Among Mad People | Verso.ink

Among Mad People

Red Queen Inc 0.5

By Miranda Renaé

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Alice grabbed a white, sleeveless sundress and blue tights from the closet, forgoing the heavy sweater and jeans her mom had laid out for her to wear. Yeah, she'd freeze, but she at least was choosing what she wore, unlike moving here.

Everything was fine before. I had friends, and the cute guy in my English class had finally talked to me. Ugh.


She tossed the outfit onto the bed.

According to her parents, the move would help Alice with the violent nightmares that had started six months ago. But if the move was about the nightmares, why had Alice and her mom left Dad, James, and Wyatt behind? Mom was the monster that stalked her in her nightmares, after all.

Of course, Alice wanted the nightmares gone. The lack of sleep was getting to her. She didn't understand how moving here could get rid of dreams, though. But her parents were sure, so Alice and her mom packed up the car and moved to this stupid town. Halfway through the school year, making it impossible for Alice to be anything other than the new girl.

And the nightmares hadn't gotten better. If anything, they were worse.

Alice pulled the dress over her head. Mom's always working. Does she even know how alone I am? That I have no friends?.

Her fingers brushed across the tops of the thick wool-lined boots that perfectly matched her mother's outfit. They were cute. Actually, all the new winter clothes her mom got were.

Alice grabbed the boots. Wearing them would be letting her mom win. She looked down at the silver stars, dotting her blue tights, thinking of the cold wind that hissed outside. Would it be worth wearing the boots? It was one thing to be surrounded by cold, but cold feet meant she'd be freezing the rest of the day.

"Alice, let's go," her mom called up the stairs. “We're already late.”

She looked longingly at the boots, running her fingers across the soft fur again. "No, I won't give her the satisfaction," Alice growled as she snapped the rubber band on her wrist. The sharp sting reminded her to control the anger brewing inside.

Dropping the boots in the middle of the floor, she grabbed her favorite lace-up sneakers and jammed her feet inside.

Muttering about how unfair her life was, Alice, stomped down the stairs. She pulled her jean jacket from the hook by the door and slipped her arms into the heavy denim before making her way to the waiting car.

Alice stared out the windshield in silent protest, waiting for Mom to comment on her outfit. She'd barely spoken to her mother since they'd moved, but that hadn't stopped her mom from talking to her. Instead, the entire drive to the theater Mom went on and on about their new "home" and her memories of growing up here.

She snapped the rubber band on her wrist again as Mom pointed at a store. "Your aunts and I used to get ice cream there every Sunday. They have this great old jukebox that only plays songs from the '50s and '60s."

Mom acted like she and her sisters were best friends, but she hadn't spoken to them for as long as Alice had been alive. Alice rolled her eyes. "Suddenly, you have happy memories," she grumbled under her breath.

Her mom ignored her, instead of driving around the parking lot in an older part of town, near an abandoned storefront. "I can't believe how many businesses have gone under in the last few months. It's like a ghost town." Mom went on. "Red Queen Inc will be a good addition and bring some life back with the jobs they provide. New people are starting to move in every day. It's only a matter of time before the shops reopen. And we get to be here to see it happen. Isn't that great?"

Alice snapped the rubber band on her wrist before pushing open the door, not even letting Mom finish parking their "perk of the job" new car. She turned to look at Mom. The sight of her getting out of the new car only added to Alice's anger.

She hated that car and what it represented. A perk for who? It wasn't like the car could be her friend or make going to a new school easier. Alice took a deep breath.

The rubber band wasn't helping anymore.

She started to count, silently at first. One, two, three… She looked down at the broken pavement, trying to remember what Mom said about the town dying and the people who'd lived here moving to the city. I bet I'm the only one in my grade. Alice took a deep breath, exhaling slowly. No, that's not right. I've been to school, and I'm not the only person in my class. It's even kind of fun being the new girl.

Four, five, six… Alice pulled the thin jean jacket close around her. "I want to go home," she pleaded.

Mom slammed the car door shut, stopping to stand next to her. "Alice, I've been patient with you. I know you are unhappy, but we don't have time for this, not right now. We're already late."

Now she responds.


Alice started to shake. She wanted to keep counting, to get control of her emotions, but the calm she craved didn't come.

The people who live in this awful town don't even want to be here— why should I?
Alice didn't want to go back to the crappy apartment they now called home. She wanted to go back to Arizona. Her real home.

She yelled this time, hoping Mom listened. "I. Want. To. Go. Home!"

"Alice Marie, you wanted to go to this movie. Now you don't feel like it?"

Alice pulled at the rubber band on her wrist. The slow tide of fury that had been swirling inside since this morning threatened to wash her away. The snap echoed around her.

Seven, eight, nine. Nope, not working.


She didn't feel grounded. Angry tears stung her eyes, refusing to fall, stuck at the edge of her vision.

This is ridiculous. There's no reason to lose control.


She didn't know how to stop the negative thoughts from pooling in her mind. "I just... I don't know." She sniffled. "Okay?"

Mom's face fell, and she moved toward Alice. No, no. Alice backed away. Her hands rested on the cold steel of the car. A storm of emotions turned inside of her, telling Alice to run, that she wasn't safe.

If Mom touched her… Alice clenched her jaw. "Not yet," she mumbled.

She wanted Mom to pull her in, to wrap Alice in her strong arms, and say everything would be okay. Alice knew she'd lose control. If that happened, she didn't think she would be able to stop herself from doing something terrible. Her world would be engulfed in uncontrolled anger and tears, leaving the real Alice behind.

It had been almost a year since the last time things had gotten that bad. She'd come out of that last rage surrounded by broken glass, a baseball bat in her shaking hand, and a look of fear plastered on her cousin's face. She still couldn't remember what happened, but that was the day her cousin stopped coming over, and Alice started meeting with someone to help her manage her temper.

Mom's voice broke through a tornado of feelings with the words that could break the spell. "One, two, three. You're safe. Four, five, six. Everything is okay." Her mom took a deep breath. "Seven, eight, nine. We're fine."

Her soft voice soothed the broken parts of Alice, reminding her to breathe. But Mom's words weren't enough, not yet.

Alice kept counting. "Eleven, twelve, thirteen..." Her chest rose and fell with each number, calming her, changing her. Mom stepped forward, her lips moving as she counted with Alice. The scrape of shoes on the pavement echoed off the walls of a nearby building as her mother took a few steps closer.

The tightness in Alice's chest eased with each number that left her lips. She let her shoulders drop as the anger released her. The negative thoughts that swarmed inside her since waking up this morning started to fade away.

You are strong. You can do hard things.


Alice met her mom's eyes. Love and concern reflected in their depths.

Things are not as bad as they seem.


The episode now fading, Alice nodded, giving her mom permission to pull Alice into a tight hug. The warm embrace erased Alice's remaining doubts.

Mom's always here when I need her most.


Stroking her hair, Mom whispered, "We don't have to go to the movie."

The clacking of high heels echoing from behind them, "There you are," Ms. Redding, Mom's new boss, said.

Alice stepped out of Mom's embrace, not hiding the annoyance of being interrupted.

The woman's outfit screamed money and power—the bright yellow designer purse and matching stilettos stood in sharp contrast to her dark business suit. A bitter breeze moved through the parking lot, causing Alice and Ms. Redding to shiver.

At least I'm not the only one who didn't dress for the snow.


A girl about Alice's age, with a long ponytail, stood next to Ms. Redding. She rolled her eyes at Ms. Redding before turning to Mom with a smile. "We worried you weren't going to make it."

The heat of a slight blush settled on Alice's cheeks. Embarrassed by the thought of what the Reddings might have seen, Alice flashed the girl an "everything is great" smile.

"Sorry, it was my fault." She motioned to her outfit. "I couldn't find anything to wear."

The girl chuckled, and Alice couldn't help but smile back—there was something inviting about the friendly girl.

"I completely understand. Love the tights, by the way." She held her hand out to Alice. "Name's Dinah, but I prefer DeeDee. Only family and people who have known me forever call me Dinah."

Alice smiled at her before taking her hand. "Nice to meet you, DeeDee."

"Should we go in, then?" Mom asked, sharing a look with Alice. She knew Mom was telling her they could still leave if Alice wanted to. But Alice nodded, letting Mom know it was okay to go in.

They walked past the main entrance of the theater, entering through one of the side doors. A guy dressed in dark clothing held the emergency exit open, letting them go in the wrong way. No one else seemed to care or even notice.

Alice shrugged it off. Perks of being the boss.

They walked through the short dark hallway into a packed theater. The people in the room seemed restless, waiting for the show to start. A podium was set up at the front, ready for the presentation Mom had been practicing for the last week. Was that why Ms. Redding and DeeDee met us outside? Alice swallowed a stab of guilt.

"Alice, what are you doing on Thursday?"

Alice turned to DeeDee. "Nothing."

"Great, there's this little vintage shop down the street. We should grab lunch and shop. I think you'll love it."

"That would be great." Alice smiled. Maybe this place won't be so bad.

DeeDee walked Alice to her seat, pulling the phone from her pocket. "What's your number?"

Alice gave DeeDee her phone number, and seconds later, her phone buzzed with a text.

This is DeeDee.


Alice turned the phone off with a smile as the lights dimmed. She picked up the complimentary popcorn tub off her seat before sitting, watching DeeDee make her way to the front of the room to stand next to her sister. The seat sank low to the ground. Something must have broken inside. On any other occasion, this would have bothered Alice. But not now. For the first time since coming to this town, Alice let herself feel excited. She might have finally made a friend here.

DeeDee, Ms. Redding, and Mom started their speech about the new products and the factory opening in town. Alice only kind of listened while she arranged her licorice around the edge of the popcorn tub.

The upcoming shopping trip and possibly a new friend washed away the last of her anger from the parking lot. For the first time since moving, Alice felt like a normal teenager at the movies.

Once the speeches finished, Mom sat next to her, while DeeDee and Ms. Redding left the theater the same way they'd come in. Why wouldn't they stay for the movie? Alice made a mental note to ask DeeDee when they got together next week.

The lights dimmed as the first trailer started to play. Alice loved previews, a snippet of what could be.

After everything that happened the past weeks and almost losing control today, Alice couldn't wait to escape into the imaginary world where the good guys always won. The fact that the movie was based on one of her favorite comic book heroes made it ten times better.

The movie started with a recap of what happened in the last movie—the hero's disappearance. Alice stared up at the screen, trying to focus. News clips of the battle from the previous film flashed across the screen, followed by interviews of people who'd been saved by the Super. Then, of course, a kid dressed up as the Super with sad music playing in the background. All part of a classic superhero movie intro. It was everything she'd expected from the opening credits.

But for some reason, it didn't catch her interest. The rest of the audience seemed to agree. Their whispered conversations moved through the room like a tidal wave.

The two older ladies sitting behind Alice were speaking the loudest. Their brittle voices overtook the sound coming from the speakers, with one commenting about the special effects and smoke. Alice debated turning around to shush them, but the guy next to her stood up, making Alice jerk away in surprise. He turned, the light of the screen reflecting off his black-rimmed glasses.

Is he going to say something to the ladies behind me?


Glasses Guy stood in front of her, blocking the screen. He leaned down, his eyes focused behind her, his lips moving without words. Alice glanced behind her, not seeing anything out of the ordinary. People stared at the screen in front of them. One even had his phone out, the bright light of the screen highlighting the harsh lines of his square face.

Glasses Guy moved closer to Alice, his hot breath moving her bangs. Anxiety swirled in her stomach, mixing with a twinge of anger. She pushed the feelings down, sinking into the chair, trying to make herself invisible.

Alice looked around the room, hoping to get someone's attention. Focusing on the seat next to her, she tried to get Mom's attention, but her mother's eyes remained on the screen.

Glasses Guy stared down at her, unblinking. His whispered words grew louder, but the words were still unclear. The screen behind him lit up with the first explosion. The guy's face hovered above Alice's. She swallowed down the fear peppered with the anger boiling inside her.

Something pink tumbling down the stairs nearby caught her eye. It was a cloud the color of cotton candy, and it blanketed the back rows of the theater. Its billowing mass moved slowly toward the front of the room, covering everything in a thick layer of pink dust as it passed. Was this the special effect the ladies behind me had been talking about?

Glasses Guy cracked his knuckles. The sound sent a shiver and something else‒fury maybe?‒down her spine.

The smell of stale popcorn mixed with sweet mint assaulted Alice's senses. Glasses Guy screamed, "Because I'm not!"

Alice slunk further into the chair, anxiety overpowering the other emotions swirling inside. Every cell in her body told her to run, but her legs didn't listen, weighed down by doubt.

Why is he yelling at me?


His chest vibrated in time with his shaking limbs as unintelligible words hissed through his teeth. Alice had seen this kind of anger before. She'd felt that kind of rage, the kind where nothing made sense. It's why she counted. Counting grounded her.

Could it help calm him?


"One, two, three…" she started.

The muscles in his neck got tighter.

"Four, five, six…"

His eyes bulged.

Alice stopped. "Counting isn't helping." Her eyes darted around the room; she still couldn't believe no one tried to stop him.

Why isn't anyone helping me? What should I do?


A flash of movement caught her eye as Mom stood up, moving toward Glasses Guy, pushing him to the ground. Some of the tension left Alice's body. Mom would save her—she always did.

A deep, almost primal roar came from her mother's lips. Waves of dread shot through Alice's body. Mom only made that noise in my nightmares.

Alice took a deep breath. This isn't real.

She didn't blink, didn't move, as Mom moved toward her. But it wasn't Mom, not anymore. It was the creature that had chased her through her nightmares. It's long, claw-like fingers reached out to Alice. Dark red streamed down the Mom Thing's face.

I'm asleep. It's just another bad dream.


Alice looked around the room, snapping the rubber band on her wrist, trying to wake herself up. It worked, sometimes. Not today, though.

Warm tears filled her eyes, blocking her vision. She couldn't see anything but blobs moving in the darkness. Alice snapped the band again, still hoping it would work, but something inside told her the grounding tricks wouldn't work, not this time.

The pink cloud rolled toward her, engulfing Alice in its warm confines, hiding Alice from the world. Its sweet flavor clawed at her throat, dragging her into the depths of her fears and choking out the light.

I'm trapped.


There’s no way out.


Her worst fear come to life.

Anger bubbled inside of Alice.

This can't be happening.


She took a deep breath in an attempt to cool the flames fighting their way to the surface.

Not now.


She couldn't let the rage take her. She needed to think, to find a way out. But that couldn't happen, as long as the emotions turning in her stomach threatened to pull her under.

Alice closed her eyes. It's just a dream.

The noise of people screaming floated around her, into her.

One, two, three…


Alice covered her ears, but she could still feel the whoosh of the cloud-like walls closing in around her, crushing her. A chalky mint taste filled her lungs with each breath of the cotton candy smoke.

Twenty-one, twenty-two, twenty-three…


The gurgled cries of the women behind her drilled their way into her covered ears.

Fifty-one, fifty-two, fifty-three…


Something tugged in the back of her mind. A voice pierced the heated hatred trying to swallow her whole, lighting her way back to reality.

Mom?


The words her mom had spoken to her in the parking lot, reminding her that everything was okay, that they were fine, echoed in Alice's mind. Giving her the courage to push away the anger and fear. Giving her the courage to face the world head-on.

Alice opened her eyes. The smoke had disappeared, leaving pink dust behind. Mom stood over her with her eyes focused on something behind Alice.

Is Glasses Guy behind me?
Alice's heart raced as she tried to stand up, but Mom held her down.

Something's wrong…


Mom grunted, and the light of the movie screen lit up her face. Red streams of blood ran down her cheeks, leaving a dark trail from the corners of her eyes to her chin.

"Mom?" Alice's voice shook. "Are you okay?"

Mom didn't answer. Her dark eyes stared down at Alice. The look sent daggers of fear through Alice's body.

"Mom?" Alice shuddered.

The mom thing stumbled away from her, tripping over something.

Alice stood up.

Mom's eyes focused only on Alice as she stood up. Unsure what to do next, Alice took a step back. Mom lunged at Alice. Her long fingers outstretched, reaching toward Alice, ready to clasp her neck.

Mom's gentle voice, the one that gave Alice comfort, was gone. Replaced with something harsher, broken, and screaming. "My stars and whiskers!"

Alice slid out of the chair and away from her mother's cold fingers. Her knees hit the sticky floor of the dark theater. The warm breath of the thing that had taken her mom's place brushed the top of her head.

It's not real.

It's a dream.

It has to be a dream.


Remembering what the doctor said about ending a nightmare, Alice stood up.

The only way to end a dream is to face the fear head-on.


She knew what she had to do. Alice turned to face the Mom Thing, pulling her shoulders back and standing straight, projecting confidence she didn't feel. I'm safe in my bed and will wake up soon.

Ignoring the turning in her stomach, Alice took a step toward the dream monster. The creature turned to face Alice; a hiss escaped from its stained teeth.

Just a dream.


Alice took two steps forward, glancing up at the screen, surprised by how much time had passed. The movie had hit the climax. An explosion lit up the room, highlighting the blood-stained lines of the creature's face. Alice fumbled. How could she stand her ground against this thing that looked so much like Mom? She needed to find somewhere to hide until her alarm went off. No, you have to face your fears.

Someone screamed nearby, and the creature cackled as it lumbered toward Alice. She froze. It can't hurt me. She focused on the Mom Thing's movements, trying to block out the sounds around her.

She couldn't do it. She couldn't hold her ground.

Alice ran away, kicking up pink dust with every step. She pushed her way through the mass of people trying to get out of the emergency exit, the same door she'd come in earlier. She forced her way to the front of the crowd, launching herself at the door with all her strength. The door wouldn't budge.

There's no way out. I'm trapped.


She swallowed down the fear bubbling up inside her. Her heart pounded in her ears, drowning out the people pushing against her. Alice slammed her fist into the heavy black door, letting some of the anger inside burn away the fear that threatened to drag her under.

This can't be happening.


A roar moved through the crowd—the people around her scattered, some by choice, most by force. Their bodies were shoved to the floor by those who fled something she couldn't see. Their screams filled the air. Alice moved to the right, dodging the large mass of bodies that threatened to take her down with them in their terror-filled flight. She used the wall to stop herself from being pushed to the floor, ignoring the sticky, metallic smelling substance that covered it.

Exposed, Alice turned in circles, searching for the creature that looked like her mom.

Wake up! Alice, wake up!


Alice screamed as something grabbed her loose hair, pulling her to the floor. The movie screen went dark, plunging the room into night. Whoever grabbed Alice started to drag her across the cold concrete. Searching for a way out, Alice spread her arms, letting her hands feel for anything to help her get free. Her scalp burned with each yank as strands of her long hair came out with each tug.

Her hand slid across the hard bottom of a broken chair. It's just a dream, Alice reminded herself. It can't be real. She wrapped her fingers around the cold steel of the metal legs still bolted to the ground, pulling herself free, holding back the scream that clawed at her throat as she freed herself. She wouldn't let whoever had her know the pain it caused; giving them the satisfaction was not an option.

Free, but with no escape route, Alice scanned the room, looking for a place to hide. She wrapped her arms around herself, trying to hold herself together. This was the worst part of the nightmare. Trying not to watch as perfect strangers became killers. The people that had tried to escape now victims as each played out Alice's bloodiest fears.

Her sights landed on a dark corner under the screen where the movie still played. Alice crawled across the dust-covered floor, hiding among the injured, slowly making her way to the corner.

Sitting on the floor, she wrapped her arms around her knees and rocked back and forth. "I'm fine. I'm fine." She covered her ears, trying to block out the chaos around her. "One, two, three…"

She looked around the room, and nothing had changed. People were still dying at strangers' hands. Why? More loud pain-filled screams echoed through the room.

Why can't I wake up?


Her eyes met the fear-stricken ladies who'd talked through the opening credits, and most of the movie. They were tied down to their chairs at the front of the theater, lips sewed together with red thread. It was kind of poetic. Sick, but poetic. She blinked.

Wait… What?


The room blinked from color to black and white and back again. Each time her vision changed to black and white, a few glowing red spots littered the floor, highlighting the jagged edges of broken chairs and railings. Alice stood up.

This is new.


Her dreams always played in color.

The fear swirling inside her changed as the colors of the world blinked out. A new emotion took over, one she knew well. The heat of it moved through her limbs like a warm bath. Her old friend anger returned, its hunger threatening to consume her.

Anger, frustration, and even rage, her constant companion for as long as she could remember, took hold. She ignored the mental tools from the therapist Mom had taken her to–no more counting, no more rubber band–and let the anger take over. She looked around the room, focusing on the items glowing red, objects she could use to get what she wanted.

She found the guy with the sharp square face, the one who's phone lit up the theater. The phone lay near his outstretched fingers, discarded among the demolished room. His dead eyes stared straight ahead at the small, dark, cracked screen. Alice only regretted she wasn't the one to break it. But there were others in the room, people who'd wronged her, people like Glasses Guy. But first, she needed….

A battle cry moved through the room, playing an eerie tune, calling to Alice, daring her to come. The Mom Thing stood before her, stumbling as it made its way toward her, a fist raised high above. A long metal bar in its hand glowed red in Alice's black and white world.

She wanted that bar.

No, she needed it.

This nightmare had started when Mom dragged her to this snow-covered hell and told her to call it home. The Mom Thing wasn't her mom, but it was close enough. This dream would end with the Mom Thing broken and forgotten, the same way Alice felt every day since moving to this stupid town. A life without her friends, a broken family, and broken promises.

As luck would have it, the creature held the perfect weapon. All Alice needed to do was take it. She stared at the Mom Thing, waiting for it to make its move.

The creature lumbered across the room toward Alice. With each step, it took, all the wonderfully horrible things she could do with the piece of metal in its hand played out in Alice's mind. She could feel the vibration as it crashed into the bones of her enemies. Even now, she could see the delicious damage it could cause. And the stupid creature was bringing it right to her.

A heavy thud pushed Alice to the ground, knocking the air from her lungs and bringing a bit of color back to her vision. Glasses Guy. He sat on top of her, something large and pulsing red clasped in his hands. He raised it above himself. "I am not!"

Alice kicked, rolled, whatever she could think of to get away, but he was too strong. His arms came down. The large piece of red glowing broken chair rushed toward Alice's face. She closed her eyes. This is it, the end. She'd read about it and seen it in movies a million times, but Alice... If you die in your dreams, do you die in real life? She wasn't sure if it was the end of the dream or her life, and she didn't want to know the answer. Either way, this nightmare would be over.

I can finally be done.


Glasses Guy screamed, and the weight holding her to the floor disappeared, taking the burning heaviness on her chest with it. She felt light for the first time since this nightmare started.

The dream must have ended.


Alice opened her eyes. The theater's dark walls and echoes of death should have faded away like bad dreams do. Glass Guy crumpled in a heap nearby, his vacant eyes focused on something or someone. She followed his gaze, the broken chair part he'd held above her flickered from red to black.

"Noooo," she cried out.

How am I still stuck here?


Mom, not the monster that looked like her, lay next to Alice, her chest rising with labored breath, her fingers wrapped around the chair piece. Alice wasn't sure what happened. Whatever it was, the Mom Thing had changed back to her mom. It had saved her. It had killed Glasses Guy before he could kill Alice.

Mom made things better, safe. Even in this nightmare world filled with madness and death, she'd fix it. That's what moms do.

"I'm sorry. I should have never brought you here," her mom breathed.

Confused, Alice looked at her mom. She'd never gotten this far in her nightmare, always waking up before the end. This part of the dream wasn't as bad as Alice thought it would be. The one thing she wanted more than anything since moving here was for Mom to apologize for taking her away from the only life she'd ever known. Maybe it would be enough if it happened in a dream.

She wasn't sure what she was supposed to say to Mom. So she didn't say anything.

The dream should be over now.


Alice stood up and looked around the room, waiting for the chaos to fade away, to wake up in her bed in the small apartment cocooned in her fluffy down comforter. But the room didn't change. The remains of the madness that consumed the dark theater still marked the walls.

"Why am I still here?" Alice cried.

Mom looked at her, confused. "Alice?"

"The dream won't end."

"Oh, Alice." Her mom coughed. "I'm sorry. This isn't a dream."

“No, it has to be a dream.”

Alice's legs gave out, and she fell to the floor next to her mom, hot tears running down her cheeks. “Things like this don't happen in real life.”

The movie's heartwarming end played behind them as she tried to wrap her mind around the words her mom said.

Alice, this isn't a dream.


She didn’t snap the rubber band around her blood-stained wrist, but spun it around, going over everything that had happened in her mind.

“It has to be…”

The doors in front of her opened, and men in white suits stomped in. Alice stood up, ready to fight.

It's real.


Alice gripped the only weapon she could find in her right-hand, watching, waiting for the men to make a move.

Static filled the air around them, the one in front lifted something to his dark lips.

"We have a survivor."

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About Miranda Renaé

Miranda Renaé spent much of her childhood avoiding reading. Letters were nothing more than a jumbled mess. One day her dad gave her the novel he just finished reading. It was full of suspense and horror that she’d only seen in movies. Only so much better. From that day on she devoured the written word, no genre was safe

When Miranda isn’t reading or writing, you can find her taking care of a pack of foster kittens or cuddling her two cats Hettie and Courage the cowardly cat.

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