Although most early readers I have talked to have had no problems, bear in mind that this series has some parents who are not nice people and this may be the first time a middle school reader encounters the idea that a parent may raise a kid as a tool to achieve their own ambitions, not for the kid's best interest. Some of the alien characters do worse things to the kids. Some may wonder why would I include such horrific characters in a middle school novel. I leave those people with this metaphor: A shiny jewel is best shown on a black background.
With that introduction, here is an excerpt from the rewritten part of Book #4 chapter #2. This is not polished so there may be mistakes in it. The setup: Elof2 is a 20 year old Tibetan-American. Paul7 is a 9 year-old blue-eyed blond human-looking boy who can shoot lightning bolts from his fingers. He is the policeman for an advanced culture---these nine-year-old kids, the Pauls, are used as policemen because at 9 years-old, these kids are unquestioningly devoted to their culture as if it is their parent. Paul7 has been assigned to protect Elof2. But he cares about Elof2 more than just policeman, perhaps wishing he would be his parent...all Pauls are orphans. The dotted line signifies part of the text I have redacted to avoid giving away the story line.
Ed yells, “If you think I am just going to sit here while you ...”
POW! Paul7 shoots a lightning bolt that hits Ed. Ed jolts back, then he collapses forward, face planting on the desk.
“I decided to save you from any annoying retort from the ‘Killing Bastard of Silicon Valley’,” mocks Paul7, sharing Elof2’s digust.
“Say the word, Dad,” thinks Paul7. “Say the word and I will reduce him to a pile of dust. Please, Dad. I can’t stand to feel you cry inside—say the word!”
“The darkness within Paul7 whispers, “You must not. They will know I am within you.”
“Thank you,” says Elof2. “I was already upset enough thinking about cleaning out the room I grew up in, without listening to his insults.”
“I sense the wound within you, Dad,” Paul7 silently worries. “He has torn it open—he is bleeding the love from your heart. I need your love—do not spill it to the darkness. Save it for me. Save it for me, Dad.” He knows Elof2 is close to cracking. He cannot consult anyone telepathically because Elof2 would hear. Then something happens which Paul7 could never foresee. It shocks him. A tear drips from his eye. He is terrified that he is experiencing emotion.
(C) Copyright 2011 by Rusty Biesele, All Rights Reserved.