Far Fetched Fables

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Far Fetched Fables No. 55 Michael H. Payne

 

Main Story: “Where There’s Smoke” by Michael H. Payne

Sudden crackling twitched Cluny’s ears, memories sparking through her of harvesting termites from the fallen trees back home on her parents’ nut farm.

The sound kept growing louder, though, its vibrations taking on a supernatural edge that prickled her fur and pulled her out of her notes. Looking up from the floor in front of the bookcase where she lay sprawled across Magistrix Gosstelain’s treatise on the numenistic forces inherent within the mind/brain interface, she said, “Uhh, guys? I think we might have a–“

A cabbage-sized mass of flame burst into the air above Crocker’s desk, made him cry out and nearly tip over in his chair. “The fools!” came a shout, and Shtasith whooshed from the fireplace, his black and gold wings flaring. “They shall rue this attempted invasion of our inmost sanctum!”

Michael H. Payne’s stories about Cluny the Sorceress Squirrel have appeared in every issue of the annual Sword and Sorceress anthology since 2008. He seems to spend most of his time these days writing and drawing 11 pages of webcomics every week for his Daily Grind and Terebinth series as well as putting together fanfiction for the current My Little Pony cartoon series under the name of AugieDog. Check hyniof.livejournal.com to see how it all comes out.

 

About the Narrator:

Cheryl Phipps was born in Canada and presently resides there, but has also lived in Jamaica and Maryland. By the time she was 16, she had moved 15 times! She used story telling as a way to fit in whenever she was the “new kid” in town. Cheryl obtained her Honours BA in Sociology at the University of Western Ontario. She spent many years teaching call center representatives customer service and communication skills. She wrote a book that won second place in an international literary contest. Cheryl has always loved words, grammar, reading, acting and writing. All of these things came together for Cheryl in the form of voice over work, which she loves!

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12/26/2017

FarFetchedFables No 186 Michael Rimar

“Avarice” by Michael Rimar(Originally published in Darwin's Evolutions.)Shadow blocked the glare of Uttum’s twin suns. Saleem looked up at the source, a man dressed in robes pale as bleached bone.“Offering for the poor?” Saleem kept his tone weak and pitiful, offering his wicker basket to the stranger.“I have more than offerings for you, my young friend.” The stranger crouched down to look Saleem face to face. Eyes green as palm fronds regarded him with benevolence. Strands of ebony hair poked from underneath a spotless turban.Saleem tensed. Anyone who called him friend usually wasn’t. Yet he didn’t run. Anyone foolish enough to run in the heat brought attention, and in the City attention equaled guilt. “Have I offended you in some manner, Isha?” He hoped to flatter the stranger by using the formal address.“Isha?” The man flashed straight white teeth and looked about as if to see no one overheard. “You may call me Hendari. I am told I should talk to you.”Saleem’s eyebrows rose a fraction. Hendari. The god of prosperity. Only the wealthy and powerful were so bold to name their children after gods. “What would a great man need of a child beggar?”“Is this part of the bartering?” Hendari’s green eyes glistened with mirth. “You are less a child, and more than a beggar. I know who it is I need, and that is you.”Michael Rimar has matured. He no longer writes witty bios with clever puns. He has stopped comparing his two daughters to pets, especially after the cease and desist order. He sees nothing funny about writing science fiction, fantasy, and some horror, although many of his stories might be considered humorous, and purposefully humorous, not this-is-so-bad-it’s-funny kind of humorous. As proof, his story, A Bunny Hug for Karl, was nominated for the 2014 Prix Aurora for the best in Canadian Science Fiction and Fantasy. He is an associate publisher of Bundoran Press and co-editor of their anthology Second Contacts, which was awarded the 2016 Aurora for Best Related Work. He has also co-edited Lazarus Risen, nominated for the 2017 Aurora for Best Related Work. Mike has been published in Orson Scott Card’s InterGalactic Medicine Show, Writers of the Future XXI, and On Spec, all serious publicationsdespite having the occasional humorous story. If you want to learn more about Mike visit mikerimar.com. Seriously.About the Narrator:Growing up, everyone told Christopher Herron that he couldn't read books for a living, it simply wasn't a real job. Always one to have the last laugh, however, he decided to start down the long road of becoming a professional narrator. To help him on his way, he created the youtube channel Tall Tale TV, where he hones his skills by narrating several short stories each week for authors looking to collaborate. He can be found at TallTaleTV.com, Facebook and Twitter.
12/12/2017

FarFetchedFables No 185 Greg van Eekhout

“In the Late December” by Greg van Eekhout(Originally published in Strange Horizons.)Here's a secret of the North Pole: Santa powders his hands with talc before donning his thick red mittens.It is a small secret, true, but some would give anything to steal even that. A secret is a detail, and here in the late December, a detail is as precious as a true name.Santa, a red exclamation in a white world, walks the reindeer line, stroking sugar-and-cinnamon fur. The reindeer shiver and snort and stamp their hooves, the lines connecting them to the parcel-laden sleigh jingling. Santa looks over to his candy-brick castle and waves good-bye, but no one stands in the doorway to wave back. With a sigh, he climbs onto the sleigh's driver's seat, the bench creaking beneath his weight. He pauses, holding the smooth and supple leather reins, and considers how to start the team. Onward? A-heya? Giddyup? Ho-ho? No, he's already used those. He makes a point of uttering a different word to inaugurate every outing, because he's been doing this for a long time, and if he didn't deliberately insert some bit of novelty into the procedure, he fears his jolly round head might well explode. That is another detail.Then he has it. He snaps his fingers (no mean feat in his mittens) and with a brisk snap of the reins, he shouts, "Zorxa!"Zorxa was a great emperor whose realm once encompassed sixteen degrees of the Curvature, and though his despotic rule made him a natural enemy, Zorxa knew how to accept a gift as well as anyone.Greg van Eekhout lives in San Diego with his astronomy/physics professor wife and two dogs. He used to develop educational software for a living, but now writes full time, which he enjoys much better. His novels range from adult science fiction and fantasy to middle grade and include The Norse Code, the California Bones trilogy, Kid vs. Squid, and The Boy at the End of the World. His next book, a middle-grade novel about dogs on a spaceship, is due out in Fall 2018. You can find more about him at his website: writingandsnacks.com.About the Narrator:Eric Luke is the screenwriter of the Joe Dante film Explorers, which is currently in development as a remake; has written for the comic books Ghost and Wonder Woman; and wrote and directed the Not Quite Human films for Disney TV.His current project, Interference (a meta horror audiobook about an audiobook... that kills), is a bestseller on Audible.com. His website for creative projects is Quillhammer.com.