Book Excerpt, Young Adult

Book Tour: Joshua N’Gon: The Last Prince of Alkebulahn by Anthony Hewitt

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Synopsis:

Joshua N’Gon is a Fourteen year old foster child from Africa. He has grown up in a loving home in north London and for all intents and purposes he was an ordinary teenager. The reality though could not be further from the truth. Joshua is a mystery wrapped up in an enigma and he is beginning to understand he has a destiny that is far beyond what he could ever have imagined. On his tenth birthday he receives a mysterious package from his birth parents. He is given articles of technology that even his young mind realized were so far beyond what he knew and understood that they were almost magical. Joshua straps on a tribal hierloom of obvious alien origin – a miraculous multi-tool he calls his RCT– Real Cool Tool that bonds with his arm and is irremovable. And so begin his physical changes too, the headaches, the flashes of genius, the visions and the amnesia. With his friends Brick and Mina they slowly help him to unravel the mystery of who he is. In the meantime dark corporate forces are gathering in the horizon as Joshua’s talents and his interest in finding his family has piqued the curiosity of powerful people. Soon as his life and the life of those he loves are threatened he must come to grips with his gifts and the miraculous alien technology that founded his people.

Bio

Anthony has been writing for over 15 years. Mainly writing for mature readers, his genre of choice has always been speculative fiction. The YA category is such an exciting category that he wanted to include a diverse set of character with a different cultural perspective. He’s enjoyed himself so much he intends to keep creating fantastic new stories for a 12+ audience.

Links:

Book website: www.thelastprince.co.uk

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36222715-joshua-n-gon?ac=1&from_search=true

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0956266010/ref=x_gr_w_bb?ie=UTF8&tag=x_gr_w_bb_uk-21&linkCode=as2&camp=1634&creative=6738

 

Joshua N-Gon: The Last Prince of Alkebulahn Excerpt

Wharnton Estate, Eastside

2 years ago

Zion jumped off her push scooter and let it fall to the ground, her actions a combination of surprise and inquisitiveness. A boy sat on the curb staring straight ahead, eyes glazed over, a scene of destruction behind him. He breathed deeply paying no attention to the Rasta girl’s tentative approach.

“Josh? Joshua?” She said taking the buds from out of her ear and letting them fall to her side, the Reggae music still playing.

The boy did nothing except continue to stare into the distance, his chest rhythmically rising and falling.

Zion knew him in passing; he was cute. They attended different schools, but he was a familiar face especially over summer holidays. His family lived about five streets away. He loved his BMX and skateboard, but she never saw him running with anyone she would be concerned with. He was always polite, nodding a shy hello when they stumbled across each other. This boy was not a troublemaker, but the scene behind him made her blood chill.

Joshua had a scratch along his cheek that was weeping dark pearls of blood. His whole body was covered in tears, slashes, and scrapes. His arms hung loosely at his side, his fists bloody. Both sleeves of his long-sleeved rugby shirt were torn. Through a jagged rip near his sleeve cuff, Zion spotted a weak strobing light coming from a strange ornament strapped to his wrist. Her mind immediately explained it as the flickering street light situated just above him playing on the beautiful metal work.

What else could it be?

That was not the strangest thing though. Stranger than the comatose boy, stranger even than the bracelet on his wrist was the scene behind her. Zion blinked at the smoking broken remains of the park.

What happened here? Zion wondered.

Jah-T had sent her out to the corner shop for bottled water, and she had decided to cut across the communal play area, a part of the estate she had been expressly told time and time again to stay away from at night. But Zion was willful and confident at thirteen years old.

Jah-T had slackened the reins because of his daughter’s insistent demands that she was as responsible as an adult but after this Zion had cause to question whether she needed more preparation for the mysteries life had in store for her.

Five boys lay on the ground strewn across the park. Not dead as she’d initially thought but badly injured, bruised, battered and broken judging by their whimpering and groans. Zion saw a few discarded knives, a metal pipe and a crowbar. The chain on a swing had been melted making the seat, a slide was crumpled at the base like an elephant had sat on it, and the bark of two trees was glowing red like they had been touched by lava. Whoever or whatever had attacked them had done so mercilessly and with a touch of the dramatic.

The Good a Road Crew were a violent clique of adolescents who deemed this part of London their turf. It was a spot where they congregated infrequently to smoke weed and shoot the breeze. Now, deathly silence took the place of their raucous laughter, and only a forlorn Joshua remained as a witness or somehow perpetrator to what had just happened.

An icy chill tremored through her at the thought of Joshua being responsible for this. But how? It had to be someone else. The Good a Road crew considered this estate as one of their many safe zones. A tentative agreement made between three rival gangs ensured that nothing of consequence could go down there. However, recently the generous patronage towards the ordinary inhabitants of the estates was ignored, and random acts of violence against them had increased. The agreement became stretched so thin it was practically transparent.

Zion had heard rumors about initiation rites being forced on new members causing the spike in attacks. Now, it seemed that someone had decided to push back.

Joshua?

She shook the idea from her head and called her father. In minutes, the Rasta man was at his daughter’s side, surveying the damage.

“How many times have I told you not to ride through here, night or day for that matter?” He said.

“I was just passing Papa. I didn’t go inside. It’s obvious from here.”

“Deh yout nuh look too hot.”

“Joshua,” Zion added. “His name is Joshua.”

“Yuh know him then?”

Jah-T moved his hands across Joshua’s field of vision. There was no response from him.

“He’s come to the youth club a few times, but he’s not a regular.

“Him look familiar. Is he a bad bwoy?”

“No Papa. He’s quiet, stylish and smart.”

“Stylish and smart.” Jah-T mused. “OK, he’s cool but how do we explain dis?”

“I don’t know.” Zion hugged herself, still in shock. She moved closer to her father, unconsciously drawing strength from him. Both looked on at the devastation with mouths open.

“Come to think of it I know his peoples,” Jah-T said quietly. “They are a decent family.” He crouched beside him and spoke firmly in his ear.

“Joshua!” Jah-T gently shook the boy’s shoulders. Then he ran his fingers over his head, feeling for contusions and swellings. He felt his chest. “Kiss mi Mumma,” he mumbled under his breath. “Just a few scratches and minor bruises.” Then he looked over to the injured boys in the park as if confirming what his own eyes were telling him. “You are a dangerous bwoy.” He lifted Joshua’s hands up. His knuckles were bruised with splashes of blood that Jah-T surmised belonged to the victims. The Rasta man shook his head in disbelief.

“Call 911 on your mobile princess,” Jah-T said to his daughter. “Deh reprobates in the park can wait. It’s time to get this one home.”

Jah-T didn’t wait for an invitation as the door of 112 Asimov Street opened wide, and both himself and Zion stepped over the threshold with Joshua held between them.

“Oh, my God!” Maria’s reaction at Joshua’s continuing catatonic state worried the Rastaman the most. Fredrick rushed in from the kitchen, gently taking Joshua from them and laying him on the sofa.

“Sleepwalking,” he turned to Jah-T and Zion. “Thanks, boss. Where did you find him? I was just out looking for him myself. I circled the estate three times.”

“He was sat by the park,” Zion said wanting to fill in the gaps but hesitating. “So, we brought him home.”

“It’s not the first time, to be honest,” Fredrick said matter-of-factly. “But it doesn’t usually take so long to locate him.”

“Suh yuh saying this is normal?” Jah-T asked, surprised.

“For him, yes. Once we get him back to his room, he’ll sleep till the morning and remember nothing.”

“Let me help.” Jah-T moved in position under Joshua’s right arm. Fredrick to the left.

“Stay with Mrs. Taylor, Princess. Soon come.” Jah-T said to his daughter, heading towards the stairs.

The two men easily made their way up the flight of stairs in silence. Jah-T was paying attention to his surroundings. The family kept their home neat, clean and welcoming with mementos of Jamaica, here and there. The walls breathed the mouth-watering perfume of a bakery.

Eventually, they shuffled into Joshua’s room. A skateboard was propped up on the wall beside his bed. A small corner desk held a closed laptop. Books and magazines were comfortably close to where he slept for easy access. Posters of musical artists and scientists adorned all four walls.

They placed Josh on the mattress and, as if he recognized that this was where his sleep-walking journey had begun, he instantly curled up. Fredrick removed his shoes and socks and covered him with a sheet.

“I appreciate the help, dreadlocks.” He turned to Jah-T.

“It takes a village to raise a child, dem say. And anyway, you would do the same for my little girl. Look, there’s something I didn’t mention,” Jah-T continued.

“What’s that?”

“We found your son amongst some youts from the Good a Road Crew. It seems like him mash dem up badly.”

Fredrick listened carefully, his face void of all expression.

“I called the Emergency services but expect Police at your doorstep anytime soon.”

Fredrick sighed, a long, drawn out breath, his eyes giving away his weariness.

“One of them threatened my wife,” Fredrick said. “The family was upset about it.”

“And your son?” Jah-T asked.

“He reacted to protect us,” Fredrick said before Jah-T could ask any more questions. “Friend, I will just have to deal with,” he said. “But for now, just keep it between us.”

Jah-T pulled an imaginary zipper across his lips and smiled. On his way out of the room, the Rasta man noticed a tablet in a leather folio open to a web page. The screen showed a still photo of an old martial arts Grandmaster and four of his students the air, seconds after being expertly repelled by the old man’s feet, arms, and hands. The Rasta man looked at Joshua and looked back at Fredrick.

“You have a very special yout, look after him.”

“I will,” Fredrick said. “I will.”

thumbnail_Joshua NGon Last Prince of Alkebulahn by Anthony Hewitt

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