Hi. My name is Shyla. I’m the author of Shadowed Passage, book three of the Anath series. After many years as a nurse, private investigator and work on a police force, I’ve accumulated information from different aspects of the topic that became part of my series.
Though some will turn away from the topic in nonchalance, apathy, or disgust, I found I could not.
According to David Finkelhor, Director of the Crimes Against Children Research Center, one in five girls and one in twenty boys become victims of child sexual abuse. In a society that supposedly treasures their children, this is reprehensible. Even though most victims survive – their maltreatment has long-reaching affects. Children are most vulnerable to child sexual abuse between the ages of seven and thirteen.
Many researchers agree that abuse is underreported.
How do we help these kids? Sometimes, all it takes for a child to see and gain insight is one person, a person who is kind, compassionate, caring. This role model may only be in their life for a short time but long enough to make a lasting impression.
Kyley, one of my characters in Shadowed Passage is such a survivor. One thing that helped her—even though she was a lifelong prisoner up until her escape, her abuse didn’t begin until she reached puberty. Therefore, she had an opportunity to form her baseline personality/character in a less harsh environment than what her teenage years turned out to be.
Also on her side, daily tutors kept a running dialogue with what was normal. Even though she questioned the reality of their lives, she was at least exposed to the idea of what life could be. Through desperation, inspiration, and a twist of fate, she found not only her freedom, but someone willing to teach her about normal life.
As a nurse, I was required by law to report suspected child maltreatment. This cannot be emphasized enough. I repeat, suspected abuse, not confirmed abuse.
In the throw-away world we now occupy, I still believe it’s possible to bring forth humanity’s better qualities.
The next time you’re in a shopping mall, grocery store or your child’s classroom, look around. There’s a child in need of help. He/she won’t ask for it. They’ll even deny and lie about their bruises. It’s what they’ve been programmed to do. Don’t wait and try to investigate. Most people are not equipped to do so. Report it, anonymously, online, whatever. No child should suffer this way. Step up, be the adult, help them.
“The choice is yours boy, but understand—not deciding is making a decision. Do it before I make the decision for you. Only difference is, I won’t kill one, I’ll kill them both. Father or sister. You have all the power.”Roth’s kept his tone calm and gentle. The evil coiled tightly within him warmed his soul. He fancied the boy killing his father, silently rooting for the infant to survive. He could have lots of fun with her over the coming years.The boy’s father would die either way. Roth had bound and beaten him just for fun.
“Daddy? What do I do?” Tears streamed down Dylan’s face, sobs racked his entire nine-year-old battered frame. His gaze slid from his father to his baby sister, now held by Roth. When he looked back at his dad’s bruised and bloody face, he cried harder. His dad’s eyes were swollen—nearly shut.
The gun shook uncontrollably in the boy’s small hand. “Daddy?”
Boredom shadowed Roth’s eyes, the excitement of the climax dimmed with the child’s indecisiveness. His gaze wandered out the window over the kitchen sink. In the back yard, a massive play structure stood, complete with swings, tunnels, overhead ladder, and a slide. How extravagant for just two children, one still an infant. His sister always belabored the little things. Shame she’s not present to witness this. He would’ve found this even more amusing.
The blond haired infant cradled roughly in his left arm actually cooed at him. Disgusting. If he kept this thing, he’d have to hire a nanny. Still, the thought of it growing up with half the powers he’d felt in his sister years ago made the brat worth the trouble…If she survived today. He sighed.
“Dylan, son, It’s okay. You’re going to be all right. Look at me. Remember how we played catch this morning? When you think of me, you’ll remember how we played ball today. Okay, son?” He didn’t know what else to say in this horrific situation. His own psychotic brother in law was forcing his son to commit the most heinous act imaginable, choose between patricide and sororicide. Roth had always been the canary in the crazy mind but even Devon hadn’t seen this coming.
“Awww, isn’t this touching?” Roth snorted, no doubt weary of his twisted game. “What a little wimp. I’m growing tired of your indecision, boy. I think I’ll just slice this little bitch’s throat.
Tariffs paid on an ill-fated decision can last a lifetime.
A young boy—tossed an impossible situation by his psychopathic uncle, father or sister, he must kill one for the other to survive.
Two decades later, Dylan has developed his psychic talents, trained by the military, learned the skills necessary to locate the family he’d abandoned as a child and kill the devil himself, Roth. On the day he’s discharged, his ex-boss offers assistance in locating his sisters, demanding help with one more mission in exchange.
Tori, a young woman weeks away from graduating with her Psych doctorate, is torn from her stable life and thrust into a world of espionage, warriors, and unexplainable phenomenon. The man she loves, Major Clannahan, attaches her to the unit charged with locating a terrorist cell. Dylan, leading the unit, draws her like no other. Yet the darkness buried in his soul will test her skills and patience beyond anything she’s ever known.
Kiera and Kyley, identical twins challenged by the extremes of evil yet remain pure of heart, both bound to their man with a love withstanding the tests of time and tragedy. One a warrior, the other with a warrior’s heart, each wield formidable psychic talents, sought after by a psychopath and terrorist bent on destroying the country.
A group of psychic warriors, dedicated to fighting evil in the shadows, locating and helping others develop their paranormal talents without splintering society’s tenacious perception of reality.
These are the extraordinary people living among us, protecting and preserving our way of life. Courage and honor, duty and strength of will can sustain us for only so long. Eventually, we must find our own path forward, learning to open our hearts to love even as we risk the ultimate pain.
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About the Author:
Of the many lessons life seems intent on throwing her way; the most important one Shyla’s learned is to take the time to enjoy family and friends. The flux and flow of changes aren’t something to fight, but adapt to with the best of your ability. One day’s heartbreak is often followed by another day’s triumph. The only barricades remaining are the ones we refuse to navigate. She hopes you’ve enjoyed this story. Shyla’s website, ShylaWolff.com, will be updated as Dylan’s journey continues.
Amazon page: www.amazon.com/author/shylawolff