‘I’m so sorry, I really wasn’t paying attention,’ the middle-aged man was told by an older woman. They were the same height. George, being six foot three, had found the novelty of not looking down for their conversation quite refreshing, though he suspected in the morning he’d discover a plethora of aching muscles he never once suspected he possessed. Her attention was fixed on undexterous fingers shaking an empty not-quite-glass, a bubbly flute of clouded plastic. It was as if, George imagined, the last drop of wine had proven impossible for her to access, and for the life of her she had found no way to solve the puzzle. She kept holding the flute up to the noisy strip-light, seemingly either looking for fingerprints or a miracle. She appeared forensic in her analysis of unobtainable alcohol. George was reminded of a video he’d once seen on YouTube, of a goldfish obsessed with its image in a mirror. The poor fish had been unable to free itself from the mistaken belief it was threatened by itself. It was the saddest thing George had seen.Continue reading “Keep Dancing by Antony Osgood”
The woman at the door stared at the children. She was pregnant. Seven months low to the ground with what she knew to be a boy. She ran a hand up and down her stomach. It had snowed overnight, and it was snowing still.
The boy and the girl were sixteen or seventeen. Maybe younger. Neither was dressed for the weather. Blue jeans and black t-shirts. Black sneakers.
“They want to come in,” she said.
“Who did they say they were, again?”
The woman looked through the glass eyehole, past the strange children. A white horizon absent direction. There were no tracks in the snow. It was windy, and the wind pushed and pulled the fallen snow. Still, it would have been nice to see tracks.Continue reading “The Other One by Richard Leise”
Ah, the brave year of ‘15. No matter the century, I’m certain that someone will claim that she/he walked ten miles uphill through snow both ways to and from school, upon recalling 2015. Time distorts perception and makes exaggerant raconteurs of us all.Continue reading “Literally Reruns – Everything Happens For a Reason by Adam West”
I don’t like TikTok much because it encourages the further curtailment of an already alarmingly short public attention span. I sometimes think that maybe we are being steadily prepped for a future in which chips will be planted in our brains at birth. In the year 3000 “slow” will describe someone who actually takes a second to think something over. No, not much for TikTok, but I do like YouTube, well, to a point, yet there is something happening on it that makes me howl with rage.Continue reading “Week 414: UserTube; Another Milestone in Scotland; the Remains of the Week and YouTube Fascinations”
He sat on the couch with his arms crossed around his middle like he was hiding something precious from some malevolent authority.
“I think I might have gone,” he said.
In a moment the water stopped to a drip in the kitchen sink.
“I’m coming,” she said.
She went to him compressed by the years. Shrunken like wool in the dryer. Her shoulders pushed down from holding all the clouds above the world.
She helped him to the bathroom.Continue reading “Wig Shop by Jon Fotch”
It is far too quiet for a room with two people, a room where the brush of bare feet on wooden floorboards struggles to fill the air. A room where dim, flickering shadows writhe unbidden across the wall, called forth by a candle sputtering futilely in the corner. It is the silence of empty air where people ought to be, and the bar is fully brimming with it.Continue reading ” The Girl Who Does Not Exist by Kaela Li”
Marku 3 was a planet with a sun in eternal eclipse.
I landed there just over a week ago, careful to make camp within a small clearing in a forest full of pale, leafless trees. It was midday. It was brisk. There was a calming eeriness about the way the dim orange sunlight painted everything in shadows.
On that first night a group of the planet’s natives came to the camps’ perimeter and watched me in wonder. They were primitive with skinny inverted legs, bulbous heads covered in wire-like hairs, and a single eye embedded within the center.
They communicated amongst themselves with clicking noises made by tapping two bone plates on the inside of their knees together.
One came as an emissary, approaching within feet of me. As it stepped within the harsh glow of a floodlight behind me it suddenly froze.
It’s single eye dilated. Every hair was out like spikes.
It started with a low rumble in its chest. A soft frequency vibrated inside me, growing stronger by the second.
It was warm.
It was mesmerizing.
A dopamine rush flooded my system. Nothing else existed but ecstasy.Continue reading “Step 13 by Joe Jablonski”
“16 years? Seriously, 16 years? You’re killing me!”
Why do they always yell? I didn’t know this guy, but I knew his story. He was in over his head. That’s how it was with most clockers. Give ‘em a second, they’ll take a year, right? Okay, I know that’s not original, but it’s still true.
“Not yet,” I countered. “Unless you keep borrowing more than you can pay back. And it’s 16 years and 47 days, plus a few hours. How do you want to do this?”Continue reading “Borrowed Time by Rob O’Keefe”
“Have you spoken to him too?” the man asked.
“Huh?” The boy didn’t even take his eyes off his comic book, only putting it down to quickly light a cigarette. “To that old guy? Yeah.”Continue reading “A Choice, Through Time by Anatoly Radimir”
Here we are at Week 413 and it’s my turn again.
Having a conversation with my mum this week brought up a sort of weird writing idea from me and that was about setting a story in a time.Continue reading “Week 413 – Once Were Wedding Presents, A Part Of A Half Billion Cabinet And A Wee Fellow Nervous In The Showers For A Lot Less.”