Em thirsted for knowledge, for knowing all the wonders of the world. No one knew why, but I had a guess: she Transitioned without a speck, and insatiability filled the hole. She was told—we all were—to go where the swirl takes you, whether that be over a tundra or atop a child’s snowman. We land where we land. But as soon as Em started her Fall, she abandoned her swirl and headed for a smoking mountain that had caught her eye. Entranced, she entered the roiling crater. Did she feel regret hurtling toward her doom? Or did she laugh as she touched the lava?
Jordan never felt right as snow, confined in solidity. “I wish I were water,” they said, “flowing, with neither beginning nor end.” Jordan’s Fall headed toward an icy glacier far from the sea, and the thought of lying imprisoned in a frozen cage for decades nearly broke them. They caught a shifting crosswind and flurried to a stream. But the stream was plated with ice, thin enough to see through—the rushing water underneath—but solid enough not to break. Jordan tried to catch an updraft, but discovered they were stuck to the ice, less than an inch away from what they desired and unable to reach it. Did they remain trapped? Or did their torture end in spring?
Messei would say, “We’re always told every snowflake is unique, but I know that somewhere out there, there’s another exactly like me.” He believed that Transition cleaves each droplet into two identical crystals. “Every snowflake has a pair,” he insisted—whether out of longing or fear, I cannot say. When Messei landed, he searched through the snowbank for his other half. Unsuccessful, he caught an updraft to the next snowbank, and then through blizzards and avalanches. He searched in far reaches, tiny crevices in the folds of the world, until no one could track him down. We never saw him again. Is he is still searching? Or did he find his match? Perhaps that depends upon whether you are a dreamer too.
Avah Dodson is fifteen. Her short fiction and poetry have won prizes and recognition in the Bluefire 1,000 Words Contest, the Royal Nonesuch Humor Contest, the Scholastic Writing Awards contest (National Gold Medalist), the Sarah Mook Poetry Contest, the Kay Snow Poetry & Fiction Contests, and the Betty Award Contest, among others. Her works have appeared in Incandescent Review, Echo Lit, Parallax, Press Pause, Voices de la Luna, Stone Soup Magazine, Highlights Magazine, Skipping Stones Magazine, DePaul’s Blue Book: Best American High School Writing, and others. She has been a member of the Creative Writing Team for Incandescent Review since 2022 and Team Manager since 2023. She lives in California with her family and two adorable tabbies.