The Runner is a Donovan Circus short story, taking place after the fifth and final book of the series. Readers will follow a few days in the life of Delia Stavros, Runner and best friend to Lucy Sullivan. Donovan Circus fans will spot a few easter eggs, as well as learn more about Delia’s everyday life, including her romance with Theo Benedict. Too bad her parents don’t approve… (Scroll down for special excerpt.)
Delia Stavros could not be happier these days – her circus is safe, her friends are healthy, and she and Theo are more in love than ever. Her only problem? Her parents refuse to approve of their relationship, insisting she must keep with their Greek heritage. She thinks she can put them off a while longer – until a sweet gesture by Theo backfires, bringing both their families to the Donovan Circus grounds. Can they bring their families together for love, or will their families instead pull them apart?
Excerpt from The Runner:
When Delia Stavros took off in a run, she blurred. The entire world slowed as she pumped her legs, the Donovan Circus grounds blending into streaks of bright lights and colors. Even after nearly two decades of her gift, Delia never tired of the view. (Or the high metabolism.)
She raced past dozens of people, their bodies still as she passed. Guests of the show never even realized she’d been there, while circus employees hardly acknowledged the way their hair moved in her breeze. Long used to her speed, they were more than familiar with the gifted world hidden away from human eyes.
“Dee!” someone called out.
Delia skidded to a halt, dust flying in her wake. Long, dark hair swirled around her shoulders as she turned to find the owner of the voice. In the blink of an eye, she used the tie on her wrist to toss her hair up into a ponytail.
Bianca waved as she got close, an apologetic look on her pretty face. Her flawless brown skin, pixie haircut, and small stature gave her an almost fairy-like appearance. The glitter all over her only added to the effect.
“What can I do?” Delia asked, already anticipating Bianca’s needs. Delia’s gift made her the perfect runner–lower case r–in the show, quickly helping anyone during the show who needed assistance.
“Someone left his ball in my camper,” Bianca said, shooting a dirty look at her coworker. “We need it in about thirty seconds.”
Delia snorted and took off, skirting busy circus workers on her way to the living area. She was back in under ten seconds, in front of Bianca again. She kneeled down in front of Bianca’s show partner and waved the bright red ball beneath his nose. Henry, a Jack Russell terrier, wagged his stubby tail in excitement, eagerly snatching the ball out of Delia’s hands.
“Thanks, Dee!” Bianca scooped her dog up and ran to take her place before their routine.
The rest of the night flew by, another magical Donovan Circus show in the books. The audience cooed and laughed at Henry’s theatrics; they oohed and ahhed at the acrobats twisting and flipping in the air; and they gave a standing ovation at Lucy Sullivan’s fire dancing. Little did they know that Lucy’s Firestarter gift produced those flames, or that the acrobats, talented as they were, could float along the wire as Levitators.