One Minute to Midnight

Ellyce Jensen was nobody special.

So, all the reasons why she was crouched down behind the bottom row of dress pants hiding in her father’s closet, were lost on her. She held her breath while dust and sweat ran down her face, stinging her eyes. Squinting through the cracked closet door into the darkened bedroom, she realized now that it had probably been dangerous, and pretty stupid, not telling anyone that she was alone.

But she hadn’t. Because at first, she didn’t think it was a big deal. And telling people that her dad had disappeared without a trace would just complicate things when he returned home. Besides, it wasn’t like this was the first time Thomas Jensen had ever forgotten to come homeit was just the longest. And the only time he hadn’t called.

No matter what harebrained idea Thomas was chasing, he always called. But he disappeared 56 days ago, and she had not seen nor heard from him since.

Photo by Bru-nO via Pixabay

Thinking back to that day, three things stood out in her mindit was 86 degrees and unusually sunny for the third week of January. It was the week before her seventeenth birthday.

And it was also the day the Doomsday Clock had been set one minute to midnight. The newly sworn-in President had only been in office three days before the nightly news had started splashing the phrase “End of the Modern World,” across ever television screen in America, and the Atomic Scientists changed the Clock’s status to “extremely critical.”

Ellyce saw the clock’s change in status as an omen, but Thomas had told her not to worry about it. He said the clock was a tool—but mostly, it was a figment of scientists’ imaginations to keep the masses under control. Thinking about it now, she should have pressed him for more information, but at the time, she didn’t know what she didn’t know.

This snippet is from my brand-new novel, A War and A Wedding … coming June 2019. Subscribe to my email list to receive news and updates leading up to the launch!

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