The Fairytale Chicago of Francesca Finnegan
by Steve Wiley
Lavender Line Press

"You be careful... because in the city of wind, a twinkle may blow out. The wind here, it twirls and sings like a music-box ballerina. It plays tricks and tells stories like an old-man magician."

What if the city of Chicago wasn’t at all as it appeared, but instead the enigmatic host to an entire underground world of magic, awaiting the arrival of an adventurous young boy Tich and his companion before it came alive? This place is not powered by the factories of the industrial revolution as the history books say, but by the enchanted eastern most part of the city that has been obscured for many years. The young boy’s adventure started in one of the city’s parks, where he met the fairy maiden that would take him for the ride of his life on the Lavender Line. On this whimsical night, young Rich encountered sharply dressed red foxes that served in the court of a senile king, grand dukes that served at the side of a flying queen from the last city farm, an alcoholic elf that bottled spirits and saved princesses, and an animate wind that told illustrious stories to anyone that would listen.

The truth is that on that Friday night, out looking for an adventure as he tended to do on most Friday nights, Rich found the escape that he so desperately needed. He discovered a distant world that ran parallel to his, but was just far enough away to help him forget all his troubles for a while. Rich would grow up without any memory of this night, and the older he got the more his life spiraled out of control. Instead of jovial, youthful games, his new Friday night adventures revolved around hard liquor and women that weren't his wife. As an adult, Rich was borderline suicidal and only a miracle, a magical miracle, would be able to change the course of his life and help him escape once more. He could go on one last adventure, he just had to remember, because his well-being and future depend on it.

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