One of the most devastating things that can happen to a family is when a child vanishes without a trace. In the short term, some will rally to support the family’s search. But inevitably as time passes, the support fades and rumors and accusations trickle into the void eroding the already fragile family. There are a few stories about kids becoming supernaturally transported to mystical other realms–think, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and The Chronicles of Narnia–but these’re from the child’s POV allowing the adventure to bloom. This tale follows the family left behind and shows the devastation in its wake.
On young Mikey Rhodes’ birthday, his father takes him to a wooded park while older brother Brennan and their Mom decorate the house for a surprise party. A game of catch sends Mikey into the woods to retrieve a ball, but he never returns. A horrific year passes in which most accusing eyes and authorities decide that the father killed his son that day, though no body was ever found. Mom’s doubts about Dad lead to divorce. Brennan gets into fights with peers and tries to keep peace between his parents and coax his father back into sobriety. This is dark stuff.
Then, after a year, the FBI regathers the family to see a new suspect, a hulking bearded man heavily armed that raves about slaying dragons and fantastical wars. He also claims to be Mikey . . .
Mikey’s tales of the other world start to mix with the plot of the real world. He claims to be a hero there, but he’s also an adult with an agenda. It’s hard not to picture his tales as well-constructed half-truths filtered for his audience. Convincing his family of his identity may not be his top priority.
This series is co-created by author Williamson and artist Andrei Bressan.
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