“To William Ivey, Fort Kearney, Platte River Region, May 11, 1849. Sir: I have the sad duty to report that your wife Elizabeth Ivey died yesterday from the cholera. Given your absence, her church will be responsible for the remains and a Christian burial. Yours, Dr. Harold Cartwright, Physician, Lancaster, Pennsylvania.”
Rose stopped reading when she heard Lenny’s high voice. “Rosie? Where are you, wife?” Read more.
Any Landing You Can Walk Away FromJeffery Thompson
“Systems check,” Nathan shouted as the ship careened and shook violently. He had been awakened by the sudden shaking, something that he shouldn’t have felt in zero G unless something had gone horribly wrong.
“All systems are green and within acceptable parameters,” the cold artificial intelligence responded. The voice was that of his copilot, C.A.L.S. Nathan never had managed to memorize what the acronym stood for. Read more.
The Hypókrisis MirrorRaymond Fortunato
To celebrate the hundredth anniversary of the Symington Art Museum’s 1913 archeological dig, near the ancient oracle at Delphi in Greece, the museum asked Audrey August, a Classics scholar at Whitson College, to prepare a special exhibit.
Knowing her fellow professor, Rokko Isti’s deep interest in ancient history, Audrey asked him to help. Audrey would re-examine the notes, photographs and stored finds from the dig. Read more.
No Better Place Between Sea and SkyEllen Boyers Kwatnoski
For the first time in fifty years of marriage, Arthur Bookman was keeping a secret from his wife. It was a new secret, acquired the day before they left for the cruise, and it chafed as uncomfortably as a pebble in his shoe.
Now, as their ship sliced through the waters off the west coast of Mexico, Arthur and his wife Faye stepped out onto the aft pool deck where rows of sun worshipers were broiling themselves in the tropical sun. Read more.
Her Brother’s SisterShauna Singh Baldwin
Roziana unfurls a violet yoga mat on the studio’s laminate floor. From wicker bins at the back of the room, she chooses a pair of mauve blocks, a purple strap to match, and a crimson blanket for what Paula calls her “sitz bones.” She sets up, facing the dazzle of the river beyond the ceiling-to-floor windows. That way, her view will change with each pose. Read more.
The first time I stayed with Jack, I was in distress. A lover had unceremoniously turned me out of the house, and, as my parents were dead, I had nowhere to go.
‘Jack, may I stay with you?’
‘Are you in distress?’
Jack was a friend since childhood, when we lived two roads apart along the Harringay Ladder. We attended the same primary school before going to separate secondaries. Read more.
Angela was smiling, not at anyone but to herself, a quiet, satisfied smile that reflected her increasingly relaxed mood. She would bend, grasp a jar, lift it, and place it on the shelf beside the similar jars, all in neat rows and patterns. It was satisfying work, bringing order, if not to chaos exactly, then at least to the ever-changing ebb and flow of randomness of the center store shelves of Barone’s Family Super Store… Read more.
The DollhouseBrandon Daily
The night before he left for the last time, he gave the dollhouse to her.
It was late. Abby had settled into her bedcovers and turned her head to the window. Outside, the sky was dark from the clouds that covered up the moon and stars. She knew she would wake to fresh snow on the yard—not the first snow of the season, but with the cold, it could be the first big snow. Read more.
Stand StillHart Vetter
I’m a trucker. My own boss is how it feels. Fending for myself. Have done it all my life. Sitting high up in my silver leather, long-haul cockpit of a seat, on top of the world. Surrounded by eighteen speakers, as many as I got wheels. Because I like things organized in a cosmic symmetry. Three thousand of my most-favored alt tracks in a bottomless, random shuffle, just loud enough for backdrop entertainment… Read more.
My father took me to boxing matches when I was a child. I was skinny, knobby kneed with a stern look on my face. We walked side by side on sidewalks with cracked uneven pavement until we reached a temporary ring set up at El Parque de la Soledad. A crowd of men would gather. Some greeted my father yelling, “Badilla!” or “Oscar!” They made wagers, slapped each other on the back and laughed from their stomachs. Read more.
Young GirlsCarol Pierce
“Yes, this is Henry Chester. I didn’t know she had a portrait in a Glasgow art gallery. How do you know it’s my wife’s?” Henry, a slender man with thick, curly grey hair, paced his kitchen floor, phone in hand, concentrating on what the man on the other end was saying. “Let me look at the one I have,” he said, walking briskly into the living room. Read more.
Puka IntiSandro Piedrahita
There were some – not many – who refused to believe Presidente Gonzalo was dead after so many years of terrorism, after he had said that he was willing to see a million Peruvians be killed in order to see the triumph of his revolution. And it was not his followers who believed that, but those he had decimated, those whose parents and children had been killed at his orders. Read more.
Johnny BoyAlicia Notorio
It’s 10:13 pm and Dad needs the money by midnight. Nico hasn’t seen or heard from the guy in six years, and every day over those six years, he has imagined what it would be like to hear from his dad again. Funny how it hadn’t seemed real when it finally happened: the phone rang and some dread inside made him pick up. Then, Nico heard Dad’s voice, and it wasn’t 2001 anymore. Read more.
Things Are Different NowKaren McIntyre
Summer, 2002. Seventh grade is finally over. But here I am, sitting cross-legged in bed with the Hello Kitty 3-ring binder I carried against my chest that entire endless year, open to the section formerly known as “Social Studies.” Every morning, I make a neat grid with 10 perfectly square boxes, each square worth 100 calories, and that’s what I get for the day. It’s a good plan. Read more.
Fiends in UteroGlenn Cannon
To the Highest Third Angelic Choir
Chairman of the Executive Council for Spiritual Agencies on Earth
Hail Incandescent One!
As per the directive of the council, I continue with due diligence in relation to the issue of saving the Earth from the destructive capacity of the Paragon Human Animal, to activate not only the First and Lowest Angelic Choir most avidly to that purpose Read more.
Making a ChoiceQuin Yen
For some of the third-year medical students, simply putting on the white coat could make them feel at least one foot taller. Who could blame them? After two years of medical school, the students’ heads were filled with textbooks of anatomy, pathology, chemistry, organic chemistry, genetics and microbiology; so naturally, they felt ready to tackle all human diseases in the real world. Read more.
Out of SortsT.D. Calvin
“Where will it end?” Oliver says. “That’s what I’d like to know.”
In the decade Heather and family have lived next door to Oliver, he’s never missed a chance to take soundings of her beliefs. Heather gets the feeling he uses discussions to test her, each one a personal assessment that might help him decide the final value of her character. Read more.
Mr. ChandlerPatrick O'Dowd
“Again?” Monica asked with a smile. A smile Mark knew wouldn’t be there in a few days. Not after she found out. There’d be no more smiles for him, not from bartenders or waitresses or family or friends. Just scowls and vitriol. Read more.
Red Chair DiaryRuth Langner
—I was homeless once.
Whether or not you choose to believe me, I once occupied a special place in a posh mansion situated in the western part of the city or what might be called the wealthiest part of the city. The property was surrounded by a low rock wall covered in ivy and bordered with pink rhododendrons and fragrant gardenias… Read more.
Required FieldsMark Wagstaff
First, you don’t know the politics. Boundaries are hazy. Clusters of desks, all kinds of work getting done. Nobody knows how much use or annoyance you’ll be. I had no plan, no schedule. I had fields to interrogate, with dry-throated alarm at how the Next Page links jumped up in tens. The data, my domain. Read more.
The Wrong RoadRyan Krause
He came to my office at 10 a.m. on January 30, two weeks to the day after the shooting. He made his appointment without referral, and I couldn’t help but assume he had chosen me because we happened to have the same name.
At 9:55, having answered emails for two hours and polished off my second cup of coffee… Read more.
Teethmarks protrude, even now, from the skirting boards of his childhood home. Gnawed memories and pitfalls of what once was, yet persists now only in peripheral reaches, dusty nooks and edges. He’s learnt to resist the urge, or the medication has straight-laced him to perform as wider society deems fit… Read more.
Duck & Cover SeasonLarry Thacker
I was looking at the guitar amps in the Cumberland Street Pawn when Janie Sizemore crashed her car into the front of the shop. She’d struck two American Pekin ducks waddling through the main intersection. She’d tried swerving to miss them but ended up running them over anyway and hopping the curb and smashing the pawn shop’s only front window. Read more.
The VoicelessAshley Goodwin
Tommy looked in all directions before confirming they were completely alone on their hidden path in the woods. They had never done something so risky in public before. They knew getting caught for Public Display of Affection would have consequences. But due to his mother’s recent shift change, he couldn’t hide his relationship behind closed doors anymore. Regardless, they were sixteen, in love, and couldn’t fathom being separated. Read more.