All Stories, General Fiction

Mung Beans and Happiness by Emily Khym

Sooner or later it’s going to happen to you. You forget the hand-me-down hanboks, blaring F-84s, stitched up sacks of half empty barley portions from a bustling market stocked with rows of mung beans and buchu. You weave through scenes of shirts drenched in sticky blood and machine guns shooting your neighbors down to become spine-chilling nightmares. You become another identity that hopes to forget the feeling of a complete family—a sort of silent-lipped desire that keeps you from proudly marching into Olympic Mart with your mother for a touch of authenticity you desperately want to forget. You force yourself to grow up to match the number of times you ate seaweed soup on your birthday, fourteen, to keep your ripped up photographs tightly shut in your safe.

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All Stories, General Fiction

I Love You More by Harrison Kim

A hollowness opened in me as I entered the house, a space within a space, as if I already sensed what had been lost.  In the TV room the stuffed toys lay piled almost to the ceiling, their little heads and tiny eyes facing up.  A whirring in my ears began, from the space within a space, “hello?” I said and the sound disappeared.  Where were the cats?  I paused at at the stairs to the second floor.  The steps up seemed staged, like a movie set, “Follow us, the show’s about to begin,” said the hollow in my head.  I went to the kitchen instead.

I will not give in yet,” I thought, though that hollow space signalled over and over again “this is not going to be good.”

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All Stories, General Fiction

Saturday Omelettes by Paul Kimm

James was making the Saturday omelettes as they called them. The late morning meal he made each week whilst Penny took her long Saturday bath. He cracked two white shell eggs into the glass bowl. He preferred the white shell to the browner shell ones. He tapped in some salt and pepper, picked up the whisk and mixed slowly with the bowl secured between his arm and torso. He admired the way they went from two yellow spheres to a marbled swirl of yolk and transparent albumen, through to a singular, opaque, autumnal sun colour. The girls were playing in the garden, chasing each other around, shrieking when one made a grab for the other. The day was warm enough to keep the kitchen door to the garden open. He put a frying pan on the hob, lit the gas, and knifed in the butter which bubbled immediately. After circling the melted butter around the pan, he tilted the mix into it at a slight angle allowing it to slowly slide in. He went into the hallway and called upstairs.

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All Stories, Science Fiction

The Ancient Wisdom by Crispen Lish

Two of the three fish tanks were ok. Only, where were the large angel fish in the third? My daughter, Sam, walked around to the side. She was standing on tippy toes and still her nose only came up to the sandy bottom of the aquarium. Nevertheless, it was she who found the fish lying flat on their sides gasping. I couldn’t understand it. We had used the same filtration, the same water in all three tanks. What had happened? Five year old Jo, on the other hand, was busy running in and out of the spacious rooms. Finally, at last, our flat was finished. The pictures were hung, the antique carpets were laid and looked luxurious in the mahogany sitting room. It looked like home. Home away from home. Home now in Japan.

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All Stories, General Fiction

Three Headed Monster by Grace Larson

Waking up is really a dreadful affair.

I think most people would agree, but allow me to elaborate. Waking up is really not so bad when you know you are coming awake, but you also know you are allowed to do it slowly. You turn over a few times, gradually renewing the sluggish flow of your veins. You yawn, your eyes still clinging to semi-darkness, and relish the delicious emptiness of your mind. There is nothing to clog it up yet. Then, after a time, you might decide to let your eyelids crack all the way open. This accomplished, you are pleasantly surprised to realize that it is warm, and sunny, and reasonably late. You lie on your side for a moment, watching the faint flutter of the curtain and the golden pool of light beneath it. You think you might roll over and go back to sleep, comfortable in the knowledge of a beautiful day outside, when you are suddenly forced upright, your nose quivering with the acuteness of a bloodhound.

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