Originals

Stand-alone short stories in various genres including fantasy, sci-fi, speculative, horror, humor, and drama.

  • One More Thing
    We don’t know what they are. We don’t know what they want. It’s kind of annoying when they show up during Prime Time.
  • The Mountains Are Calling
    And although I don’t remember why, or where I came from, or what waits me there, and I don’t think I want to, I must go.
  • Kendrick Lamar Is Dead
    The people he left behind are dead. The people who will come will come to late. All he can do is his job.
  • Want, Need
    Mr. Morris wants a room unlocked in his house, but Marty is pretty sure he needs the opposite.
  • Midnight Mass and the Queen of Mean
    Talking about a certain character from Midnight Mass. SPOILERS WITHIN, PLEASE GO SEE THE SHOW FIRST.
  • November
    I don’t know what it is about this time of year that makes me feel like Thoreau.
  • Someone is Wrong on the Internet
    Angry at someone on the internet want to vent the healthy way? Utilize your local Internet Discussion and Emotional Release Program today!
  • Gallows of Love
    The DJ cut Rhianna off mid-sentence and announced that it was time for the first dance. Everybody in the large hall settled, twisting in their seats to see the dance floor or getting up to surround it, phones in hand and set to record. The bride, surrounded by the tufts of champagne lace he rememberedContinue reading “Gallows of Love”
  • Had it Coming
    An eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind, but maybe satisfaction is better than sight.
  • An Attic in the Middle of the Night
    Children, especially very young children, don’t know anything. More, they don’t know what they don’t know. Their brains are black holes, taking in everything, spaghettifying the concepts, and coming away with the wrong idea. They must be taught everything, especially the things adults take for granted. How physics works. How people work. Don’t touch that.Continue reading “An Attic in the Middle of the Night”
  • u/aproblemlikemarie
    Tale as old as time…
  • The Day the World Came to Town
    Sunshine, warm and soft, fell through the open window onto Dagny’s face. It was early, and the sun had not discovered what it would be angry about today. It would. It was nearly the end of April. The sun had been angry since the last week of March. But now the sun was still halfContinue reading “The Day the World Came to Town”
  • First Day at a New School
    I’m starting to think I should make a series of these called Things I Wish the Main Character Teenage Girl Would Say Instead of Whatever Insecure Thing Actually Comes Out of Her Mouth So far, Kate’s first day at her new high school had been going…well enough. Math was a bummer, as always, and worseContinue reading “First Day at a New School”
  • The Forecast is Storms
    Maybe it wasn’t fair, but there were only hours left so what did fair mean anymore, anyway? It was outside a CVS, of all places. Why would they keep it? Was it even theirs? Who else could have owned it? He didn’t know a thing about that sort of thing. As the clock wound down,Continue reading “The Forecast is Storms”
  • Static, 3
    “The radio!” Luis screamed. Everything about him since they had gotten back in the car was tight and intense. His voice was constantly on the edge of ragged, and as he reached for the power button Evan could see the muscles in his arm tight and practically twitching.
  • Static, 2
    There was no highway.
  • Static, 1
    “Exit’s coming up. Turn off here.” “Where?” “Here!” Evan cut the wheel hard to make the ramp that came out of nowhere. It was a tight turn for a highway off-ramp, and for a few seconds Evan, Luis, and Alex could only grip the oh-shit handles and fight the turn’s urging to be flung toContinue reading “Static, 1”
  • Which Witch
    Deep in the Mortimor Woods and far off the Woody Path, but not too far, was a handsome, ugly cottage. Handsome because it was sturdily built, wood and nails and a low roof of shingles all coming together to create a small but cozy home. Ugly because the wood was the black of mildew stains,Continue reading “Which Witch”
  • Magnates and Mirrors
    Sir Lord Reginald Thwarpington Ramsbottom the third, lately of Hillshropshireforthdanwidthtonvillebourguponavon, was enjoying his morning rather leisurely. He had awoken in his giant bed and rolled over thrice to get to the edge and then gotten caught in the curtains, made of the very finest damask. Once he was able to cut himself down he putContinue reading “Magnates and Mirrors”
  • Two Oranges
    Jeff didn’t want to look up at the flat-screen hanging over the Slushee machine, but he’d always had a hard time not looking when a television was on. Didn’t seem to matter what was on it. It was one of the many, many reasons his first wife Barb had screamed at him before she’d jumpedContinue reading “Two Oranges”
  • Haunting 101
    Tucker Winslow – alive for twenty-six years, dead for three, employed by Here and Beyond Solutions for two and a half – was sitting on a crappy plastic chair in the breakroom, staring at the soda machine without really seeing it. The Sector 1248 break room shared a physical space with the break room forContinue reading “Haunting 101”
  • A Witch in the Woods, or Said Isn’t Dead
    This was the end. A journey lasting three weeks and two days, one that had taken them from one side of the world to the other, through the fields of Parda and the marshes of Silence and everything in between, one that had seen giants and wolves and the cat lady, one that had nearlyContinue reading “A Witch in the Woods, or Said Isn’t Dead”
  • Modern Miserable Man
    The truth, which will be difficult for some of you to hear, is that he died alone because he was an unpleasant person. It’s a hard truth, so I understand if you need to percolate on it for a bit. We’ve all been raised by movies, yeah? And movies always have those…well, if not happyContinue reading “Modern Miserable Man”
  • Slide, Part 2
    Maya didn’t die in 2028, but she did accidentally get some answers.
  • Slide
    2006 The first time she died was on the side of the road. It was utter bullshit, too. Some real fluke of nature, Final Destination type crap that they only pieced together the next day. It started with this idiot contractor who didn’t secure the ladder correctly to the side of his truck, so thatContinue reading “Slide”
  • What’s in a Name
    Stephanie rocked back and forth, back and forth in the chair her grandfather had carved, her eyes never leaving the baby’s in her arms. So sweet and little. So full of possibilities. He was only two days old and she already loved him so fiercely when she thought about it she wanted to break something.Continue reading “What’s in a Name”
  • Translations and Synonyms
    They landed their ship in some sort of field. The crop, according to their preparation materials, was called asphalt, and made for a steady landing. Apparently, the humans used this asphalt for the care and feeding of their primary motion animals, automobiles. It must have been very important, as it covered a great deal ofContinue reading “Translations and Synonyms”
  • Specter
    The first time she appeared, she was standing at a corner. Maureen shouldn’t have noticed her. She was still in the city. It was a busy corner. Others were standing there. But a few blocks later, Maureen couldn’t remember any of them. She could only remember her. She wasn’t facing the street. The others wereContinue reading “Specter”
  • Pre-Apocalypse
    The song cut out as the radio started blaring a test of the emergency broadcast system beginning with its usual discordant WEEEEEEEEHHHHHH. Mack cut it off and left it. They were almost to the parking lot of the trailhead, anyway. Next to him, in the passenger seat, Lois shifted. Out of the corner of hisContinue reading “Pre-Apocalypse”
  • What Goes Around
    April 3rd, 2037 His phone didn’t wake him up until it vibrated itself right off his nightstand. Still, he only turned over, his eyes glued shut to protect himself from morning. He groped blindly, his fingers running through the thick, cheap carpet. Seth hated that carpet. It held smells the way the dying held memories.Continue reading “What Goes Around”
  • Slow Burn
    Ella turns around and sees Dean on the other side of the party, drinking a martini and talking to someone. He’s as handsome as ever, his brown hair brushed back and the physique of his arms trying to burst through his shirtsleeves and those eyes. Even from across the room she can see the wayContinue reading “Slow Burn”
  • Bullshit
    “Do you know what my first thought was, entering that trailer?” Rebekah asked. She took a quick sip of her beer and held up her hand. “I mean, after the screaming and confusion. My first real thought, looking at the scene.” Asche shrugged and leaned back in his chair. He expected some kind of platitude,Continue reading “Bullshit”
  • To Prove The Human Spirit
    President Goodman, a good man, indeed, although easily steered into bad decisions, had a few minutes before the eggheads from Global Health Counsel came in with their report, so he was staring out the window behind his desk and tossing one of his kids’ fabric toys back and forth between his hands. It was aContinue reading “To Prove The Human Spirit”
  • The Moth
    A moth walks into a podiatrist’s office. The podiatrist sits her down and asks, “So, what’s the trouble?” And the moth says, “Trouble, doc? Trouble. I’ve got so much trouble I don’t even know where to begin. I used to have a job I loved, but I quit to take care of my older brotherContinue reading “The Moth”
  • Moon Over Prairie Fire, Part 4
    Gus only got two seconds to be confused. A loud snap ricocheted around the room, causing everybody to jump. Gus the worst of all. The sound was that of his humerus bone snapping back into place. A second pair of sounds quickly followed as the two bones in his forearm found their proper place, but no one could hear it over the sound of Gus screaming.
  • Your True Self
    There once was a man who lived a good life. I mean, it was okay. Middle of the road. He had a family and he loved them. He had a job and he was indifferent about it. He had hobbies. He had just bought a new television. Things were mellow, things were fine. The manContinue reading “Your True Self”
  • Moon Over Prairie Fire, Part 3
    Inez was running across the parking lot, flanked on either side by Jesse and Mat. The van behind Gus shuddered as Adelaide slammed the driver’s side door. They all reached him at the same time.
  • Moon Over Prairie Fire, Part 2
    Inside, Inez had just reached the bar and was reaching for where the phone was sitting next to a napkin holder on the bar when it started to ring. She waved it in the air at Matsui and Jesse who were looking at her with confusion before answering it.
  • Moon Over Prairie Fire, Part 1
    “You’ll have to show me your photographs sometime.” It didn’t sound like the wrong thing for Gus to say. In fact, it sounded like the exact right thing to say. It showed interest in her work, he was honestly interested in seeing what kind of photography could be done, exactly, in Prairie Fire, and itContinue reading “Moon Over Prairie Fire, Part 1”
  • Critter, Part 2
    Previous The sounds started off to their left. It was making a large circle around them. At one point it got close enough that they could hear it’s breathing, slow and thick, but then it faded again, and all they were left with was the sound of it squeezing its body through the trees andContinue reading “Critter, Part 2”
  • Critter, Part 1
    John Deacon killed the engine and stepped out of his pick-up, his boots rasping against the gravel that surrounded the EZ Pit Stop they had parked behind. He leaned on the open door and studied the woods his high beams were currently trained on. A thin barrier of shrubs and weeds that glittered with brokenContinue reading “Critter, Part 1”
  • Teenage Dystopian Love
    They stepped out of the darkness, bleeding and bruised and Renna’s ribs were definitely broken, but alive. They were alive. “Guys,” Molly said, still breathing hard and leaning on Johnny. “We did it.” For a few seconds, Renna only stood there. The cliffs in front of her. The cave behind her. The sun, hot onContinue reading “Teenage Dystopian Love”
  • Anyways
    Anyways, Spucky knew it was going to be a bad day when he woke up forty minutes before his alarm went off because there was some kind of super being or some shit standing at the foot of his bed. It was tall. And, uh, it had hair. Like, you know, long hair. For aContinue reading “Anyways”
  • I Shall Have the Last One
    I almost missed it, too. I’d come to Myrtle for the vintage and thrift shops. It was well known for that. Folks would come in from all over to browse. That’s why I went during the middle of the week. Took off from work. Told ‘em my mother died. It wasn’t really a lie. IContinue reading “I Shall Have the Last One”
  • In a Laundromat
    “Hey.” Tina pushed herself up on her elbows, carefully keeping her balance as the washing machines underneath her muttered and bucked. Nestor was sitting cross-legged in one of the silver carts, the one with only one wild wheel. He had been pushing himself across the room, back and forth, reaching the bank of dryers onlyContinue reading “In a Laundromat”
  • Music Box
    Sitting on the card table, nestled between a couple of Nerf guns and a tall stack of Hardy Boys novels, was the music box. It was made of a dark wood, and intricately carved all along the sides and the top. Celtic knots, mostly, but the design carved into the middle was foreign. Three trianglesContinue reading “Music Box”
  • Village Lost
    It was a nice day for a hike, right up until they found the abandoned village that was definitely haunted as fuck. “It’s not haunted,” Mike said. He even rolled his eyes at her as he walked down what could have once been a street. “Do you have eyes? Are you seeing the same shitContinue reading “Village Lost”
  • Secondary Protocols
    Everything that will happen in the next fifteen minutes, and this is the moment she will dream about over and over. They are sitting in the middle of the factory floor, in the area they have built into a living room, of sorts. It’s just some old chairs around a fire pit, but it’s theContinue reading “Secondary Protocols”
  • Control
    The first thing she felt upon waking, besides the dull throbbing behind her eyes, was surprise. Fennix didn’t think she would be waking up again. At least, not in any way that mattered. What did those that were already caught by Emmaline’s web think and feel? She had assumed she would know by now, butContinue reading “Control”
  • Main Street, Seaview
    It had felt very important to be properly dressed before leaving the house this morning. Proper decorum had been a vital part of keeping her sane these past few months. Loretta had thought it was odd that the only proper dress Ramona had was tucked away in the back of the closet. Odder still that she not only dressed herself in a pair of trousers she called ‘jeans,’ and a thin blouse, but that she also let her children wear the same things! She held her tongue for politeness’ sake, not wanting to abuse her host, but hoped that wearing the gown would show the children what proper young ladies should be wearing.
  • A Call
    It was a nothing town in the middle of nowhere South Dakota. Carina, population four hundred and three. There was miles and miles of pasture, and then the town, and then miles and miles of pasture. A selection of houses surrounding an intersection that had a grocery store, a gas station, a diner, and aContinue reading “A Call”
  • Honestly, It’s Hot Enough in Florida Without the Sun
    It was so bright out by the time Honey busted through the door onto the motel roof she thought he was already dead. “Oh fuck, oh fuck, oh fuck,” she muttered to herself, scanning. She had gotten turned around on her way up. Which way was east? The sky in the direction she was facingContinue reading “Honestly, It’s Hot Enough in Florida Without the Sun”
  • It’s Always Nice to Make New Friends
    The airlock door hissed and began opening, startling him awake. He winced, waiting for the shooting pains to wrack him. Instead of pain, it was just itchy. Maybe a little ticklish. Experimenting with moving his arm, he breathed a sigh of relief. He had begun to believe he’d never be able to move freely again.Continue reading “It’s Always Nice to Make New Friends”
  • The Doom Movie Bitches Want (I’m Bitches)
    Peter and I recently watched the 2005 movie Doom. We had heard it was bad. We guessed it would be that kind of ‘fun bad’ where the script is terrible but laughable and there would be awful CGI. Cheesefest – that’s what we thought we were tuning in to. It wasn’t a cheesefest. It wasn’tContinue reading “The Doom Movie Bitches Want (I’m Bitches)”
  • A Room in a Mountain
    He sat on the side of the bed, looking out the window. His hands were next him, resting gently on the crisp white sheets. Occasionally he would forget, and a muscle would twitch or he’d move his neck quickly to catch a strange sound, and the pain would start all over again. Like pins andContinue reading “A Room in a Mountain”
  • Liminal Spaces
    “They’re called liminal spaces,” she said. “Places that only exist to pass through.” “You mean a hallway.” Out of the corner of Brandon’s eye he could see her shift in the kitchen chair. How someone that tall could always get her legs tucked under her, wherever she sat, Brandon would never understand. Eunice – suchContinue reading “Liminal Spaces”
  • Seaview Historical Society
    When Ramona had been picking her wedding dresses, her mother, a loving but practical woman, had tried to steer her to something sleek and modern. But Ramona had dreamed of her fairy tale wedding her entire life. She hadn’t wanted a wedding dress, she had wanted a wedding gown.
  • A Pleasant Day Spent Searching
    Gerald cut through the forest like the yellow tang in the fish tank in his dentist’s waiting room. Quick. Silent. Every step carefully calculated. Slipping around bushes and under tree branches. Avoiding fallen twigs, rocks, even leaves. What if he supposed a leaf to be soft and then he stepped on it and it madeContinue reading “A Pleasant Day Spent Searching”
  • Didi
    October It was a heatherheart funeral, except instead of a bar they were at Ralph and Didi’s house. Just Didi’s house now. Not our house, she thought. My house. She was standing in the kitchen, staring at all the food. Tradition said it should have been casseroles and cobblers, but heatherhearts can’t cook worth aContinue reading “Didi”
  • Cemetery
    Let’s cut through the cemetery, Paul said. It’ll be fine, he said. Well, apparently the Applewood Cemetery was way bigger than either of them thought. If they had just walked around they would have gotten to the party by now. Instead it was full dark and they were still somewhere in the middle of aContinue reading “Cemetery”
  • Supply Lines
    With equal amounts of relief and leg cramps, Roll and Jack waded across the ill-named Lazy River. The icy water rushed by up to their knees, trying to knock them over and carry them away. A couple of times Jack almost let it. It might have been easier to just let the river drag him away from the raiders; he’d just have to push himself toward the eastern shore. The pack on his back kept him upright. It was heavy. It was unwieldy. It was his duty.
  • Little Bits of Magic
    A soft knock on the door broke Loretta from her reverie, followed by the sound of the doorknob turning. She sniffled, and then relief hit her as the door shook in the frame. She had forgotten she had locked it.
  • Making Friends
    He met her at a bar a block away from his new apartment, the apartment where most of his stuff was still in boxes and maybe still was in boxes if not just tossed away or set on fire or sold off, not that he owned anything worth selling. It was a bar a blockContinue reading “Making Friends”
  • Sapphire City’s Airyard
    They followed the captain out from the dark tunnel and Natch’s heart stumbled. “It’s even bigger than Sapphire City,” Natch said under this breath. Ralla tutted. “Very well couldn’t be, now, could it?” To Natch’s eyes, it was. The thrufare that laid out before them seemed to stretch on and on, until Natch could hardlyContinue reading “Sapphire City’s Airyard”
  • Ghostbusting? In This Economy?
    Paige was sitting at the table, eating her cereal and watching the salt and pepper shakers floating above the table and circling each other, when Riley came hustling through to the door. Still wearing her pajamas and slippers, she looked out the window for a mere second before flinging open the door. Paige cringed againstContinue reading “Ghostbusting? In This Economy?”
  • Another Tuesday
    She woke up afraid, because it was a Tuesday and for her Tuesdays were historically terrible. It wasn’t every Tuesday. It wasn’t even most Tuesdays. But anything bad that had ever happened in her life had happened on a Tuesday, and now it had been fifty-two Tuesdays since a single thing had occurred. Rather thanContinue reading “Another Tuesday”
  • A Dragon’s Cave is No Place for a Princess
    Angus knew that dragons were supposed to be fierce. Marauders. Attack a town and take their ill-gotten gold and burn down a few buildings while at it. Wait for the kings to send their knights and thieves to send themselves to come for the gold, then cut them all down. This was the way dragonsContinue reading “A Dragon’s Cave is No Place for a Princess”
  • A Foot in the Door
    Victor stepped out of the town car, smoothed the lines of his suit, and signaled the driver to go. In front of him was a single block of Maple Hill Street. There was nothing special about Maple Hill. That was the point. It was just your average block of homes in your average suburb. ThisContinue reading “A Foot in the Door”
  • The Grace
     The air that rushed in to meet his face was sharp and icy, and Laurent knew they had gone through the wrong gate even before the world on the other side revealed itself. The tips of his nose and ears began to freeze, and his first inhale was such a change that his lungs shrunkContinue reading “The Grace”
  • Pancakes
    As the wine had finally pushed Ramona off to uneasy sleep that night, her last rational thought before dream logic took hold had been, I can’t wait for those few seconds in the morning when I forget all about this.
  • Moment’s Peace
    A proper green mage would balk at the idea of going into the desert to ply their trade, and in fact they had. Ana was not, and would never be, a proper green mage. She’d started with a mage of the highest regard in New York, one carefully chosen and courted by her parents. SixContinue reading “Moment’s Peace”
  • The New World
    The year is 1721, it is a bone-frigid winter night, and a boat from Europe has just docked in Boston Harbor. This, of course, is nothing so strange. Every winter night in Boston is the coldest a person has ever been, and the coldest they will ever be. Until the next night. And boats nowContinue reading “The New World”
  • Swans
    When they tell you swans mate for life, what they forget to tell you is that this isn’t always a good thing. Greta and Pistachio were walking on the grass next to the lake, both of them deliberately, angrily silent. The only sounds were the soft rushing of the fountain and the padding of theirContinue reading “Swans”
  • Dawn in the Night
    It was a little past one, middle of the night, the time Dawn liked best. Daytime, in her experience, had too much. Was too much. Too bright. Too noisy. Too filled with people, and those people too filled with emotions. Furious screaming and laying on car horns and middle finger salutes. Or worse, laughter. Big,Continue reading “Dawn in the Night”
  • Beach
    They didn’t know what else to do. So they went to the beach. It wasn’t far but it was a slow walk. Lynnette’s ankle was twisted badly if not completely broken, and Ronny was just tired. Tired. It seemed like the right word and the wrong one at the same time. It wasn’t strong enough,Continue reading “Beach”
  • Garage
    The elevator chimed and the doors slid smoothly open, things Missy barely registered. If it wasn’t contained within the bright glowing world of her phone (blue light filters, Missy believed, were for the weak) it had to be put on the backburner. The act of physically leaving work didn’t mean she was actually leaving workContinue reading “Garage”
  • In Which Mrs. Loretta McEnnis, Recently Widowed, Discovers Reality Has Folded in on Itself
    Loretta retraced her steps of the night. She had supped alone – after Miss Reynolds had deftly turned away dreadful Mrs. Johnson, who seemed to call not to check on Loretta’s welfare but discover if she was ready to admit her husband was dead and have her meet her youngest son, Carroll, and Loretta would reward Miss Reynolds in her weekly pay – and then she had sent Miss Reynolds home for the night. She had tried to sleep, spent some hours tossing and turning, and then had given up entirely. If sleep were to abandon her again, she would rather spend her night staring at the ocean than staring at the top of her bed frame.
  • Widow’s Walk
    It was approaching one in the morning, and like most nights, lately, Ramona was on the rooftop patio of her two-hundred year old coastal Victorian home, sitting in the oversized Adirondack chair her kids had painted, and drinking white wine from the box sitting on the table next to her. Above her were a smattering of stars between oil stain clouds, and a hangnail moon. In front of her was about half a mile of this nothing Maine town and then the never-ending Atlantic, dark and choppy.
  • Calvin
    It was a beautiful night on the promenade. There was a breeze, cool and salty, bringing different smells from the vendors, popcorn and nuts and saltwater taffy all mixing together to create something so sweet it was nearly sickly. Cloying. Way above, a few of the brighter stars shone through. The rest were drowned outContinue reading “Calvin”
  • Friends in High Places
    He hit her again, in the face this time. She took it with a grunt, her entire body twisting in the chair under the ropes. For a brief second Garza thought she had passed out. Then she opened her eyes and spat blood at the hunter’s feet. Lester looked down at his shoes, once-white sneakers,Continue reading “Friends in High Places”
  • Woman in White
    “Is that someone walking?” “Who’d be walking out here? It must be a deer.” But as their car got closer to the figure on the side of the road, it became impossible to deny that the figure was human. A woman wearing a white dress, dark hair falling down her back. “Why would someone beContinue reading “Woman in White”
  • A Heatherheart Wake
    This is the traditional heatherheart wake. Specifically, this is the wake for Jeremiah Jones, or JJ to his friends and family. He was forty-six years old, and had been a heatherheart for the last eighteen. He was well liked. Real good at the job, very clear-headed and rational, and in the past he had beenContinue reading “A Heatherheart Wake”
  • Unravel II
    “Tell me again,” Corter said. “Wasted breath.” Eres tossed it over her shoulder as she kept powering forward. Moving too fast, Corter thought. He had been sure she would wear herself out before they ever reached the little building, but she hadn’t slowed once, forcing Corter and Mack to keep up. He caught up toContinue reading “Unravel II”
  • Unravel
    At the last second, and for only a second, Eres saw the corner of Doved’s mouth turn up, to what amounted to the smallest shit-eating grin. She began to reach out. She may have even managed to get the ‘n’ sound out from the ‘no’ she was trying to scream. And then Doved’s hand slammedContinue reading “Unravel”
  • Bad Trip
    Rafi threw himself behind the car and squatted down behind the trunk. He adjusted his grip on the baseball bat he stole from the bouncer. Breathing heavily, he squinted his eyes then opened them wide. Over and over. One of his pupils had blown out.
  • Lacy After Graduation
    Most of the things she wanted weren’t in that plan, actually. Like the magazine she had brought with her this morning to the office. Oh, Mother had been quick to take that away, and replace it with this book. Text book.
  • Billy on His Eighteenth Birthday
    He pulled his clothes on, wincing when he had to lift his arm to get his shirt on. The bruise was an ugly purple, turning green at the edges. The last bruise
  • Act Like You Belong
    “Well, I’ve never been, so that’s where we should go next. Don’t look at me like that. I’m the one trying to experience life here, so…oh, wait, hold on…excuse me…yes, excuse me…this is decaf.” Paulette froze, a forkful of eggs halfway between her plate and her face. Dinah was looking at the waiter pleasantly, anContinue reading “Act Like You Belong”
  • The Not-Deer
    Clementine knew she shouldn’t have left the party just as soon as she did it, but through some combination of stubbornness and pride she kept on walking. This stupid party her boyfriend – ex-boyfriend – had dragged her to was all the way out in the boonies. She should have known it was a stupidContinue reading “The Not-Deer”
  • Just a Little Magic
    This is the tale of Cecilia Ramos, who never figured out she was mildly psychic. Strictly speaking, ‘psychic’ is a garbage term that umbrellas so many different types of mental abilities as to make it quite useless. A mind reader and a medium could both be called psychic, and if you asked, for example, theContinue reading “Just a Little Magic”
  • Dinner at Rosa’s
    Sometimes jobs fall right into your god damned lap. Paulie and Tosh were sitting at a booth in Rosa’s, a twenty-four hour diner directly off the highway in a town that had grown up only to serve it. The highway, not Rosa’s. In the same large parking lot as Rosa’s there was a Trucker’s HavenContinue reading “Dinner at Rosa’s”
  • Lost Soul
    Humans cannot possess magic. It was simply one of the known facts of the universe among people who knew these things. Humans could borrow magic, if one of the factions was willing to share. And if someone was only part human they could have magic from whatever else ran through their being. But full humansContinue reading “Lost Soul”
  • Invocation
    In a small clearing of trees not far from the Route 85 Rest Stop #14, three men and a woman stood staring at each other. Rocky Lopes and Verity Fields stood on one side. Ozzie Gomez and Perseus Onri on the other. Between them was a hastily assembled shrine, a heavy leather book with theContinue reading “Invocation”
  • The Gate
    The Guardian There was no questioning if Milo was okay to run. It didn’t matter. If he wasn’t, he’d have to find a way anyway. That thing knew where they were. It was coming. They had to find the gate first. He took Laurent’s hand and pulled. Waited for some piece of his body toContinue reading “The Gate”
  • The Guardian
    Their laughter faded as one of the sounds coming through the trees caught their attention. The crystal had taken them deep into the forest. They had been surrounded by animal sounds the entire way. Birds’ wings flapping above. Critters crashing through the underbrush below. At first even the sound of a chipmunk chittering at themContinue reading “The Guardian”
  • Girls Weekend
    The farther they got from the carnival the softer the sounds became. The high pitched bells and whistles from the games and the screams from the rides and the off-key jangling of the local band on the stage faded and blended together until it was all just a wash of distant buzzing. The sounds thatContinue reading “Girls Weekend”
  • Deals With Strange Men
    That – and the sound of another chair being pulled up to their cramped table – make Theo jump and pull back. His own hand had been inches away from the man’s, he’d been about to shake. Had he wanted to? Did he want to? He couldn’t remember.
  • Just Wedding Things
    Simon had never been a fan of the fame part of acting. He’d said as much in many, many interviews. Not that it had really been an issue in the early part of his career, when he was mostly getting hired to do low budget indie or lower budget sci-fi movies. The occasional times he’dContinue reading “Just Wedding Things”
  • Infinite
    She’d lived in LA her entire life, and a sky full of stars was just something her country bumpkin cousins in muddy boots and torn overalls would brag about to make themselves feel better about not living in civilization.
  • Grasslands
    They’d never find her here, because here there was nothing to find. She was taking her break on the back porch of the diner, leaning against one of the white-painted wooden posts holding up the little roof. It was just past midday. The sun was somewhere above, and the roof cast a shadow across theContinue reading “Grasslands”

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