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“Butterfly,” by Garth Upshaw
Aidan’s color had worsened overnight, and one of his ears had sloughed off, replaced by shiny grey scar tissue. His eyes were the only part of him still fresh and wonderful. He smiled at me when he woke and saw me examining him. “Morning.” He coughed and spit a tooth into his palm. “Sorry.”
“The Magick,” by Kristina C. Mottla
Was she, Elna, depraved, as the book said? Was Parn? Parn had never an angry word for Elna, not even a scowl, not for anyone; how was that depravity? And what did her parents believe? Parn thought her parents would conceal her, protect her, defend her, but Elna feared otherwise.
“Gone Sleeping,” by Heather Clitheroe, from BCS #77
Gris-Gris’s fur moved where I blew on it, but nothing happened, and I felt desperate sad but also I felt so happy to know I wasn’t a witch. It wasn’t working and he wasn’t coming back alive, so I wasn’t a witch. But when I thought that to myself, something in Gris-Gris seemed to tremble, and I touched his chest with my finger and felt it move.
“As the Prairie Grasses Sing,” by Sarah L. Edwards, from BCS #42 and Audio Fiction Podcast 038
I knew I was not alone. Unseen things crept at the edges of my hearing, but none made any sign that they could talk to me, or that they recognized me as a friend. I began making the motions with my hands, which trembled a little. Will any of you talk to me? I asked, knowing it was futile to expect an animal to know the hand-signs that my family used to speak with me.