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A. Portland, Oregon

1. Grand adventure is calling!

2. Slide your ass out of bed.

3. Drink a Stumptown or three.

4. Clear IPAs from your head.

5. Gas up the Subie wagon!

6. Put on your old Birks!

7. You’re in Oregon camo.

8. (In the city that works.)

9. Avoid roads with bored cops.

10. (You don’t want to go down.)

11. Stash the weed! Crank some indie!

12. Head straight south out of town.

637 miles later (about 10 hours, 2 minutes):

B. San Francisco, California

1. Cross your choice of big bridges.

2. Pick one – pay the damn toll!

3. Go up and go down.

4. Don’t stop at stop signs – just roll!

5. Go up and go down.

6. Get lost and then again!

7. Do E with a homeless dude.

8. He’ll become your best friend!

9. Good luck finding parking.

10. (Though it helps some to pray.)

11. Kick the homeless dude out.

12. And head south to L.A.

381 miles later (about 6 hours, 26 minutes – up to 7 hours, 50 minutes in traffic):

C. Los Angeles, California

1. Oh! The freeways and cloverleafs!

2. Lots of lights! Lots of cars!

3. Oh! The silicone breast implants!

4. Lots of strip clubs and stars!

5. Don’t turn down the wrong roads.

6. Never trust a valet.

7. Careful snorting while driving.

8. Buy a hands-free coke tray!

9. Party at clubs with ridiculous covers.

10. Drive like you’ve got the heart of a beast!

11. Avoid being on a reality show.

12. Onward, the desert awaits to the east.

792 miles later (about 12 hours, 19 minutes):

D. Albuquerque, New Mexico

1. Take that left turn.

2. (You know that you want to!)

3. Make fun of the town’s name.

4. Just where no one can hear you.

5. It’s a good place for business.

6. And for jobs (Forbes says so).

7. But they drive like they have

8. Nowhere special to go.

9. So just drink some peyote.

10. View the great color fountain!

11. See hot air balloon fiestas.

12. Then head on up the mountain!

449 miles (about 7 hours, 11 minutes):

E. Denver, Colorado

1. Celebrate that you’re here!

2. Your adventure is done.

3. Drink beer and get stoned.

4. Pretend you’re in Oregon!

5. It’s the Mile High City.

6. Snow’s a beautiful scene!

7. Reflect on your adventure.

8. All the places you’ve been!

9. You’ve had traffic and parking.

10. Yes, at times you were vexed.

11. But it’s your destination!

12. Where will you go next?

We’re changing things up a bit this week, giving you updates on cabalists you haven’t seen here in a while mixed with some microfiction pieces that are even more micro than our usual fiction.

Where are they now: Sara Genge

Sara Genge has published quite a few short stories since her last piece appeared on the Daily Cabal, including several in Asimov’s. This year, one of her stories was chosen as a finalist for the Sturgeon award.

You can see what Sara’s up to and find a list of her published stories at her blog, artemisin.blogspot.com

Alex Dally MacFarlane

So I found this sword out back behind that abandoned building on Third Street where I shouldn’t have been playing, my mother says. I’m always going where I shouldn’t go, and it’s my own fault, she says. I told you someday you’d get yourself in a bunch of trouble, she says, and there you are.

But it was right there, lodged in concrete all the way up to the hilt. And you know, I know what that means. I didn’t want it. But it shook when I touched it, and then it came loose when I pulled. Just a tiny tug and there was this sword in my hand, and it wasn’t even shiny. I had to drag it home behind me. I left a groove in the sidewalk, all the way up to our front door. I split the stairs in two.

My mother came out and she said, “Where did you get that? You put that back where you found it!” I lifted the sword, and her words fell right down between us on the old braided rug. My brothers said, “No fair! Give it!” and they tried to take it from me, but I couldn’t let go. It was my sword, even though I didn’t want it. It’s my sword, and I can’t give it back.

I left it at the bus stop, but it was on my bed when I got home. I tried to put it back in the rock, but the building is gone. I tried to give it to a homeless guy, but he told me he didn’t believe in violence and did I have any change? Ravens follow me. They hang like black moss from the tops of street lights and the chimneys of the apartment building across the street.

An old man came out at me from behind a mailbox yesterday. He had a beard down to his belt and wild eyes. I didn’t mean to—he came at me so fast, and the sword is easier to lift the more I lift it, and I forgot to get milk. I just ran all the way home. I hid the sword under my bed. I did my homework. I wish I knew what he wanted. The sword isn’t even shiny. My brothers say, “You think you’re so fancy, Eileen, with your destiny,” but I’d like to see them try it.

Archive for the ‘Rudi Dornemann’ Category

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