The Giant of Chaldor

The Giant of Chaldor

by Arthur Powers

There was once a tribe of little, frightened people, making their way, and mostly losing it, across a great empty plain toward the Mountains of Mome. Their leader was the Giant of Chaldor.

He had appeared to them one day, seemingly out of nowhere. He was vast and strong and handsome, twenty times the height of the tallest of the little people. A small white bird perched on his shoulder.

He looked down at them gently, his eyes full of affection. “Follow me,” he said, and he walked off slowly, careful not to go too fast for them. Read more

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A Dragon goes to Confession: An Excerpt from Live and Let Fly

By Karina Fabian

One of the things I like about working with smaller press is that they aren’t as worried if something has religious overtones. Neither of my publishers for my DragonEye books are Catholic, yet they loved the incorporation of the faith in the world and character building. I like to think that it’s because it is part of the world and character, rather than for preaching; and certainly, if I had started preaching, they would have caught me.

Still, it’s been fun to be able to put in scenes like this one in Live and Let Fly. Vern, my dragon who has been “drafted” into serving the Catholic Church, goes to Confession with a priest from Idaho who has never even seen a Faerie creature, much less a Magical. However, Vern and his group have just come out of a very dicey situation and are wounded in more ways than one, and Sister Grace has fetched a priest knowing the Sacraments will help: Read more

Double Trouble

By Walt Staples

Odell Moore glared at his enemy. “Milton, it’s bad enough Melba married something like you. Now look what you’ve done.”

Milton Frisk returned the look of love from his brother-in-law and fellow funeral director. “I’ve done? Look, you bean-pole, if you hadn’t been a hog this never wouldda happened. The Monroes were mine. I’ve buried ever’ last one of them.”

Odell sneered at his short, fat opponent. “Ain’t my fault one of them came to her senses.”

Milton’s mustache bristled. “But they were a matched set. You know that.” Read more

Prelude to a Fall: A Rag & Muffin Story

by D. G. D. Davidson

Her name was Mademoiselle Anne Defoy, but to the criminals of Godtown, she was the Ragamuffin, or “Rags” for short. By day she was a fourth grader at Valhalla Primary, but by night she was the temple city’s most feared preadolescent dispenser of vigilante justice.

It was midnight and Rags was chasing her quarry across Godtown’s rooftops. With little light except from the red-tinged clouds hanging low over the blasted high-rises, expansive slums, and towering temples, she leapt nimbly from pinnacle to spire, steeple to minaret, dome to balcony in the closely packed Old Quarter, her white sneakers squeaking whenever she landed. She had no fear of losing her quarry: Muffin, her dragondog, was with her, and once Muffin had a scent, no one could escape him. Read more

Friday Night

by Walt Staples

Ike Perlman had just stepped out of the ER’s ambulance entrance for a smoke as the wagon from Trauma 4 screamed into the lot. He flicked the just lit cigarette away and ran to help hurry the gurney and its load through the doors. “Kitten” Kelly set her coffee cup down at the nurse’s station, called, “Number 5,” and pointed. That everyone involved, including the EMT’s, knew which bay was five and hardly needed the sign language from the large ER Head Nurse wasn’t remarked on–it was just Kitten. Once, an EMT had had the temerity to ask about it. She smiled down at him and, gesturing at the unconscious form on the gurney, answered sweetly, “Sugar, maybe you know, and staff knows, but the patient don’t necessarily know.”

*

Fred gazed out the window. It seemed to him he’d been on this bus forever. He grinned. It didn’t matter; he was going home. They were already in the upper reaches of Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. He wasn’t quite sure where, but it didn’t matter.

* Read more

Ego Te Absolvo

by Fr. Jim Tucker

The cuffs chafed his wrists as Jude sat peering out the back window of the squad car, a scowl creasing his face.

He peered out at the sullen rain, crying over the pavement.  People crowded around the massive doors of the church, pulling their garments close against the cold and clammy dampness.   They had been waiting for what seem to be hours.   An hour ago, police cars had pulled into the lot with their red and blue lights flashing, one officer pulling some yellow tape across the entrance:  Police Line.  Do not cross.

Yeah, he thought. “Do not cross me,” says the long arm of the law.  Jude snorted, “Do not cross me,” says the God of the high mountain tops. Read more