Staying Invisible

I'm currently working on Empowered: Hero, the final novel in Mat's story, and one thing that she is concerned about from the start is what happened to the sister she left behind, Ella's twin, Ava. Ava, who was there for Ruth when no one else was. Well, I've written a flash fiction story set during the previous novel, Empowered: Rebel, when two visitors arrive at the apartment with unexpected help, and, moreover, an unanticipated insight about Ava. Staying Invisible (Copyright 2019) Dale Ivan Smith I wished so hard I was Empowered. If I were Empowered, I’d find a way to save my grandmother. Stupid, because chances are I wouldn’t have a power that could save her, but I’d go work for the Hero Council and get them to help her. My sister Mat was Empowered, but she’d refused, and went rogue instead. Ruth coughed again, a deeper, scarier sounding cough this time. I put down the pot scrubber and went down the hall to her bedroom. The room smelled like rancid bread. The Thalik’s disease ravaging her had turned ugly. We’d used up the supply of the experimental drug the government had provided for Ruth last month, now she grew sicker each day. Damn them for stopping the drugs. I lifted my chin and forced myself inside the room. She was my grandmother, and I was the only one left to take care of her. “Ava?” she asked, her voice a low croak. “I’m the only one here, Grandma,” I…

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Finishing the Empowered series

Last year when I published Empowered: Rebel, I'd posted here that the series was complete. Done. How wrong I was. I'd always known there was more to Mathilda's story, and had considered writing another book after Rebel. Now I realize a fifth book is not only important to the series, it's absolutely necessary. Rebel ended with so many things up in the air. The fate of Mat and her friends. What would happen to the world itself. I'd made a mistake moving on so quickly. Fortunately, Mat wouldn't leave me alone. She kept coming up to me in my imagination, and insisting I tell the rest of her story. After a few months of this, I wised up and realized I'd better do as she wanted, and got to work. I'm working on revising the first book in my second series, as well, but Empowered: Hero will be out sometime in the next several months. I'll keep you posted. After all, Mat would expect no less.

New story–Halloween Duty

Here's a new Halloween story, a prequel to my new series, when Liz was working with her first partner. Neither of them have the Halloween spirit.     Halloween Duty Dale Ivan Smith I’m Elizabeth Marquez, Sorcerer-Agent for R.U.N.E. I used to love Halloween, but after my sister and I discovered real magic and its hard consequences, I lost that love. Once upon a time All Hallow’s Eve was when the seam between the Hidden world of magic and the supernatural opened into the Everyday world, and ordinary people could readily see manifestations—especially goblins, ghosts, spooks, boggarts, and the fleeting glimpses of those manifestations showed up in far greater numbers. Not so these days. Halloween went all commercial a long time ago, and in this age of smart phones and the internet, people over the age of six didn’t have any use for Halloween except as an excuse to dress up and clown around at parties. Really, it’s a lousy holiday. People give out teeth-destroying quantities of candies to kids dressed up like pop culture superheroes, cheesy witches, and princesses. And, on top of that, the numbers showed fewer manifestations on Halloween than almost any other night of the year. But my bosses at the Regulating Union for Normalizing Enchantment still took Halloween seriously. They ordered Tomlinson and I to pull Halloween Duty. Didn’t matter that I’d asked for the night off. I had an actual date lined up, for the first time in far too long. Will was a…

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