eight year old, but from a distance—as if it wasn’t a part of the world where he existed: when he snuck into R-rated horror films designed to seduce viewers with dread, or in the numbing moments following a catastrophic highway accident—not playing with his own fragile mind. Not in his world.
His name was Danny. Of all the children in Cambridge, Danny was the only one to embrace him. Arson’s friend. He treated him with kindness. They had fun sneaking into places they didn’t belong. Danny was like a brother. He even looked like Arson, with his ash-brown hair hanging over those bushy eyebrows; they had the same body structure, even learned to laugh simultaneously.
Arson always wanted a brother. At birth, Grandma and Grandpa claimed he was grabbing for something—reaching—for another, as if he was waiting for a brother to be given life as he was. Danny was the other half of him by which he was born to coexist. But it was a dangerous bond that melted their fates together. Danny was a bastard, just like Arson, and as such, both were born abandoned. So they looked elsewhere for the bond that birth stole away. They found friendship in each other.
The game was firecracker. Arson had to light it, and then throw it as far as he could. But it had to be in the open. It had to be public. It would be fun. Danny always promised fun. He, as always, supplied the ammunition (they gave fireworks the more dangerous euphemism, naturally), and all Arson had to do was supply the gall to go through with it. Sure, Danny had convinced him to do most anything—whether that was killing an entire pack of one of his mom’s most recent move-in schleps’ Marlboro’s, being dared to catapult off the back of Danny’s deck, or even something as lame as eating till he puked. But this time was different. This time, fear circled him like a vulture. The sick thing was death seemed an easier thing to face than this.
“I don’t like fire,” Arson said, shaking. “I never liked it.”
“Don’t be a wuss, it’ll be fun.”
“I don’t feel safe, Danny.”
“Don’t be such a chicken, Arson, you’re always scared.”
“No I’m not; this time it’s different. I swear… I’ll do anything else, just not this.” His dread created a break in his voice, and a tear leaked from his eye.
“Unless you want the entire school to think you’re a chicken, you have to do this.”
He wiped his tear away. Hoped Danny didn’t notice.
“Give it to me,” he finally said, giving in.
Standing in the center of downtown Cambridge, fear awaited a frail boy and his friend. It devoured the seconds before he lit the fuse. After numerous attempts to light it, Arson felt his wrist turn hot. Then his hand. Soon, a spark lit the tip of the fuse, though he had no idea how such a thing was possible.
The next few seconds came like a bullet. “Get rid of it. Quick!” Danny screamed, agitated and pressured by the bystanders’ passing stares. Their eyes found two jittery boys out in the darkness.
Arson ran out of the street light and launched the firecracker from his hot grip, some of his clammy sweat still stuck to the firecracker as the sparkling flame outlined the night sky.
He heard his heartbeat in his ears, drowning out the world. But he could hear one thing, the sound that haunts him still. It was the sound of a girl screaming. The most frightening thing he would ever hear.
A big thanks to Estevan for sharing that with us!
For those of you that have read it, what do you think? For those of you that haven't, I hope you get to read it soon!!