Beautifully written science fiction and fantasy.

So, You’re In an Alternate Universe – Jeremy Packert Burke

So, you’re in an alternate universe. It doesn’t feel alternate. Your mom is still your mom, who smells like fennel, with red-rubbed knuckles. Your dad still has his large tie collection: his wooden tie, his Yellow Submarine tie, his tie that looks like a large fish. Hitler was still Hitler, and Stalin, Stalin. The sun outside is very yellow—is it too yellow? Is that the difference? The scar on your knee is still there. Eileen…

Keep reading

The Bonesetter – Santiago Belluco

Nissil saw a disturbance within the mold brambles in the far distance and turned to the broad edge of her tissue-fitting terrace. Soldiers approached from the east. The narrow road they took was partially obscured by the tall mold that dominated her holdings, but Nissil counted six figures with ease. She expected the attack on her keep to be more subtle than this, and was unsure if such an obvious maneuver should be cause for…

Keep reading

Out Where the Rivenbuds Grow – Mark Rookyard

The second sun sat low in the sky, its pale red light smeared through a blanket of grey clouds. The winter had been a long one; five years, and the rivenbuds were a rare splash of colour in the world. Caitlin fed the plants, her hands wet and dirty. The winding stems twisted above her, green and bright. The flowers of the rivenbuds were blue, red and white, and a score of colours in between.…

Keep reading

Duet for Unaccompanied Cello – Chanel Earl

My favorite place to practice the cello will always be the observatory. My friend Jamie, an astronomer, first let me in one day when the sun was up and visibility was nil. I practiced for hours under its high dome, right next to the telescope. The echo of music in the observatory was singular: less vibrant than a racquetball court, more round than a stadium stairwell, a fuller sound than I have found in any…

Keep reading

Luminaria – Matt Thompson

It’s a cold, hopeless wind that blows across the Southern Seas on these winter nights. Blade-edge gusts skim the waves; paper lanterns swing from the rigging, and the merchandise below decks strains against the swells: statues of boars and elephants, carvings of crocodiles and dung beetles, their marbled visages mocking the dreams of those who bear their burden of passage. On such a night one might remember the deserts of home, rocky outcrops on the…

Keep reading

The Last – Premee Mohamed

Erik was balanced atop one of the standing stones on the black pebble beach when the elders told him of his father’s death. Drowned, they said. Out at Sampson Fjord. Killed by Old Blue. Darkness overtook him and he spilled boneless from the stone, was caught and laid on the wet weeds of the tideline. Elder Erde lifted his ankles into the air with one hand. Erik’s friends paused incuriously, then wandered off. “I want…

Keep reading