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Flash Fiction: “One Hundred Years” by Gerri Leen
She wanders the castle late at night like a haunt. She startles the servants when she finds them flesh to flesh in the darker corners of the place. She doesn’t mean to interrupt their trysts; she just can’t sleep.
She slept for a hundred years. Most thought that was the curse of the evil fairy, but it wasn’t. Not for her, at any rate. The years passed in a heartbeat, dreams keeping her company as she lay unchanging behind the forest of thorns while the world grew colder and uglier.
Gerri Leen lives in Northern Virginia and originally hails from Seattle. She has stories and poems published or accepted in Escape Pod, Grimdark, Spellbound, Sword and Sorceress XXIII, Spinetinglers, She Nailed a Stake Through His Head: Tales of Biblical Terror, and others. When she’s not writing, she volunteers at a local animal rescue and is editing an anthology, A Quiet Shelter There, which will benefit homeless animals and is due out in 2015 from Hadley Rille Books. She can found online at gerrileen.com.
Main Story: “The Thief of Precious Things” by A.C. Wise
Their shadows are crows.
They are two men, standing at the mouth of an alleyway, watching the night with dark, guarded eyes. Their long, black coats flap in the wind, and their shadows have wings. They have feathers and beaks and claws.
When the moon reaches the apex of the sky, they crush their cigarettes against the bricks. Their shadows break into a dozen birds each and take flight.
They have been waiting for her.
She is a fox-girl, running swift over the close rooftops. Up here, the world smells of dust and feathers. Fresh-washed laundry hangs from obsolete radio relays, satellite dishes, and cellphone towers, which sprout like mushrooms atop every building. Sheets and shirts flap in the wind, flags to mark her passing.
A.C. Wise’s short fiction has appeared in numerous publications over the years, including Apex, Shimmer, Uncanny, and The Year’s Best Dark Fantasy and Horror: 2015, among others. In addition to her fiction, she co-edits Unlikely Story and contributes a monthly Women to Read: Where to Start column to SF Signal. Her debut collection, The Ultra Fabulous Glitter Squadron Saves the World Again, will be published by Lethe Press in October 2015. Find her online at acwise.net and on twitter as @ac_wise.
About the Narrators:
Nicola Seaton-Clark lives in the wilds of (almost) Eastern Europe with her long-suffering husband, phenomenal children and a grumpy cat. Trained as an actress and singer, she has worked in entertainment for over 20 years and currently splits her time between writing speculative fiction, helping her husband run their voice-over company, Offstimme, and voicing everything from commercials and documentaries to public transport announcements. She also hosts this podcast…
Sarah Frederickson was born in Oregon in the United States, and was raised in beautiful Minnesota. At a young age she realized her passion for musical performance and the creative arts. Sarah spent most of her childhood singing and acting – both onstage and off – and affecting various accents for fun.
She soon found herself competing in local, state and national forensics competitions (that’s competitive speaking). Her experience and awards landed her a forensics scholarship to Bethel University in St.Paul Minnesota, where she continued to compete as well as train other speakers at the collegiate level. Sarah graduated with a degree in Music business and Audio Production. Shortly after graduation she traveled to Australia for a one-year holiday. During that time she became smitten with an Australian man who asked her to stay, and four years later the couple live and work in Australia, going on adventures, writing music and reading stories to their cat.