After fifteen-year-old Tuck finds a Maya artifact while on vacation in Guatemala, his whole life changes. To his surprise, he discovers he can make it rain and snow. A local weatherman happens to be around when Tuck creates a waterspout near his home in Tarpon Springs, Florida, and the next thing he knows, someone from the Department of Homeland Security is picking him up at school and taking him to their offices in Orlando. From there, things only get weirder and more dangerous when he’s escorted to Washington, D.C.
With help from friends and family, Tuck tries to outwit government agents while staying one step ahead of the mysterious Rafe Castillo, the man assigned to ride herd on him. Tuck has an amazing opportunity to reverse the effects of climate change… but only if he stays alive long enough to do it.
“Swim first, then study, ’kay?” Holly said.
Mick fell in behind her, but Tuck held back. “I’m gonna wait a bit for my pop to chill. I’ll be out in a minute.”
Mick trailed laughter. “We’ve had this discussion, Tuck. It’s called ‘soda’ down here.” A moment later, Tuck heard a loud splash and Holly’s giggles as she and Mick jumped in the pool.
“It’s pop,” Tuck said under his breath. Although he’d been in Florida five years, he still sometimes felt out of place even though there were lots of transplanted northerners here. Mick and Holly, however, had been born in Tarpon Springs. Tuck raised his voice. “I’ve seen snow! I’ve gone skiing and made igloos.”
“Who the hell cares?” Mick called back.
Shoving his hands in his pockets, Tuck sulked. Wrapping his fingers around the talisman―something he’d been doing a lot since he’d taken to carrying it―he thought about his last day in St Paul. The house had been sold and their things shipped down to the new place on Bayshore Drive. It had been the fifteenth of January, and snow was falling hard enough they’d wondered if their flight would be delayed. The temperature had been fifteen degrees and falling. He remembered being really cold as they locked up and got in the airport van. He slid his thumb over the curves and lines on the talisman and briefly wanted to feel that cold again. There’d been something clean and refreshing about winter up there that was always missing in the Sunshine State.
“I wish it would snow,” he whispered into the empty kitchen. “For just five minutes.”
He grabbed his can of pop from the freezer, and the backpacks off the table, and joined his friends in the cage. Mick and Holly were horsing around in the pool, but when they saw he’d brought their homework, they made faces at him and climbed out, dripping on the flagstone. Mick had stripped down to his boxers, as threatened, and Tuck averted his eyes.
“Ugh, work,” Holly said, giving her shoulder-length hair a quick rub with a towel. “But after we finish, maybe we can hang at Howard Park. What do you say?”
“Food first. I’m getting hungry,” Mick said, flopping down in a chair at the patio table. “Think your parents would invite me to stay for dinner? Your father grills a mean hamburger.” Reaching into his pack, he retrieved his history book and opened it to the third chapter; rumors were a pop quiz on the material was scheduled for tomorrow.
“You’re always hungry,” Tuck teased, claiming part of the table for his math work. He reached for his Dew and froze; something that looked suspiciously like a snowflake landed on top of the can. “What the….”
They turned toward him. He pointed at the table, where more flakes had fallen.
Holly said, “Is that… snow?”
“Can’t be,” Mick said in a hushed voice. “It’s almost a hundred degrees out here, even in the shade.” He looked up. “Besides, we’re protected by the overhang. Even if it was possible, there’s no sky directly above us.”
Tuck inhaled sharply and touched the white stuff. It was cold and wet.
“It’s snow,” he said, “… and I think I made it happen.”
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About the Author
Theo Fenraven happily lives in south Florida where it is hot and sunny all the time.