Need to Know (short fiction)

Helen and Troy’s Epic Road Quest

Peggy Truthstalker had been born with a full set of tusks and yellow eyes. Orc tradition marked her as a shaman, which wasn’t surprising considering her mother had been a shaman before her, and her grandfather before that. Communing with the spirits and reading omens was in her blood. There was no denying it.

And it was a pain in the ass.

While going through some paperwork, her pen started leaking. The blue droplets spilled across the page, telling the story of the dark future. John two offices down had an undiagnosed medical problem. The spirits didn’t tell her what it was. Just that it’d be fatal in a week.

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Bathroom Break (short fiction)

 Helen and Troy’s Epic Road Quest

On the road of legends, Helen Nicolaides had to take a bathroom break. Gas station bathrooms were always a risk. They all promised clean facilities, but promises were easy. She was pleased to discover that this one was mostly clean, though it did have that strong antiseptic smell that didn’t quite cover the more unpleasant odors.

Helen reached for one of the three stalls. The lights flickered and a crooked woman in a pantsuit and curlers stood beside the sink. She hadn’t been there before.

“Choose wisely,” said the attendant.

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Loretta’s Place (short fiction)

Gil’s All Fright Diner

The diner was empty tonight. A fog rolled around outside, even though the dry desert air wasn’t cold enough for it. Loretta sat behind the counter, reading a copy of Vogue, waiting for customers.

It was a quiet night at Loretta’s Place, the kind of night when you could hear things crawling under the floorboards. Rats, you’d hope, but given Loretta’s devotion to keeping the place spotless, that was unlikely. More likely, those things were minor escaping horrors from the dimensions of madness, slipping through the cracks between realities. They didn’t often come to the surface, but she kept a hammer handy in those rare instances they did and a shotgun behind the counter for the more stubborn abominations.

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Battle Plan (short fiction)

Cindy and Cragg

Saturnites were notoriously difficult for Terrans to read. It said something about Cindy and Cragg’s relationship that she could tell he was nervous. It wasn’t obvious, but he was frowning. He frowned a lot since his wide mouth was naturally bent in that direction. But there was a difference to his normal frown and his nervous frown.

She took his hand. “We don’t have to do this if you don’t feel up to it.”
Cragg shook his head. “A warrior doesn’t allow fear to rule the battlefield.”

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