All Stories, Fantasy

The Lighthouse Keeper by Loredano Cafaro

Today Leonardo comes home crying. When his father and mother hear what his school friend has told him, they understand that the day they have feared for a long time has come— the moment when they will have to start crushing his dreams. They speak to him, say that his friend is right; tell him I do not exist. But they are wrong.

I dream, therefore I am.

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All Stories, Fantasy, Horror

One Final Ingredient by Lamont A. Turner

The spell called for a dead man’s hand. Not just any dead man but, according to the manual, “the hand of the man who killed one most dear.”  That put old Elizie in a bad spot. It wasn’t that she would have minded sacrificing someone close to her. The problem was there was no such person. The only solution was to have someone else perform the ritual.

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All Stories, Fantasy

The Apple by Simon Berling

One day many years from now.  Or wait..  Maybe it was many years ago?  I guess it doesn’t very much matter.

Well, One day, a small creature not so old, yet also not so very young, its mottled furs pointing this way and that, its feet opened and sore, its body shivering, weak from its life’s long toils, cold from the inclement elements, but most of all hungry; so very hungry, hungry from days-

(Or was it years?  Perhaps. That too does not much matter now.)

– without nourishment, came upon a beautiful tree.

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All Stories, Fantasy

Voice of Feathers by Dominic Walker

The night is nearly empty. Even the rodents and insects have gone. All that remains is a girl walking alone along a pitch black path. She is wearing a red dress. A streetlamp flicks off as she passes underneath. A moment later she stops outside a small house. This is where she vanished.

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All Stories, Fantasy, General Fiction

Our Party by John Giarratana

…To waste his whole Creation, or possess
All as our own, and drive as we were driven,
The punie habitants, or if not drive,
Seduce them to our Party,…
from Paradise Lost by John Milton

Just outside, a late season cricket clicked in the sea grass, its song even more mournful, as it was the only sound that night.  Earlier, there had been a rich silvery light cast by a full moon, but that had since been covered over by a blanket of clouds from the bay.

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Fantasy, Short Fiction

The Mynah Fall and the Major Lift: A Feeble Fable of the Fantasmagorical By Leila Allison

Marianne was an uncommon Common Hill Mynah. Hill Mynahs are native to Southeast Asia, but they can be hatched anywhere in the world as long as they are kept warm. This was the case with Marianne, who had been born in Norway, lived for a time on the Greek island of Hydra, then Asia, Canada, the American northeast and eventually wound up residing at a Bird sanctuary at the University of Southern California at Burbank. In her first six years, Marianne had seen more of the planet than most people see in a lifetime.

She was a well adjusted and happy Mynah, with a large, eclectic vocabulary drawn from several cultures. And all was going well until the following sort of thing began to happen on a daily basis:

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All Stories, Fantasy, General Fiction

Swinging At The Daisy Chain by William Kitcher

It wasn’t until about three in the afternoon that I got back to the bar. After the show the night before, we partied in the bar with the band until about four, then went to someone’s apartment, I think she was with the band, who knew or who cared at that point, it was a place where we could keep going. I left about nine and most of the band was still there, drinking whatever was left, blowing coke, pretending the night was still happening, ignoring the fact they didn’t have another gig lined up.

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All Stories, Fantasy

The Sack by Richard Huw Williams

Pete’s night at the pub with his old school friends had brought the usual mix of nostalgia, laughter and awkwardness. Now living in the city, it was great to return – occasionally – to his home village in the countryside to catch up with everyone. Sure, most of them were the same. Same jokes, same haircuts, same lies. But the familiarity was comforting. The devil you knew didn’t tend to disappoint you as much as the devil you didn’t.

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All Stories, Fantasy, General Fiction

The End Of The World by Dave Henson

When my broadcasting partner, Screwdriver Dan, drops his jaw, I think he has a dental problem. When the station manager texts me to stop by her office after our show, the thought of a raise flashes through my mind. The first inkling I get that something’s wrong is when our call screener informs us the switchboard is lighting up, and no one wants to talk about home repairs.

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