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I can still remember the scent of gunpowder drifting along the crisp summer air as I gazed out of the window. It was my eighteenth Fourth of July; my last in my hometown before I would take off and go to Houston for college in a month.
I don’t know what provoked me to want to stroll down the Chicago streets to the bridge a few blocks away. But I knew that there was a strong chance that I wouldn’t get to see the sight of the blooming fire-flowers again anytime soon. At least not with my closest friend.
How would I forget the last Fourth of July that I would ever spend with my mother?
The streets had been dully lit to keep from overpowering the fireworks. Popping echoes encircled the entire block. Children dragged their parents along the sidewalks in a frenzy, all to reach the barbeques taking place at the park or the bridge to cross over to the lakeside view of the annual show.
The scene was typical. We had gone through this same situation every year for at least a month after the day itself, listening to fireworks being set off, having to endure laughter late into the evening. But now time was setting in, and those bountiful days of youth were coming to a steady end.
Maybe that had been why I desired to spend one last moment watching the show with her.
The bridge was abundant in noise, and several bodies littered the area like flies. It was too much of a hassle for either of us, so after ten minutes, we ended up walking back. We roamed the local track across the street and spoke of future goals. I would be leaving for college—my mother would finally have the chance to live her own life now that her work was coming to an end, her only child leaving to become an adult and make a place in the world.
Or so we had both wished. It was something neither of us realized would never be upheld.
The night in itself had been simple… but far from then did I realize that such a night would hold such meaning in my memory.
A few more fireworks of that final summer.
Many generations have passed since the Guardians crafted the world of Nimestria, planted underneath the aurora of seven moons. Great power courted even greater enemies. It was a trumpet’s blow heralding the arrival of the Creator. Within the realm of Fracturis, a fleet-footed rogue named Frayle and his best friend Relek journey west when they’re set upon by a man vehemently riding a Behemoth. After a narrow escape, the two continue their route to seek guidance away from a roving band of beings called Savages. The Church before them lies in ruin, but this only belies the true mystery. After unspeakable events unfold before his eyes, Frayle is thrust twenty years in the past to right the wrongs of his splintered time. Wandering the thin lines of fragmented memories, a Time-Jumper named Nova Avery whisks Frayle through the windows of the Phantasm and together they unearth the mystery of the Guardians and the origins of the Creator in the first installment of the series.
About the Author: Shakyra Dunn has been bound with chains to a life of fantasy. What was the crime? She couldn’t stray away from the impression that there is always an adventure down every corner! When she isn’t playing the role of the Creator, she is marching through the worlds of her favorite video game characters or taking drives around her city to see the sights. Born in Chicago, Illinois, she currently resides in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, striving to experience more than the little town.
Buy the book at Amazon.