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Best of 2014 – The Eyes Behind the Mask

It’s not very often that we get a superhero story. It’s even more rare to get a superhero story that’s more than just some Pow! Bang! Whoosh! action. Fortunately, we beat the odds and found just such a story for Fiction Vortex, and it’s a natural addition to our Best of 2014 list.

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The Eyes Behind the Mask

By R.Y. Brockway

The city has changed in my absence; I almost don’t recognize it. Like running into a childhood friend you haven’t seen in years, it takes a moment before recollection returns, bringing with it the realization that time has also changed you. I wonder, does the city still know me? I feel the urge to return to the rooftops and exclaim: “It’s me, The Nightmare, I used to be your protector.”

~~~~~

The carpeted halls of the Convention Center are new to the Nightmare. When she left the city its waterfront had been the home to outcasts, vagrants, and thieves. Now it’s a bustle of urban renewal. People have returned. The Nightmare is just one of the multitudes.

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Art by David Revoy/ Blender Foundation

The Recompense Grift

By R.Y. Brockway

A shadow emerged, a dark spot in the vast, featureless, white terrain. It descended, circling above Lazarus’s head, and he could just make out the forms of outstretched arms, long fingers splayed wide-open. Around and around it spiraled, growing closer with each pass before ascending once again on some unperceivable updraft. Oh sweet Death, thought Lazarus, finally you have come to embrace me.

A cold, wet splash hit Lazarus’s in the face. Lazarus jerked upright, gasping for breath. He clutched his head as it spun between his hands and tried to control his breathing. The vulture — not Death — took one last look at its would-be meal and flew away, disappearing over the horizon.

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