Havok Publishing

Innocent-Sage

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Leaf

The fierce storm had run its course by morning. Scores of leaves now lay scattered on the ground in a thick pile of reds, oranges, and yellows. Only one remained attached to the old maple tree.
Leaf clung to the tree’s highest branch, stem battered but intact.
The fallen leaves started to dry

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Serpent & Dove

You adjust your tie, unable to help first-day flutters. The nondescript Serpent & Dove offices are paradoxically soothing yet disorienting.
Trying to walk at a brisk and assured pace, you head toward the office you’re to share with your partner. Your desk is opposite the door, clean and without character. The other desk is

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The Mastermind

Vills climbed onto the bottom rung of the wooden fence and peered into the pen. “Willy, can you really understand what he’s sayin’?”
His older brother squatted, staring into the eyes of their piglet, Charleston. “Shhh. I gotta concentrate.”
Charleston snorted, squealed, and danced around in a circle.
Vills leaned his shoulders over the

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Super Gus Gets Name Checked

“When Super Guy is busy, call Super Gus!”
My purple-and-orange logo fades into a montage of my greatest work set to a dramatic score. To be fair, most of the guys I’m pummeling in the amateur cell phone videos are not actual villains but Justice Lounge drunks hoping to look tough by beating up

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Dark Side of the Moon

“You go’n kill me?”
Slade Cartwright, Texas Ranger, ignored the question and continued cleaning his Colt revolver. In the campfire light, firewood popped and sparks dissipated. The scent of beans wafted from the kettle above the flames.
Ten feet away, Darren Dedrich sat with his hands bound behind his back, clad in a muddied

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Silent Ever?

“You all right, little one?”
It’s finally my turn. He awaits me on a grand throne of candy-red and white stripes. Even though I can tell it’s only plastic, I feel so small.
But his demeanor is different. Could he, in fact, be the real deal?
“Now, now. Come sit on my lap and tell me

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The Griffin and the Wren

The forest was alive with every one of Wren’s nightmares. Trees beckoned with branches like witch’s fingers. Reptilian skin rustled through the leaves underfoot. Unseen birds complained.
The darkness around her shifted as though it were something tangible.
Wren stumbled over a gnarled root that had crawled out of the loam. She caught herself

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Wizards and Kings

I look like a peacock in a lion’s den. My gaudy green robes swish across the smooth marble as I eye the four armored guards escorting us. We enter the throne room. I step behind Zofan, my mentor and fellow wizard, and twiddle my fingers.
The guards clomp to either side of King Roganvel’s

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Peaches ‘N Cream

It was a running joke between Doddy and me throughout our marriage that he’d fallen in love with the missing half of my leg first—and then he fell in love with the rest of me.
Inventors! More excited by what’s missing rather than what’s there.
I open the panel in my prosthetic leg

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The Preponderance of the Evidence

July 10, 2040
A night like tonight would have shaken me as a rookie cop, but it didn’t seem to faze Aaron Verde. I engaged autopilot on the patrol car. My arms still ached from holding back the teenager. He wanted to kill his father. I couldn’t blame him, given the bruises on his

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The Dragon’s Cry

The cry came from the underbrush below a giant oak. Jordan set down the basket of magical plant clippings he’d collected and crept closer, pulling the hood of his cloak away from his face. Distant clicks and caws pierced through the rustling trees, but Jordan focused on the tiny cry.
He scanned the area

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Sword Fight With A Crab

I go to the beach to escape committing more murder.
I take in the ocean’s revitalizing air to think clearly. The salty waves sting the broken blisters on my feet. I dip my hands into the water, wishing I could wash the metaphorical blood from them, and the coldness sends shivers over my body.

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