STORYGLOSSIA Issue 19, April 2007
First Love West Side Highway by Stephanie Dickinson
"See, I told you everything was going to be okay," Hawkins said, the guy who used to be a bouncer at Crobar then at Clubland, keeping to his side of the taxi's back seat. His face shone with dimples and his warm eyes seemed to drink in all the night's trouble. But it was his soft voice that convinced her to get into the taxi with him. His niceness. She'd been lucky, all that fear and then it had worked out . . .
The Clown Beneath by James A.W. Shaw
Peterson, teetering between anger and grief, stares at the cell phone. He needs to get to this party—the mother has already paid in advance—but he flips the phone back open and dials Miranda. He gets voice mail, and leaves a message—his eighth since last night. He reclines the bucket seat, remembers last night's fifth of vodka, now half-empty inside the console, takes two quick shots, and sips a third while thinking about how stupid he was to go to Miranda's. Marc. Of course she was with Marc . . .
Touch by Jill Stegman
Only one bone came back. It was a fragment about four inches long, enfolded in bubble wrap and as smooth as driftwood. Merriam didn't know what part of his body it was from, and she didn't ask. She only knew it had been found in Cambodia and that DNA proved it was Larry's . . .
Keeping Up Disappearances by Darby Harn
And we're back with a mind blowing new development in the case of little Sara Dennison—I want to welcome my next guest, who some of you out there may recognize: Betty Riehl, what's a glamorous Hollywood actress like you doing out there in rural Iowa, in the middle of this tragic case? . . .
Penguins in Amsterdam by Patricia DeLois
The damn phone won't stop ringing. Ordinarily I would know who's calling, but I'm still half asleep, and drunk, and the psychic thing isn't kicking in. I light a cigarette on my way to the living room, where I grope for the phone and croak something into it . . .
Vibe by Shellie Zacharia
There's an old manuscript. It sits in a file folder marked In Progress though the folder has not been touched in years. This is not progress, or perhaps it is, the writer has ignored the folder all these years. Maybe it is the writer who is in progress. . . .
The Bureaucrat by Christopher Battle
A clerk sits in an office, typing and stamping, writing notes, answering phones. The office is a cramped square where the skeleton light of fluorescent lamps exaggerates the flatness of his desk, drying the colors out into off-whites and tans. He wears a pale blue shirt, a muted red tie, grey pants, black shoes . . .
Sorry Kid by Virginia Reeves
She had a text message from her mother. She closed the phone and took another hit. It would be good news. She'd never put something bad in a text message, would she, this woman who hated the phone she'd gotten for Christmas from her daughter, who hated the very idea of email? . . .
The Shift by Susan Buttenwieser
Lying back on the sofa, Russell pulls out the ultrasound picture tucked inside his wallet. This fuzzy black and white image of a tiny skeleton's arm will become his first child in just a few months. At home, a large pile of baby books is stacked up on the floor by his side of the bed. Fay refuses to look at them . . .
26 Miles by Julia LaSalle
Bruno. That's what I named the man. Bruno the Brontosaurus. And, of course, the little one, Baby. It's one of the games I like to play—giving strangers friendly nicknames; some day I'll play it with my own kids, when my eggs are finally able to do their work, but for now I do it mostly to keep myself company on these long runs. Helps to pass the time inside my head. . . .
The Only Reasonable Explanation by Simon A. Smith
After his wife promised him that she meant business, after he watched her unzip her suitcase and begin filling it with pajamas, a clean pair of silk panties, some toiletries, Richard went into the kitchen and started washing dishes . . .
Up by Justin Benton