PseudoPod 040: Wanting to Want


Wanting to Want

by Eugie Foster

Read by Tabitha Smith


She was wide-awake, alert to every jangle of hyped-up nerves. Rolling to all fours made the twitches worse, like red-hot pins jabbing her insides. The pain in her neck flared hot as a match–a sharp, ragged sting that begged for scratching. It was the bad spot, the abscess next to her shoulder where it chaffed and rubbed against her shirt. She’d tried shooting up under her tongue to give that area a rest, but it wasn’t the same; the tongue hit too slow. The neck, with the vein so close to the surface, was the best place for the needle, even if the area burned, weeping blood and pus on some days, bringing fever on others.

PseudoPod 039: Some Things Don’t Wash Off


Some Things Don’t Wash Off

by Joel Arnold


Finally I looked at him. Bald, thin, muscular and his body covered with tattoos. I mean everywhere. On his face. His ears. All up and down the front of his back. He wore jeans and suspenders. No shirt. Just suspenders.

I caught myself staring at his teeth.

“Scrimshaw,” he said, widening his smile to expose more detail. “An art practiced for centuries by sailors.”

Each tooth was etched with a picture of a man hanging from a tree. The etchings disappeared into his throat.

PseudoPod 038: Hell’s Daycare


Hell’s Daycare

by D. Richard Pearce


With literally his last dollar, he bought a lottery ticket. That night, Beth called twice, but he ignored the phone. He curled up on the couch, gorged on chips, and watched as the lottery numbers dropped, in precise order, and matched his ticket.

With the weirdness of the last couple of weeks, winning the lottery didn’t surprise him at all. Not only that, he didn’t feel the least bit hopeful. He expected something to go wrong between now and the time he collected. Either the numbers were wrong, or he’d lose the ticket — something.

Nor was he disappointed. He did win, and Satan’s collectors allowed him to keep the decorative memento cheque, and not much else. He suspected a pattern was emerging.

PseudoPod 037: We Are All Very Lively


We Are All Very Lively

by Richard A. Becker


The really big cities had already been given the military treatment anyway, and that was mostly just plain stupid. Hallelujah, we used fuel-air explosives on the things! Nuked ’em! Genius! We destroyed ourselves to save ourselves, and if only they’d completely vaporized the targets it would’ve been fine. Well, apart from the fallout and the millions who died by friendly fire, that is.

You know, you really ought to make sure you move around a little bit more. It’s not our shift’s sleep time yet.