Title: THE SHADOW OF VESUVIUS
Genre: YA Historical Fiction
Vesuvius is readying itself to spew hot ash and burning rocks over the seaside town of Herculaneum.
Fifteen-year-old Mira recognizes the signs from her vision of a year earlier. Massive destruction, bringing its own burial, is coming to the town and its people.
Mira's first attempts at escape are stopped, but she finds an ally in the mother of Remy, the Roman child Mira looks after. Serena, near the end of her second pregnancy, dreams of her own death. She makes Mira promise to save her son and sends Levi, another house slave, with her. Mira is determined to take this chance to return to her childhood home.
Mira vows to keep her promise to the child’s mother, while she battles to get to safety before Vesuvius explodes and buries her along with the town and everything else for miles around.
Seeing the violent and compete destruction and burial of the town she has lived in for eight years, and knowing Serena is dead, overwhelms Mira and nearly stops her from going on.
Soldiers who come to investigate the carnage will also have the task of rounding up runaways.
A farmer offers them ride on his cart when their stolen horse becomes lame.
Although given her freedom by Serena before leaving, Mira still has scars on her neck from the slave collar. With Serena dead, she has no proof of being set free. They hear the regular march of the military returning to the village where Mira and Levi were given refuge. Terrified of being caught and resold, they accept the offer of a ride into the mountains, where Mira’s home is.
The farmer father Mira thought killed the day they were attacked and she was sold into slavery. Although she looks familiar to him, they have both changed so much in eight years they do not, as yet, recognize each other.