The Best of BCS, Year Two anthology now available
“Bearslayer and the Black Knight,” by Tom Crosshill
They clashed in Bear Forest, and the trees sighed around them. Unarmed, dressed only in shadow, they explored each other with sore fingers and hungry eyes. The enchantments of battle cast aside, they were two men of flesh and bone–no taller than any others and no stronger.
“Sinking Among Lilies,” by Cory Skerry
The science of anathema arrayed itself in my thoughts unbidden. I counted the marks–five in each swipe. They reached as high as a man, avoiding the iron fittings on the window frames. Whatever it was, it was as big as me. Something that size wasn’t a fair match for ignorant villagers with nothing but a book written by an ex-priest.
“A Place to Stand,” by Grace Seybold, from BCS #89
The title of the book was Principles of Light-Bearing, and Sharide was engrossed in it by the second page. She had dreamed of being a weaver, and a fisher, and a soldier, and many different wives, but the life of a seeker of knowledge had never come to her yet. When next she slept, she decided, she would try to find a life wherein she had read this book, and other books, and understood them.
“To Slay with a Thousand Kisses,” by Rodello Santos, from BCS #36 and Audio Fiction Podcast 032
Her age was impossible to say, for her face was crusted with muck and roots. Her teeth were like kernels of mottled corn. She was naked, her skin textured like stone, gray and gravelly. Wet, bulbous mushrooms grew in the moss around her womanly crevice. Her reek nearly brought me to my knees.