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Role Model

The countryside was in flames, Armies descended like locusts on farms and villages, devouring everything they could before marching off with another helpless population center in their sites. For one Inn struggling Inn, though, the arrival of the marauders was a miracle.
Crown Prince  William Ausburg Courber Fredrick Zollern the Fifth, or merely the Crown Prince William to those who couldn't commit the chain of titles and names to memory, was on campaign. In either war or peace, the Crown Prince was a magnet for the creme de la creme of any society. Luckily for the owner of the Inn the Williams as a man of especially notable blood, he was above pillaging.
The decaying wooden walls of the establishment brimmed with nobility. The Crown Princes entourage mingled with local men of property who hoped to endear themselves to their conquerers early.
The rod spined Crow Prince William sat at the head of a long wooden table. To his right was his aid de camp and second cousin General Schwar…
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Do Not Adjust Your Set!

According to Google Analytics, the majority of readers that visit this site are in China, Hong Kong, Italy, and the US. All places where millions of people have been put on lockdown. So, if you're looking for a way to pass the time once the alcohol has run out, might I suggest my newest collection of short stories now available on Amazon!
This anthology is a bit longer than the others but still a breezy read. I think the title speaks enough to the theme. Buy it here today!


Musical Chairs

Triton was built on the floor of an alien sea. It was a network of austere rectangular facilities connected by titanium tunnels that channeled the water like a hulking industrial Venice. Triton wasn't a city in the organic sense, although people did live within the sunless confines.
Its growth was not an organic process. It was a prefabricated facility built for the practice purposes of housing a specific population of humans while they toiled to extract the resources buried in the ocean floor.
For a time, Triton was a success. Rising production lead to growth, but the precarious balance between population and resources was always maintained. A creature of unimaginable sized suddenly and without warning seized the entirety of Triton in its grasp. The beast engulfed Triton and slowly began to crush the life out of it the way a boa constrictor does to its prey. The aquatic monster was so enormous no one could see it in its entirety, there was no way of knowing what it was, but it he…

Ethical

Jill was sitting up in bed against the headboard with her laptop resting just above her knees. She had just finished typing her script and decided to scroll through her social media feeds one last time before getting some much-needed sleep.
She refreshed her Facebook page.  There was a procession of photos featuring acquaintances, colleagues, friends, and family doing everything from scuba diving off the coast of Ice Land to eating tofu. Each photo got a glance and depending on the content a like.
"Wow, you should check out Dakota's pictures from Croatia. It looks really cool!" Jill called to her fiance Miguel, who was in the adjoining bathroom.
The sink stopped, "What?" Miguel replied
"I said Dakota's pictures of Croatia are really cool!" Jill repeated.
"Oh," Miguel replied, and the water resumed running.
Jill kept scrolling until she saw the words "BREAKING" in bold red letters.
From there, the feed went from being a self-per…

King for a Day

Like an animal, the adolescent boy was destined to be slaughtered, and like an animal, his blood and flesh sacrifice was a gesture to please the eternal forces that sustained his people. The hungry gods that accepted the gift of young carved flesh would be satiated for the time being, and in turn, would protect the kingdom until it came time again to offer up more sustenance.
To make their gift special, the boy whose blood was to pay for prosperity was anointed king for a day.
Ceremonies, feasts, and gifts made for a spectacular climax to a relatively short life. The dizzying experience and sense of duty were opiates that dulled the boy’s suppressed dread of the main event.
By nightfall, the boy was laying on an altar, stripped of the kingly robes and ceremonial ornaments of power. The real king had returned to take it all back. The boy’s tear filed eyes were staring up at the point of a dagger clutched in the hands of a high priest.
This last moment was the longest of his life.  The …

The Living Dead

As we advance in years, we find time has made some people superfluous to us or has made us unnecessary to other people. To us, as to them, we become for all intents and purposes the living dead. There is a particular frustration character to grieving our living breathing losses. They are present but forever absent. It is a state that is not so final but quite as devoid of any hope.
In the past, it seemed these souls were destined to accompany us through life, but then gradually or somehow without warning, they’re lost to us forever. Their memory becomes an abstract figment of dreams.
The living dead. They are our friends, our family, our lovers, physically they still exist but are always separated by the unbridgable and ever yawning gape of time.

Black Hole

"What's inside the black hole?" The seven-year-old Grace asked the rest of the breakfast table before taking a sip orange juice.
The adults at the table were caught off guard by the question. Eric, Grace's father, froze up as he was about to take a bit of his avocado toast. The slice of bread lingered in his hand before his gaping mouth. His eyes shifted to the big casement windows that peered into the sky above lake Michigan. It was as if he'd forgotten, but there it was the roaming portal to oblivion hanging in the sky just beside the sun. The irresistible force of this fissure in the fabric of existence was devouring earth's life-giving star, slowly draining it from the sky into its eternal gullet.
"Well, no one knows for sure," Grace's mother Meridith interjected.
"My teacher says it's going to suck up the whole world," Grace said with a dramatic gesture of her hands.
"I was an engineer at a start-up that was trying to des…