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About Literature / Professional Jess MarelloUnited States Recent Activity
Deviant for 7 Years
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You Were All Yellow
“Ari, you’re glowing,” he warned as he trotted alongside her. The girl’s eyes widened as she glanced down at her hands, body, and legs. There was a yellow-hued aura emanating from within her. In daylight, it was difficult for most people to notice. Ariana stopped walking, closed her eyes and took a deep breath. Her companion looked around, feeling anxious. In seconds the glow faded, and Ariana opened her eyes.
“Thanks,” she said, looking down at the black cat. “I didn’t notice.”
“You have to be more careful, Ari,” the cat replied with a sigh. “Other people might not notice, but you’re like a lighthouse beacon to anything in the Shadows. It’s a good thing I was here to walk you home today,” he added.
“Would you stop chiding me?” Ariana hissed. “Do you know what people would think if they saw me talking to a stray cat?”
“Cats are everywhere in this dimension. This form
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 4 3
It was so dark that I couldn’t see an inch in front of my face. So cold that I curled into myself until my back ached, pulling my knees to my chest. Was this a dream? No, a nightmare … I didn’t have dreams anymore. I slept and I slept, but I was so tired …
“Are you alright?” a voice called out from the shadows. I ignored it.
“Hey, are you awake?” it asked again. It sounded so kind, so warm … yet instinctively, I pushed it away. I did not want to be awake. I wanted to sleep, so I wouldn’t be tired. I wanted to sleep, so I could forget everything else.
The voice came and went, like a distant howl. In and out, close and far, all at the same time. I didn’t trust it, couldn’t trust something so formless.
It snuck up on me in the dark, footsteps muffled by my sobs. How often had I come back to this place? Was there ever anywhere else? Was I ever someone else?
I could feel it here with me, in this place. It was a mixture
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 5 8
Small Like My Kittens
The loud whooshing of large, leathery wings stirred the calico from her slumber atop the fence post. The ground shuddered under the weight of something far larger than a cat, the vibration reverberating through the old wooden post. The calico blinked away sleep, her pale green eyes taking in the sight before her - a slinky black dragon bowed low to the ground. She studied it for a long moment before sighing.
“How did you find me?” the calico asked.
The snake-like dragon did not move. His wings were curled up against his back, his hide darker than midnight and shiny. It dazzled the cat sometimes, but the dragon was not a plaything - it was a thing she had already said farewell to. When the dragon made no further show of movement, the calico sighed again.
“Unflatten yourself,” she commanded. “It’s embarrassing, having a creature so large bow to a cat no bigger than its snout.”
“I apologize, but I am indebted to you,” the dragon replie
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 5 5
Only the Butterflies Knew
It was about that time again. The dawn of a new day, when humans thought to sneak up on the Deep Woods Dragon while it slept. It feared the way the sun reflected off of it’s scales, they said. It’s prismatic hide was so bright it was blinding. If taunted into the sun, they said, the Deep Woods Dragon could be defeated by the least trained of knights. The Deep Woods Dragon needed to be blinded, they said, or it would burn its attackers to ashes with rainbow-hued flames.
He knew these rumors because the butterflies had told him. They were drawn to the rainbow of greens, yellows, pinks and purples of his scales, like the flowers they coveted so much. They had told him this, too, but the Dragon did not mind. The butterflies were honest, as their lives were short and beautiful. Even still, they could fly unhindered among the humans, even admired by the small humans who chased them, laughing. They told him stories while they rested on his wingtips, tail, and snout. Butterflies di
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 5 0
When Tanis Calls
If I ever claimed
That there’s a voice in the dark
Would you believe me?
I hear it at night
The low pulsating humming
It keeps me awake
Time fades in the breach
But I cannot stay too long
Or my mind fades too
Sometimes I wake up
In the middle of the woods
Cold and terrified
Despite the dangers
When Tanis calls out to me
I always answer
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 3 0
Just An Animal
It had been a week since I had turned eighteen, and I still didn’t have an animal companion. My parents were concerned, my friends were supportive, and my classmates were convinced something massive and rare was on its way. One of the art majors had waited days for her companion, which had turned out to be a mythical creature - a unicorn, in fact. A recently aired story claimed that one boy had bonded with a sea serpent. My classmates spent their free time taking guesses at my animal companion.
“What if it's a chupacabra?” Jason asked.
“The chupacabra isn't a real creature,” I replied.
“That's what you said about unicorns,” Sky said with a light laugh. The sun conure on her shoulder chattered along with her.
I shrugged, and went back to revising my chemistry notes. They enjoyed teasing me because they already knew my answer. I didn't want an animal companion. Pets were pointless creatures, meant to make you feel less lonely and unloved. I prefe
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 3 4
A Light in the Dark
Shannon turned eighteen a week before I did. She came down from college for the weekend so we could celebrate together. We decided that when we each turned eighteen, we would have a sleepover and learn each other’s powers in the moment, before everyone else. Shannon was an advocate of living in the moment. She was studying nutrition, went running every morning, and used to pinch me in high school whenever she caught me daydreaming. So when she got the ability to fly on her birthday that night, it just added another notch to her love of adventure. And she still runs every morning, which is more than I would do if I could fly. It’s pretty amazing.
The thing is, the abilities people inherit when they turn eighteen seem to be entirely random. My mother can read sentences five times as fast as a normal human and my father has enhanced vision – he can see from further away, that most of us would need a telescope for. Shannon went to college even before she knew that her abi
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 6 6
Casting Apps
The low murmur of voices pulled me from sleep. Blinking, I fought to keep my eyes open as the world swirled to life around me. I was sprawled out on a black floor mattress in a small, dark room. A couple of candles were lit on a dresser under a window, through which I could see the night sky. Groaning, I raised a hand to my forehead. Ugh, what a headache. Did I fall down somewhere? Where was I? Forcing myself to sit up, I glanced down at my body. Yeah, those were the same jeans and t-shirt from yesterday. Something must have happened, but I just couldn’t sort anything out. Maybe once my head stopped pounding.
The bedroom door slid open, and I turned my head despite the pain that followed. The silhouette of a tall, twig-like person stood in the doorway. I blinked rapidly, trying to clear the haze. “Who…?” I croaked, before breaking into a cough. When was the last time I had something to drink? It felt like days.
“Whoa, wait, don’t move,” a light
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 33 30
A Witch's Smart Phone Powers
Adie had been looking forward to this moment for months. She had packed her clothes a week in advance and left the lid of the red messenger bag open. It was fun to gaze inside it occasionally, and imagine being in a new town. Most innkeepers offer cheap room and board to visiting young witches. Oh, Adie hoped she could live in an inn with a flower garden. Or a small park. Maybe she should have done some more research.
“Adeline, are you getting ready?” Her mother knocked on the door before pushing it open slightly. “Oh Adeline, your hair!”
Adie reached a hand up to pat the frizzy, blonde mess that existed on top of her head. She chagrinned. “Oh, I’ll be ready after I brush that.”
“Your clothes?” her mother asked, crossing her arms across her chest.
“I packed them!” Adie replied cheerily.
“Your new boots?”
“I’m wearing them!” Adie exclaimed, standing up and kicking a leg out to show the black
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 3 3
It told me I was an Australian woman in my past life when I entered my name and birthday. Supposedly, I was trying to find the bridge between the physical and non-physical worlds. It sounds like something I would do, or hope to find. What if there was a corporeal bridge between both worlds? Would it be ridiculous to search based on the claims of a random website? Maybe the bridge isn't a physical object or place. Maybe we ourselves are the bridge, in the right state of mind. Would I be searching for a bridge, or only for myself?
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 2 0
You have your whole life ahead of you, they say, and that is the problem. What am I meant to do with this life so ahead of me? I feel so far behind, so unprepared. Do they know something I don't understand? I worry until I overthink it, and meditate until I  don't think enough. My family worries about me, still stuck in this quicksand. But beyond this pit is desert, daunting and endless. How am I meant to cross this land without a sense of direction? Somewhere out there, my life is ahead of me. I am the problem.
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 1 0
Dream (a Little Dream of Me)
Dreams are better during the day, when you are awake and listening. I like to let my mind wander through ideas and endless landscapes, to see where I end up. Sometimes I am supernatural, a mix of human and superhuman power. In other dreams I am normal, but in a fantasy life. I like to drift along silently, to watch the stories unfold without spoiling them. Dreams are better during the day, when you can live in multiple universes. Sometimes I am a dragonrider, and sometimes the dragon. Each time it is just me, transplanted into a dream, a life.
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 2 2
Small Beginnings
A quiet girl went to visit her new neighbors one day. The mother and father were frightened when their daughter brought the quiet girl a glass of water. The new girl was careful not to spill a drop. Outside on the swings, she told the quiet girl that she was made of salt, and would melt if water touched her skin. She was so brave. Her parents burst out of the house, shouting in panic. The new girl leaped into the air, no longer a girl; she was a dragon, made of salt. She flew away. The quiet girl smiled.
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 2 0
Somehow I Found It
As far as I was concerned, I was always a level lower than everyone else. I knew the members of the archery club, interacted with them, enjoyed their company, but I never had conversations with them. They were college students, just like I was, but we were not the same. They could socialize with an offhandedness that I could never aspire to, a universal likeness that was so different from me. When it came down to it, I was certain that I was less valuable, and didn’t mind leaving when no one else showed up for club that Saturday.
And I was going to leave, bow case in one hand and plastic tube in the other (it held my arrows), when Ryan showed up. Ryan was the unanimously elected president of the archery club, and for good reason; he made his own longbows and atl atls, and was incredibly accurate with both of them. When he came to the door and saw only me standing there, I was sure practice was canceled. I could go back to my dorm and spend the rest of my day in safe solitude.
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 4 9
The Beginning of the End
“Stop!” she shouted, holding her hand outstretched toward me, a pleading look in her eyes. “You can’t go any further, trust me!”
Trust her? I looked her up and down, from her oversized black sweatshirt down to her blue jeans, fraying at the ends like little tufts of hair. That straight brown hair hanging down her back, those green eyes … she could have been me once, from another time. But still, she wasn’t me, not a part of me, so how could I trust her? A smile twisted up the sides of my mouth, and I took another step toward the precipice before me.
“There’s nothing down there,” she cried, running toward me with surprising speed. “You’re going the wrong way!”
“I don’t know you,” I said, turning my head to the side to watch her again. I felt like I should know her, should be able to understand what she was trying to tell me. Another time, years ago, she was like me, but not really. She went t
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 1 0
Words of Power
She had read the old musty book from cover to cover, the brittle pages threatening to crumble between her fingers at each gentle turn, almost begging for release from their ageless task. No human had touched a book in decades, breathed in the smell of old parchment, felt the sleek form of a pen between their fingers as they crafted words from an endless vocabulary, the perfect words to finish a sentence. So the volumes of books sat on their shelves in abandoned libraries, some moldy from water damage, some stolen for firestarter, none read by eager minds.
As much as people could still speak and think in words, the ability to read and write had faded. Due to technology, most people could surpass language barriers with ease, through a system of feelings and images. The new method of communication was spreading, even among the less wealthy of the population. The “mindspeak” was said to be addictive; people who mindspoke became more visibly withdrawn, less physically talkative.
:icondream-howl:Dream-howl 13 18




Jess Marello
Artist | Professional | Literature
United States
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💻 Blogger 🖊 Writer 🐱 Pet enthusiast 🎮 Casual gamer 📚 Avid reader 💭 Obsessive daydreamer 🐸 Enlightened agent 🐾 Pokemon trainer

This account is on hiatus while I seek out new places to practice and share my writing. I may stop by to visit, but I can't say how active I'll be. The link below will show you where to find me.


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LadyLincoln Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2017  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you for the :+devwatch: I appreciate the support!

With love,
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tygerwolfe Featured By Owner Jan 18, 2017  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks for the +Watch!

If you have a chance and could look at my latest journal, I'd appreciate it. I'm trying to keep my wife alive and can use all the help I can get, even if it's just a signal boost or $1. Thank you!
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nightshade-keyblade Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2016  Hobbyist Writer
Happy Birthday, Jess! :cake: :party:
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SpiritDragonRyuu Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2016
Thank you for the watch :huggle:
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SpiritDragonRyuu Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2016
Welcome to :iconwalking-with-spirits:
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