In the category 'Short Fiction'

Mastery of the Mind

11th of October 2017

Of course, Dara had been bored and loud about it for every minute of the drive here. Now that I needed him to distract us with some antic from all this emotion, he stood still as a stone in the dullest alternate universe.

Papa and I had just finished hugging, and judging by Mom’s tear-dampened cheeks, she and I were due for another round. I noticed that everywhere else in the courtyard, students were scurrying, leading or trailing lines of their belongings in orderly hover patterns. They wore suits with ties—even the girls, just like I’d fantasized. They carried and checked black leather-bound notebooks. They moved straight ahead to the stone footsteps of the Public Hall, to the front doorway where they all looked like toys compared to the giant columns. Nobody else was embracing their parents.

Dara broke his silence.

“You think everybody already knows you’re the youngest?” he asked.

“Dara,” said my father. A warning. “Naré, your age is nothing. You have been the most brilliant girl at all of your schools. You will be the most brilliant sorcerer here.”

“So, no pressure, huh?” I riffed.

Cover of Witches & Warriors: A Sirens Benefit Anthology, edited by Jessica Corra, cover design by Amanda Lewis.

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Queen’s Mechanic

6th of October 2016

Tomas is grumbling again on shift. I don’t want to give him the slightest encouragement, but he’s distracting me even now, so I have to say something. We’re both human, after all.

“Problem, fellow?” I ask. Polite. Direct.

“Not besides the usual,” he answers, and yanks something large and metal out of the wall—a long thermo-pipe support. This hallway hosts the junction of half the ship’s thermo-currents, intersecting in an elegant lattice.

“Try not to take it out on any of the primary systems,” I suggest. I don’t sound at all authoritative.

Tomas grunts. “None of these systems are working for me, anyway.” He shoves a new pipe support in its place like it’s personally angered him. “We could find a viable planet right now, and I’d still have to work my next shift. Wouldn’t I?”

Cover of Queens & Courtesans: A Sirens Benefit Anthology, edited by Jessica Corra, cover design by Amanda Lewis.

Read full piece: Queen’s Mechanic

The Driver

26th of June 2010

Jerome was such a bastard sometimes. He was right, of course, but he was nearly always right. I kept fighting anyway.

I knew he was inside, taking out his aggression on a ten-ounce New York strip steak, and even that pissed me off—because I knew he’d pair it with some sautéed vegetables and leave it, a wrapped plate in the refrigerator, a peace offering I couldn’t talk back to.

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