Special thanks to Jessica Standifird for her editorial assistance. This week’s artwork is by Marylea Madiman.
by Gena LeBlanc
The Devil’s in the details. He’s in the cupboards, too, waiting for idle hands to edge inside and prod the prince of darkness into action. He was there the day Judd killed all those roosters. Judd believed that Jesus had commanded him to wring feathered necks until the squawking stopped. Unfortunately for Judd, Christ has no need for dead birds. The Devil, on the other hand, loves a good sacrifice.
by Brian Schaab
I see the tendrils of midnight stretching out towards me. Grasping, groping for me, or are they beckoning, reaching towards me to envelope me in a warm embrace? I keep walking, trying to fight against it. Color has left me. Light has left me. Only a few feet around me resist the growing shadow. Something passes in front of me, it turns, black eyes staring, and smiles. Color and light radiate out of that smile. The darkness is thrown back, driven before that smile. She turns and walks down the street, fading into the New York bustle. The unknowing hero.
by Dennis E. Thompson
Mornings were quiet now. Carl Saebo had never liked arguing, normally avoided it at all cost, but sitting alone at the table was too much stillness, like a warm summer day when the heat becomes stifling from no air movement. Life was different. His wife had passed before him and that was not how it was supposed to be. He lit another cigarette and drank deeply from his coffee. He wondered where sixty-four years of his life had gone, how each had blended and passed, like rivulets after a hard rain running together and disappearing in sand.
by Chris Deal
The dying started in the early evening. Nights stretched cold and long and the fire needed wood, sending Llewellyn out to bring down trees. He had become near an expert. The angles were easy, though there were always variables. A railroad spike driven into the old growth, to defend against loggers long gone. The saw’s chain caught and exploded with a high squeal, lashing out and slashing his chest, neck. He weighed his options as he leaned against the unfelled tree. The fading sun left a gash of purple and red across the sky.
Chinese Fire Drill
by C.C. Russell
Red light pulsed through the windshield, the thump of Jenny’s playlist as the Buick stopped, shuddering. “Again!” a voice laughed, yelled and we were out, screaming around the car. I ended up in the backseat. Jill leaned in, kissed me hard, tongue darting. I tingled – less from the kiss than the whiskey kicking in. J.D. was driving now, his eyes wild, warm from the fifth we had split. I grabbed Jill and returned the favor. Harder. And the whole world turned green. I hit J.D. in the shoulder. “Punch it!” I yelled. Jill laughed, pulled my face towards hers.
It’s the moment you’ve all been waiting for: the inaugural edition of Microfiction Monday Magazine! Five incredible stories by five incredible writers. Special thanks to Marc Corbier and Jessica Standifird for their assistance in making some tough choices. Artwork by Marylea Madiman. Enjoy!
Now is the Winter
by Dan Coxon
Outside, the blizzard ebbs and moans. In here it’s simply cold. My nose is numb, my eyeballs ache. I can’t recall the last time I felt the purple ghosts of my feet. I read somewhere that your blood is the last thing to freeze. The heart never stops trying to warm its sticky reservoirs. Like tea. Like a million rivulets of mulled wine. I peel off my gloves and start cutting.
Truth is a Bearded Lady
by Stephen Graham Jones
My husband has two hearts. He told me. When he was a kid, sideshow people were always lurking around to kidnap him into the carnival. But he got away each time, just barely. If he hadn’t, we wouldn’t be together right now. But he only tells me about his second heart. His other wife thinks he’s like everybody else. She thinks he just has one heart, can just love one woman. I know the truth, though. He trusts me with all his secrets. If either of his hearts is bigger, then it’s the one he’s given me.
by Angela Maracle
The Americans run from crib to crib, looking for children with the whitest skin. I pick up a dark-haired baby, flick away flies.
“No good, he is Gypsy,” my interpreter says.
There are no colors, no toys in the orphanage. Bottles are propped against pillows.
“I want this baby,” I say, clutching him, even though I came for a girl.
I can’t take all of them. Some of them grab my skirt through the bars. We step over broken glass, and a stray dog passes by in the corridor.
The baby twists away from me and cries.
by Jon Gluckman
My uncle took me into the basement to show-off his train set. As he pulled a chain hung from the rafters, a sickly yellow light dissolved the darkness and silenced the crickets, illuminating a world in miniature. He had created hell on a sheet of plywood, where tiny houses on fire simultaneously populated and depopulated tiny towns. When he pushed a small black button screwed in beneath the table, a recording of people screaming began to loop. Bloody half stumps of commuters crawled from a multitude of car accidents toward a lake slicked with oil where they would surely drown.
by Bob Thurber
After my sister ran away forever, Mom found a notebook filled with crazy drawings and gloomy poems. One poem was titled FUCK and went on pretty much like that for several pages. Another told the story of Red Riding Hood being raped not by the wolf but the woodcutter, and another listed eleven ways you can kill a man so that he will die agonizingly slow. My mother showed the notebook to her boyfriend Carl who tossed it in the washing machine, added bleach, and set the machine on Heavy Load.