Devil and the Deep
September 30, 2015
STORM CLOUDS ARE GATHERING, AND THEY WILL RAIN BLOOD.Scarlett is living her happy-ever-after, back in the real world. Only the ‘happy’ part is proving problematic.For starters, there’s the isolation. Being a Cerulean among humans is fraught with risk, so her time with people can only be fleeting. Which means being with Luke but not being with Luke.Then there’s her Cerulean light, her power over life and death. Less awesome talent, as it turns out, and more overwhelming responsibility. And it comes with rules – rules that are increasingly difficult to obey. But what’s really pushing Scarlett to the precipice is something much bigger than herself, than her life in the cove. A force to be reckoned with:Blood.When long-buried truths are exposed, will Scarlett keep her head above water – or will she drown in the blood-dimmed tide that is unleashed?
If the might of the heavens were in your hands, would you be sinner or saint?
That’s the central question in my young adult romance series The Ceruleans. By Book 4, DEVIL AND THE DEEP, it’s a question that’s becoming impossible to leave unanswered, as characters are pushed to the precipice and must decide what actions to take – and whether they define those actions as ‘good’ or ‘bad’.
The origin of the question lies in my childhood. If you asked me when I was a kid what superpower I’d choose, it would be the power of the heavens: power over life and death. So that I could bring back someone very close to me. I thought about having that power a lot. Dreamed of it. Wished for it every time I threw a penny in a well or blew out a birthday candle.
As I grew up, slowly I let go of that yearning, accepted it as fantastical. But the idea stuck with me, and the older I got, the more I thought, What if? What if I had been granted that power? What would life have been like?
Amazing! was my initial reaction. I’d stride around healing the heck out of people, and bringing back those loved and lost. No more pain. No more grief. What a gift! What a saint I’d be…
… hang on.
I couldn’t heal everyone; there’s only one of me. So who would I choose? Who would I leave to suffer?
I couldn’t be open about my talent; I’d be engulfed by people in need. So I’d have to carry about a huge secret. How would that affect my relationships with others?
I’d have power over life – and death. So I’d have the means to dole out justice. Would I – could I – kill?
Suddenly, the might of the heavens becomes less awesome power and more terrible responsibility. Saintliness fast disintegrates into sinning. And I find myself, like my heroine, stuck between the DEVIL AND THE DEEP blue sea.
And when, as William Butler Yeats put it, the blood-dimmed tide is loosed, then the ceremony of innocence is drowned.
Once upon a time a little girl told her grandmother that when she grew up she wanted to be a writer. Or a lollipop lady. Or a fairy princess fireman. ‘Write, Megan,’ her grandmother advised. So that’s what she did.
Thirty-odd years later, Megan is a professional writer and published author by day, and an indie novelist by night. Her fiction – young adult romance with soul – recently earned her the SPR’s Independent Woman Author of the Year award.
Megan grew up in the Royal County, a hop, skip and a (very long) jump from Windsor Castle, but these days she makes her home in Robin Hood's county, Nottinghamshire. She lives with her husband, a proud Scot who occasionally kicks back in a kilt; her son, a budding artist with the soul of a palaeontologist; and her baby daughter, a keen pan-and-spoon drummer who sings in her sleep. When she's not writing, you'll find her walking someplace green, reading by the fire, or creating carnage in the kitchen as she pursues her impossible dream: of baking something edible.
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