Pacific

Pacific waves are powerful. I can tell from a considerable distance, as the whitecaps crash on the bright reflective sand and roll up the long stretch of beach. The cars and trucks seem to ripple in the heat of the day. We aren’t even...

Jory’s Grove

As a strega, Alessia knew that there were still places in the world where the natural and the supernatural intersected. There were portals or, as she had once read in Neil Gaiman’s novel, Neverwhere, places that had a lot of time, where all the...

Vmbra Wormwood

And the name of the star is called Wormwood… – Revelation 8:11 Pus star Wormwood glowers ceaselessly in the cigarette sky. Although it is only midday, Wormwood pulls long shadows from the sour crabapple trees, whose fruit not even the crows will eat. Embittered...

Louie the Hatchet

My father did not discriminate when it came to choosing his friends. So, it wasn’t a big surprise that he befriended a notorious hitman. This particular hitman didn’t wear a shiny suit, have gold chains around his neck, or wear a pair of sharp...

Burrbrook

She was lost Now found, redeemed Her paws splayed wide and nailed to the oak Belly split, birthing entrails Cold He found her there A night spent searching, vainly hoping His flashlight passes her eyes Glinting, unglinting The oppressive presence of nothing Below, white...

Beyond Repair

Allie’s breath caught in her throat as she stumbled down the stairs. Her husband stood frozen, slashed by her weapon of choice – her words. She hadn’t meant for it to happen, again. But when words volleyed back and forth, the volcano erupted without...

Bye-Bye

I was sporadically dozing in my seat at an airport gate at Dallas-Fort Worth, waiting for my wife to return from ladies’ room, when another late middle-aged man with close-cropped white hair sat a couple of seats down from me. He opened up a...

The Monolith

There are many forsaken highways in rural Wisconsin. Briar Creek Road was as lonely as any of them. When the highway department built the interstate in the 1950s, they decided to forgo an exit to Briar Creek Road. Instead, they simply closed the road...

Put Your Money on Ted

McFarlan described the district’s situation as desperate more than once. He used the word emergency. He said drastic times called for drastic measures, and mentioned something about circumventing the background check if needed. He spoke of a loophole that offered an emergency permit if...

The Neighbor

“John, you have to go talk to him,” Angela said from across our faux-wood kitchen table. She had started in on me as soon as I woke up and stumbled my way down to the kitchen. I looked like death, but that wasn’t going...

Unseen

On the forty-first floor of the high rise building in the Lehman Brothers offices, Mathew Brook’s concentration was diverted from the accounts page on his Apple Mac computer to a stream of light cutting through the myriad of buildings outside and finally resting on...

A Stomach’s Revenge

Here’s the link for the story with indented first lines and all that formatting jazz if you want it. Dialogue reads better that way I think. Now let’s begin… A Stomach’s Revenge It all happened in a thunderclap. Skyscrapers toppled, smashing into other skyscrapers...

The Wall

The minute hand of the analog clock edges with agonizing slowness toward 3:45pm, release time. I hate the way the hands move around the clock-face as if stating: this boring class is almost over, but not quite. I prefer digital clocks, just like everyone...

Mrs Neb

Work’s ok, but coming home is better. Well, it is unless she’s standing by her gate. I have to pass her house and she’s unavoidable. I call her Mrs Neb, not out loud, of course. Every feature of her face is etched into my...

The Bubble

The economy is going down the plughole again: because of Brexit this time. Everyone on my timeline voted Bremain. Who didn’t? We think there should be a second referendum: surely we’d get the right result this time. Our poor economy. First the bankers and...

The Debauched

My eldest sister, Tatiana Sergeyevna, was disrobed and bathing Rasputin when I returned home one evening, in 1908. She ran her slender fingers over his hirsute back, bare and dirty. This all was transpiring in my own marble bathroom with its porcelain tub, of...

The Woman on the Bus

Penang, Malaysia “The doctor at the hospital said I should report this,” she showed the stoic officer at the counter her young daughter’s infliction – a mark similar to an elongated X that seemed to be transforming from a red scratch to an almost...

The Tram

When I was nine years old, my family lived in a leafy district of Prague; my brother and sister and I went to school nearby. Our mother would chat with the other parents by the school’s metal fence while she waited for our classes...

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