Author Archive

PseudoPod 175: Flash on the Borderlands II

Show Notes

Theme music as usual: “Bloodletting on the Kiss” by Anders Manga
Additional music in this episode: “Ihaveseenthis” by Hopeful Machines


A writhing pile of flash fiction stories combined, against all reason, into one congealed mass.


The Desert

by Tom Leveen


“They haven’t moved since . . .” Dom started to say, then cut himself off. I knew how the sentence finished. Since Trish and Jack had made a run for their car parked beyond the driveway, that’s what he was going to say. Since the spiders had swarmed them.


Benefits

By John Robinson
Read by Freeman Goodyear


The real person will never know that a copy of them just committed adultery in another part of town because, well, we can grow you from a piece of hair. A bit of skin. Fingernail clipping. Done. Person goes home, clone gets reduced to composite atoms, spouse is none the wiser — everybody’s happy!


Bird in a Wrought Iron Cage

by John Alfred Taylor


He opened up the musty buffalo-hide trunk with its green-stained brass fittings and pulled out the cage inside. For a second, I thought it held a huge brown spider, until I saw the fingernails like broken roots. Then it crawled to the corner of the cage and picked up a pen.

Pseudopod 174: The Primakov


The Primakov

by R.J. Hobbs


It was a Tuesday night when the Primakov received an emergency transmission on the ICT radio from The Bakapor, a distressed fishing vessel from Petropavlovsk. The captain translated the Russian slowly, word by word, with a phrasebook. The night was completely calm, and the ocean lapped up against the hull with gentle rhythmic intensity. The Bakapor had lost fuel after a storm, and required additional petrol if the sailors were ever to see their wives and mothers again. The Primakov wouldn’t even have to change direction to give them assistance.

Pseudopod 173: Bophuthatswana


Bophuthatswana

by Lavie Tidhar


It was just before the referendum, when white people voted on giving black people the right to vote. The skies were clear, the African sun was hot on my young face, and the wild scent of earth, of renewal, was in everything. All the Stop signs had F.W. sprayed on them. Stop F.W. Stop De Klerk.

Eugène Terre’Blanche was king.

I watched the Boer Nation on TV. Eugène, big and red-faced, a barrel of beer full of righteous White-Christian indignation. Eugène and his boys. I watched the bombs flower over Johannesburg in brilliant reds and yellows, fire and blood. Eugène and his boys valiantly rode to battle with pipe-bombs and guns, and I watched it on television. I felt like I was locked up, bound within the confines of the house, the garden, the walls, the barbed wire.

Pseudopod 172: The Dude Who Collected Lovecraft


The Dude Who Collected Lovecraft

by Nick Mamatas and Tim Pratt


I thought about the brittle old letters in my briefcase, which included (among genial advice on writing and cranky complaints about publishers) a few passages of deep loathing about “the niggers and immigrants who fester and shamble in the slums of our fallen cities.” Ah, Lovecraft. I always wondered how my great-grandfather’s letters back to him might have read. I doubted if old Cavanaugh Payne ever told his idol that he was a “miscegenator” himself. Three generations later, I was fresh out of white skin privilege myself, but I had enough of Cavanaugh’s legacy to clear all my debts, assuming I could ever find the isolated country house where this collector lived.

The hand-drawn map Fremgen had mailed me was crude, and obviously not to scale, so it was a little like following a treasure map made by a pirate with a spatial perception disorder.