Less Than a Day by April Kelley
The door between the Upperworld and Otherworld only opens twice a year. Samhain marks one of those days and even though Talli’s Oberon forbids him from leaving the Otherworld, Talli walks right through the door. Talli has never seen a real human before. Once he gets a glimpse and experiences a bit of what the Upperworld has to offer he fully intends to go back to his friends and the library he loves so much. That is, until the first human he sees just so happens to be his soulmate.
In This Life and Beyond by Bronwyn Heeley
Sometimes it’s as simple as wanting to be more than history claims you can be
Beltane is a special time of year, the beginning of summer where the festival of the Great Rite of sexual union between Goddess and Gods is celebrated. And that’s exactly what Ashley needs in order to collect what he’s always wanted.
A fairy, werewolf and vampire walk into a bar, they walk out soul bound to a witch, who happens to be so much more…
TRIGGER WARNING: dealing with suicide
Bronwyn and April are giving away an e-copy of Taking A Stand by Bronwyn Heeley & an e-copy of Leave It All by April Kelley – just add a comment on this post with your email.
“Let’s follow the trail,” Kele said and started down a dirt path on their right. That path cut into the woods around them and was just wide enough for them to walk down it side by side.
Talli nodded, unable to speak as the sheer magnitude of what they had just done finally hit him. By the gods, they were in the Upperworld, walking where humans had walked. His footsteps matched that of the humans. He might actually get to see a human if he was lucky. Talli turned, walking backwards for a second.
The area was so very different compared to the Otherworld. The forests at home were greener, with foliage everywhere and giant rocks rising up amongst the trees. Moss usually grew on the stones in all its green patchy glory. Both stone and grass lived in a happy union that Talli had never really understood completely, although he loved being a part of it whenever he could tear himself away from his library.
On the Upper plane, everything was so flat with brown dirt under his feet, instead of green grass or rock. The trees looked like brown and gray skeletons without all the green leaves attached. Instead, the leaves littered the forest floor as if they were dead bodies.
The path ran right next to the pond for a small stretch and Talli looked over at the ripples in the water. The water was a dark blue, almost black color. At home, the water was a pale green and it stretched endlessly.
Even before the path opened up, Talli saw the white dwelling that had smoke coming out of a dark red chimney. Just beyond that were several red buildings. Talli had never seen anything like them. A white fence spanned out as far as Talli’s eyes could see. He saw black and white cows in the distance. Talli had read about the animals in some of the books back at his library. Humans ate animals. While he thought the practice disgusting, perhaps he understood it to some degree. They ate what they had available. In the Otherworld, eating animal flesh wasn’t necessary.
Talli pointed to them and grinned at Kele.
IN THIS LIFE & BEYOND
Ashley stumbled, steadying himself on a thin tree before he went down. He blinked the memory away. He shouldn’t have been thinking about the past anyway, not when he was trying to walk up to a pub that would do anything it could to turn him away for not being evil enough. Yeah, he was heading towards a grand establishment, but he had to do what he had to do.
Shaking his head, Ashley tried to get himself to snap out of the guilt he was feeling over what was about to happen. He couldn’t do what was needed if he let himself get eaten up over the whole thing. He needed to pull himself together and carry on. It was necessary.
Yes. He nodded to himself, standing up straight, holding his head high, and continued to walk down the narrow path that would lead him towards his destiny. The trees, standing tall and thin around him, were silent like no other place ever had been before. It became more and more ominous the closer he got to his destination.
Wet and mouldy, it smelt like earth, like still water in a closed room, and yet not quite. There was something just outside his knowledge, which Ashley knew was a kind of magic. Magic that would keep the undesirable away. It just so happened, that what they would call ‘undesirables’ were the kind of people you’d take home to mother.
It wasn’t as common knowledge as one would have thought, but the only way he was able to get to the pub was because of the blood from his heritage and the unsavouriness of his future.
Even still, with those points and the marks his mother had carved into his body in order to protect him, he still wasn’t evil enough and because of that, his gut continued to churn as his muscles screamed for him to turn away and run. He knew it was all a trick. It was the magic rubbing up against him, telling him he needed to fear it so much he couldn’t go any further. He knew, and probably because he was a witch, was able to tell what was happening. But that didn’t stop it’s pull, the instinct to obey.
Ashley swallowed hard. His heart beat in his throat, pounding inside his chest. His fingers tapped against his thigh. His legs became heavier as if he was trying to get himself through hip-high mud after he’d run a marathon.
APRIL KELLEY: Living in Southwest Michigan, April resides with her husband and two kids. She has been an avid reader for several years. Ever since she wrote her first story at the age of ten, the characters in her head still won’t stop telling their stories. If April isn’t reading or writing, she can be found outside playing with the animals or taking a long walk in the woods. If you wish to contact her, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Please visit her website at authoraprilkelley.com
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1554526621464220/
BRONWYN HEELEY: I’ll show you mine, if you’ll show me yours… da da da da dum, author of LGBT+ genre fiction author.
Email me at email@example.com