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"Science Fiction" means—to us—everything found in the science fiction section of a bookstore, or at a science fiction convention, or amongst the winners of the Hugo awards given by the World Science Fiction Society. This includes the genres of science fiction (or sci-fi), fantasy, slipstream, alternative history, and even stories with lighter speculative elements. We hope you enjoy the broad range that SF has to offer.
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Fantasy

High Fantasy


Fairies and Elves, Unicorns and Dwarves. It's important to note that here there be dragons--most of them, anyway.

by Barbara A. Barnett
At midnight on her ninth birthday, Alison Marie was crowned Queen of the Nightlands; she decreed that flowers should glow in the dark and that bats should dine with her at supper. At midnight on her tenth birthday, she was named Keeper of the Secret Word, which she whispered to her trusted steed, a giant frog who galloped through the moors. On her eleventh birthday, Alison Marie was worshipped as Goddess of the Sky. She spread her dragon wings each night and breathed the stars to life with fire. But at midnight on her twelfth birthday, Alison Marie became the daughter of a widowed man, and she made no more visits to her other lives. There is no memory in those worlds, she thought as she touched the cold, papery cheek of her mother's body. And so I shall remain in this world and be a Servant of Death.
Published on Jul 5, 2013
by Beth Cato
In the back corner of the barn, the unicorn watched her with expressionless eyes. He didn't tug against the ropes. One cloven hoof tapped the hard dirt. Bandages swaddled his left foreleg from fetlock to knee. Emma had found him a week ago snared in the barbed wire. She brought him home, cared for him, and stroked the silky length of his forelock. It would take him weeks to mend and hold weight on that leg.
Published on Oct 12, 2010
by Ryan Creel
She opened her eyes, revealing golden orbs that glittered like stars in the night. And as the morning sun rose slowly over the northern mountains, black pupils narrowed to slits, and stood like knives, to accommodate the light.
Published on Jun 4, 2012
by Amanda C. Davis
Say you've got a problem. Might be big, might be small. Almost always to do with money. Maybe you can't afford to feed your kid. Maybe you can't make the rent. Maybe you've thought about all the different ways to get yourself out of this hole, and they've gotten bigger and crazier--theft and fraud and suicide and murder--and you're just about ready to start trying the worst of them. Here's what you do.
Published on May 16, 2011
by Sarah L. Edwards
She smiles to see him so, content, healthy, for dimly she remembers another time when he did not appear so well, before his father returned from the mountains with the gently beating box of stone.
Published on Oct 26, 2010
by Alyc Helms
When the Bargain was first made--so the stories went--the leaves on the trees had just turned. The world was dressed in rubies and gold, and autumn rains darkened wood to ebony. But each Bargain lasted a year and a day. As the seasons cycled, the day of sacrifice crept through the winter. This year, a spring ice storm sheathed the sprouting branches and new leaf buds in a silver thaw. From everywhere, crystalline brilliants flashed and winked. The Sacrifice stood on the approach to the Keep, though neither of them deserved their titles. Enid was just a scared girl, and the keep was less like a dwelling built by men and more like the cocoon of some great larval insect. Brittle, colorless stone dribbled down from an amber-glass dome to grip at the hilltop like the fingers of a keloid scar. The entry causeway stretched before her like the gullet of the great beast she was slated for.
Published on Nov 4, 2011
by K.G. Jewell
"No, sir, I don't think your problem is with the fridge elf." I watched the technician bend his thin frame behind the refrigerator as he spoke, flashing his light through the cooling fan into the inner recess of the unit. "He looks pretty happy. He's got himself satellite TV and a case of Fritos. If the writer's strike isn't over when football season wraps up, you might have a problem, but you should be fine in the meantime. He doesn't have a clue about anything going on around here." I recalled the nametag on the technician's blue coveralls had read "Ed." Ed shifted to his stomach, peering into the inch between the linoleum flooring and the bottom of the refrigerator. "Ah ha! Just as I suspected," he said triumphantly.
Published on Mar 18, 2011
by Andrew Kaye
Jonathan ate elves because they were high in protein and vitamin B, and he fed them to his wife for the same reason. She was three months pregnant and couldn't stomach most foods; only elves satisfied her without bringing on a ripple of nausea in her belly. He prepared them for her like a tuna fish sandwich, chopping the cooked meat into small, moist chunks and mixing it with mayonnaise and a blob of sweet relish, then smearing the resulting paste between slices of toasted Wonder Bread.
Published on Mar 10, 2011
by Mary Robinette Kowal
Even though her parents had always told her they'd come to the mortal world for the sole purpose of conceiving her, even though her childhood had been filled with fairy tales in which she was the chosen one, even seeing their glamour, Kim had never fully believed them. Because the alternative, that she was the first fairy born into the mortal world since the gate closed, was crazy. She gestured at the parchment. "Can I see it?"
Published on Sep 17, 2010
by Jamie Lackey
Ellandra followed the unicorn deeper and deeper into the dying wood. She saw it only as flashes of white in the sunlight that filtered through the brown leaves, but it had to be a unicorn. Unicorns maintained the balance in the world, and her land was dying before its time. They couldn't allow this to continue. Ellandra stopped to rest at every tree, her thin chest aching with each breath. Her legs trembled beneath her, and her hands were weak and clumsy, clutching at crumbling bark.
Published on Mar 7, 2013
by Ian McHugh
In the days when fairies were still to be found in the world, and wishes could come true, there lived a wishwriter and his wife. The wishwriter was a clever man, but plain, and born with a twisted back that made him stoop. His wife was beautiful, gentle and generous, and she loved him just as he was. The wishwriter was happy, for this was just as he had wished. His wife contented herself that her husband, too, was gentle and generous, and it did not hurt her to love him.
Published on Jul 19, 2011
by Holli Mintzer
After graduation, still in the white dress the school made all the girls wear, you go down to the lake to see the mermaids. It's a long walk: through the backyard of your father's house to the woods, over the neighbors' gate, down the lane and under the bridge and across the irrigation ditch. This early in the summer, the grass in the meadow is knee-high and still green, and the tangle of vegetation down the slope of the hill smells damp and alive. Along the lakeshore, the mud sucks at the heels of your new white sandals, bought to match, until you take them off and hook the straps around one wrist. They've left the start of blisters in two spots, on the top of each foot. The grotto where the mermaids live is on the far side of the lake, far past where most people bother to go. There's a path, but it's not much more than a deer trail, and you remind yourself to bring the hedge clippers, the next time you come. The raspberry canes will creep across the path, otherwise, and they're prickly.
Published on Jul 6, 2012
by Jaime Lee Moyer
My Dearest Miranda, I must apologize for being so remiss in not answering your last letter promptly. I do hope you'll forgive me once I explain.
Published on Oct 18, 2011
by Mari Ness
She married the dragon when she was only twenty. She kept her hand on his head throughout the ceremonies, holding it absolutely still in fear that his sharp scales would cut through her skin. A human priest, then a dragon officiant--did dragons have priests? She would have to find out--performed the twin ceremonies beneath the moons, first human, then dragon, then the signing of the bond, dragon and human. The dragon let the village tavern keeper feed her the traditional honey bread and wine. She gave him the tiny garnet, all that the village could afford, smaller, she knew, than the great gems the dragons exchanged when they wed, dragon to dragon. She knelt as he blew flames across her head. He stayed still as she placed the gentlest of kisses on his scaly nose. She tasted blood as she stepped away. The villagers applauded politely; the dragons blew flames against the wind.
Published on Dec 27, 2013
by Kat Otis
Everyone knows that humans shouldn't eat or drink when visiting Faerie, but no one's quite sure why. I searched the internet and found a bunch of different theories. Maybe you'll end up trapped forever, enslaved to whoever fed you. Maybe you'll get transformed into some hideous beast. Maybe you'll starve to death, never able to eat human food again. Or maybe it's some combination of all the above. I pestered my faerie--well, half-faerie--boyfriend for answers while he filled my cracked vinyl lunchbox with human food, but Maelon refused to explain and finally demanded, "Look, do you want to meet my parents or not?"
Published on Jun 18, 2012
by Alter S. Reiss
4 Springsolm, 2347 Mercedrin & Hart, Specialty Importers,
Published on Jul 9, 2012
by Sean R Robinson
She thought that The Machine would be easy compared to unstitching a tesseract. She didn't know when the creation had earned itself a name, complete with capital letters, but as she peered into another of the supplementary power coils, she thought it was around the same time she created her lab coat. Every scientiste she'd read about, whether they studied the algedonics of whales south of the tropic of cancer, or were engineers developing bronze bas-reliefs to commemorate the fifteenth moon landing, deserved a coat to mark proficiency in their study.
Published on Nov 13, 2013
by Damon Shaw
The invaders kicked down the gate in the village stockade. Eurwen heard the crowd behind her moan in fear, but did not allow herself to flinch as the flimsy barrier crashed to the ground. She raised her hand, as much to still her own heart as to calm her people. The soldiers marched into the village in perfect step. They moved like wolves, their weight centered and low. As they neared, Eurwen fought to control her rising dread. The rumors of the dragon's army were true. Each man was inhumanly handsome.
Published on Apr 29, 2011
by David Steffen
Matthew spent half the morning removing rocks from the western fields before he felt the first rumblings through the soles of his feet. He looked up to see a cloud of dust moving quickly down the dirt road in his direction. The ground shook harder and harder as it approached until he had to crouch just to keep from falling over. It stopped on the point of the road nearest to him, and when the dust cleared, he saw a dragon bigger than his house. It was covered in a thick layer of road dust, which made it seem all the more real. Stranger than that, shields of every shape and size were strapped over every inch of its body. A belt spanned its waist with a lance in a scabbard, and a huge black cauldron served as a helmet, the handle tucked securely under its chin.
Published on Oct 12, 2011
by Sean Vivier
One Your Uncle Abraxas stands at the door. His eyes are wide and his hair tangled. He lifts his chin and sniffs at you.
Published on Apr 17, 2013
by Ian Watson
"Right, apprentice lad, welcome to Ravenstower! As yer already well aware, or bluddy ought to be, the Thirteen Dukedoms communicates by raven-post, and us 'ere is the central ravenry of this 'ere fine city of Orth, proud capital of Northland. Woz yer name again?" "Igar, Ser."
Published on Aug 8, 2013
by Sylvia Spruck Wrigley
I appreciate your showing up. I know. Putting that ad onto OKCupid probably wasn't the best way to deal with this. I just... I didn't know where to turn for help. Maybe I should have just explained outright, but I was worried you might not come. I'll tell you everything, I will. It started with the caterpillars. Seriously.
Published on Nov 28, 2011
by jonathan schneeweiss
Izam's fingers moved on their own. They found his sunken chest. And counted his ribs. His father would have slapped his hand away. A stupid habit of a stupid boy. A stupid starving boy who counted his ribs when he was hungry even though it only made him hungrier. Izam knew it was stupid but he could not help it. He was so hungry.
Published on Feb 17, 2014
 
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