“The Crystal Stair, Pt. I,” by Charles Coleman Finlay & Rae Carson Finlay
Khatire couldn’t seem to catch her breath, afraid to swallow the fouled air. The cut in her palm throbbed like heartache. She had just killed one of the precious vaimen. In the eyes of the emperor, her life was forfeit.
“Kingspeaker,” by Marie Brennan
I have not spoken with my own voice in nearly seven years. I knew this would be my fate long before it happened–but only now do I understand what it means.
“Architectural Constants,” by Yoon Ha Lee, from Issue #2.
The spider stepped out of the gate. She was a stooped woman with dark hair. The sockets in her face were empty and scarred over. She wore gloves that were cut off at the first knuckle. At each fingertip was a tiny glittering eye.