by Tim Pratt
A high fence of weathered wood ran along the right side, partitioning the beach for the people in the hotel. The fence ran for a distance even into the water before giving up hope of division. Harriet heard happy shouts and laughter from the other side. It was a gleaming white hotel with balconies on the back; she could see the top floors rising over the fence, much better than the ramshackle crammed-in house with rusty showerheads and sand in the mattresses. Same water, she thought, squelching her envy, they get the same beach we do.
But this was a sad little beach. Grady surged like a live wire, pulling away and eager to be in the grey-green water, but she held on and stepped with distaste around broken beer-bottles and chunks of styrofoam. The horizon was infinite and curved but the air stank of fish.
About the Author
Tim Pratt is a Hugo Award-winning SF and fantasy author, and has been a finalist for World Fantasy, Philip K. Dick, Sturgeon, Stoker, Mythopoeic, and Nebula Awards, among others. He is the author of more than 30 books, most recently multiverse adventures Doors of Sleep and Prison of Sleep. His stories have appeared at Tor.com, Lightspeed, Clarkesworld, Asimov’s, and other nice places. He’s a senior editor and occasional book reviewer at Locus, the magazine of the science fiction and fantasy field. Since 2013 he’s published a new story every month at www.patreon.com/timpratt, and he tweets incessantly at twitter.com/timpratt. He lives in Berkeley, CA.