Elyse

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Elyse (502 Words)

“Dear heart, why do you hide yourself?”

He cradled her gloved hand in both his own, his sharp face earnest. The wrappings beside him stirred in sudden discomfort, and the hand he held strained momentarily to free itself.

“I don’t know,” said Elyse.

“Sweet one, tell me. Or better still, let me see and understand.”

His insistence coupled with his choice of words alerted her to the possibility that he was not quite so ignorant after all. The bundle jerked emphatically from him.

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The Odd

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The Odd (139 Words)

“I face odds well enough,” she said, “when they’re easy.”

“Ah,” said he. “And am I easy?”

“Are you odd?”

They glared at each other. It was a humored glare, the irritation and resistance mixed with a joining humor.

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Unexpected Flight

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Unexpected Flight (168 Words)

Mayor Grady absolutely denied he had ever wanted to be on a cross-country flight in a hot air balloon. He was only at the balloon’s unveiling to support the community. The two engineers also denied any intention of actually wanting to fly the balloon anywhere. They were only there to support their company.

So when the balloon somehow managed to pull free and ascended patiently some five hundred feet above solid ground, no one was more surprised than its three passengers.

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Worth It

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Worth It (225 Words)

It was a beautiful sight. Daria leaned over the boat edge, letting her hand trail in the water. The current pulled past her arm, troubling the reflection of fireflies and starlight. The moon shone clear, and the silver glow lit the world like another kind of day, bright and enlivening.

“Do you think it’s worth it?” she asked.

Ruad was barely awake, resting in the boat. At her question, his eyes half-opened.

“What do you mean?”

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The House that Wouldn’t Let Go

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The House that Wouldn’t Let Go (193 Words)

They sincerely tried to escape the house. But when the wheel popped clean off of Grandpa’s carefully maintained car—a car that had outlived countless relatives and was taken care of with all the tenderness of a baby—they knew they weren’t going anywhere.

“Dad’s going to kill me,” said Mr. Hanes gloomily, examining the dislocated wheel.

Mrs. Hanes, in the driver’s seat, offered no comment. Their two kids, Amy and Mike, looked at each other uneasily.

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Mermaids and Ceiling Fans

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Mermaids and Ceiling Fans (160 Words)

The ceiling fan wasn’t working and Jake was telling one of his interminable stories. There was no doubt he’d done a lot of traveling and adventuring in his day, but I’d never seen anyone so eager to flaunt it in the most unbelievable way.

“With all that seaweed wrapped up in our propellers,” he said. “We couldn’t go anywhere. We stuck there, with nothing at the bottom of the sea. You might say we were stuck.”

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