The Curious Leaf: Voyage to the Moon 012

TCL Cover“Come, child. I’ll see you to your ship,” the pale queen said, holding out her hand and smiling the serene smile of a person caught in a pleasant dream.

“But I’ve only just arrived,” Kya said, taking the queen’s hand nonetheless. She cast her hungry eyes about the hall, drinking in the glowing white stone of the walls, the smooth, delicate throne of ivory, and the black marble floor shot through with stars.

The queen gestured to a round door that opened silently on its own. “Not all visits happen along the times of our choosing.” They stepped through, and to Kya’s surprise, she found herself back at the harbor, The Curious Leaf bobbing gently against the white ash dock while the sand leading up to the harbor gleamed like crushed diamonds bursting with moonlight.

She turned to the queen, her mind ripe with questions. “How . . . ?”

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Mira Morganstein: The Pink Lemonade Club 011

MMCoverTime froze as Mira’s gaze zeroed in on a boy-shaped patch of shadow in the center of her room. He looked to be only slightly shorter than she was, and he stood squarely in the center of the rag rug Nana had tied for her the year before.

She narrowed her eyes, but anything more detailed than boy-shaped swam strangely through her vision. Like she was trying to read a book underwater with the sun shining directly overhead.

“Who are you?” she squeaked, trying to calculate how fast she could get down to the kitchen. Her mom would know what to do, and even if she didn’t, at least Mira wouldn’t be alone in the craziness that was intent on intruding in her life.

The boy-shaped shadow paused as though deep in thought. “I’m really not quite sure,” he said apologetically.

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The Faerie Thief: The Ruby Queen’s Garden 011

TFTcover“So it’s hopeless then?” The creature gnawing at her heart sprouted another set of teeth.

Lyra grinned, and the sparkle came back into her eye. “Of course not! I may not be able to do anything about it, but there’s nothing saying you can’t.”

Gwyn lifted her head, and the air around her turned fragile as spun glass. “What can I do?”

“Well,” Lyra drawled, linking her arm with Gwyn’s, “I may not know how to break the binding, but I can teach you how to make a door.”

“A door?” Gwyn asked, thinking of the many doors Lyra always insisted she find on her own. “Can’t I already do that?”

“Yes and no. You know how to find a door if you have to, but it’s always better to know how to make one. Doors are handy things, but only if they’re there.”

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The Curious Leaf: Voyage to the Moon 011

TCL CoverThe dark queen raised her hand as if to caress the bottle, but stopped just short of touching it. Her eyes gleamed with a crafty look. “That is not the only apple you have in your possession, I believe.”

Kya blinked and put the apple back into the pouch. “No.”

“The apple is for you?”

“No.” Stronger this time as the certainty that the dark queen meant to trap her somehow grew with each beat of her heart.

A secret smile deepened the corners of the Moon Queen’s lips. “Do you know for whom the last apple is intended?”

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Secrets of the UnderWhere: Welcome to the UnderWhere 009

SotUcoverWednesday stared at the path, the basket his mother had packed tied securely to his back. Neither his mother nor his gran had been able to see them off, for which he was grateful. The yellow paths were perhaps the rarest in the UnderWhere, and he didn’t like to think what they would have to say about that—especially if they ever learned that this wasn’t the first time he’d set foot on one.

“Nah-nain,” Glop observed from beside him. The child frowned at the buttercup stones that uncoiled before them. His bear said nothing, but simply dripped with slime and stuffing.

“No,” Wednesday sighed, “not a nain.”

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