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The Deal

The massive claw-like tips of her fingers extended out to touch her face. The razor-sharp talons of one hand were clutching something small, and it was dripping as the other hand stroked her young face. Looking up at the object Alesha reached out her seven-year-old fingers to grasp at the worn-out wooden quill pen. As quickly as it appeared, it was snatched away from her sight. Her gruesome face appeared in front of her snarling wet black smoke from his nostrils. Alesha jumped back, startled at the sight of his repulsive skeletal-like features stitched from a quilt of non-matching blood-soaked skin patches.

“Do you understand what I am asking of you?” Her baritone voice reverberated in Alesha's head as the misty black fog rolled around her body.

“Yes,” she replied, shaking, staring at his wrinkled and burnt skin flaps hanging off her bones.

“What is your desire?”

“I want to be the best rock and roll artist in the world,” she replied with confidence.

“So it is written so it shall be done,” she told her, handing her the pen.

Clutching onto it, Alesha could feel the flesh in her palm getting hotter. She began to sweat profusely as a smoking piece of parchment paper was held up within an inch of her face. Trying to read the writing was impossible, as ancient Babylonian script was not one of her strong suits. The pen dripped crimson liquid as the smell of burning flesh wafted through her nostrils. “What does this say?” she asked with curiosity and fear in her voice.

“It says that you will be the greatest guitarist and singer in a world where music no longer exists. Now sign the paper I have another appointment with Mr. Johnson in fifteen minutes.”

The paper floated in midair in front of her face as she scribbled her name the best she could. The pen became so hot it dropped out of her hand. Clutching her burnt right palm with her left hand, he spoke one more time before disappearing.

“I will see you in twenty years, my dear―”

Standing in the middle of two intersecting dirt roads, she screamed a blood-curdling raspy shrill “help!” that echoed throughout the humid cotton fields. Alesha woke up sitting up in bed, sweating as if she had just caught the worst fever from unknown influenza within seconds.

A minute later, her father plowed into the room illuminating the lights kicking over a small trash can on his way to her bed. “What is going on?!” he asked, confused and upset. He searched the room for an intruder. An awful smell filled his olfactory senses as she held her hand crying. He sat down on the bed next to her and held onto her. Gripping him tightly, she rested her head on his shoulders as her salty tears dripped down her cheeks into her mouth.

“Dad, please don’t let go of me,” she begged.

“I would never leave you,” he told her, stroking her damp hair, “Did you have a nightmare?”

“Yes―something like that,” she told him as she stared at the five-pointed star sitting inside of a circle of symbols burnt into the palm of her right hand.

Amaranth Front Cover Art
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Amaranth Back Cover Art
Signed Cover Art for Alesha from Kat
Terprise Rockin It!!
Surround O Rama


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