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Prior to Arcane Solutions:

Even though it was cold, the night was beautiful. We sat outside, wrapped in blankets and drinking hot spiced cider while watching the fireworks lighting up the sky.

It was New Year’s Eve, and in just a few minutes, the calendar would change to January 1, 2000.

My parents talked quietly a few feet away from me, assuring each other all the doomsday talk about power failures and computer meltdowns was nonsense. Rolling my eyes, I watched a pink and gold spray of sparks spread across the sky. It looked like a weeping willow.

Dad consulted his cell phone. “One minute to go. Are you ladies ready for the new millennium?”

“Absolutely.” Mom’s face was shining, her long, graying blonde hair waving in the breeze.

“Sure,” I agreed.

“Thirty seconds.”

I finished my cider and put the mug down.


As we counted down the last seconds, a strange feeling spread through me. I remember saying “One!” then nothing but darkness, through which a soft murmur trickled.