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by Ines Gray

One

The countryside outside London, England, 1781

   E  lias Kokabel wanted to die.

     Too bad he couldn't. 

     Ever.

     He kicked his bare feet up on the wooden stool and squinted into a darkening sky. A silver streak sliced the navy night. The falling star faded away at the horizon.

     Maybe the gods would allow him to wish for death. Doubtful.

     Not while still being punished for falling. Nope, he couldn't get so lucky. Tipping back a snifter of Flamethrower, he swallowed the fiery liquid, almost choking when a sarcastic snort erupted from his throat.

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