Posts Tagged "short fiction"

Foreclosure

by on Jun 2, 2015 in Short Fiction | 0 comments

(4200 Words) “Plenty of warm bodies at home. The debtor and the donor should be in there, with any luck.” Colin looked up from the infra-red image on his laptop and grinned at Greg. The roll of the River Thames was making him queasy. If the Haywards were home, he wouldn’t have to sit in the boat and wait for them. He guided the quadricopter camera drone back to the boat. When he stood to stow it, Ellen nudged the throttle and sent him staggering against the donor cage in the stern. “Careful there,” said Ellen. Colin turned his face away from her to hide his scowl. If he challenged her, she’d say she thought he could manage the motion of a boat. Her words would be...

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Proximity

by on Jun 2, 2015 in Short Fiction | 0 comments

(4200 Words) I see the blurred teenager long before the others do. We’re on the train, fishing meta as the rush-hour crowd crams on and off. A crush of people, all bored and messing about on their phones. Buying stuff. Thinking about buying stuff. Messaging people. Scrolling scrolling. Generating all those tasty usage statistics the data providers pay my crew so well for. Every day we cast our nets and haul in hundreds of shimmering little stats. Every day. I’m starting to feel like one of the people who get on and off this train, clocking in every morning and out every night. But after the message I got last week from data provider and metadata giant Bracket 5, it’s...

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Inhabiting Your Skin

by on Jun 2, 2015 in Short Fiction | 2 comments

(3800 Words) The house won’t stop talking to you. You’ve tried to turn it off, several times, but it keeps happily turning itself back on, with a little chirp and a hum. You’ve tried to lower the volume, which works for a little bit, until the house gets frustrated, and suddenly shrieks out at high pitch, overriding its controls, “ARE YOU LISTENING TO ME?” You get worried about the neighbors. You tell the house that you’re accustomed to answering people with a nod or a shake of the head, not words, so you are answering, really, it’s just that the house can’t tell. The house knows better—it’s listened to your conversations when you’ve had people over, or when you’ve been...

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A Sister’s Weight in Stone

by on May 5, 2015 in Short Fiction | 0 comments

(4400 Words) I. SAM SUI. The dragons stole Little Phoenix’s sister on the way to the British port of Singapore, snatching her from the deck of the Kwangtung Mariner as it struggled in the belly of a storm. § 1892 had been a bad year for seafarers. So many dragon-worms survived the spawning season that the seas across the warmer parts of the world seemed to churn with their gelatinous bodies, serrated teeth destroying everything in their path. Fishermen’s boats went out in the morning and came back empty driftwood torn with holes. Stilt houses fell whole into the sea with their occupants, foundations razored away to nothing. Coastal cities closed their ports to all but...

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Wildcat (from The Secret Diary of Donna Hooks)

by on May 5, 2015 in Short Fiction | 6 comments

(4800 Words) April 25, 1908 It has finally happened, after literally years of persistence: My father has given me a slice of wild land north of town, a rambling stretch of brushy thicket, one hundred acres of promise. Here I can be actively adventurous, though my folks for the longest time have been dead set against such total independence. I had a hard time overcoming their opposition, certainly. They would not abandon the notion that I might renounce the wicked ways of a divorcee and return to Clyde Fletcher’s side. But our marriage, I made them understand, is irrevocably broken. What I need now is to erase all visible memories of that shattered covenant by rescuing...

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