Feb 06, 2021

Drama

Just before dawn, a figure emerged from a shop in the southern part of Kiwali’a, bags in hand. She jogged briskly through the streets of her small town as she made her way eastward, doing her best to stay quiet. When she reached the southeastern edge of town, she paused uncertainly, looking around for someone or something. She didn’t have to wait long before another figure, also a woman, melted out of the shadows beside her. 

Lillian examined the young woman standing before her. Where there had been an overeager girl with a bright-eyed youth about her, there was now a slightly more subdued young woman with a steady determination urging her onwards. It was as if something deep inside her had shifted, giving light to this new version of Maya. 

“Are you ready?” Lillian asked quietly. 

Maya didn’t hesitate, instead standing taller and saying firmly, “I am.”

Lillian nodded and extended a hand to the other woman invitingly. “Then come. We must hurry.”

Maya took it immediately and Lillian melted into the shadows, taking Maya with her. Lillian guided them through the shadows of early dawn, across a few miles and to the outskirts of the clearing the three Dragons had chosen as their temporary camp. Already, Lillian knew that Megan, Mj, and all the Commons were all preparing to break camp. By now, even most of the wards and protections had been taken down to remove every trace of their encampment. 

Lillian led Maya through the camp, nimbly dodging Commons as her eyes searched for Megan and Mj. She finally found them in one of the last erected tents, leaning over a map along with the appointed representative of the Commons, Nathan. Today, Megan’s blond hair was an ice white, styled in a short pixie hairstyle. Both women wore matching black cloaks that seemed to shimmer in the soft glow of the small light orbs revolving around Mj. Lillian knew that Mj had cast charms on the cloaks to allow them to blend the wearer into the background when the wearer pulled the folds around themselves. Lillian ushered Maya into the tent, calling, “We’re here, is everyone ready?”

“Yeah, we were just waiting for you two,” Mj said, scrutinizing Maya thoughtfully before tossing them each a black cloak. “Here, take these, you may need them.”

Lillian slipped hers on quickly, “We should head out then, who’s going to scout today?”

“I’ll take point.” Megan offered. With the agreement of the others, Megan swept out of the tent, shifting as she walked.

“I want to show Maya how we cover our tracks so we’ll take the rear,” Mj said. 

“Great, then let’s get going.”

~*~

Fifteen minutes later and the entire camp of Commons was on the move. With so many malnourished Commons, travel was slow even with the constant urgings of Lillian and Nathan. 

As she walked, something pricked at the edge of Lillian’s consciousness. Worry wormed through her as she identified the feeling. Someone was attacking her mental shield, attempting to push through. And not only that, they were winning. Lillian began to throw up her strongest mental walls, the ones that required a conscious effort to keep them in place for any amount of time. But there was something about the Mentalist that was distinct, familiar and she hesitated. In that half-second of pause, her attacker forced its way into her mind. 

Before she could drive them back out, they spoke. And Lillian’s heart froze in her chest. The voice was garbled and indistinct but she recognized it instantly. 

Hurriedly, she began to clear away her thoughts, attempting to allow her brother a silent space to deliver his message. But all she could make out was her name and the panic of his thoughts. When his mental voice fell silent, Lillian frantically called out his name, searching her head for him. She could feel his consciousness buzzing around in her mind but he said nothing. Then, all of a sudden her mind was filled with one giant picture of an abandoned house on the banks of a large river. 

Immediately she realized that this was not her memory but she recognized the building regardless. It was the last place she had seen her older brother since they’d parted three years ago. 

Lillian didn’t realize she had stopped until someone tapped her on the shoulder. She jumped, automatically drawing one of the many daggers on her person. Mj leaped backward, avoiding the gleaming tip of Lillian’s blade. Worry wrinkled her brow as she said, “You stopped, are you okay?”

“I-I think Luke needs me,” Lillian replied slowly, thinking over the implications of the message she’d received. She related what had happened.

Mj looked concerned, “Are you sure that’s what he wanted?”

“I think so.” 

“Lily, he’s a Shadow, it might be a trap.” Mj took one of Lillian’s hands imploringly. “I can’t lose you…too.”

“Mj, he’s the only family I have left,” Lillian whispered. 

Mj opened her mouth as if to speak, thought better of it, and closed it wordlessly. After a pause, she tried again, “You’ll be careful?”

“I promise.”

“I’ll tell the others later,” Mj sighed. “Now go, and be swift. Don’t get caught.”

“I’ll do my best.” Lillian gave a short bow and melted into her own shadow. She emerged in the capital of Dunaire, in the shadows of the building opposite the one Luke had shown her. Her eyes searched the streets for any trace of an ambush but all seemed well. Of course, that didn’t mean it was. 

Lillian unsheathed one of her long swords and shifted to shadow only to reappear a few feet away next to the doors of the other building. She took a deep breath then reached out her abilities to manipulate the air in the building, scouring each room on the first floor for any sign of a living being. Finding nothing, she ventured into the house, swords raised and ears pricked for any sign of danger. She did the same with the second floor, and the third, making sure to check the floor behind her briefly to ensure she wasn’t being followed. 

On the fourth floor, she repeated her process. Sitting on a shelf in one of the rooms, was a small piece of parchment. Lillian hurried forward, realizing her mistake only seconds later when the rasp of steel on leather came from behind her. She whirled around with the speed of the winds behind her, but she was still too slow. 

Her body registered the small prick of a dagger just above her right hip. “Drop the sword.”

Surprise and betrayal coursed through her, “Luke?”

“Drop the sword, Lillian,” her older brother hissed. 

“Or what? You’ll kill me?” Lillian snapped furiously. “Like—”

She didn’t finish her sentence, dropping gracefully to a crouch and kicking her legs out. When she dropped, Luke had yanked the dagger away from her body to prevent impaling her upon it, giving her time to drop her sword and draw two knives of her own. Lillian jumped back to her feet, her eyes locked to his. In a subconscious part of her mind, she compared this Luke to the one she had seen three years ago. In the dim light of the room, his sharp features were hard and unforgiving. His eyes especially glinted dangerously, the flakes of warm gold in them standing out against the cool landscape of his silver irises. His hair was the same as before: short and wavy, the exact same shade as her own. 

Even as her mind processed all this information and stored it away for later, she leaped forward, daggers slashing swiftly. Luke backed up a step and a yellow shield of pure energy came into place in front of him and Lillian skidded to a stop, glaring frostily at him. A moment later, flickering orange flames wreathed her arm and she directed them at her brother’s shield, pouring all her wild and unwieldy emotions into the flame. Anger, hate, love, betrayal, hurt, sadness, she used it all to fuel the flames. 

The sheer, overwhelming power of the initial giant effort pushed Luke back a step but he locked his jaw and reinforced his shield, turning the translucent yellow into a honey gold. The siblings were both powerful, far more powerful than most others at their age and if it were a test of skill and precision, Luke would have one quickly with his superior training and dedicated practices. But it was a test of endurance, to see who would falter first. With such powerful magic, they both knew that any mistake on Luke’s part, no matter how small, would lead to his immediate demise. 

But he made no mistakes and with the torrent of emotions fueling her, Lillian did not think rationally. She didn’t think to conserve her energy, to last him out. She also didn’t count on the fact that Luke would not have come alone. The first warning she got of a hostile being approaching her was a strange prickling on the back of her neck, her sixth sense warning her that something was not right.

Lillian whirled around and was once again too slow to fend off her attacker from behind. He held a dagger to her throat, preventing her from moving anywhere but back which was where Luke now stood with a sword in his hands, face pale from exerting so much energy. When she attempted to draw on the winds to escape, she realized with growing dread that she had no more power to give. It was the perfect trap, and she had fallen right into it. With rage clouding her vision, she had blindly exhausted all her energy to fuel her flame. The man in front of her snarled, “We may need you alive but you do not need to be in one piece.”

She blinked into his hazel eyes, anger simmering in her stomach that was aimed not at either of them but at herself. She had been foolish to exhaust all her energy as she did and now she was paying the price. But she still had one more trick up her sleeve. As she had done with Luke, she dropped into a crouch but this time scrambled away from the two men and towards the window on the far side of the room. “Stop her!” 

Someone new tackled her from behind, using their full body weight to keep her still. From the corner of her eye, Lillian watched as Luke approached and then knelt, putting a finger to her forehead. He was going to knock her out. She thrashed wildly but her attacker simply leaned down heavier against her. 

The last thing Lillian saw was Luke’s face and she mouthed the word, Traitor. 

~*~

Luke knocked on the large oaken doors to the Commander’s office, guilt weighing down his every step. “Enter.”

Luke threw open the doors, anger blossoming out of his guilt as he stalked towards the man sitting at the large mahogany desk in the center of the room. “I brought you Lillian, Father. Now let my friend go.”

“Of course,” Commander Damian Brooks said coolly. “Thank you for your cooperation, Captain.”

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173 comments

Livia R
06:42 Feb 06, 2021

This was necessary for the stories to come. It sets up Luke's story and my character is the only one I had no plans for. Anyway, there were a lot of cameos here by amazing Reeders/writers. Check each and every one of them out, they're just so awesome. Here they are (in order of appearance): Maya Emerson: https://blog.reedsy.com/creative-writing-prompts/author/maya-emerson/ Megan Sutherland: https://blog.reedsy.com/creative-writing-prompts/author/meg-sutherland/ Mj S: https://blog.reedsy.com/creative-writing-prompts/author/71bc1e/ And, last ...

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22:18 Feb 09, 2021

IM GONNA MISS YOU SO MUCH LILLY UGHHHHHHHHHHH :((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((( Im so sad aaaaaaaah

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Livia R
22:31 Feb 09, 2021

Im sorryyyyyyy

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22:32 Mar 18, 2021

🍇🍇🍇 And I didn't get to meet creepy Damian, but I want to... Hehe. Hello, Lily! Ooh, so goooooood! The whole rivalry between you and Luke was sad but terrific. Also, you taking Maya under your wing kinda sorta was really nice. Plot, description, dialogue, and sentence fluency were all perfect yet again. :D Also, this sentence: "Worry wormed through her as she identified the feeling" stopped me for a moment before I continued to read. I don't know why, but it... Idk... Beautiful is an understatement.... Keep writing! Your friend, Brooke

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Livia R
22:57 Mar 18, 2021

Hehe, creepy Damian was creepy. Like the cold villain thing...that was him with an evil smile lol. The taking Maya under my wing was totally supposed to be "I think this kid could be useful to us, i want her." Idk, lollllll. The sentence: "Worry wormed through her as she identified the feeling." Lol, now that I look back on it, I have no idea what that means XDDDD

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00:18 Mar 19, 2021

XD I would still like to meet creepy Damian at some point. Maybe he has a major mood swing lololol. XD I didn't take it that way, but it works! lollllll. I thought it was really really good! XDDDDDDDDDDDD

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Livia R
00:36 Mar 19, 2021

XDDDDD Maybeeeeeee!!

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13:19 Mar 20, 2021

XDDDDDDDDD

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Livia R
16:01 Mar 17, 2021

hehehehe

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Maya Emerson
17:48 Mar 03, 2021

Hi :) Would you like to play Skribble today at 3:30 EST, even though we haven't played for a while. Also, if you want to ask anyone else if they want to play, feel free. :)

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Livia R
17:53 Mar 03, 2021

I'll try but idk if I'll have time, sorry.

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Maya Emerson
17:57 Mar 03, 2021

That's okay. If you do play I'm going to put the link in my bio.

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Livia R
18:17 Mar 03, 2021

Great! :D

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18:14 Mar 01, 2021

🗡⚔️!!!!!!!!!

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Livia R
18:29 Mar 01, 2021

Thanks, Cookie!!!

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18:03 Mar 01, 2021

LIA https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1Sq7s1ivwFRcvjdQbT1kuzmMWuRbtEKMiOMhLI2EEvJ0/edit?usp=sharing

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Livia R
18:37 Mar 01, 2021

I FILLED IT OUTTTTTTTTT

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19:10 Mar 01, 2021

YAYYYYYYYYYYYYY

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Amaya .
03:41 Feb 25, 2021

⚔️🗡

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Livia R
18:24 Feb 25, 2021

Hehehehhehehehe

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Phoebe De Neve
18:26 Feb 24, 2021

Hey L. It's Phoebe; just read the story and I love it!

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Livia R
21:26 Feb 24, 2021

Thanks, Phoebe!

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01:31 Feb 24, 2021

⚔️⚔️⚔️

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Livia R
04:57 Feb 24, 2021

Lol thxxx

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Nainika Gupta
23:24 Feb 22, 2021

I completely understand why you deleted it loll and I'm certainly not mad :) i can't wait for it come out (again) 😈

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Livia R
00:07 Feb 23, 2021

Hehehehe I can't wait to release it!!!

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Nainika Gupta
00:09 Feb 23, 2021

yesss queeen <3

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05:27 Feb 22, 2021

YESSS LILYYYYYY KOTLCCCC

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Livia R
05:29 Feb 22, 2021

HAHAHAHAHAHA

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05:31 Feb 22, 2021

HAHAHAHAAHAHAHAH #LATENIGHTPARTAYYYYYYYYYY

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Livia R
05:31 Feb 22, 2021

OMG YESSSSSSSSSS

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05:34 Feb 22, 2021

WE ARE GOING INSANE AND I LOVE ITTTT XD

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Livia R
05:36 Feb 22, 2021

Wish I could’ve stayyyeeedddddd!!!

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16:42 Feb 14, 2021

I'm so sorry you got downvoted L!! Stupid downvoters

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Livia R
19:03 Feb 14, 2021

Eh no problem. I’m here to write and make friends, not earn more points. :) Also you can call me Lily, :)

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19:08 Feb 14, 2021

that's good! Ok, sorry! I had Lily originally then changed it when I saw your comment at the bottom!

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Livia R
19:14 Feb 14, 2021

Hahaha, sorry. I feel professional signing off like that XD

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19:16 Feb 14, 2021

lol you're goodXDD

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Livia R
19:19 Feb 14, 2021

:DD

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Love this! Can i be in it? I know this seems like the end, but if you come back for another part...

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Livia R
21:33 Feb 12, 2021

Hey, Emerald. I have another story in the making but right now I have a little too many characters running around. But I'm sure I'll need some more cast soon! Wait, on second thought... I might be able to squeeze you into this one. I'm not sure though, no promises but I'll do my best. Could you please fill this out for me: Hair(anything from just a vague description to every detail is fine): Eyes(anything from just a vague description to every detail is fine): Clothing preferences(anything from color preferences to exact outfits is fine): ...

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Livia R
21:36 Feb 12, 2021

Thanks! I'll try to incorporate you once I get all the information!

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02:07 Feb 11, 2021

D; elle your LEAVING :(

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Mira Caplan
22:36 Feb 09, 2021

....this drama is insanely awesome. I LOVE ITTTTTTTTTTTTTTT

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Livia R
22:43 Feb 09, 2021

Thank you!!

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Mira Caplan
22:43 Feb 09, 2021

np!!!!!

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Mira Caplan
22:43 Feb 09, 2021

np!!!!!

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01:03 Feb 09, 2021

NOOOOOOOOOOOO i support your decision but D: I'll miss youuuu pls come bac soon <3

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Livia R
01:16 Feb 09, 2021

I'll try, Cellllll

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01:19 Feb 09, 2021

liaaaaaaaaaaaaa ill miss you ;w;w;w;w;w;w;w;

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00:28 Feb 09, 2021

I know I dont know you very well, but I'll miss you!! Completely understand why you need to take a break and I'll definitely miss this series:D It wont be the same without you, but take as long as you need<3 It's not rude at all, we all sometimes need to stop(whether its abrupt or not) and take as long as you need. We'll all be here when you come back<3333

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Livia R
00:32 Feb 09, 2021

Thank you so much, Luna, and I'm sorry I didn't get to know you as well as I would have liked. When I'm more active, maybe in a few weeks or even months, I'd love to get to know you better!

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00:33 Feb 09, 2021

That would be amazing Lillian!! Enjoy your break:D

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Livia R
00:33 Feb 09, 2021

Thank you!

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Maya Emerson
19:45 Feb 06, 2021

This is so spectacular, Lily!!! The twist with the brother and betrayal was so dramatic and amazing! This was such an intriguing and terrific story and a perfect continuation of your series!!!!! I do not understand why you are embarrassed about it!!!!! :DDDDDD <3

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Livia R
19:53 Feb 06, 2021

Thanks, 22. I guess I'm embarrassed because only pompous writers write about themselves. Which, uh, happens to make me one of them. Oh and, did you like Soul?? I loved Soul Twenty-Two, she was hilarious!!

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Maya Emerson
19:54 Feb 06, 2021

That's not true!!! Oh yeah, I loved the movie that's why I changed my name (I'm Maya if you didn't know XD)

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Livia R
19:55 Feb 06, 2021

Lol, yeah I know, thanks so much!!! :D

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Maya Emerson
19:56 Feb 06, 2021

Lol XD No problem! I really loved it! :)))

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Maya Emerson
22:59 Feb 06, 2021

We're all on suggesting mode is what happened.

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Livia R
23:08 Feb 06, 2021

Sorry!!

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Bill Cara
19:33 Feb 06, 2021

Wow, I loved this. Everything from the descriptions, to the suspense..oh my. You should be proud of this. (: 🍇

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Livia R
19:37 Feb 06, 2021

Thanks, Bill :D

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Bill Cara
20:24 Feb 06, 2021

No problem (:

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Maya Emerson
17:55 Feb 07, 2021

BILL COME BACK :((((((((((((((((((

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Litlover 📖
14:44 Feb 07, 2021

WHERE ON EARTH DID YOU GO????? WHY DID YOU DELETE YOUR STORIES???? WTF??????? ARE YOU USING YOUR OTHER ACCOUNT NOW OR WHAT???????

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Maya Emerson
18:31 Feb 07, 2021

What's his other account?????

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Litlover 📖
18:58 Feb 07, 2021

I THIUGHT THIS ONE WAS HIS BUT HE JUST CHANGED THE NAME SO HE DOESNT HAVE ONE WAAAAAAAAAAAAAH

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16:23 Feb 07, 2021

BILL HOW THE HELL ARE ALL YOUR STOIES GONE ARE YOU MAD AT US WHAT HAPPENED WHY TELL US WTH

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Livia R
18:37 Feb 08, 2021

Hey, Bill, I just read your bio. I'm not going to tell you to stay because that's your choice if you think you need to leave. So I hope it is with good faith that you read on. I don't want to diminish what you are going through every day but I also want to make sure you know that we support you and that we know what it's like to face struggle, too. I know we're just online friends, we probably will never know each other face to face, but that doesn't mean we can't support you. Writing communities like Reedsy base themselves quite a bit on c...

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Bill Cara
19:08 Feb 08, 2021

Thank you, Lillian. I think I'm just taking a break away from writing, and trying to push myself too hard. I'll still be around to read stories, but just not as often. I'm glad to have such amazing friends to support me in my decisions. I guess the main reason for this break is to learn how I'm going to deal with my situation and the changes that are happening in my life. As much as I'd love to accept someone to lean on, I can't. I always feel as if I'm a burden, that my problems don't matter. But I want to change this, and learn to accept m...

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Livia R
19:20 Feb 08, 2021

It's okay, take all the time you need :D. Don't you ever feel like a burden, self-doubt is natural, I feel it, you feel it, we all feel it. When I talk to people, I have a tendency to ask them if I'm bothering them, if I'm being annoying. Which I usually am, probably. But anyway, I read a quote once (oh great now I'm getting quotesy), it said, "Only in the dark, can you see the stars." Now you better remember that because it took me about ten minutes to decide on one (I may be a little crazy about quotes...)! ;) We're all here for you, Bill...

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Bill Cara
19:32 Feb 08, 2021

Don't worry, you aren't bothering me in the slightest. Seeing people's messages are surprisingly relieving because I thought I'd turn into an anxious mess. And it's okay, I love quotes too, I'll add that one to my bio. Another quote I've heard is 'Without pain, how could we know joy.' (Yes, I'm an avid John Green reader.) The last time I took a break in January, I realized how much I missed everyone and their wonderful stories. So I guess, yeah, that quote makes a lot of sense. Thank you <3

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Livia R
19:35 Feb 08, 2021

:)

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