Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Banzai, Melody!

In the end, goodness wins. Every time.


A distant rumble was gathering and growing in volume out over the ocean, out of sight. Something that threatened to swallow the entire universe.
Melody tore down the stairs, bursting through the back door of the restaurant. She stopped dead, her breath leaving her lungs in a single huff of mortal awe.
The ocean had retreated a mile out, leaving the sea floor exposed. Out in the opaque mist a green-black wall swelled visibly, higher and higher, hundreds of feet high …
… a wall rushing straight towards her.
With a shout she bolted around the restaurant and down the walkway, her bare feet flying under her. The Pier trembled with the approach of the tsunami, the thunder of the oncoming wave growing in volume by the second, bursting her senses.
Yaeko’s voice was at the edge of panic. Melody bolted past the lifeguard tower halfway down the walkway, adding speed upon speed—
—A horrifying crashing noise right behind her—
The tsunami had swallowed the restaurant and the Temple Sanctuary Room she was just in moments ago, plucking them up into its rising, curving swell like useless toys. The Pier cracked and groaned as it lifted like twigs yanked from the sea floor. The great wave’s deathly shadow swept over her … the wave thundered behind her, it was overtaking her …
I’m not going to make it! It’s useless! I’m going to die! I can’t escape it!
At the foot of the Pier itself, a malevolent twisting black tornado descended from out of the sky, touching down and dissipating. And there stood the horrible shadow-thing, fully formed, the one she’d seen rising out of the burned body of her father.
Waiting patiently for her.
It was then that Melody committed her second act of heroism.
Instead of stopping, instead of quitting, instead of resigning to her fate, she dived back inside her being, to the music—and to Yaeko. She shouted as Melody filled her spirit; she redoubled her speed—
—The shadow-thing backed up two feet and opened its arms widely—
And then, with the song of her life bursting forth within her, with the black wave curling over her, with her legs carrying her as fast as she could possibly go and no faster, with her feet a blur beneath her—
She tripped.
She flew forward, out of control, falling helplessly towards the knotted planks of the walkway. She threw her arms in front of her—
She wasn’t falling.
—The walkway’s planks were zooming effortlessly just inches beneath her—
—She whipped her head left, right—
She—had wings! She had WINGS! Great feathered wings of angel-white and rust-red, wings trailing bright streamers of brilliant sparkling white smoke as though she had just burst out of a nebula.
She—was a bird! A BIRD!
Yaeko was beside herself with joy.

Thank you for reading!
Illustration by KJH Cardinalis. All copyrights are hers.

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