Originally published in Allasso, Volume 1: Shame, November 2011
The stars were thick, but the moons were thicker. Every year for the last decade, Earth’s sky had grown brighter with the reflected light of new lunar satellites. Generally a half a dozen small new moons per batch. Jordan had been working hard. He was a Labrador Retriever by heritage, and, back in human pre-history, those had been working dogs.
Ever since he was a pup who hadn’t yet grown into his giant feet and floppy ears, Jordan had known what he wanted to do with his life. He’d spent all of high school working hard at the car wash, saving his nickels and dimes, and staring up at the stars at night. Continue reading “Fetching Asteroids”
Originally published in Dancing in the Moonlight: Rainfurrest 2013 Charity Anthology
Jason’s brushy tail wagged like a flag as he trotted down the sidewalk in front of his house. He strained his neck against the leash, just a little, to help his master out. His master was always reluctant to go on walks, and the only explanation Jason could think of was that she must tire out easily. Heaven knew, Jason had energy to spare, so it was only fair that he help pull her along. Continue reading “In a Cat’s Eyes”
Originally published in Galactic Goddesses, July 2019
Annie squeezed the mechanical hand of her robo-nanny. The hand was cool and silvery like metal, but the smooth surface had a soft give to it like real flesh. Annie felt safe when she held Rononia’s hand.
“I need to take you home,” Rononia said, her voice low and even, but not mechanical. For all of the metallic gears visibly built into her elbows, shoulders, and anywhere else that hinged, Rononia had been given a deeply feeling, emotion-laden voice. And she was programmed to love the child she cared for. “We can’t go looking for Sparky.” Continue reading “Sparky”
Originally published in Fantasia Divinity Magazine, Issue 5, December 2016
Camping with my sister Phyllis feels like a cargo cult. If she hikes into Uncle Mark’s forest, stakes out a tent in the dirt, cooks instant stuffing on a propane stove, and toasts hot dogs on sticks, then she believes the happiness of childhood will come flooding back. But all I see is a sadly empty camp site. There are no cousins climbing trees, rock-hopping across the river, or searching for frogs — they’re all grown up and scattered across the country. Hell, Erika lives in Australia. Instead of aunts and uncles laughing over a lively game of Brain-Dead Bridge around the campfire, it’s just me, Phyllis, and her travel backgammon set. Continue reading “Memory Sprites”
Originally published in Luna Station Quarterly, December 2015
As I brought the mug of fresh-brewed coffee to my lips, the steaming liquid froze solid. Startled by the sudden coldness in my hand, I dropped the mug. The handle broke off when it hit the linoleum floor. To make matters worse, the magic wore off almost instantly, and the mug-shaped block of coffee-ice promptly melted, puddling on the floor. Continue reading “Feral Unicorn”
Originally published in Golden Visions Magazine, October 2010
Gerty had been snuffle-snorting about the melon patches all morning. She was looking for little people to play with, but all the bugs and mice seemed to be hiding today. Dormancy was in the air.
She tried asking a bird to play with her, but it was so high in the branches of the karillow tree that she had to shout at it. And the master scolded her for barking. The bird flew away anyway. They always did.
The scraggly white kitten crouched, trembling, behind the crates of fish. The smell was thick, but the scraps were thin. She’d been skittering from one stall to the next at Fisherman’s Wharf all day, mewing for bits to eat. Few of the vendors favored her with more than a glance. One had chased her off with a broom. Continue reading “The Wharf Cat’s Mermaid”
Originally published in Allasso, Vol. 3: Storge, April 2014
Topher checked his watch and peeked out around the dusky red stage curtain. There was a full house in the bar tonight. If he played them right he could get all the tips he needed, and tonight could be the greatest night of his life. Continue reading “A Real Stand-Up Guy”
Originally published in Sorcerous Signals, February 2014
The carousel turned, and Artie watched the ponies go by. He shifted his weight as he sat on the green, metal frame bench. It was one of many around the edges of the giant, window-walled room that housed the carousel. Artie was beginning to think that he should upgrade the benches. These ones looked nice, but they weren’t easy on an old man’s back. Continue reading “The Carousel of Spirits”
Originally published in Tails of a Clockwork World: A Rainfurrest Anthology, September 2012
Mice tell a myth of fearsome creatures with scaly talons, massively muscled bodies, and sharp, hooked beaks. Death from the sky, instant death, for any mouse foolish enough to be above ground when these creatures come hunting.
The name of the myth is owl, and few mice see one and live to tell the tale. Owls are creatures of shadow — both the shadows of trees in a darkening forest and the shadows of misremembered tales retold by forgetful minds. Continue reading “One Night in Nocturnia”