Teaser Tuesday 6/3/2014: Infected (Click Your Poison)

This week’s “Teaser Tuesday” comes from a book that’s a little bit different from most! Readers of “a certain age” may remember the old “Choose Your Own Adventure” such as The Cave of Time, the first in the series. Rather than being linearly structured, these books presented a series of scenes, at the end of which the protagonist (you) had to make a decision, then turn to the indicated page to see how things worked out for you. Pretty often that would be like this:

But then every once in a while it be like this:

Anyway this is all background information for this week’s book, which you don’t “read” so much as you “play”: Infected (Click Your Poison #1), by James Schannep, which that takes advantage of the Kindle’s ability to incorporate hyperlinks to make it very easy to follow a set of changing paths based on answers to questions posed at the end of a scene. Naturally enough, the book is about a zombie apocalypse.

You do the hokey-pokey and you eat yourself a brain, and that's what it's all about.

You do the hokey-pokey and your intestines fall out, and that’s what it’s all about.

In this case the apocalypse is brought about by a new drug will help you stay young and vital forever. But don’t take my word for it — just read the advertising copy and see for yourself!

After successful testing on lab rats, Gilgazyme® is now ready for public consumption. It’s a revolutionary new gene therapy, invented by Dr. Richard Phoenix and Dr. Lewis Deleon, which promises to end aging after only one dose. Simply use the patented inhaler, and let science take care of the rest. Your flawed genetic code will be removed, and replaced by a new and improved stream in which you’ll never age another day (this statement has not been evaluated by the FDA).

Stay young and beautiful forever with Gilgazyme&reg.

Nice stealth puns in the doctors’ names! Obviously they never saw the most recent film version of I Am Legend or, for that matter, read Oryx & Crake. But I digress. The important thing here is, what do you do next?

* “Stay this age forever? I’ll sell my house, my kids, whatever — sign me up!”

or

* “Does anyone else think this is a bad idea? No freaking way I’m going anywhere near that poison!”

Care to guess what happens if you go with option #1?

Speaking of choosing poorly while choosing your own adventure, the conclusion of Shards continues to progress!

Bernard climbed back down to his post on the street, Cynidece trailing along behind. Arriving there, he discovered that Aldric had wandered through the harbor gate to the top of the road; he had unbuckled the scabbard and left it on the ground near Bernard’s quarterstaff. The team coming up from below was only a few switchbacks away from the top now. “You know, I own a small boat, but I have never seen it,” Aldric said.

“Why not?”

“I never go down to the harbor. It is in such an inconvenient location.”

Cynidece snorted. “What foolishness, putting the harbor at sea level.”

“Why do you have a boat if you don’t use it?”

“I hire men to take it out and catch fish for the inn.” He gave Bernard a look of immense seriousness over his shoulder, then turned back to the water and declared, “If we survive this, I am going to go out on the boat once.”

“Um, okay,” Bernard said.

“Why would you want to do that?” Cynidece said. “Do you like being seasick? Do you enjoy the smell of unwashed sailors?”

“Just so I can say I have been out on the ocean.”

She laughed. “You are such a melancholy drunk.” To Bernard: “You wait. He will start singing maudlin ballads at any moment.”

For a long while, Aldric was silent.

Then he said: “Is it my imagination, or is the water turning green?”

No, Aldric. No it’s not.

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