Havok Publishing

Fantasy

The Book of Life

“I don’t want to.” Annie tucked her hands under her arms, backing away from Grandma’s desk, her shoulders hitching up to her ears. “You can’t make me.”
Grandma looked at her with eyes full of sadness. “I know, dear. None of us want to. This is our purpose.”
Annie shook her head

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The Ring

The ring winked in the pale evening light, mocking me for my foolishness. Sure, I didn’t know the difference between a faceted sapphire and a chipped piece of glass, but I’d reasoned such a pretty trinket was worth at least a loaf of bread.
Unfortunately, the baker disagreed. His face was an ugly shade

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Hard Baked Detective and the Sot Sibling

Most people are skeptical when they hear a sentient cake has a PI’s license, but get your picture in the paper enough, and you begin to gain credibility with a capital C. That, and the delicious smell of my chocolate ganache, is how Agatha Vanderbruin Von Marnestein found her way to my office.

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Unending Knowledge

Some people never come out of there,” Jabril said.
Daniel gave him a flat look. “Do you really believe that rumor?”
They stood in front of a neglected library sandwiched between a bank and a corner boutique. Cracks and water stains spread across the faded yellow facade.
Jabril secured his long black dreads

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The Vice of Drinking to Excess

“Bert! Another.”
I throw my empty tankard against the wall, where it clangs and rolls under a table. The customers there give me a look of wariness and move to hide in a shadowed corner. They are the fortuitous ones. Shadows no longer hide me.
Bert gives me a look of disgust as he slams the fresh

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The Scaterpillars

Matt Caterpillar raised his guitar, looked out across the crowd at the Garbage Bowl, and heard crickets. And ants. And roaches, beetles, and myriad other insects—all cheering for him and his band.
As he strummed the opening chords of their new ear-worm hit, “Gimme Some Leaves,” he marveled at their

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Sweets and Soured

For young Margery Jones, The Candy Shoppe was more than a store to buy sweets. It was a place of opportunity.
When she walked through the gilded doors, sugar and color assailed her senses. Rows of
rainbow lollipops, orange taffy, grass green gumdrops, and striped pickleberries lined the shelves. Tiny planes zipped

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The Frontier’s No Place for a Soft Gingerbread Man

Faced with great adversity, most gingerbread men will crumble. But not the gingerbread men of the Cloves family. No, they are tough cookies.
“You ready?” Samuel T. Cloves yelled to his friend Billy.
“I am, but I think this is crazy.” Billy’s frosty mouth quivered on his brown cookie face. He perched on

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Spell of Life

Hanu flattened the parchment on the grass and reviewed his handwritten spell for the final time. Proper exit condition for the main loop? Check. Clearly defined energy conversions? Check. Timeout in case of emergency? Of course.
“This is it,” he said.
The maple trees surrounding the clearing rustled in response. Birds above exchanged

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Tiger, Tiger

I don’t sleep anymore.
My apartment is cramped, little more than a closet. Space enough for a few childhood mementos and some clothes, nothing more. No bed.
I was ten years old when I woke one morning to a blazing house and my parents burning alive and myself unscathed in the middle of it all.

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The Magic of Living Things

Gray sky. Gray walls. Black iron gate.
“Do your magic, girl!” Shouts harsh as gravel. “Stop holding back. We know you can do it!”
Dirt brown boot, crunching into her side. Dung-colored ground.
Whimpering, Alia pressed into the corner. One of her captors seized her by the hair and dragged her forward…

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Pumpkin Head Passion

“S-s-sir, please!” Malcolm hunkers low in his chair, hiding behind his notebook. “We’ve talked about this! You have to remain calm—”
Fire spews through the hollow eyes of my pumpkin head as I tower over him. “I am completely calm, Malcolm!”
My butler, currently acting as my therapist, cowers deeper into his chair.

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