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Shatters - Book 1

By ali_linchwood All Rights Reserved ©

Adventure / Fantasy

Blurb

Mark, a sarcastic Latino teenager, receives a dog to help him cope with his depression... only to discover not everything is what it seems. In a tide of events, he is forced to decide if he should trust the people who have been lying to him from the start or go with a shady, unorthodox group who might know the location of his father: the only person who can tell him who he truly is. But is it really his father who can answer his questions, when this journey has shown him so much? A story about growing up and taking life's punches, even when you're already down. ||Dedicated to Grandpa Greg; for always believing in me. ~ We Never Truly Say Goodbye ~ RIP ~ Feb 12, 2015||

Prologue

April 9th, 1993

This will be the last time I see this beautiful place. This will be my last time to see the winds roll through the jungles of her homeland, to smell the sweet dew the morning after a heavy rainstorm - the kind that leaks through the hut’s roof. My last time to hear the songs of the Paradise Birds from dawn till dusk, and to speak in her beloved tongue; words that roll off her lips like melted butter on a hot tortilla at supper.

The last time to touch the face of my beautiful lover. Her eyes shine like the waters of the Caribbean, her skin is dark from the hot sun that beat down on us when we worked. Her hair soft from the cocoa butters of the land... She is asleep now; her breaths soft compared to my beating heart. She holds her mother’s crucifix over her belly to protect our baby from demons...if only she knew a demon sat not five feet from her.

I must leave. It is the only chance they have at life. I have left her the tickets to America and the expensive ring from her father; they will not survive here without help. I thought of sending her back to her uncle, but she will be better off far from the monsters of her old world.

I only wish for her to be safe from this all, even if it means I must leave her forever.

I pray she can forgive me.

The man shut his journal, wrapping it in his good jeans and placing it in his cubby before turning back to his wife as she slept. The smile that could always light up a room did not play on his lips. Instead, he wore deep frown with furrowed eyebrows. It always had to come to this: running. Deciding not to torment himself any longer, the man rose and went to the doorway. The night was silent as he took a long breath and let it back out, as was customary for humans to do.

That, however, was not the case.

In moments, his body began to thin and pale as he staggered from the hut, trying not to gasp. He struggled with his garments, ripping them off and standing naked in the cool breeze, his eyes watering as his veins began to blacken. His fingernails and hair began to fall from him, teeth spat to the ground as a black bile dripped from the lips of the gasping creature.

Shutting his eyes, the man struggled to stand before his legs dissolved into a long silver tail, his fingers and joints melting so his arms became wrigley appendages. His mouth, ears, and nose sealed themselves forever as his pupils dissolved into a solid purple color. Two moth-like antennae sprouted from his head and fell back against a non-existent spine.

The last transformation was the worst as two sharp objects began poking out from under the skin on its back. The man-creature groaned loudly, despite lacking a mouth to do so, grappling at the sand. The points slid from its back like a cat’s claws appearing from her paws before finally - and painfully - the skin ripped and released the delicate wings. Swirling about, two long pale poles twisted and flared upwards, the ends opposite of those that punctured the flesh curling inwards. Suspended in thin air beneath each pole where hundreds of tiny glass feathers and shards, like a broken mirror. The wings seemed to twitch involuntarily before rising weightlessly to float behind the creature’s back.

The beast - once a man - arose, lifting itself like a ghost. It was easily fifteen feet long; the wingspan of glass rivaling that by at least double. It looked to the sky, lost in thought for the moment before throwing a final glance at the hut.

Forgive me...Please...

It’s purple eyes swirled with the starlight as its attention went upwards, flapping its wings. Once. Twice. Again. A flurry of colors filled the night as the tiny glass feather sparkled in the moonlight, causing a glow to shine from his being. The glow intensified as he launched off the sandy beach; the colorful man-beast spiraled upwards into the night sky, refusing to look back.

And all was still.


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