Plugs

Kat Beyer’s Cabal story “A Change In Government” has been nominated for a BSFA award for best short fiction.

Ken Brady’s latest story, “Walkers of the Deep Blue Sea and Sky” appears in the Exquisite Corpuscle anthology, edited by Jay Lake and Frank Wu.

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

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

Everyone’s a Carnivore

by David

Sabertooth boy is dating a dental hygienist. He likes to surprise her. His smooth cold curves tickling the side of her neck make Carla shiver from head to toe. She likes to floss, gets DOWN with the unwaxed string, has plenty of uses for those big big teeth. Genetic Modifdication doesn’t bother her. In college she lived with a phytosaur, captain of the GM rugby team, now a personal trainer, lots of big teeth. A whole forest jutting out of that girl’s mouth. Lately, STB has been getting pangs of jealousy, can’t stop thinking about Carla and that rugby player.

STB is not an athlete. As an ambush predator, he played chess, a little scholar bowl in high school. But it’s not the sweaty locker-room thing that bothers him. It’s the teeth.

STB walks into the consultation room. Dr. Holden is some kind of human-dinosaur blend, probably a tyrannosaur. He’s seated in an tan upholstered armchair. STB sizes him up, one predator to another. “I could take him,” he thinks. The shrink smiles slightly, keeping his teeth hidden. STB looks around the room. No couch, just a brown recliner facing the doctor’s chair at an angle.

“Have a seat.”

STB sits. He’s not comfortable talking to anyone about his problems. Holden puts him at ease with a little chit chat, eventually getting around to STB’s feeling that he’s not satisfying Carla.

“In the bedroom. She likes teeth.”

The Doc smiles slightly. He recovers quickly; but STB notices.

“I’ve only got two, Doc. Sure, they have some size on ’em, But Gladys had a mouthful. And Carla’s always talking about them, even when she’s flossing mine.” He shudders.

“And my neighbor, Poison-ivy boy. He’s dating the beagle twins. Everyone knows when it’s their night to howl. Carla doesn’t ever make that much noise.”

Holden tries to reassure him, but when STB leaves, he’s more worked up than ever.

“She’ll see,” he shouts over his shoulder, “these babies have some action left in ’em!” He flicks his thumb off the right one.

About a half hour later, Holden tries to call STB on his cell, but it’s turned off. He calls Carla, but she doesn’t sound worried, says he’ll calm down. As she heads home, sweat-stained exercise outfit in her gym bag and family-size floss dispenser in her pocket, she starts to wonder. Is he in the apartment, waiting, teeth bared?

end

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