Plugs

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.

Jason Erik Lundberg‘s fiction is forthcoming from Subterranean Magazine and Polyphony 7.

Jason Fischer has a story appearing in Jack Dann’s new anthology Dreaming Again.

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

Archive for the ‘Kat Beyer’ Category

The Bagels of Wisdom

Friday, September 17th, 2010

Old Lady Think can flip dark to light and light to dark like a pancake. She lives out beyond the Milky Way, which the Dineh think is made up of the footprints of the dead. (They’re right on this one, but they’re not in this story.)

She’s got a bunch of names, more names than Allah, and—no offense, new gods—she’s far older. Used to sit around in the caves with us, looking pretty overweight and extremely pleased with herself. Now she appears in many forms, sometimes as a mysterious 2 a.m. call on your cell phone, or a bagel you did not order.

Such a bagel appeared on Nora McPherson’s plate during her lunch hour in the East Village. She’d stopped in to ignore some dancers she used to know before she moved uptown and went to work for Wall Street. (Mind you, think about all the dancers Wall Street funds.)

Ms. McPherson took a bite anyway, after the cranky waitress wouldn’t take it back, neither of them suspecting that the waitress held the pose of the ancient High Priestess of Tiamat as she did this. By the end of lunch Ms. McPherson was drafting her two weeks notice; by the end of dinner she was drunkenly apologizing over the phone to a friend from Juilliard, and at 9 a.m. the next morning she had an audition.

Back behind the Milky Way, Old Lady Think just smiled. Making mountains is fun, but sometimes, it’s the little things, like sending visionary bagels to the monkey children.

The Cliff of Deeds

Monday, August 2nd, 2010

Our village lies up with the hawks.  I can name you every current and cross-current of wind that rails around our high seat.  Some several thousands of years ago, my people diverged from the human tree, choosing a peculiar kind of self-protection over terror and aggression: we fly.

But not all of us.

That’s the hard part.

We train and train, when we are young; we name the winds and learn the ways to speak from mind to body, to say, we are as birds, we are as dragons, we are as air, and we shall not fall.  We study, and prepare, and then—no amount of preparation can ensure that we will pass the test when we are old enough.

That’s where I stand, right now.  I stand at the edge of the Cliff of Deeds.  I don’t look down.  The nets don’t catch everyone, after all, and before today my friends and I have crept to this edge and picked out a white skull, here and there, far below.  Those who fall and live have to stay in the village forever, and may take no-one to child with.  Those who fall and die have peace, I suppose; I have thought sometimes I’ve heard their spirits.  And those who fly…

I have no time left.  It’s my turn and my mother is watching.  I judge the currents, my hands shaking at my sides.

And then—

That’s that—

My stomach lurches—

There’s nothing at all, nothing at all under my feet—

I can see the horizon—

And then, I am not among the white skulls or the trapped living, I’m myself, flying, and there is nothing more lovely than the edge of the earth, out there ahead.

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