Entranced

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Photo credit: Steve Dimock

The sweep of her wings, the arch of her neck, the delicate bend of her leg — every curve, line, and motion painted her with grace. She hadn’t seemed to notice Elliot, so he snapped his hanging jaw shut and waited in a shadow wishing his heart would stop pounding so fast.

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Not Alone

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Photo credit: Li Feng

The pent up worries he’d been nursing since diving into the tensions of Bog and Fen rinsed off with the scent of motion sickness. Elliot’s solitude absorbed the peace of the Lilian Pond while the muffled music of the larger public bath beyond the bushes infused his thoughts with joy.

As unpredictable as it had become, his life was full. Life isn’t scary, he thought, it’s an adventure. I’m not weak unless I give up.

Counting the obstacles he’d overcome, even when he’d needed help, he smiled. He had strength. He had friends. He had love.

He had company.

To be continued. . .

Previously, on Elliot’s Adventures ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ Next time . . .

Pierce Steps Up

Glad you could join us for the next skeptical episode of Elliot’s Adventures. If you’re new here, you can catch up by returning to the beginning, and reading really fast…

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A subdued splash announced Pierce’s arrival.

“The Queen’s buzzy little nephew said you needed help.” A bath had washed away the sour odor of Elliot’s indiscretion, but not the disappointment of the missed mission to Bog.

“Pierce! Yes, we’ve found Vernon, but he’s wounded and sick and he can’t make it back to the Hive on his own. Would you please take him back with you?”

He eyed Elliot. “How sick?”

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Under Pressure

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Photo credit: Imagebase

Elliot tried to press on Vernon’s stitched chest with his tentacles, but instead of compressing, they slid off the hard shell that was the wasp’s skin. After the third attempt, he stared at Clifton.

“You have to do this, Clif.”

“But I don’t know what you’re doing.”

“I’m trying to make his heart work again, but I can’t push hard enough.”

“If I push on him,” Clifton warned, “I’m afraid I’ll break him. Besides, what is that stuff? It looks like he’s leaking.”

“I think his cut is infected — he’s burning up. But if we don’t get his heart started soon, he’s gonna be cold and dead.”

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Water Is Life or Death

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Quivering his way to the spot where Vernon vanished, Clifton tried to ignore the tickle of doubt in his chest. Elliot believes in me.

Taking a deeper breath than his lungs had ever held before, he kicked his chubby back legs as hard as could and dove into oblivion.

Reluctantly, he forced his eyes open.

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Clifton Takes a Dive

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Photo credit: Michael Johnson

Vernon’s eyes flickered in recognition just before his arms broke through the water and he disappeared beneath the surface.

“Vernon!” Elliot called again.

Only bubbles answered.

“Ohmigosh! Ohmigosh!” Clifton buzzed in swelling panic. “We can’t let the Queen’s Liaison drown!”

“Can you swim?” Elliot asked.

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That Sinking Feeling

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Photo credit: Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel

“Take a deep breath and hold on!” Barry shouted to his passengers.

They burst through the front line of the fire into a clearing on the edge of the river. Elliot shot a last look over his shoulder. Yvonne was gaining on them. We’re goners, he thought, closing his eyes against their imminent violent end.

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