Kassi and the Dungeon by Ste Whitehouse

The dwarf shifted in the dim light, his milky white skin glistening with sweat. Pale eyes as bleached as his skin glanced across at the bodies of his brethren and a snarl escaped softly from thin lips. He was naked except for cotton trousers and hairless but for a sheen of white down across his scalp. His legs were thick and sinewy beneath a thickset body that stood almost four feet in height.

Kassi Seishin adjusted her sword and kept her own eyes upon the squat creature before her. She was a good two feet taller than the dwarf but down here where gravity was stronger the dwarf’s larger frame assisted him in ways her wiry build did not. Managing that extra weight was hard work and all the dwarf really had to do was be patient. He was adapted to this environment in ways that Kassi was not, besides her armour sat heavily on her. She paused; confident she would not need to wait long. Dwarfs were notoriously impatient. Continue reading “Kassi and the Dungeon by Ste Whitehouse”

The Image of His Parents by Laurence Klavan

Penn was very special to his parents, very dear, as they used to say. By the time he entered his late childhood, he had been subject to more supervision, worry and love than most kids ever were. In the view of these other kids and some adult observers (like me),  his had given him the demeanour of a little prince. During his first check-up after he turned ten, I noticed that he was perfect, and perhaps this was a problem.

“There’s nothing wrong with you at all,” I said. Continue reading “The Image of His Parents by Laurence Klavan”

The Final Tape by Joseph Sale

‘Those bastards never deserved a second chance,’ Bret said, talking to himself as usual. Though nothing was usual tonight. Three of his clients were dead, and he was on his way to a safe house outside of London, in the woody byroads surrounding some forgotten little town. Weygone. Weydon. Something like that anyway. The point was, no one ever looked for him here.

The road was narrow, twisting between colourless trees. If he drove fast enough it would tear, show itself to be a stage backdrop. The car felt real however. It was a beautiful Mitsubishi Lancer, a relic some would say, but the wheel in his hands, the titanium frame, the three litre engine purring, these were all totems to reality. Reality was an important thing to a man like Bret.  Continue reading “The Final Tape by Joseph Sale”

Because We Care by Cooper Anderson

They filed into the room one by one. Each with their own freshly hewed scars. Cheap coffee and day-old biscuits had been laid out on a table in the back and a few of them poured a cup, but no one spoke. When it was time, they took their seats.

“I’d like to welcome you all to the group,” one of them rumbled. “My name is Fenrir and I’m a wolf.” Continue reading “Because We Care by Cooper Anderson”

The Wheels on the Bus by Jack Banfield

The stovetop coffee pot whistled as the early morning seeped between the blinds, casting skeletal shadows across the floor. Toby shuffled into the kitchen stifling a yawn and wiped the remnants of sleep from his eye with the heel of his left hand. Picking up his World’s Best Dad mug he filled it with steaming, black, Nicaraguan gold and tried to hold onto the dream he had the night before. He could make out half remembered images of snarling tigers and thick, choking smoke, but even this fell through his memory like water through his hands. He shook his head and savoured the silence, the early stillness and the warmth of the the day’s first coffee. Continue reading “The Wheels on the Bus by Jack Banfield”