|“Mister Bob” by Dan Campbell
“It all began with the chicken in the end of the road,” she said.
|“Lightning Strikes” by Lindsey Duncan
Storm-clouds gathered over the city of Calrhayas, immense hands catching the smoke from fires below. In her training, Diyesari had learned of diviners who could read the future in fallen ash; there was too much here to interpret, and only one possible answer.
|“Lone White Seagull” by Geoffrey W. Cole
The first officer announced that the plane was lost three hours after they entered the cloud.
|“Camouflage” by Eden Robins
Today, I’m taking the train to the end of the line. Then I’m going to get on another train and another, and eventually I’ll end up in Wisconsin. And then? I’ll keep going north to where the trains stop. Is there a train to Nunavut? To the Arctic Circle? I intend to find out.
|“Heart-Song” by Danielle Davis
Nycalla shifts on the dusty ground, unnerved by the shouting of the crowd. The voices of the Men rattle the soil beneath her, cluttering her senses with their vibrations and setting her tail to twitching.
|“Nice” by Jamie Mason
It is the anniversary of the Overthrow. The execution of Emile Vonnegut, child frightener, has just been broadcast and Michelle Michelle, host of Group Spank (“your liNk’s social equity enforcement program”) is announcing the round-up of four thousand middle-aged Eurasian grandmothers for their collective violations of the Kindarchy’s Social Consideration Code. A festive mood prevails. People are in the streets.
Illustration: Alex Vannini is a professional illustrator in Europe and now looking for new markets. He has worked in England and Italy in the major newspapers and magazines, generally in the cultural and litterary pages. See more of his work at alexvannini.com.