Keeper of the Lost Cities - Deleted Scene #12

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Deleted Scene from Flashback was such a huge chunk of the book that I needed to limit it to the most essential moments. I had to cut anything making progress on her recovery. And since this was neither of those, it had to go. —Shannon

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marching over to Elwin’s office. “I was promised ooze!” “Yeah, let the Great Fitzphie Ooze Fest begin!”

Keefe commanded, pumping his fist. “It’s going to be a few more minutes,” Elwin warned them. “I’m

still finishing up one of the poultices.” “Is there gross stuff in it?” Ro asked hopefully. “Some of the worst I’ve ever seen,” Elwin agreed. Keefe smirked at Fitz and Sophie. “Excellent.” “But hurry it up!” Ro added as she paced around the room. The third time she passed Sophie’s cot, she paused to ask, “Are you aware of your hair situation?” “Situation?” Sophie repeated. “‘Disaster zone’ might be more appropriate,” Ro warned as she

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pulled a compact from the back of her breastplate and held the mirror up to show Sophie. Sophie blinked. “Oh wow.” She wasn’t sure how hair could stick out in so many different directions and also be plastered to her head. And the more she tried to pull it into a ponytail, the more it rebelled. “Okay, now it’s getting pathetic,” Ro said, smacking Sophie’s hand away and taking over. “You can all thank me later.” “Uh, what is happening right now?” Keefe asked. “I’m helping your girl look less like a newborn yeti.” She used her claws like a comb, trailing them gently across Sophie’s skull. “Worried I’m going to shred the skin off your scalp?” she asked when Sophie flinched. “I could, you know.” “I’m sure you could,” Sophie agreed. Just like she was sure that Ro could crush her head like a grape. “It’s weird, isn’t it?” Ro asked, separating Sophie’s hair into sections. “This truce between our species? I mean, if someone had told me last year that I’d get this close to an elf and not want to rip out their throat—especially one of the little brats who attacked our capital city—I’d have broken every bone in their body. But here I am: styling elf-y hair in Sparkle Town. And the weirdest thing is—I don’t totally hate it. I mean, I could do without all the glitter—and the perfumy smell. But the drama and obliviousness make it pretty entertaining.” “Obliviousness?” Sophie asked. “The fact that you need me to spell it out for you kinda proves my point. But don’t worry: Someday you’ll figure it out—and then things will get very interesting. In the meantime—behold!”

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She held up the mirror again, revealing the two messy buns she’d twisted Sophie’s hair into—which was a little Princess Leia meets Minnie Mouse, if Sophie was honest. Ro sighed. “Clearly you need to start seeing yourself the way others do. Check out the staring boys if you don’t believe me.” She pointed to Fitz and Keefe, who were indeed staring. “What?” Sophie asked, heat creeping up her neck. Fitz blinked. “You look . . . different—in a good way.” “Dude, is that the best you can do?” Keefe asked. “I don’t see you doing any better,” Fitz argued. “Oh, I could. But I’m trying not to make you look bad. And can we be done with the makeovers? I came here for ooze! Come on, Elwin—you’re killing me!” “One more minute,” Elwin called back. “Still finishing up the new poultice.”

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