EIGHT MINUTES BEFORE MY BOUT, and I was struggling with my goggles — the one really important piece of protective gear. A rapier through the heart is a legitimate medical emergency, but one that the on-site medical staff handle with routine ease. Only a rapier into the brain is at all likely to produce a career-threatening injury and, except for the very rare fluke of a thrust through the soft pallet or the ear, the skull provides enough protection that just about the only way into the brain is through the eye socket.
Picking his way through morning glory vines, over rolling chunks of old pavement, David made his way to the edge of the ditch. Kneeling down, he got close enough to the dandelions and clover to see that the bees visiting them were striped the distinctive orange-and-black of watch bees.
Looking up, David took in the farm as a whole. The paint on the farmhouse and barn wasn’t fresh, but it wasn’t peeling. The garden was big. The fields grew food, not just biofuel crops. He was six or seven miles from town, having rejected each of the farms he’d passed, but this one looked promising.
The bicycle noticed someone was following before Kurt did. Watching for a tail was a habit he’d finally broken himself of, but not before the bicycle’s impressionable brain had picked it up. Its low warning hum sent a thrill of adrenalin through him, giving power to the part of his brain that wanted him to sprint away.
My first Esperanto-language short story “Paŭzo en la stacidomo Union,” appears in the new issue of Beletra Almanako! My contributor’s copy arrived today. I even made the cover.
I am in very good company—a veritable who’s who of current Esperanto literature.
“Tiu,” Emma diris
Otto rigardis kien ŝi kapmontris. “Tiu alta viro en la drelika jako?” Li pripensis. “Filo de riĉaj gepatroj. Eksigita el pli ol unu universitato pro tro da petoloj kaj maltro da studoj. Ricevas iom da mono de la patrino, sed ne sufiĉe por vivteni sin.”
Her gown left her shoulders bare. Her skin was pale, translucent. She had no freckles, as if she had never gone out in the sun. Her lips were colored a shade of red that seemed odd for a red-head to wear, until I noticed that it was the same angry red as her scars.
“New Song of Old Earth” in the fourth Darkfire anthology Bones of the World: Tales from Time’s End, edited by Bruce Holland Rogers, from SFF Net, 2001, ISBN 0-9669698-4-7. Available from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or directly from the publisher, SFF Net.
I usually refer to my clients as “the accused.” But, in my own mind, I usually think of them as “the prisoner.” Certainly I thought of Martin Tyo that way, even though he wasn’t, really–he had a cheap room in a hotel near the transit station.
There was no need to put him in a cell. He was already ten years from yesterday. . . .
“Reading is Fundamental” appears in the second Darkfire anthology The Age of Reason: Stories for a New Millennium, edited by Kurt Roth, from SFF Net, 1999, ISBN 0-9669698-1-2. Available from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or directly from the publisher, SFF Net.
I’m hiding in the tall weeds behind the compost heap, which is good, because the sergeant looks behind the woodpile before heading to the outhouse. I listen real carefully and am glad to hear the splashing sound of a good piss. That always puts the sergeant in a good mood. If he can start the day with a good piss he’ll usually give me breakfast. Otherwise I sneak away and don’t come back until lunch time. . . .