The Best of BCS Anthologies – a great gift for that new Kindle, tablet, or smart phone
“The Death of Roach,” by Spencer Ellsworth
I walked away from the Flare that had once been Scorpion, away from Tal-hedran and toward the deepest parts of the desert. I stumbled in the sand, weeping as much as Frog had when we were children in the manor of stone. I had seen myself, and I was empty, no more than a vessel for my father’s belief.
“The Traitor Baru Cormorant, Her Field-General, and Their Wounds,” by Seth Dickinson
She leaves the concubine boy sprawled against the parapet and turns to the estuary, so that he falls on her right and vanishes from awareness. She knows he is still there, of course; she is not touched. But she cannot make herself know it, cannot make herself grasp that he still exists. Her mind insists that he has been snatched away, drawn off-stage.
“Read This Quickly, For You Will Only Have a Moment...,” by Stephen Case, from BCS #81
The one who brings your food is named Osla. My birds are trained well, and this one will have struck at his eyes. Take this parchment quickly, speak his name, and he will fall like the rain outside your window. You must move quickly, for the first guard will be at the door.
“Shit,” I said, and that sat there ugly and twitching between us for a few seconds before his stallion decided he’d had enough and wanted to go check out the mares. The King just had enough time to swoop up into his saddle before the horse made a beeline through the crowd. “Come and see me sometime, Livia!” he called, and then he was gone, swallowed up in the blue.