Of course it would rain. Hungry and footsore after three days of walking, his back and shoulders aching from carrying his heavy pack, all Malik needed now was to be soaked in water that barely resisted becoming ice.
Sometimes I set stories in San Francisco because I have friends who live there. No family yet, sadly. I like to imagine them reading what I write and maybe smiling. I’m setting this story in Tokyo-Tokyo for the same exact reason. Greg, for one, lives in Tokyo-Tokyo.
There was a game we played at my primary school called “Giant in the forest.” Every day, even if it rained, the fourth and fifth grade teachers took us to this small playground with a jungle gym, swings, and a big grassy space where we could run if we wanted to.
She was being chased. She kicked off her shoes, which were slowing her down. At the same time her heavy skirts vanished and she found herself in her usual work clothes. Relieved of the weight and constriction, she was able to run faster.
Ten years ago, Clara had attended a creative writing workshop run by Karen Joy Fowler, and what Karen Joy told her was: “We are living in a science fictional world.” During the workshop, Karen Joy also kept saying, “I am going to talk about endings, but not yet.” But Karen Joy never did get around to talking about endings, and Clara left the workshop still feeling as if she was suspended within it, waiting for the second shoe to drop.
Once, an apple named Evan fell in love with a hummingbird, as moldy apples lying in irradiated playgrounds are sometimes wont to do. “I like your wings,” Evan said. The hummingbird briefly landed on him. “You are very warm,” the hummingbird observed, because hummingbirds are, generally, imbeciles. Too much energy spent flapping those pretty wings, too little spent on the brain.
Once, not so long ago but before our time, all people were the same person. That’s not to say that they weren’t immersed in their own lives; they were, of course, as people always have been—millions of fish in their millions of bowls. It’s just that they were equally immersed in everyone else’s.
Come here, cher, and I tell you a story. One time there is a girl lives out in the swamp. Her skin and hair are white like the feathers of a white egret and her eyes are pink like a possum’s nose. When she is a baby, the loup-garous find her floating on the bayou in an old pirogue and take her to Tante Eulalie. Tante Eulalie does not howl and grow hair on her body when the moon is full like the loup-garous. But she hide in the swamp same as they do.
How They Met: They met at a wedding. He was in the wedding party. She was serving canapés at the reception. On some level, reclining in a fountain while holding a tray of canapés is more efficient than circulating through a crowd with them. On most levels, it isn’t. “Canapé?” the mermaid asked the werewolf when he wandered near the fountain. “Isn’t this just garnish?” said the werewolf, picking up a wilted stem of parsley.
I have lived in the village all my life. Miss Havisham has told me the story over and over again: how, as an infant, I was found in a basket on the front steps of the church, and how Reverend Rivers asked the villagers gathered for service on Sunday morning which of them would be willing to raise a foundling. And how Miss Havisham immediately said, “I will.”