First Story: “Evil is as Evil Does” by Travis Burnham
(Originally published in Aoife’s Kiss.)
Right in the middle of my nefarious plan to create an enormous ball of bubonic plague-infected fleas, the door gong set my teeth to rattling. I sent Herschel to see who it was.
“It’s today’s virgin,” he rumbled from the end of the hallway.
“Well don’t just stand there like an idiot, bring her in,” I shouted. “You know the routine.” Herschel is as loyal as any evil master could hope for, but if his intellect were a knife, he’d have trouble cutting butter.
Herschel brought her in over his shoulder and placed her on the trapdoor that dropped virgins to the room below where they would meet their violent, bloody deaths at Vilesnoot’s claws and fangs.
I leaned back in my easy chair, annoyed. “Herschel, remind me to call Green Light Virgins and complain. They’re simply cutting too many corners.”
Travis Burnham is an SF/F writer and science teacher. His work has previously appeared in Aoife’s Kiss, Bad Dreams Entertainment, South85 Journal, and SQ Quarterly. Originally from New England, he’s lived in Japan, Colombia, and the Mariana Islands, and currently lives in Upstate South Carolina with his wife and pup. He’s a bit of a nomad, having bungee jumped in New Zealand, hiked portions of the Great Wall of China, and gone scuba diving in Bali. He’s got some novels looking for homes and can be found online at travisburnham.blogspot.com and travisburnhambooks.com.
Second Story: “Picture Perfect” by Matt Mikalatos
(Originally published in Unidentified Funny Objects 3.)
Richard the unfriendly ghost woke me. I blinked twice. The sun was still up, I could sense it on the other side of the drapes. “Are you trying to murder me again?” I asked.
Richard cackled. “Worse! Much worse, Isaac.”
I frowned. I didn’t bother to ask what was worse than murder. As a vampire I had doled out plenty of worse-than-murder moments, not the least of which was feeding Richard to one of the elder gods of terror. That had bought me almost two months of Richard-free bliss. But ghosts are surprisingly resilient.
Matt Mikalatos is the author of eight books, the most recent of which is the young adult superhero novel, Capeville: Death of the Black Vulture. Find out more at mikalatos.com, or on Twitter and Facebook.
About the Narrators:
Dan Kelly is an artist allowing the universe to deliver his wildest dreams. Other than a high school diploma and a few random certificates for esoteric skills like Steadicam operation and freediving, Dan is giddily sans credentials and credibility. Born just before all those iconic Americans were rubbed out, he now thrives at the northern edge of the USA amidst paranoid prepper enclaves and socialist sleeper cells. Dan likes movies and with a little luck, he’ll be releasing his first open source inspired featurette, a post-apocalyptic romantic comedy titled Daughter of God sometime in the late summer of 2016. You can learn more at dog.movie.
Seth Williams is the avatar for a three-kilometer sentient starship that is parked (probably uncomfortably) close to the third planet. Surprisingly he has not yet been discovered. He is very happy that the inhabitants have discovered enough technology to that he can communicate in this limited fashion. Any communications can be directed to theboojum.org.