Nightmares, Dreams, and All Things in BetweenPaige Bergen
Nightmares, Dreams, and All Things in Between
By Paige Bergen
Copyright by Paige Bergen, 2017
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Table of Contents
Title and Copyright Page
Table of Contents
The Enchantress and the Sprite
About the Author
Amy took everything. Her backpack with the taco pin on it, her stuffed make-up bag, and her favorite book Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell. The only thing she left behind was Harry. And she wouldn’t miss him.
Shiny, silver keys jingled in her hand as she ran down the cement, gum-littered stairs to her slick, black Cadillac. She opened the door, hopped into the driver’s seat, and drove.
The night was as black as a crow’s back. Amy smiled then winced, her puffy, purple eye stinging and throbbing. She inhaled through her nose and sighed, smiling smaller this time.
The wind whooshing in from the windows scattered her short pixie hair like a wishing flower on a breezy summer day. The cool air soothed her sore scalp and swollen face. She grinned wider now as she stopped at a red light. Her eyes stared at the bright circles above, and her eyelids drooped.
A man stood before Amy in a dark cave. She stood tall, but her fragile hands shook. The man scoffed and took a step closer.
“Stay away,” she said, her voice wavering as she swung her tiny fists at him. He grabbed both with one large hand. Amy whimpered.
“How can you say such a stupid thing?” He crushed her two hands into grey, bleak sand with a single squeeze. Amy screamed and fell to her knees.
“Get up,” the man said.
She paused with silent tears lingering in her eyes. She wiped them away with her forearm and rose. “I will,” she said, “I always will. But not for you.”
The man laughed and the dim cavern echoed. “For who, then?”
She turned to face the monster. “For me.” A gleaming, silver sword appeared in front of Amy. She leapt for it.
However, her lack of hands caused her to pound her face to the sooty ground. The man laughed louder.
Amy stood up again. Her feet walked along the grimy floor past the sword to the man. His black eyes looked her over as she came forward. “What?” he asked with a smirk. Amy stopped. Then, she kicked him right in the jaw.
He cursed, flying backwards and hitting his head on the rock wall. He fell to the ground, limbs sprawled out like a drunkard’s.
Amy walked toward him one last time and as she did so, her hands grew back, smooth, seamless, and metal. She stuck out one behind her and the sword fled to it like a magnet. She looked down at the man who looked a lot smaller now.
“Are you okay, Miss?”
A police officer stood at the window of Amy’s car with a tiny flashlight in her hand. Amy blinked. “What?”
“Are you okay?”
Amy looked around. The car had drifted onto the grass at the side of the road. The traffic light still buzzed. “I must have fallen asleep. I’m sorry, officer.”
“Don’t be sorry, darlin’. Just tell me that you’re okay. You look like you’ve been in a boxin’ match.” The woman motioned to Amy’s eye.
Amy reached up and touched it. It no longer stung. Amy smiled and nodded to the woman. “I’m okay,” she said, “I’m free.”
The Enchantress and the Sprite
A pointy, black boot hit the wooden floor of Taboo Tavern with a sharp tap. The drunkards who giggled and hollered over their booze mere seconds before didn’t make a sound. They only stared at Audra as she prowled her way to the bar, her metallic silver and green cape whisking ratty shoelaces that tied themselves together upon her magic touch. When she reached the bar worn with scratches, dents, and dried drops of blood, she slammed down her fists. Even though beers spilled all over the bystanders, nobody moved.
Audra lifted her chin to reveal shining, steel eyes from behind her large, dark hat. “Your finest drink, please.”
The burly barkeep’s bald head wrinkled up with the lift of his bushy brow causing beads of sweat to trickle down his face. “You sure, Ma’am? It’s quite expensive.”
The enchantress raised a fist. The man flinched. Then, she opened her hand, letting an avalanche of gleaming platinum coins clatter before him. She smirked, looking into his eyes. “That shouldn’t be a problem.” Her smile, then withered. “And don’t call me Ma’am.”
He nodded his head. “As you wish, Miss.” He scurried through a doorway in the back where smokes in shades of purple, blue, pink, and gold crept from. Audra inhaled the scent of Octopus Pus, Forget-Me-Not Vodka, Love Liquor, and Queen’s Brew. She pulled up a spare stool with a flickering of her fingers and sat down amongst the men, awaiting her beverage.
She glanced up. A wanted poster displaying a drab photo of herself dangled from one of the weathered cabinets above. She sighed as she rested her elbow on the bar and her cheek on her palm.
Audra looked up with an arched eyebrow and pursed lips at the unexpected voice. “Yeah, actually.”
A woman with mauve wings down to her ankles watched her from a few seats away. She rose and walked toward Audra. With every step she took, white glitter dripped onto the rotten floor boards beneath her delicate bare feet, cleansing them of their grime.
Once in front of Audra, she fluttered her wings and sat mid-air with her legs crisscross apple sauced. Up close, her feathered eyelashes quivered just above her sparkling, opal eyes. “Well,” she said through flower petal lips, “you don’t have to be a witch about it.”
The men about gasped, cupping their mouths with soot-covered fingers.
Audra’s eyes froze, void as two blank pages. Each unreadable, for she had no words.
After a slow moment of disbelief, intrigue, she stood.
As did the sprite.
The corners of Audra’s mouth tickled as she looked this opposing force up and down, but her fuzzy lips did not curl. “What’s your name, Flutters?”
The fairy grinned, each tooth as white as the moon. “Zanoa.”
Audra nodded and turned her back to Zanoa, walking a few paces forward.
She stopped, her shiny shoes shocking the floor with a sound, simultaneous click.
“It sounds like you want a duel, Flutters.” With a wave of her hand, she summoned a silver staff with an orb blacker than Space atop it. Her head pivoted so that only one of her stormy eyes peered over her shoulder. “Is that correct?”
Zanoa chuckled. “No.”
Audra’s eyebrows flew upward. She spun to face Zanoa, still gripping her staff. “No?”
Mouths laid agape upon watching the scene.
Zanoa smiled as she hooked her thin fingers through the belt loops of her light-blue jeans. “Nope.”
The orb buzzed just above Audra’s hand, causing the staff to shake. The buzzing grew louder and louder until both the orb and its staff vanished in a puff of silver mist.
The men let out held breaths.
“Hmm.” Audra crossed her arms. Her eyebrows furrowed. Her chin wrinkled. “Then, what do you want?”
Zanoa laughed again. “Hell, I want a lot of things. Books. Cash. A waterslide would be nice.”
Audra almost smiled.
Zanoa grinned, walking closer to Audra. “But what I want presently, is to talk.”
“Really?” Audra asked, placing her hands on her hips, “To a fearful fugitive like me?”
“Yes,” said Zanoa, “but to be honest, you’re not all that scary to me.”
The crowd gasped.
“Oh, hush,” she said, then looked back to Audra. “Apparently, some people disagree.” Her smirk faded. “That’s actually what I want to talk to you about.” She sat down at a small, empty table with two seats.
Audra considered the seat, her fingers touching down one at a time on her waist as if they were at a football game, doing the wave.
Zanoa watched the deliberation.
Audra sat down. “So,” she said, “go on.”
“Can I ask you something?”
“What do you think ‘go on’ mea–”
“Are you happy?”
Audra’s lightning, zig-zagged eyes rumbled. “What?”
“Are you happy?” Zanoa repeated.
Audra’s jaw slacked, as her eyes welled with water. “No, you insufferable fairy.”
“Hey,” Zanoa reached her hand out, but Audra scooted back in her chair. “I only want to help.”
“Why?” Audra asked. “Nobody wants to help the wicked witch. They only want to throw stones at her or whisk her hair with torches aflame.” Glistening tears spilled down her dark face. “They only leave her alone when she’s cruel. If she can snap their bones with the snap of her fingers, they dare not cross her.”
Nightmares, Dreams, and All Things in Between by Paige Bergen have rating 3 out of 5 / Based on18 votes