So Close and Yet So Far

Robert Quick

Where the -@!# did my muse go?

Writer, dreamer, knight, shackled by entertainment . . . and people.

Alone in a vast desert, atop a nameless stone tower, a single hooded figure watched the sky. Deep with the tower's belly a siren-like wail erupted. Closer and closer it grew, accompanied by slamming doors, rising as it ascended each floor until finally Jaren burst into the room like an Autumn storm.

The wailing stopped as she barked orders with each breath. “Tell them not to come! Tell them that it's an ambush! The Voth know we're here.”

“I can't,” Krossk said, pointing to the lines of shimmering light streaking across the sky, “They're already on their way. Sending a message now wouldn't change anything.” He turned, taking in the bruises that showed through her torn clothes and the black eye that spread like an ink stain across her bloodied face. What happened? Where's Nelly?”

Jaren's face broke and she sagged against Krossk's broad chest burying her face in the thick wilds of his beard. “Annelle--Gods, Krossk--it was a nightmare. They brain-jacked her. Shoomf--right into a go-case. We need to run now."


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