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[Fiction] A Cold One [Complete]


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She hadn't cried since Momma died. She hadn't cried when she'd had a tentacle pulled out. She hadn't cried when she'd realized Max was a liar. But tonight, Sally stood on her balcony, with the stars above and the city below, and suddenly she was crying.

The beer bottle in her hand shattered when her fingers curled shut around it, exploding with a sharp crack and a rain of beer and glass. It should have cut her fingers; the glass should have sliced her skin open. If it could have, would Max still be here?

But she'd been the one that left. She could tell herself and others whatever she wanted, but she knew that she was the reason she was alone right now. Her throat tightened, and she sniffled, a deep gurgling noise that sounded like a rat dragged backwards through a sewer pipe. She was a mess; the cold New York air gusted, sending her greasy hair into her eyes. Grumbling, she pawed at the mess, yanking it out of her face. She was suffocating. And even though she knew that she couldn't escape this feeling, she hopped up on her railing, and then out into the night.

For a moment, she was falling; then her barb wire tendrils lashed out, grabbing at the building. Her fall was arrested, jerking her to a stop. She didn't pause; instead she swung out over traffic, her tendrils reaching ahead of her to grab the next building over. She fell and swung through Manhatten, letting her mind empty of everything but the next tendril- or finger-hold.

Somehow, she found herself on the top of the Empire State Building. For a moment, she just stood there, watching Manhatten below her; then she threw back her head and screamed. It was safe to unleash the sonic attack up here, to let the power build in her lungs and chest and ripple outward. It scoured her throat, stealing her pain and rage, taking them away in a wash of power and pain.

Panting, she sagged against the tendrils holding her, shaking with the aftershocks of her own rage. She did feel better, cleaner. Sighing, she rested her elbows on the ledge, and the right one bumped something.

Sally looked and saw a beer can; a note was in a ziploc. Frowning, the blonde nova picked up the note and read:

To my fellow nova,

Have a cold one on me.

A nova

Sally chuckled before whispering, "Thanks." With a smile, she cracked open the can and took a deep chug of the amber liquid. This had been an awesome surprise; a secret touch from an unknown kin.

"I'm gonna replace this tomorrow night," she whispered, still smiling. Maybe, things weren't that bad. Maybe, all she needed was a cold beer and a warm gesture.

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