Amy froze. Then she all but spit as she talked. “Fuck! They didn’t tell me. It does that kind of thing all the time. In my world, we’ve had a lot of creatures come through interdimensional portals. They’re mostly magical creatures, but every now and then we’ll see some strange mixture of magic and science, and sometimes… Sometimes we’ll see something purely scientific.”
Her face twisted, and then she sighed. “I’ve told you that we’ve fought The Thing That Eats for years, but what I didn’t tell you, because I didn’t know, was that it collected them. We’ve got humanoids called the Elder. Think of them as a cross between vampires and elves. The Thing collected them—along with anything else it could get. Cyborgs? Sure. Centaurs? Definitely. It took anything it could get. Continue reading Splits: Part 4
Haley frowned. “I wish I’d heard a real conversation with him. Then I might have better sense of what he’s like. You can learn a lot about who someone is by what they’re nervous to talk about.”
“What I’m wondering is if you could tell who’s in control? Andronicus or The Thing That Eats? That would make this a lot easier.”
She tilted her head, obviously thinking. “If I had some time to observe him, maybe. It’s a good idea. It seems like the kind of thing I ought to be able to do.” Continue reading Splits: Part 3
Amy met Vaughn’s eyes. “My father said to wait ten years and if I hadn’t heard anything from him to gather together what allies I can find, and take back the kingdom if I can.”
Her voice didn’t waver, didn’t sound apologetic or uncertain. Her accent even edged toward British though it wasn’t quite. In that moment, I could completely believe that she descended from generations of royalty and supernatural guardians, and would get back what was theirs. Continue reading Share The Love: Part 2
At the same time, lights came on in nearby houses. Hovering above the fog, I noticed something that I hadn’t before. The bigger houses that stood next to the four-lane road were all different from each other. On the narrower streets behind them stood identical, white two-story houses that didn’t quite look Western though I was at a loss as to why.
Thanks to the light, I could see that they were white boxes with green shingled roofs. Even if I couldn’t imagine them in Michigan, there wasn’t anything especially unusual about them.
Pushing aside speculations about the manufacturing process that led to them and what it might say about Turkmenistan’s culture and economy, I concentrated on the glowing, red ward I’d pulled out of my pouch. Continue reading Intrusion: Part 9
Jaclyn and Izzy went first, followed by Amy (flying), Cassie, who jumped in after her, and finally me.
The Thing leapt as Rod closed with him, aiming for Rod’s abdomen, knocking Rod backward for all his bulk, and throwing him to the floor.
For me at least, this instantly confirmed the “Cabal Reserves” theory about The Thing’s host. Continue reading Intrusion: Part 8
I couldn’t read Amy’s face as easily when the helmet covered half of it. Still, she stiffened. “What kind of powers?”
I thought about it. “I’m… not sure. I think he took over a Cabal soldier. The Cabal’s normal soldiers had a wide variety, and mostly their powers weren’t fully developed, but their reserves were terrifying. Think strong, nearly invulnerable, and they regenerate. Actually, you duplicated one of their descendant’s powers, so you know them better than I do.” Continue reading Intrusion: Part 7
A few people laughed, but Amy stopped moving, expression blank, finally managing to say, “That’s the plan.”
Samita stood up and walked up to the front. Dressed in a green blouse and khaki pants, it was one of the few times I’d seen her out of costume. With black hair and brown skin, she looked like she might be from southeast Asia, and her parents were. She’d been born in the US.
She stood in front of the group as Amy moved to the side and stood next to the wall. Samita’s eyes darted from one of us to another. In combination with the straightness of her stance, she gave the impression of a highly motivated student hoping for an “A.” Continue reading Everybody’s Got One: Part 6
Izzy shot into the air, moving so quickly that she was nothing more than a blue blur. She hit the dragon’s wing at the joint where the small inner wing ended and the larger, triangular far end of its bat like wing began.
The bone made a crack that was audible to all of us below.
Izzy didn’t stop there. She followed it up with another punch that I didn’t see, but found its mark.
Artaxus stopped breathing fire and snapped at her, twisting his neck around. He failed to catch her. She’d shot upward again, hovering far above him. Continue reading Faerieland: Part 37
Travis’ mouth twitched. “I’m pleading the fifth on that, but yeah, I like the idea. That might get us what we need. Do we have any other way we can find out more? Like his ex-girlfriend… Jaclyn, do you know where she is? Or what about Samita and Rod? Can’t you, I don’t know, summon up something?”
Samita’s mouth turned into a flat line. “Summoning is very dangerous. One wrong move and you could release whatever you summon into the world. Worse, depending on what you summon, you could put your life or even your soul in danger.”
Jaclyn started tapping furiously into her phone.
Vaughn looked up from whatever he’d been checking on his phone. “Hey, it doesn’t have to be something dangerous does it? I read one of those Dresden Files books, and in there the guy summons up fairies and feeds them pizza. Can’t you do something easy like that?” Continue reading Faerieland: Part 3
Jaclyn shook her head, and pulled her phone out of her pocket. “That’s not what interests me. What I want to know is why he’s even bothering? What do we know about him?”
“Well,” I paused, mouth partway open, wondering if I should even say it. “I’m pretty sure he’s a client of my dad’s. My dad had a client who was a superhero, and who needed therapy after quitting. Adam’s girlfriend got killed by the mob, and he went on some kind of rampage, killing anyone remotely associated, I guess. Agent Lim got him into therapy. I don’t know why he actually stopped killing and went through with it, but he did say nice things about my dad when I talked to him once.”
Fingers already tapping out something on the screen of her phone, Jaclyn said, “His codename?”
She stopped and looked up at me. “That guy? I heard about him.” Then she started tapping away again. Continue reading Faerieland: Part 2