My happiest ending would be if Offie moved in here and I weren’t alone all the time. “I can’t, Chilli,” Offie says. “There’s not enough room for me.” I know that but I keep asking. I hate being alone. I hate it, hate it, hate it. “Please,” I beg, but Offie doesn’t reply. It doesn’t shut me out. Offie knows how afraid I am of being alone so it leaves the channel open. I could…
Simon Kewin’s story “The Stars are Tiny Lights on a Perfect Black Dome” was published in Metaphorosis on Friday, 16 December 2016. This was a story that grew from its title. I’m not sure if I heard the phrase somewhere or it simply came to me, but I liked the sound of it and set about wondering why the stars might only be tiny lights upon a perfect black dome. I also liked the idea…
Q: Duckbilled platypus – result of divine distraction, or alternate universe crossover?
A: I’m going to have to go with neither on this one. I’m uncertain about the whole divinity thing, but my thinking is: if there were a creature resulting from divine distraction it wouldn’t be the platypus. I’d put my money on one of the nudibranchs or maybe one of the stranger weirdies of the Galapagos. If anything, the platypus is the result of divine inspiration; it has a bill that can detect electric fields, and the fine-detail work on its cuteness is just superb.
As to its near-interdimensional oddness, I will admit that an egg-laying mammal is more than a bit unusual. But I also think that the whole platypus controversy says a lot about social impressions, and how resistant we can be when a belief that we’ve inherited from science turns out to be wrong. In fact, while most people will tell you that the platypus is weird, I think many of them would be hard-pressed to tell you why the platypus is stranger than any other animal. The idea of a warm-blooded creature that hatches its young doesn’t really shock us anymore. Which means that the very foundation of its strangeness, its failure to fit into the then-dominant taxonomy of Biology, has in effect passed away; and yet we continue to remember that this animal probably won’t find a date to the prom.
In an ideal world, science would be able to graciously (and swiftly) change its core principles when faced with evidence that refutes a dominant theory. But then, I’m pretty attached to my beliefs too.
Y. X. Acs’s story “The Abjection Engine” will be published in Metaphorosis on Friday, 30 June 2017. Subscribe to our e-mail updates so you’ll know when new stories go live.
The gateway drug was Narnia, but pretty soon T.B McKenzie had moved on to stronger stuff. Lloyd Alexander, Ursula Le-Guin and Terry Pratchett solidified the addiction, and then along came the category one names like Jack Vance, Asimov and Iain M. Banks.
After that, there was no hope, and the only way to control the habit was for T.B to pick up a pen and start manufacturing.
His turf is Melbourne, his cover is teaching high school English, and he lives in constant fear that his family will discover his illicit after hour life that is fast spiralling out of control.
T. B. McKenzie’s story “BetaU” will be published in Metaphorosis on Friday, 7 July 2017. Subscribe to our e-mail updates so you’ll know when new stories go live.
When the Fata first found me, I was very small, and I had lost my voice. Nevertheless, she took me in, and proved both kind and cruel thereafter. I used to gesture pleas, begging for the return of my voice. But she never seemed to understand why I would want such a burdensome thing back. She gave me colors — gold leaf, ultramarine blue, vermillion — so that I could draw and paint instead of…
Table of Contents
- BetaU – T. B McKenzie
- The Circe Test – Nora Mulligan
- HOPper – Charlotte H. Lee
- Papa Pedro’s Children – Karl Dandenell
Cover art by Kathryn Weaver.
Subscribe to our e-mail updates so you’ll know when new stories go live.