Thinking Stone (516 Words)
The day after her eighteenth birthday, Princess Tana’s parents told her that it was time to marry. Because their daughter’s happiness was everything, they promised she could make her own choice with one caveat.
“If you aren’t in love within three months,” they said, “we will choose your husband for you. It is for your own good, Tana. You don’t want to die alone.”
Painting in the Window (280 Words)
I always wondered who put the picture there. It had been hanging on the bedroom wall when we moved in, and neither Cal nor I seemed to want it down. It surprised me that Cal didn’t complain. He was always a little impatient of art, calling it frivolous and fanciful. As an artist myself, I took his criticisms in stride with a few remarks of my own about the ship models that were all his pride and joy.
Homeland (98 Words)
“Do you ever wish you could go back?”
Alan looked up from watching the second hand tick across the clock face. His companion watched him keenly, the dragon’s eyes narrowed against the harsh light of the second of twin suns.
The Three Sisters (152 Words)
Once upon a time there were three brothers who lived with their parents in the midst of a vast forest. If there were any other people in the forest, they knew nothing of them, for they found no trails other than those they themselves had blazed, and they found no pits for iron in the bogs other than those they themselves had dug, and they discovered no hewn trees other than those they themselves had hewn.
Revealing Rain (682 Words)
“Well isn’t that something,” he said. “That’s something.”
The water was running on his cheek. His hair was plastered in heavy sodden locks over his brow despite his effort to smooth it, so black, so vivid against his feverish color, she couldn’t help it. She leaned to him and stumbled.
He started, held her. His eyes fell to hers. For a startling instant she thought he knew her in spite of her disguise, because sharpness and reserve seemed to ice his childlike wonder. But then wonder, reserve, gave to a keener awareness. She raised her hands and he bowed his head. Their lips touched. They flinched. Her fingers curled in his dripping hair and brought his wet white mouth more surely to hers.