Honey-Sucker

“Specimen 42 has escaped. Unique Guards to your stations. All other personnel return to your quarters for your own safety.” Howard jogged through the bright, narrow hallway as the message repeated. The mid-30s, pot-bellied janitor wheezed with strain as he rushed into his room. He locked the door and dragged a nightstand in front of…

Slimy Friend

Willow fluttered into the adventurer’s hall with a purpose. Her black, flowy dress hung limp and hid her feet; she hovered ghost-like straight to the quest board. A set of long, veiny, translucent insect wings kept her five-foot fairy frame aloft. The bright pink quest card was still there. It stood out from the wall…

Stellar Observation

“Something funny?” Sophia asked Craig. The pair sat in a red and white booth in a bright, quiet diner. They sat next to a window that looked out at the morning traffic. A thick wall of pedestrians passing the window obscured the gridlocked cars on the street. Sophia wore blue jeans and a rainbow hoodie;…

Sharp Schedule

Eugene stood from his seat as a group of men entered the room. He fidgeted with nervous energy in his best black tuxedo. It was complete with a bow tie and matching silver cumberbund stretched out around his round belly. He looked down at Wallace and slapped his shoulder to get him standing too. His…

Sharp Benefits

“But what are they for?” Marge asked. She turned over the small glass rectangle to inspect the other side; the action was an automatic curiosity. She felt dumb after she flipped it over and peered through the perfectly transparent pane. Her boss, Mr. Brewster winked and walked away. Marge was left alone within the confines…

Potato, Plant

Melanie smiled to herself as she ate. She sat a brightly colored picnic table at the restaurant’s outdoor patio. The kids swarming the play-park reminded the mid-40s woman of simpler times. The setting sun left the sky twilight-purple. The year’s first cold front breezed across the back of her neck and gave her a slight…

Island of Hope

Servers paused mid-step while delivering food, patrons stopped eating, chatting and typing. The mental message stopped everyone in their tracks. Seconds after the voice finished speaking Charlie typed in the address one letter at a time. His clacking on the keyboard broke the silence in the small cafe. Immediately everyone else with a laptop or…

Shivering Star

Cassie let herself fall backward onto a soft mound of snow. The scrawny brown-haired girl panted and wheezed with expended effort and kept her hands up letting the frigid wind soothe them. The cold, sharp air was several steps warmer than in the bucket of ice water. Her hands tingled with numbness as the moisture…

Slimy Guild

A scrawny, young fair-skinned girl stepped barefoot out of the heavy, dark plume of dust. Her dirty blond hair was pulled back in a short, tight bun. She wore a black shirt with loose, flowing, yellow pants. A handful of spearmen formed a barricade between the warlord and the young girl. She looked around the…

Zero Manners

Jason was the last one through. The stocky, burly soldier followed two women into a wide, circular black portal. A 10-foot high metal arch around the ramped platform held the hole in place. The first expedition was a test-run. Jason’s minimal, expendable team consisted of one scientist and two guards. The plan was to get…