Academy of Stars

“In or not?” A grumpy old man in a suit asked Andy. The young, blonde man, barely 18, took too long to enter the elevator making the old man grumpier by the second. He sighed and let the man’s impatience pressure him into the elevator. Once Andy hefted his bulging, black backpack over his shoulder…

Froggy Friend

“Are you sure it’s okay?” Margo asked. Her green eyes clouded with doubt and she bit her bottom lip in nervous hesitation. She did not know whether she wanted it to be okay or not. Her new friend, Rana, walked next to her as they headed home after school. “Only if you can keep a…

Moral Qualification

Daryl stepped out of the small, dim room and sighed. He closed his eyes and slowly counted to ten taking a breath at each number. He thought of the ritual as his last bit of humanity. He allowed himself a few seconds of regret after each kill just to feel normal again. He tried to…

Zero Harmony

“It’s so beautiful,” Harmony gazed out at the park in front of the hospital. “I almost don’t believe it.” She sat on a stone-carved bench next to her husband, John. Their bench rested atop a hill overlooking a lush green park. Dozens of people dotted the winding trails while several children ran through the tall,…

Stellar Ramifications

Harmony shivered; she felt intense chills course down her spine. She stopped walking and leaned against the kitchen counter for support. The pale, dark-haired woman closed her eyes to try and hide from the spinning room, but her head continued to whirl. She focused on the cool feeling of the granite counter-top under her palms…

Projectile Guidance

“Double or nothing!” Travis shouted, angrily, then dropped several $20 bills on the bar in front of Keith. “You can’t hit it again. No one’s that good.” Keith shook his head. “I’m done fellas,” he shrugged and grinned at Travis, the biggest, dumbest thug in the rundown biker bar. “I ain’t tryin’ to take all…

Punishing Star

“We’re living in a simulation!” Jaime said suddenly. He stared at his best friend, Martin, sitting across from him. Jaime offered him lunch in the park and Martin never turned down free food. The curly-haired young man raised a single eyebrow at Jaime but continued taking a bite of pizza. “I’ve thought it for a…