Far Fetched Fables

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Far Fetched Fables No. 92 Danny Adams and Michael Canfield

Flash Fiction: “Junk Silver” by Michael Canfield

(Originally published at Daily Science Fiction.com.)

Albe ignored Tic, who exclaimed “huh!” after stabbing another Wikipedia article in his usual overly-enthusiastic way. Albe then watched Tic push the article off the sharp end of his poker into the bag. Tic wiped his hand on his leg, as he did every time he cleared his poker of trash.

Albe had gotten himself knee-deep in Myspace pages, which had started to seep through his garments and cling to his skin, so he didn’t care what Tic chose to vociferate about.

“Junk silver,” said Tic, unswayed by Albe’s lack of response. “That one was about junk silver. Know what that is?”

Albe didn’t, and he didn’t care.

He knew Tic would tell him anyway.

Michael Canfield writes about monsters, superheroes, couples, bank robbers, babies, astronauts, paranoids, background artists, obsessives, and other people. He has published mystery, fantasy, science fiction, horror and just-plain-odd stories in the magazines Strange Horizons, Escape Pod, Realms of Fantasy, Black Gate, Flytrap, and others.

You can find him on Twitter as @michaelcanfield and at MichaelCanfield.net.

Main Story: “The Wind-Catching Wizard” by Danny Adams

(Originally published in Mythic 2.)

Ogrin nearly turned himself to stone to keep from recoiling in horror when the old wizard offered him a pouch of gold.

The wizard chuckled at his bodyguard’s reluctance. “What’s the matter, Sergeant Venn? You’ve earned it. Your men have earned it. This is your reward for good service.”

The warrior shifted as if straightening a sword stance. “Ogrin, sire,” he corrected, though he had been in Gettir’s service for four years. Venn was Gettir’s bodyguard generations before Ogrin was born.

“Yes, so I said. My apologies if I was mumbling again.”

“And sire,” the warrior said even more quietly than usual, “you have already paid us for this month.”

Gettir’s sag-­wrinkled eyes blinked under his single white brow. He straightened the simple violet sleeping robe that he had taken to wearing throughout the course of every day.

“Don’t be foolish, Ogrin. I’m not losing my mind. I… I’m…” He stared at the bag in his hand as if it were about to come alive and bite him. “You misunderstand me. This is a — bonus.”

Danny Adams is the co-author, with the late Philip Jose Farmer, of the short science fiction novel The City Beyond Play (PS Publishing). His shorter work has appeared in Abyss & Apex, Asimov’s, Ideomancer, Mythic Delirium, Not One of Us, Paradox, Space & Time, Star*Line, and Strange Horizons. He lives in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia, where he is a librarian at Ferrum College and a reviewer of science fiction and fantasy books for Publishers Weekly.

You can find him on Goodreads.

About the Narrators:

Kenny Park is a video editor by trade, but having trained and worked as an actor, director and writer, he maintains it’s all just storytelling. He’s been involved with Starship Sofa since the early days of Tony and Ciaron, filming their interview with the legendary Michael Moorcock in Paris, and he still does narrations and wee video intros when Tony can pin him down. He can be found online at KennyPark.com.

Graeme Dunlop is a software solution architect and voice actor living in Melbourne, Australia. He is the co-editor of the fantasy podcast Podcastle, and used to host the YA podcast Cast of Wonders. You can find him on Google+ and he occasionally tweets as @kibitzer on Twitter.

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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.