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The Test (Animorphs #43) by Applegate K.A

The Test (Animorphs #43) by Applegate K.A

Author:Applegate, K.A. [Applegate, K.A.]
Language: eng
Format: azw3
Publisher: Scholastic Inc.
Published: 2017-08-29T04:00:00+00:00

<It’s sure enough about time, Bird-boy.> Marco’s thought-speak greeted me at about three hundred feet. He was flying in, too, and was just as late as I was. It was dawn. We were both working hard to stay up in the cool air.

<Enjoying a leisurely breakfast while the rest of us get ready to work?> he continued.

Actually, breakfast was why I was late. This morning, the meadow had been unusually still. Not a field mouse anywhere. Kind of ominous, like they knew something I didn’t. Like they knew it was better to stay at home.

I’d set out hungry, but along the way I’d spotted a gray squirrel. It was bigger than I like, but food is all I think about. In nature, in my world, hunger doesn’t just mean you’ll be crabby in the car on the way to Taco Bell. It carries undertones of death.

I’d dived, silent and swift. With wide-open talons I snatched it, unsuspecting, from the power line it was making its way across. The squirrel was heavier than I’d guessed. It yanked on my legs, sent me tumbling for the ground. I held tight. I even regained control, feet above the ground, flapping like mad to stay aloft.

But then, the squirrel’s teeth pierced my leg. Sharp pain from the incision shot to my brain. I released one talon and let go of my would-be breakfast.

<Some of us actually have to work for our food,> I called to Marco. <But then, it’s probably a huge deal for you to get the Pop-Tart in the toaster.>

I landed gently on a tree branch. Marco was already demorphing. The others had gathered a few feet away. All but Ax, who was hiding in the thick grass, keeping an eye on the pumping station.

Jake had changed plans on Taylor at the last minute. He had to balance the danger of not having her accounted for as we dug with the risk of having our true identities discovered when we demorphed.

So Jake had let Taylor know, by E-mail, that she couldn’t come within a mile of the dig or the pumping station before 8:00 A.M. If she did, the deal was off. When she did show up, she had to hang with us as we dug.

She had agreed to Jake’s conditions with an eagerness I found disconcerting. I didn’t mention it to the others. I knew it was nerves.

I could see the manhole cover next to where the others were standing. It was partly covered with sand and stuck out above the ground a few inches. This was a good place to work, with little chance of being seen. We weren’t far from the pumping station but were concealed by trees and brush on all sides. Taylor knew what she was doing.

The sewer cap was in a cul-de-sac, on the side of a gravel road that hadn’t been paved. The concrete curbs were in place and the gravel was carefully compacted a few inches below, ready for a layer of asphalt. It had been this way for a while.


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