Category/Genre: MG/Urban Fantasy
Word Count: 64,000
Pitch: When twelve-year-old Conley frees a mind-reading dragon with a killer agenda, he must get his own dragons in the sky before Kansas City goes up in flames. So long, summer break.
Egg: Chocolate and prickly pear, ‘cause I’m a thoughtful guy but don’t push me.
The brick house was the tallest house on the street and the brick house knew it. The brick house had an extra twenty feet on the competition and that was without the rooftop palisade and launch pad that had been torn down and smashed to rubble at midnight in the 1950s.
The brick house was made entirely of stone. The lintels were hand-hewn limestone. The floors were poured concrete reinforced with steel, except where they housed escape tunnels and air shafts. A century-long line of home inspectors had said, “Completely safe and stable,” and each time, the brick house had smiled with quiet irony. The brick house was immovable and ingenious and fireproof, but the best word to describe it in English was “dangerous."
The brick house was looking out, keeping its eyes open, biding its time. It expected a lot and usually got it. It knew what it wanted. The brick house had never settled, would never settle for anything. The brick house was strong and good-looking and the brick house was kind of a jerk.
But that didn’t change the fact that the brick house knew its stuff. That didn’t change the things that the brick house had seen and the lives it had helped begin and end and the dark corners it would show the right tenants and the questionable plans it had for their future.
Chapter One: The Night Visitor
Conley wondered why the window was open. He’d been staring at the ceiling for about half the night, thinking about summer break. He was deciding whether a dent in the plaster resembled a camel or just an amoeba when he noticed the draft. The window had definitely been shut when his dad had hugged him good night, the old air conditioner humming and rattling outside.