Sang-Col (595 Words)
It was on a cliff of stone and ice where they met, the goblin chieftain and the human king. So the goblins called the cliff and the field itself Sang-Col, which in their tongue means “Blood-Call.”
The goblin chieftain was Scrape, known to her people as a fair but unyielding ruler. In the days before goblin lords and the self-named goblin king, a goblin chieftain recognized no path but their own, and Scrape acknowledged no master of her actions but herself and the God whom the goblins named Ovallen. For this reason, against the advice of her kin, she had seen the human king’s youngest son Patrick and dared to love him.
Seasons and Morning Mist (203 words)
She remembered standing on that ridge overlooking that moorland. It had been a morning like this a little over a year ago. The sky had been that pale, cool pink softening towards a rainy afternoon chill. She remembered huddling under her cloak, trying to keep the rain out as they continued the long road to the false king’s castle.
A silly girl, that’s what she had been. A silly girl with big ideas and a bundle of arguments that meant nothing to an iron tyrant.
The Umbrella (175 Words)
She had carried the umbrella since she was a girl. Sunshine and rain, there was the umbrella in her hand like a gentleman’s cane. And walking in a moonlight garden with her sister, there was the umbrella spread as always.
Angie hadn’t seen her sister in ten years. Both of them had changed, but there was that umbrella.
Martians Walking the Moon (113 Words)
The most common assumptions about aliens are that they are somehow our intellectual superiors. Most imagine a new race of beings with superior technological skill or medical superiority. But then again, there are others who imagine aliens are, if not our intellectual peers, perhaps more primitive than us.
There is always a fourth option.
Marble Garden (822 Words)
A silent, solemn figure to steal through the graves, his long cloak trailing in ebon folds as if he hurried night into the evening’s blue mists. Past the disconnected lines of wooden crosses he walked, mindless of the old and pausing in a moment’s fixed grief at the newer. His glance swept the cracked marble of aging stones but never for a moment did his purpose falter, and his direct progress led him straight to the gnarled cherry, shedding vibrant color in sharp spring wind.
Water Prints (427 Words)
She didn’t live in town. The island population, a little under five hundred residents, was limited mostly to farmers and fishers. The moment Davie saw her sitting on the sand, looking out to sea with her knees pulled under her chin, he knew she didn’t belong.
There was something unusual in her quietness and poise. Something in her eyes was strange and deep, wild and unafraid like the sea itself. Davie was a little afraid of her. But even though he was afraid, it comforted him somehow to see her every morning. People gossiped about her but he never listened to what they said. There was a mystery about that young woman he was satisfied to solve himself.
Treasure Trap (198 Words)
Three days, walking through jungle, avoiding the teeth of poisonous snakes. Three days, and they found the big rock.
“This is the seventh rock we’ve found,” muttered Mr. Jones. “Next to the seventh sand pit.”
Elf at Oars (167 Words)
“It’s fifteen past eleven. Where is he?”
Roran met the young woman’s anxious eyes with dispassion. “It was your idea to steal the key in broad daylight,” he said. “That was wise. We cannot be hunted by the blood-drinkers at day and the human guards are not so clever. But it was also your idea to have Larus arrange our getaway.”
Snow, Man! (139 Words)
It was a snowman at the edge of the playground. Seeing the snowman, Gracie rubbed her cold nose and sat down.
“Gah,” she said. “What do I want to talk to you for?”
The snowman didn’t say anything.
“I shouldn’t even sit with you,” said Gracie. “You just didn’t snow hard enough. Couldn’t you have snowed a little longer so I wouldn’t have to go to school.”
Grimsward and Homeward (155 Words)
The trail stretched for miles through the Grimsward forest. Already the three companions had walked for six hours. As the sun set, the trees gathered close, and already Edgar was seeing troubling things in the shadows of the haunted wood.
“What are they?” asked Midge.
“Don’t you two know?” asked their gnoman guide. “They’re the spirits of lost travelers. Travelers who didn’t stay on the road.”