19A

The sky burned with hundreds of colors Audrey had never seen before. She wasn’t really sure if the sun was rising or setting, but there was a liminal perfection to the moment. Breathing in the pure air of the revitalized garden, she stood outside her house. She wasn’t home yet, but now finally Audrey knew without a doubt that she would make it home, and be a stronger person than she was before this whole adventure.

Everything was so beautiful, so calm; things had to be going well for Nadine and Horera too. Audrey emerged into the clearing where she usually met her friends at the same time as Nadine. The two smiled at each other and then noticed Horera curled up and sleeping on the bench. Nadine and Audrey met on their way to the bench.

“So?” Nadine fell into step next to Audrey.

Audrey smiled, “It’s done. We still need to figure out what to do about Elise and her golem army, but she’s beaten. She even changed Andromalus and Elaria back into humans.”

Nadine nodded, “I’m actually just catching a quick nap while I can. I guess we managed to save Metropolis after all, but now we’re fighting for the fate of all of Eden. We met back up with my dad and he’s fighting with us.”

“Are you okay?”

“Yeah,” Nadine nodded again then looked down at the sleeping Horera, “What about you, Horera? What’s going on with you?”

“Horera saving world,” the little dogling rubbed her nose.

“Right now?” Nadine crouched down next to Horera.

Audrey stood behind the bench and rested her spell book on the back. Horera nodded, but remained curled with her eyes closed. Nadine glanced up at Audrey. Audrey shrugged and stepped around to sit next to Horera on the bench. Also shrugging, Nadine sat on the ground with her back against the bench by Horera’s feet.

Nadine and Audrey sat watching the colors of the sky play across the pond for a while. Horera sniffed and scrunched tighter before relaxing back to her original position. Smiling gently, Audrey produced a blanket she laid out over her sleeping friend.

“That’s a good idea,” Nadine grinned and produced a larger blanket she laid out over her own legs before passing the rest up to Audrey.

“It’s strange, I feel like a completely different person from who I was when we met,” Audrey returned her gaze to the pond. “I feel so much stronger now than I ever even imagined I could be—like I can literally do anything, even when I’m awake.”

“Me too,” Nadine nodded.

Audrey laughed, “You were already plenty strong when we met. I think you were the strongest of us all. I, I may have been a little jealous of you.”

“What?” Nadine turned back to look at Audrey, “No way! I act strong, but I was definitely as scared as you were when things went wrong. I’ve grown a lot thanks to you guys.” Nadine turned to look over her other shoulder, “I think Horera’s the strong one.”

“Yap,” Horera mumbled and flexed her biceps.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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