Glooning the Chartreuse Lemon by Leila Allison

A Few Rings of Hell’s Bell Ago

The little god of unfounded happiness at an unlikely place seemed to be smiling on me. I was up 500,000 bit-pesos at the online Uruguayan poker site, and someone had finally restocked the Snax Machine in the lobby with chili-cheese Fritos. Yes, the good guys were winning, and no one was supervising my activities. I fondly recall whistling “Dance Ten; Looks Three” from A Chorus Line, prior to carb-loading for that long elevator ride back to my office, deep in the bowels of the Smiling Face of Darkness.

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A Cryptic Night for Halloween by  Tom Sheehan  

Bang! It went. Bang! Bang! Bang! A whole series of bangs, like gunshots at a shooting range, echoes coming atop one another, full of alarm and the awful promise of  consequence. Eleven-year old George Pearl, twelve before you’d know it, his birthday but an hour or so away, ducked his head as he walked down the dark center road of Riverside Cemetery. Shadows of stones moved around him, angular blocks of darkness set upon darkness, the ground and the shadows giving up other noises steeped with night and night things. Sounds swelled like thermals, unseen but known, catching up what was loose in the air, broadcasting strange messages that he could identify in a split second … fear, catastrophe, disaster, strange hands reaching to touch his backside, strange sounds at his ears. All around were strange things that boomed or blasted or bellowed in the night.

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Chairs by Barrie Wayne Sherwood

“The planning of a new chair can take much longer than the actual construction,” Shinji said as he laid out his sketches. “No other kind of furniture has a purer function.”

Around the table stood three rows of sixteen year-olds dressed like old men in once-white shirts with the school crest on the pocket, ill-fitted black trousers with frayed hems, and green sandals. They jostled and pushed and muttered insults at one another.

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