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CRAZY SNAKE AND THE CIGUANABA

CRAZY SNAKE AND THE CIGUANABA, by Eric Atkisson   I Help me. The horseman froze. He could not be certain if he had heard a voice at all–little more than a gentle whisper above the murmur of the falls, the branches rustling overhead in the night breeze, and the soft crunch of his pony’s hooves […]

WITH A GOLDEN RISHA

WITH A GOLDEN RISHA, by  P. Djéli Clark The Hanging Stones of Ispa had been aptly (if also quite boringly) named. Twenty or more boulders floating high above the Jade Sea, as if unaware their weight should have made such a thing impossible. Some held a sorcerer had convinced the fool things they were feathers […]

BRONZE-ARD, THE FERRET MASTER, AND AUSPICIOUS EVENTS AT SWIFT CREEK FARM

BRONZE-ARD, THE FERRET MASTER, AND AUSPICIOUS EVENTS AT SWIFT CREEK FARM, by Adrian Simmons   The remarkable occurrence of both Bronze-Ard and the Ferret Master arriving on the same day at Swift Creek Farm presented Bellaw and her siblings with a rare opportunity to slip out of a day’s work.  And, since the farm was […]

CRAZY SNAKE AND THE CAMAZOTZ

CRAZY SNAKE AND THE CAMAZOTZ, by Eric Atkisson I There was no word for it in the tongue of his people, the Nermernuh, whom the Utes named Kohmats–They Who Are Always Against Us–but his mother had spoken of something like it when he was a child. He could picture her delicate hands shaping it in […]

SHADOWS AND FOXFIRE

SHADOWS AND FOXFIRE, by R. Michael Burns    “Everything in this world is but a marionette show.” –Yamamoto Tsunemoto, Hagakure, ca. 1700   That night, the gods raged. Fūjin’s winds lashed the towering pines, bowing them before him.  Raijin slammed the narrow valley with fists of rain, his thunder-bellows shaking the earth.  Caught in the heart […]

FEATHERS

FEATHERS, by Andrew Knighton Hal stood on the track out of Olbry, feeling the wind whip off the moor, watching a dark shape soar on rotten wings. He heard the cawing of the raum crow and the whimpering of his son from their hut. The cawing filled him with anger, but the other sound ripped […]

HANDFUL OF SPRING

HANDFUL OF SPRING, by Charles Paysuer Mina watched each step fall into the snow, those brief shadows around her feet the only landmarks in the shifting white. Directly behind her she felt Natham stumble again, heard his curse as she was forced to stop, to wait, her arms full of spring. “How much farther?” Natham […]

A MATTER OF GOATS

A MATTER OF GOATS, by Ben Fenwick:   An eerie call fell down the wind from the dark mountainsides. It was a high-pitched tone that fell slowly into a humanlike, ululating sob. Anton Le Bouveret felt the hairs on his forearms and the back of his neck prickle. The dark, rugged, Balkan shadowland surrounded them […]

LADY CARDULA AND THE GRYPHON

LADY CARDULA AND THE GRYPHON, by Shawn Scarber:     Duncan hated human-sized books. Sadly, they were about the only tomes created and though he wrote long letters to the monks who lived in the Sambata monastery imploring them to copy larger editions, his letters often went unanswered. “If I were a dragon, they wouldn’t […]

A BREATH OF DARKNESS

  A BREATH OF DARKNESS, by Liz Colter:   The wind gusted up the mountain, rattling the pine cones and shaking the blue-green branches of the trees. This was no fickle spring breeze, nor even a winter gale; it was a wind that carried the feel of fangs and decay and misery. # The chorus […]

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