“Ice cream, seriously?”
Andrew exhaled slowly as Lauren started again.
“You’re an adult now. All you do is want to play your guitar or complain about your job or do stupid things like eat ice cream.”
On their way to shop some more, they stood on the street corner, and waited for the light to turn. Traffic was up from usual on a Saturday and the crowd already had his wife on edge.
“Ice cream, seriously?”
Ivy had zero misgivings about bringing her armadillo spelunking with us. Gustave was well-mannered and well-bred. He’d accompanied Ivy to prestigious events, such as opera premiers, royal balls, and lectures on the nature of truth by eminent philosophers. His track record was spotless.Read it now
“I said, hold still.” Landon squints at his phone.
I freeze, palm outstretched. Goodness, he’s getting snappy. “Have you got it?” My thighs burn from crouching on the boardwalk.
“Almost.” His blonde hair falls into his eyes as he leans forward and taps the phone screen. “Yup. All good.”
When the stranger reached fifteen paces, Xildar called, “Friend or foe?”
“Neither.” The voice peaked like an unripened boy. A fabric hat framed most of his face—a face about eighteen years in the making. His teeth were exceptionally white. His leather and linen clothing might’ve been made by the seamstress who’d fashioned Xildar’s attire.
The shock of cold water splashing all over my body startled me awake. My eyes frantically scanned the room as I tried to remember what had happened.
I am definitely not in my room.
The black walls were splattered with blood stains. A dingy toilet squatted in the corner, and iron bars blocked the doorway. I shivered as another round of cold water hit me from the other side of the bars.
Friends and fans knew him as Nole the Mole. The internet knew him as a viral failure.
Last year, he dueled Herbert the Hammer at the Twenty-Second Whack-a-Mole International Championship for the title of Mallet Master. Herbert’s score reached previously unseen levels, but Nole knew he could’ve beaten him— had he not ignored a “wet floor” sign, slipped, and sprained his mallet hand catching his fall.
I died three hundred and ninety-nine days ago.
The doctors told me that I didn’t really die. I just lost 46.6 percent of my human body. It felt like dying when they dragged my broken frame out of the rubble and inferno of the explosion and filled the empty spaces with wires and metal.
“It’ll be worth it. You’ll see.”
My brother, the perpetual optimist. “You’re not the one puking over the side. Thanks to me, even the dragon probably wants this flight to be over.”
Tad’s chuckle was soft, but I could still hear it over the constant rush of air and the beat of the massive wings.
Don’t think about the portal—anything except the portal.
Elwick swallowed. He gripped the ship’s wheel, desperate to keep his hands from trembling. But it wasn’t the endless ocean, its waves lapping against his ship’s hull, stretching out on all fronts that provoked his fear.