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Revamp, Excerpt 5

Well today is the last Saturday of the month. Where did it all go? I guess I got lost in all the writing. The revamp is progressing well. And by well, I mean it's off to my beta readers! Woohoo! this means, once they get done it can go off to the editor. If things go well, a finished, revised copy will hit the shelves in the next 30 days or so. This does mean excerpts might change from book 1 to book 2 pretty soon. I don't want to give all the changes from this book away before all of you get to read them, so the fact this book is nearly ready, makes that fear go away.

Some of you are probably wondering by now, "Shannon, why has this been taking you so long with this revamp? We want to see it and read more of the series!" I know, I know. I'm sorry it's taking so long. This lone timeframe wasn't my intention, but once I changed one thing it led to another and just snowballed. Not to mention. sadly, right now writing isn't my main career. I have a full-time job and do freelancing on the side when I can. They pay the bills and make it so I can afford editors and cover designers so these books look great.

One day I hope to be big enough to write full-time, but until then, I'll take what time I can to produce quality reads for all of you.

So here's the next excerpt. This is from chapter 4 and was a fix to a very boring explanation that really shouldn't have been oversighted as much as it had been the first go round.

I stalked over to the vanity and snatched my jacket. I sucked in air tightly through my nose to try to calm myself but it didn't help as much as I was hoping. My arm, seemingly on its own, attempted to bring the jacket up to my face but I resisted the urge to indulge in its scent. I knew better than to rely on that crutch. Instead I threw the jacket on and headed for the door.

"Wait," Raikidan called. "What did you just do?"

I turned to look at him. "What do you mean?"

"Just then, something got you worked up and you inhaled and your mood instantly responded."

I shrugged. "I've learned to use breathing as a way to get my head straight. Nothing special."

"Okay, how about that weird motion you almost did with your jacket but then stopped?"

"Oh that…" I shoved my hands into my pockets and rocked on my heels as I thought about a good way to word that part. "Well, it's an old habit I broke and resurfaces from time to time. As I told you, we Nu Humans have enhanced senses over regular Humans and we experiments have even better senses than the average Nu Human, but those extra enhancements vary greatly from one experiment to the next.

For me, I have the average Nu Human sight and hearing as well as strength, but my sense of smell, taste, and my endurance and speed are far above that average." I leaned up against the door. "I'll talk specifically about my sense of smell since it sparked this conversation. Because that sense is so enhanced I can take a smell and dissect it. I can determine what part of a scent is unique to someone, what identifies their race, and what part of their scent identities where they have been recently."

Raikidan looked surprised. "You can identify someone's race by their smell?"

I nodded. "I know, it sounds weird b—"

"Well actually, it doesn't, Raikidan interjected. "We Dragons can do this. Of course, your race smell doesn't smell much different than that woman downstairs."

"That's because Nu Humans are still Human. We're not an entirely new race or cross of races like most want to believe. Take away all our enhancements and we're still just Human."

He nodded. "That makes sense. So how did your sense of smell cause that habit of yours?"

I laughed awkwardly. "That was something I perpetuated. You see, with my ability to smell better, I can determine the types of scents that are pleasing and displeasing to me to a better extent than most. Early in my life I found certain smells caused my mood to shift and eventually I began to experiment until I started carrying around vials of concentrated smells that could help me alter my mood at will. Unfortunately I used it so much I essentially became addicted and had to force myself to stop. I still feel the effects now and then, as much as I'd rather not."

Raikidan sat down on the window sill. "That's pretty amazing."

I shrugged and looked away, not really sure how to take his words.

"So, what do I smell like to you?" he asked. I looked at him funny and he stammered, "U–uh what I m–mean…that sounded a lot less weird when I was thinking about it."

I laughed. "It didn't sound weird; it's just an odd question to ask—and to be asked for that matter. Very few have ever asked what they smell like to me."

"So…are you going to tell me?"

I grinned. "You smell like soot."

He frowned, almost looking as if he was trying not to be mad at my response, and I couldn't stop myself from laughing. He reacted exactly as I had hoped.

"Not funny."

"What? You really do smell like soot," I defended. He looked at me with disbelief and I smiled. "Really, you do. It's because you can breathe fire. Anyone who has connections with an element takes on a scent quality of that element. Yours happens to be soot.

"You also smell like musk, since you're male, mountain pines, water and soil, all coming from where you live, and you have a similar reptilian smell that the Grekeleons have, but it's also different. It has the smell of the sky mixed into it. And yes, I know, the sky doesn't technically have a smell, but trust me, that's the image I get from this part of that scent. Your Dragon scent is so new to me I really can't describe it any other way."

He just stared at me, his eyes showing how impressed he was.

"Oh, and honeysuckle. That floral scent sticks to you better than the forest smells."

"Does that mean anything?" he asked.

I nodded. "It means it's part of your natural smell and not given by the environment. If you were put into a sterile room, the forest smells would go away, but that floral smell would remain with your soot and racial smells."

"Why honeysuckle though?" he murmured, almost as if he were talking to himself. "There's quite a bit in my territory but…"

I shrugged. "Everyone has a unique part to their scent. Some have a floral scent, some fruity, and some have a scent that's way out in left field."

Raikidan's brow rose. "What?"

I shook my head and opened the door. "Human expression. Don't worry about."

"Hey wait," he called after me. "Is that it?"

I laughed. "Yes."

I then headed down the hall to see if I commandeer some breakfast.

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