It was her masterpiece.
Jutting out of the water, everyone around could see what she'd created - what *she* had created.
Some, she knew, would say it was ugly. Some would say it was an eyesore. Some would say it was totally unnecessary, but she wouldn't let any of that bother her.
It was her creation, her mark on the world, and that was all that mattered.
She wouldn't live to see it, but as it happened, she was right. She left her mark, and as she'd ignored, everyone hated it. Everyone, by extension, hated *her*, and rarely did a...
Bobby had lived in his imagination as a child. Within the universe of his mind, he was an action hero, an iron-willed daredevil. He could meet any challenge, snatch victory from the jaws of any defeat, bravely pull off any stunt.
Now that he was older, he was learning more and more that he would probably never trade tracer bullets with South American guerillas, or infiltrate the secret Appalachian hideout of a band of communist child kidnappers, or balance on the hood of a car, guns blazing, while pursuing Somalian bank thief pirates across a perilous frozen lake.
The city of Asgoth was falling out of the sky, and there was nothing that Jorund could do to stop it. Enemy dragons spat greek fire, swarming in and around its once-grand towers. Helium vestibules melted and ruptured, and the city sunk faster and faster.
They could only save themselves. Jorund struggled with the helm of the Zephyr, trying to escape Asgoth's widening shadow. He grimly looked across the atmosphere at the enemy warship. Charin was standing on the bridge, his hands full of magic and his eyes full of hate. This wasn't the Academy anymore; things were settled in...