Plugs

Alex Dally MacFarlane’s story “The Devonshire Arms” is available online at Clarkesworld.

David Kopaska-Merkel’s book of humorous noir fiction based on nursery rhymes, Nursery Rhyme Noir 978-09821068-3-9, is sold at the Genre Mall. Other new books include The zSimian Transcript (Cyberwizard Productions) and Brushfires (Sams Dot Publishing).

Luc Reid writes about the psychology of habits at The Willpower Engine. His new eBook is Bam! 172 Hellaciously Quick Stories.

Sara Genge’s story “Godtouched” may be found in Strange Horizons.

Unanchored (Part Three)

by Daniel Braum

For parts one and two of this story please visit my author archives or click here:

http://www.dailycabal.com/2009/12/unanchored/

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Belinda and I walked along Merrick Road. Passing the site of the where the old Cajun man’s shoe repair store had been I felt a pang. I had only been away a day but now I knew I could never touch anything here again.

The ghost of the old Cajun man was sitting on the bus stop bench outside the house with the telephone pole with flower wreath on it making motions like he was feeding the pigeons. The birds poked in the sidewalk cracks looking for anything edible.

“His name is Roland,” Belinda said. “Call to him.”

My pang worsened. I didn’t know where it was I was feeling it. There was no “me” left to have a pang in the gut. I had been shopping in this man’s store for years and I did not know his name. The dentist’s office and chain store sandwich shop, which now stood in the stores place, added an unsightly insult to my injury.

“Call to him,” Belinda repeated. “He needs you. He is too far gone for me to reach him.”

“Roland?” I asked. “Hello. How are you today?”

As he looked up the pigeons took flight in a disturbed flutter.

“You can see me, mon cherie?” he said. “I never knew you knew my name.”

“Ask him to come to you. Take his hand,” Belinda said.

I slowly extended my palm.

“You must be lonely,” I said. “Come.”

He stood, walked over to me, and took my hand.

As his fingers closed around mine Belinda removed her crystal rod from her pocket and waved it in the air. Roland, Belinda and I disappeared and reappeared in the cave. Men and women in trench coats like Belinda surrounded Roland. With crystal rods they directed him, like an errant cattle to a dark alcove of the cave. Roland ambled into the darkness with a strange obedience. There was a flash of light and I knew he was gone. Where I did not know.

“Why did you do that?” I screamed.

“We were only helping,” Belinda said. From the look on her face I knew she was lying. They were only helping themselves and using me, I realized. But why? I only knew it had to stop. It had to stop now.

-End of Part Three-

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