"Noah" doesn't hit theaters until March 28, but today (March 18) you'll be able to get an entirely different side of the story. Specifically the whole tale of the movie told from the perspective of Emma Watson's character, Ila. And exclusively for MTV News readers, we have an excerpt from the book below.
The daughter-in-law of Noah (Russell Crowe) anchors this junior novelization written by Susan Korman, and released by Titan Books. Based on the biblical story of Noah's Ark, the movie is written and directed by Darren Aronofsky, and stars Russell Crowe, Ray Winstone, Anthony Hopkins, Jennifer Connolly and Watson.
The young girl moaned, her eyes flitting open. A deep gash had pierced her belly, and blood was soaking through her dress.
Ila tried to sit up, but it hurt too much. She had no idea how long she'd been lying here, alone in the dark and cold. Right now the camp was silent and still. But earlier it had been filled with sounds, loud, terrifying sounds...
First hoofbeats and loud cries from a band of raiders. Then desperate screams from her mother and her aunts. The men in Ila's family had tried to fight back, but the raiders had arrived so swiftly, and with no warning... Even Ila and the other children had quickly seen that there was almost no chance of overpowering them.
"Mother," Ila whimpered now. But she knew her mother was dead. A brutal raider, his eyes gleaming like a snake's, had grabbed Mother. When she'd tried to fight, he had swiftly stabbed her with his spear.
Perhaps Father will find me, Ila thought. Father had rushed back into their tent for a weapon. He was very strong — able to lift Ila in his arms as easily as he lifted a sheaf of wheat. Surely he had managed to protect himself. Did he know she was here, wedged between wagons, wounded?
"Father?" she called. Pain tore through her as she made herself lift her head to look around.
Small fires smoldered around the camp, scattering embers into the air. The dim light was enough for her to see the ruins of their settlement — the blackened and burned-out wagons, a smashed urn, scraps of clothing, grain spilled across the ground.
A sharp wind blew, blowing dry dust everywhere. Ila tried to lift an arm to shield her eyes. When she dropped her arm again, she saw something else close by — bodies, a stack of lifeless bodies.
With a moan, she let her head fall back again. Her teeth chattered and her body trembled violently.
There's no one left but me, Ila realized. I am the only one.
She closed her eyes, and soon the thick blackness fell over her again like a blanket.
Ila drifted in and out of sleep, too weak to move or think about getting up.
"Do you think they're dead?" a voice asked suddenly.
Is that a boy? Ila wondered. She struggled to open her eyes.
"It looks that way," someone else answered.
A woman was speaking now. "It looks to me like they were gleaners. They must have been scavenging around here when raiders came."
"And someone scavenged from them," a man put in grimly. "There's nothing left here."
Ila moaned in pain.
"Shh," someone said. It was the boy again. "Father!" he cried. "I heard someone!"
"I heard someone too, Shem," answered the man. Ila thought she heard him moving nearby, perhaps he was looking around. "It doesn't seem possible, but maybe there is a survivor among these ruins."
Ila heard more footsteps. Maybe they will find me. Her eyes fluttered closed again. She was so tired... There was so much blood around her.
At last the boy stepped closer to where she lay. "Here, Father!" he yelled. "I found her. It's a girl!"
A woman carrying an infant hurried to Ila's side, murmuring soothing words. "It's all right... you'll be all right..."
Ila opened her eyes and looked up, blinking. Was that her mother? No, she remembered with a stab of pain. My mother is gone.
"What happened?" the woman was asking her. "Tell me what happened to you and your family."
She handed the infant to a younger boy. Now Ila could see the man — he was tall, with broad shoulders and a dark beard.
Ila's eyes closed again. Her throat felt dry and her eyes stung from the wind and all her tears. "Raiders..." she whispered. "Mother and Father and — "
"Never mind." The woman stroked Ila's hair and hushed her. "Rest now. You can tell us your story later. May I look at your wound?"
Ila stared up at the woman's face. She had kind, green eyes and dark hair. Her voice was soft and gentle. Ila nodded, letting the woman examine the bloody gash across her abdomen.
"It looks very deep," the woman murmured. "I'm going to try to bandage it now." She looked at Ila. "It's going to hurt. A lot," she added.
Ila nodded, grimacing as the woman swiped at the cut with some water.
"What's your name?" asked the woman.
"Ila. My name is Ila," she answered.
"Ila," the woman repeated with a smile. "My name is Naameh." She gestured to the older boy who had found Ila. "This is Shem. While I bandage your wound, he's going to hold your hand tight and he won't let go."
The boy named Shem took her hand. Just as Naameh had promised, he held it tightly while his mother nursed Ila's wound.
Ila looked away, grimacing in pain. Tears filled her eyes. Mother, Father, she thought.
Shem tightened his grip on her hand. "You are very brave," he told her solemnly. "Braver than I am, I think."
"You are braver than me too!" chimed in the younger boy. Ila thought his name was Ham.
She tried to smile her thanks. She held on tightly, closing her eyes again and letting herself doze.
Soon she heard more voices. This time they all belonged to men. There were some harsh shouts, followed by a flurry of commands.
Oh no. Ila's heart skipped a beat. Were the raiders back?
Naameh looked up, worried. "Do you see anyone, Noah?"
"Yes. A raiding party," he answered grimly. "They've seen us. We have to go."
"Now?" Naameh started to say. "But — "
"Yes, over the hill!" he commanded. "Run!"
Naameh grabbed the baby, and the next thing Ila knew, the man named Noah swooped down and gently lifted her off the ground.
The family ran from the raiders for a long time. Naameh and the boys seemed exhausted. Ila tried not to cry out from pain as she bounced along in Noah's arms.
At the bottom of the hill, the land looked burnt and scarred-looking. Ahead Ila could see clumps of skeletons hanging from tall spikes. She squinted. Were those spooky things real? She shivered and closed her eyes.
Naameh was staring at the dark, pitted landscape ahead. "No, Noah. No. We can't go there. It's the Watchers' Land."
Noah had stopped too, still holding Ila tightly. "The raiding party is right behind us, Naameh," she heard him say. He glanced over his shoulder again. "They've crested the ridge," he said. "We have no choice. Hurry!"
Naameh and her sons followed Noah across the border. Behind them, most of the raiders halted. But Ila heard Noah curse under his breath. A few of the raiders rushed after them.
Ila dozed again. She woke with a groan as Noah suddenly thrust her into Shem's arms.
Shem took her, his eyes on his father.
"Protect your mother first and last," he commanded the boy. "Now run. I love you!" He pulled out his knife and whirled toward the raiders.
The wound in Ila's belly throbbed as Shem raced away from Noah. Naameh hurried after them with Ham and the baby.
Ila closed her eyes. Will Noah be safe? she wanted to ask Shem. But she was too tired. Everything hurt so much...
When Ila woke, she could see that she and the others were in a deep crater. Peering down at them were about thirty giant creatures — they looked like they were made of stone or mud.
Impaled on pikes all around the rim of the crater were more of those spooky-looking skeletons.
Ila's head felt hot and her eyes burned. Scared, she turned to Shem, who was sitting nearby. "I must be dreaming," she murmured. "I see stone giants up there."
"Those creatures are Watchers," Shem whispered back.
"Watchers?" she echoed. "Are we in danger?"
"I am not sure. They captured Father and then they found us and trapped us all here." He looked at her as she winced. "Are you in a lot of pain?"
Ila wanted to be brave, but she was in pain. "It hurts a lot," she blurted out.
"Well, we think you are very strong," he said. "You do not have to talk, you know," he added. "Mother said that you are to save your strength."
Ila nodded. It hurt when she spoke, but she wanted to keep talking. She didn't want to think about her parents and the rest of her family right now.
While Shem stared at the Watchers, she stole another glance at him. She guessed he was about nine or ten, maybe a year older than she was.
He's very kind for a boy, she thought. Not like most of her boy cousins who teased her and rarely included her in their games and races.
"How did your family find me?" she asked.
"Uh..." Shem cast a quick look at his father. "We were traveling, on our way to see Grandfather. My father... Noah...
He has dreams — terrible dreams about the world ending and millions and millions of people dying in a massive flood. He says..." Shem swallowed, looking worried. "He says that he dreams of the Creator destroying the whole world."
"The whole world...?" Ila echoed. She could not imagine that — especially since her world had already been destroyed. Was Shem saying there was more destruction and violence to come?
"Father also dreamed of Grandfather's mountain," Shem went on. "Methuselah is the oldest man on earth. He has walked the land since Adam lived and is very wise. Father wants to see if he is still alive. He is very anxious to talk with Grandfather to — "
One of the Watchers started shouting again. Ila looked up to see that he was grizzled and covered with scars.
"That one is their leader," Shem whispered to her. "Samyaza."
"That's an abomination, Og!" Samyaza snapped at another one. "You should have killed them. They are trespassers and they must die!"
"We are here to see Methuselah — my grandfather," Noah called loudly.
Og looked toward the leader. "That man is a child of the old one, Samyaza!" he said. "That's why their lives were spared."
Samyaza scowled in anger. "Those are lies, Og. That's a man and nothing more!"
"But Samyaza..." Og tried to argue again.
"Do you forget how they betrayed the Creator?" Samyaza cut him off. "How mankind — "
"It is He who sends us," Noah yelled to them. "The Creator himself!"
Ila heard a few Watchers gasp.
"The Creator sent them?" one murmured.
"More lies," Samyaza snarled. "Leave them here to rot!"
Soon the Watchers marched away from the crater.
Shem looked worried again. "You should rest now," he said to Ila. "Don't worry. Father will think of something."
"Noah" hits theaters everywhere on March 28.