Restless Dreamer

Jim Stitzel

I dabble a little in a lot of things — writing, webcomics, gaming, photography, web design, music, and more. I write code full-time and words in the gaps in between.

Malika slept restlessly that night. Her sleep was plagued by dreams of shadows and flames, the yellow infernos of building burning. Creatures moved among those flames, casting long silhouettes across the carcasses of homes that had fallen into embers. Of the villagers there was no sign, but she knew they were there nonetheless, buried under piles of ash and soot.

Then she was in the forest, and shadows of the creatures having followed her, morphing into the forms of Lycanders even as she stood rooted in place, unable to move, unable to lift her arms or bring Morduth to bear. She could feel the sword in her hand, but she was frozen, her movements so sluggish that there was no hope she would be able to defend herself.

Sure enough, as she watched, Lycanders of all shapes crept from the shadows moving cautiously toward her. One directly in front of her suddenly moved with blinding speed and leapt at her face. She drew her arms up in a defensive posture, but even as she did, she knew it would not be in time.

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