Freezer Burn by Joni Caggiano

Snow had fallen for five days in a row, and we were no longer allowed outside.  Yet, my hateful sisters, Ruth and Elizabeth, somehow obtained mom’s approval to drive to the deli right up the street.  Mom gave them money for sandwiches and hot cocoa.  They both stuck their tongues out at me as they…

The Water Writer by Britta Benson

The ritual was painstaking. It never got any easier. First the freezing cold shower to make his skin tingle with shock, jerk the lethargy out of his bones, bump his soul into existence. Then, turn the dial to piping hot, leaving him red raw, aching, reduced to a whimper. Next, lower the temperature back to…

Special Delivery by Joni Caggiano

The giblets of a turkey never got me worked up. Thoughts of stuffing, long-necked turkey soup, or even giblet gravy didn’t dance in my head.  Instead, my mouth would water when Mama breaded and fried up those turkey gizzards, yummy! Our menu included lots of small lobster tails with the usual seafood trimmings.  Sides included…

The Angel on Broadway by Nigel Byng

“Oy! You hold ya horses now.” She shouted at the driver while standing in the doorway to the bus. I ran, half asleep, dropping my half-eaten packet of chocolate digestives. I didn’t care. I grabbed a seat and promptly tried to get back into that napping phase like a lazy alligator. “Simpletons. Every one of…

You Can Have Her by Dawn Pisturino

The call came in on his office landline.        “Tony Blackwell?  We want two million dollars in small bills, or your wife eats a bullet.”        Tony laughed.  “She’s a whore.  I don’t give a damn about her.  Do you know how many times she’s cheated on me?”        “Hey, man, I’m sorry, but she’s…

Buttercream and Biscuits by Britta Benson

I’ll chap her door. What else can I do? That woman must know something that I don’t. Hettie died on Friday. The family didn’t hang around. No wake, no cake. Her son clearly adopting the less is less approach. ‘She wouldn’t have wanted a fuss’, he said on the phone, like he knew her. Trust…

Dead Man’s Party by Joni Caggiano

Isabella was having a difficult time breathing.  Every inch of her was crying silently, releasing her anger on the gas pedal.  She restrained herself by pumping the breaks so her husband, Liam, whom she was tailing, would not see her red Tesla. Isabella was a striking woman who loved her husband of twenty years.  She…

The Door by Susan Beetlestone

I almost ran into it the first time. Almost every morning, about five forty-five, I get up, drag on my running gear and go out into the nearly empty streets. Running so early has two advantages. My resistance to exercise has not built up yet, because I’m hardly awake, and there are not too many…

Ghosting by Richard M. Ankers

Not ghosted, but ghosting. There’s a difference, though it’s too subtle for most air-breathers. One may ghost into any room, into which, in retrospect, one would say they ghosted. The ghosted are identifiable by time and place as in seeing the ghost here or there at such or when, whereas one is only ever ghosting…

Secret Admirer by Dawn Pisturino

The first day of May had arrived, and the world seemed bursting with flowers – red, yellow, purple, blue, and pink!  As Amy walked home from her office job, she breathed in the sweet fragrances that wafted all around her, from the blooming gardens bordering the sidewalk to the flower boxes – alive with living…

South to Key West by Edward N. McConnell

A stiff breeze whipped across the snowy field. There was silence . . . then,             “Cold today, isn’t it?” The wife said.             “Yeah, not as bad as last week though. I don’t know why we stay here in the winter. Next year, let’s go south, I’m thinking Key West,” said the husband.            …

Naming Ceremony by Britta Benson

She called this child ‘Dandelion’, after the only thing that would thrive in her dump of a garden. No poppy here, no marigold, not even a daisy. She was done with them and hoped, her youngest daughter would be resilient, like the bright yellow wildfire weed, that spread across the street, ready to conquer the…

Death of a Stranger by Joni Caggiano

Hearing the rush of nurses heading toward the ICU, I followed the herd.  My youthful intuition was kicking in as an eerie sense of suffocation and dread encircled me.  I suddenly felt like a child waking from a nightmare.  I was already on edge since yesterday having been informed that three nurses were raped in…

AQUA – Part 4

(A short story in Vietnamese by Trần Băng Khuê, translation into English by Nguyễn Thị Phương Trâm) PART 1- PART 2- PART 3- PART 4- Last night, I couldn’t close my eyes. I left my bed, headed for the kitchen, and found a knife with a small black handle, placed it next to a lemon…

Thursday’s Special by Joni Caggiano

It was as if the argument earlier today had grown legs and followed me to my rusty red probe. The callous words leaping and reverberating around the entrails of the safe confines of my sanctuary were horrifying.  One and a half hours to travel home, craving that egocentric time.  I turned the radio up even…

A Stormy Night by Kunjal Gupta

The night was cold and torrid winds blew kissing the roofs of all the houses in the colony. Ramu kaka’s little paan shop faced the road which veiled itself into darkness as it entered the ‘AMAR COLONY’.  He shook his head and stretched his face up in a grimace. The LED bulbs were flickering, more…