(Continues from Aired Out)
Blink. Breathe. Brace for a massive attack.
I’m looking through the slits in my helm at men throwing off snow-covered blankets. Ice crystals sparkle in their beards. Determination solidifies in their eyes. They raise their swords for the strike. My hand grips a hilt and draws. Four feet of polished crystal shines when I loose Legend from its scabbard. Light cascades out in an attack aiming to blind the rank upon rank of men ambushing my comrades. I Must stop this now. The border is undefended.
Blink. Inhale. Exhale. My chest burns. Pain throbs in time with my laboring heart.
I stagger, fall through a portal into an alley. My sword collapses in on itself becoming a bejeweled dagger. My armor melts, changes into strange clothes scratching the fierce ache in my chest. Blood soaks my new clothes, but I belly crawl toward the sound of voices. The dagger rises and hops on its point after me.
Blink. Squint at the swaybacked buildings.
Carnival rides whirl, empty without their riders. Shadows walk between striped tents. I lie on a black and white spiral. Each breath I take stirs up dust mixing the black and the white powder into the featureless gray of the sky where I lost my friends. I rub my eyes. Gravel crunches closeby.
“Do you remember yet?”
I squint at Fiona. The wind stirs her white hair, billowing it. Maybe it’s waving the white flag of defeat. There’s enough product in her hair to keep it standing on end. She’s Fiona, and she’s not. Bones slide under her skin. She wore a different name on the battlefield in my vision.
“Yeah, this ain’t Paradise’s Circus.” I wiped blood from my lips and levered myself to a sit with difficulty. My stupid hands kept phasing through the ground forcing me to concentrate. All my parts worked. No blood leaked or welled. I was still a ghost though and no closer to an answer about Jase and what he’d done. Now I had a host of new questions.
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