Patches

By Terri Clifton Patches was born with his smile stitched on, if that is what you call being stuffed and stood upright. And even if his smile hadn’t been so carefully sewn, he couldn’t have helped having it upon seeing the sparkling eyes of the child, her curly head hanging over him as he wasContinue reading “Patches”

Desert Oasis

By Kaitlynn McShea March, 1955 The small town was tucked away into the rolling desert landscape. Dirt storms were more common than rain showers, and water was a more valued possession than gold. That’s what the three hundred residents had been told for generations, at least. The gold rush had come to their doorstep andContinue reading “Desert Oasis”

A Lion’s Love

By Kaitlynn McShea When Laura Henderson was eleven, her father came home with a lion. It was a California summer day, and blistering, stunning heat filtered through the front door. Laura remembered it being out of character for him: he never came in through the front door, he never came home before nine, and heContinue reading “A Lion’s Love”

A Stroll Through the Fruit and Veg Section

By Carys Crossen The week the pregnancy test displayed two blue lines Elise’s baby was the size of a sesame seed.  Two weeks later, it was the size of a blueberry, according to the pregnancy website she had started checking compulsively. Another fortnight later and it had the same dimensions as a grape.  Elise wonderedContinue reading “A Stroll Through the Fruit and Veg Section”

Surfcasters

By Adele O’Grady Botticelli The SUV skidded on the sand, sprinkled like flour on a baker’s board along the tar road, as Jack braked to a stop in front of the grey shingled, rusty-red trimmed gate house. The July sun beat down on his truck as he leaned over to address the woman ranger, sittingContinue reading “Surfcasters”

The Lady in Black

By Paige Wyatt The lonely stretch of Highway 74 is as close to a lover as Dani has known. It’s always there for her when she’s lost her way– a strong presence for as far back as her memory goes. The dark asphalt and faded white lines are a welcome sight at the end ofContinue reading “The Lady in Black”

The End of Time

By Kaitlynn McShea The End of Time Time was ending. The Earth cleared itself by flooding coasts and burning trees, by spreading disease and withholding rain. Gradually, creatures started dying. The Earth had killed creatures intentionally and without sorrow for many millennia. It was Earth’s nature, after all. It created and destroyed, because that wasContinue reading “The End of Time”

The Reflection

By Tiffany Shull Peterson Emla was sweating and shaking as she sat at her mother’s dressing table. Instinctively, Emla’s eyes darted away from the smooth mirrored glass to the open window. Clammy night air kissed goosebumps on her skin and the familiar glow of starlight comforted her. With a roll of her shoulders she straightened,Continue reading “The Reflection”

The Misery

By Kaitlynn McShea A September wind sighed through the city. Beatrice closed her eyes and leaned into its cool embrace. Simultaneously, bells from the cathedral reverberated through her skin, marking the hour.  It was time. Within her loose fist, wings tickled against her palm. A wasp battled against her fingers, searching for a way out. Continue reading “The Misery”