Havok Publishing

Tag - heartwarming

The Proxy

Cassandra gripped the handle on the side of the launch shuttle to keep her hand from trembling. The target ship’s silver and white panels gleamed in the ocean of darkness.
At least I could swim in the ocean. In space, Cassandra would be at the mercy of trajectory, and it was no short distance

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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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Wither’s Reckoning

“Who does she think she is? The daughter of a villain, trying to be a hero?”
A punch hit me square on the cheek, smacking my head against the road. Fingers tightened around my throat, and I struggled to breathe—an all-too-familiar feeling.
Decay’s superpowers activated. I gasped as my fingertips began to shrivel

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Dragon’s Mercy

I sat stooped at the edge of the castle fountain, waiting patiently to die. The hum of humanity inundated me. It filled the outer bailey—travelers swapping rumors, merchants shooing children from their tents. I was surrounded by people, yet alone. I had no offspring, no kin, not a soul who knew my name.

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My fingers hover over the ivory keys, and I smell smoke. I don’t have to strike a note to hear a sound. But it’s not a clear, crisp middle C ringing in my ears—it’s screaming.
The memories flooding my mind haunt me more than any discordant melody ever could.

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A Boy and His Horse

Jeff blinked at the sun, wondering where his shades had gone. Dust settled around him to the tune of ringing in his ears.
The Jeep rumbled in vain. He shut off the ignition. Considering the hood was ripped open like a sardine can, it probably wasn’t going anywhere.
“So much for an easy

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Down the Dragon’s Throat

As King Theon looked out the castle window, he allowed hope to flutter in his chest. Perhaps today would be the day his son would return. Despite the king’s plea against it, the prince had left two years ago in the name of expanding the kingdom.
“We have all we need here,”

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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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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 Glasswright

The shoebox rattles. A crystalline scratching sound tinkles inside the worn cardboard. I clutch it in my aching, bandaged fingers as I stand trembling in the yard of the old livery stable at the edge of the village.
It’s my last option.
If he can’t help me, no one can.
One step at a time

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Paxton’s List

She waits for him in the parking lot.
It’s a Saturday—her day off—and Paxton is on time. The elderly man parks his ‘78 F-150 pickup and enters the library, returning a few minutes later with two tomes.
When he drives away, Greta’s car follows, but not too close. She’s wearing dark sunglasses

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Tough Crowd

Jessmina had faced tough crowds before, but a squadron of war-torn soldiers? That just felt unfair. She loitered at the bar, though—unfortunately—drinking on the job wasn’t allowed.
She sighed glumly at her situation. Outside, gray gloom and swirling snow. Inside, a table full of scowling warriors with rifles strapped across their backs.

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