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At Calendar's End: January: At Calendar's End

At Calendar's End: January: At Calendar's End

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At Calendar's End: January: At Calendar's End

59 pages
46 minutes
Jan 1, 2016


The first installment in a 12-part serial thriller.

Time is a fickle thing. Sometimes, so are those that wield it. But as the holidays set in and another year comes to a close, the beings that keep the cycle of time moving forward are being killed off. Whatever is killing them off seems to be taunting Ember, saving her for last.

With only a handful of days before the new year is supposed to begin, can she figure how to stop the killer before time - literally - runs out for everyone?

Jan 1, 2016

About the author

Andy Lockwood is a writer, an artist, and above all: a dreamer. When not slaving away, he spends his time buying books he does not have time to read, and delving into mediums he has no time to fully explore. He currently lives in mid-Michigan with his three cats.

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At Calendar's End - Andy Lockwood

Time flies over us, but leaves its shadow behind.

- Nathaniel Hawthorne

















The wind swirled, twisting ribbons of snow through the streets, buffeting anything and anyone unfortunate enough to be caught in the path. Pedestrians redoubled their efforts to hide themselves within thick winter garments as they traveled toward shelters of a more permanent sort.

Ember moved along the path of streetlights, lingering in the bright oases before stepping down the path into the relative dark. Even at the furthest points between luminance, the frozen crystals in the air and the blanket of white around her reflected so much light that darkness struggled to hold onto the night. She moved lightly, playfully toeing around icy patches and occasionally stepping off the cleared path to kick playfully at the piles of snow people had worked so hard to remove from the sidewalk. Passersby were so wrapped up in their own struggles against the blistering cold, they scarcely noticed her slight frame and pale curls bouncing down the walk in thin flats and a light jacket. When they did notice, they mistook her for a fashion-conscious twenty something, assuming she'd rather suffer in the cold than be caught in a frumpy coat that stood a chance to protect her from the elements.

They were partly right: she did love fashion. Maybe not the avant-garde style the fashion world loves to advertise, but she adored the trends. So much so that her knit cap was only coincidentally protective, as she had only picked it out as a colorful accent. If she needed to worry about the weather, she wouldn't be running around in a pencil skirt and vest as the forecasted squall descended on the city. She was, in fact, the furthest thing from worry. Her smile was stretched from ear to ear, and her ruby lips glinted almost as brightly as her blue eyes.

This was her storm. Every year, it was only a matter of time before a major winter event pummeled the Great Lakes and the states that surrounded them. Whether by her own will or by environmental coincidence, the storm often enough fell in December. This year, by some fluke it had come earlier than expected. Usually, she waited all month for it to arrive so she could play as it blanketed the city in peaceful white. This year, it fell in the first week, before turkey leftovers could be forgotten in the back of the fridge.

The longer the flakes drifted down, the more barren the streets became. She loved these moments: the quiet stillness so foreign to the usually crowded streets. It was a small present she granted herself once a year; running amok in empty streets. Her job was so strict and serious during December. It usually required so much concentration that she was exhausted by New Year's Eve. Often, it was the only break she gave herself, but sometimes there were moments when the bitterness of mankind got the better of her and she hid among the alleys and the snowbound dead ends, away from both her kind and theirs. She hid, rather than emulate that pettiness, returning it ten-fold and unleashing whatever awful power lie beyond self-restraint. It was times like that she was glad she was not solely in charge of balancing the year. She was all but certain humanity would have been lost to time long before they'd achieved any merit, if she'd been their only saving grace.

She was accustomed to hiding from mankind - they all were. The members of the Intercalary had made a solemn unspoken vow that they could never reveal themselves, or who knew what might happen. Through the years, Ember had changed her name more than once, as

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