Sonata II: Shailani – L. Chan

Allegro: Shailani This is part 2 of L. Chan’s novella, Sonata. Part 1 ran in January 2020. What has gone before: Sona has travelled north, up the lawless swathes of the Periphery of the Empire Sound. He’s enlisted the help of Shailani, a former soldier with the Imperial Army, on her own journey to the north. After an ambush by jealous bandits from a gang Sona used to serve, Shailani learned that Sona was carrying …

Heart of Stone – Chris Cornetto

Light filtered through the debris, igniting a spark in his crystalline heart. Bending all his will to the effort, the little golem opened his eyes. Pink, hazy dawn — or perhaps twilight? — filtered through a cloud of dust motes. It was barely light at all, yet it set his body thrumming, energy tingling through silicon veins. The light soaked into his heart and filled it with life. He tried to move his arms, his …

Pyrrha – Antony Paschos

 I open my eyes and see a rifle pointing at me. Well, not at me exactly. At me and Sister. Or just at Sister, I’m not sure, because the barrel is dancing in circles and zigzags. Sister’s heavy breathing rumbles, hur, hur, hur, lulling me. Her snoring shakes her chest, which, in turn, shakes my head, as it’s tucked under her tit. I elbow her hard. “Sis,” I whisper. She grunts, tightens her arms …

Sonata I: Sona – L. Chan

Andante: Sona Siege drums struck the town just before daybreak – whaleskin stretched over hollowed out tree trunks, varnished and polished until the drum bodies were darker than a moonless night. War Music was the province of the Empire military, and was not often employed by the Periphery patrols. Early morning mist clung to the ground, warping and distorting as the waves of force sped from the siege drums, propagating through the Sound and smashing …

Bedwyr by the Sea – C.B. Blakey

As the sun set over the sea, an old man built a sandcastle. His old green anorak sagged around him, patched and salt stained from years spent on the coastline. The sun glinted from the waves, so bright it was almost blinding. Eyes closed tight against the glare, his hands moved over the sand, pressing the crenellations into shape one at a time. “Avalon,” he whispered, feeling the sand firm beneath his fingers as he …

Magical Whistleblower Tells All – Michael Sherrin

August 19 FLYING MAN CLAIMS MAGIC IS REAL London – Magic exists, says Thaddeus Seams, 37. Mr. Seams claims to be a wizard belonging to a secret society with real magical abilities. Monday morning, Mr. Seams landed in Trafalgar Square, dressed in velvet robes and holding an alleged magic wand. “It looked like real magic,” said Daisey Patricks, 53, who was present when Mr. Seams arrived. “He was flying above our heads, then landed in …