Shimmer #47 – “Broken Toys” (Part 6)

Next I knew there was a dimly lit room with pastel red walls and gold trim.

The arms dragged my feet inside and closed the door before. They placed me down on a four poster bed; the curtains were riddled with dust.

My stomach churned, still rolling with the blow that landed in the dark. A girl with blonde hair and green eyes leaned over me, fretted with teeth biting her lip, and lifted my head.

“Hey, are you alright?” she pressed. “Sorry, we didn’t mean… we thought you were-”

“I’m fine.”

My gut told another story.

Another of the girls opened the door a sliver and peeked through. She lingered like a statue, senses sharp and eager for the smallest move to trip them. Our fumbling pricked her ears and inspired a scoff, but she turned back to her watch without a word.

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Shimmer #46 – “Broken Toys” (Part 5)

My eyelids pried like old tape. Kicking from inside my skull pushed me through the haze. Every muscle whined as I rolled and planted my palm into the rug. The room was more dust than air and smelled like an attic.

I coughed and pressed against the ache until I was on my knees. From there I could barely make out the shapes against the dark. I reached out, ran my hand along fabric and pulled back the cobwebs.

“Ugh. Eww. What the hell?”

A sliver of amber spiked from the corner of the room, leading to the crack under a door. I pulled myself to my feet, nursed the thumping in my head, and hesitated when the floorboards creaked.

Where was I?

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Shimmer #45 – “Broken Toys” (Part 4)

My eyes were as much on my phone as they were on the street. I had to have typed the same message a dozen times without hitting send; probably drained half the battery with it.

“hay t. 4give me 4 bein a jerk???”

To send or not to send; that was the question. I mean, it wasn’t like I had anything to apologize for, did I?

An hour past midnight and a chill set under my skin. How long had I been walking?

The lines for the clubs had been replaced by the cue for taxis. Men smiling and reeking of alcohol leaned toward me as I passed them by.

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Shimmer #44 – “Broken Toys” (Part 3)

“Are you alright?” she asked for the millionth time.

“I wasn’t okay the last time you asked, and I probably won’t be okay the next time you ask.”

We sat in silence as I pulled my knees to my chest and stared at the dashboard. A town block had come and gone before Tanya opened her mouth again.

“You know your Mom’s an ass#$%&, right?” she said.

Instead of feeling validated I exhaled and buried my head. Knees made a hard perch, but at least I didn’t have to face the world.

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Shimmer #43 – “Broken Toys” (Part 2)

“I told you to stay out of my room!”

The Mom-creature rolled her eyes, pursed her lips and perched the bridge of her nose against her fingers. What was she trying to say; that she was disappointed in me, or that she didn’t want to start another fight?

Stacks of clothing landed into the suitcase, enough to last a week, along with pair after pair of shoes. They had to take up the most space, and I still hadn’t packed the vitals; make-up, toiletries, school books. It was bad enough that I had to leave my computer at home.

“Would you please be reasonable for one minute,” she pleaded. “You’re blowing this way out of proportion.”

I stopped, flailed my arms and squawked at her. “You came into my room without my permission! While I wasn’t here! Do you have any idea how violated I feel right now?”

“Justin, please stop acting like it’s the end of the world.”

“And stop calling me that! My name is Kaira! Kai-ra! Okay!?”

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Shimmer #42 – “Broken Toys” (Part 1)

The ice in her lungs pulled her breathing tight and cut it into gasps. For every two beats of her shoes on the ground her heart took five; the surge of adrenaline emptied her of any thought other than survival.

Cars shuffled by as she tore down the strip and waved her arms to catch their notice. No taxis, no police, no good Samaritans caught sight of her; that, or they figured she was somebody else’s problem.

Engulfed in a whirlwind of panic the woman threw herself into the open traffic, stopping short of the navy sports car that ran inches from her death. Horns blared, and she started again across the lanes.

She screamed at the passersby in a wreck of tears. “Help me! Please, somebody!” None could hear her, let alone see on the roadside obscured by shadow.

Her pursuer clicked as it closed in on her, and the woman struggled for an escape. Was she the only one who could see? Maybe she was; or maybe the drivers were smart enough to keep moving in spite of her.

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Hellbound Dolls #20.5 – “Emerald Nightmare” (Epilogue)


Fingers tensed, pulled tendons like steel wires and released. My arm was still flesh, but not human; then again, did it matter?

The city was bright as bright could be, swirling with each of the senses. Scents of the street prickled against goose pimples as the light of Tokyo Tower danced on my tongue; while the hustle and bustle, panic and pain climbed the corners of my skull and skated the blade of realization. Humanity, nature and industry carried across the water and bent to my awareness.

“It’s so…”

Words caught on my tongue. None could describe the experience.

The Platinum Doll… Chiyoko, smiled and nodded. Until that point her expression had been forced; her celebration of my transcendence a point of pride more than of happiness.


Fists struck invisible targets, whipping gusts in miniature. Woe betide whatever, whoever they landed against.

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Hellbound Dolls #20 – “Emerald Nightmare” (Part 7)


The rain fell before midnight. The streets were covered in blood, and God came to wash them clean; clean as a city could be, anyhow.

I stepped inside and slipped my shoes off by the door. Cold ran down my fingertips and fell as fat drops onto the wood panel. Each was stained with a cloud only visible if you saw it close; life itself watered down and made thin.

Beyond the threshold the lights were still on, dimmed, and permeated with whispers from the center of the room. On the television were two men fighting to talk over each other; between them a picture of three figures they mistook for human.

“Nobody really knows what these magical girls want,” one pressed.

The other nodded. “I agree, Kamina. People have been calling them ‘heroes’, but rumors of monsters have been unsubstantiated. The only proof we have is of the damage they’ve caused”

“Police are still wondering if they’re connected to the murder of the Black Soul Angels, a gang based out of the Shinjuku district-”

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Hellbound Dolls #19 – “Emerald Nightmare” (Part 6)


A hot river sprayed through my fingers and into the chasm bridging the skyline. Even at half strength my bounds traveled faster and farther than human or beast; so long as I did not hesitate or nurse my wounds too closely.

How could I have been so weak? Two hundred souls had been claimed as mine, only for the rest snatched by a pretender whose scars paled in comparison. Who did he think he was to usurp my holy quest?

Wounds wept through the hand squeezed against it, losing life to the gravel. The power of Dollkind burned at the flesh, pulling it closed, sealing it in my vessel, but not fast enough.

Every second was vital.


Tarred wings streaked toward the sky, and with it pulled a gust that knocked me from my feet. It’s scream tore through my ears, and a new layer of agony left other senses scrambling.

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State of the Author Address

Hey all,

Sorry it’s been a while since I’ve posted anything.

It’s been a rollercoaster month; moving house, mental health stuff, plus doing all of this media hoi polloi that comes with being one of the few transgender people in your area who will talk publicly about issues, so… yeah.

The good news is that I’m getting back into it.

Even better is that I’m not alone.

So, in the spirit of branching out I’d like to announce Brave New ‘Verse.


Spiritually it’s an extension of the Shimmerverse, but I’m told by my fellow writers that I’ll have to relax a touch and share. (Boo.)

I’ll be cross-posting a lot of material from here, as well as posting some new material, so please check it out!

More content to come soon. I promise.

In the meantime I hope you’re all well!

Love and laughs,
Miranda Sparks