Giant Slayer

July is obscenely hot, but the air conditioning broke two weeks ago and their mother won’t let them leave the house, so they suffer quietly. Felix sits on the plastic-covered couch, poking at the remote control with his toes, flipping from Maury to PBS to the station that only ever plays novellas. There is thin […]

Purple Pen

You started it. Last Thursday. Under the stairway next to the cafeteria door, there was a spot where the cameras don’t reach. The security guard was probably staring at a freshmen girl’s butt. You must have slipped right past him. I noticed it on my way to the bathroom. When I walked by, the security […]

The Price of Words

“It’s so…” I sighed and stared at the dress. “Colorful?” Phoebe guessed. I shook my head. “Stylish?” “No.” “Then I think I know what you mean.” Dreamy, I thought. Charming, lovely, exquisite, ornate. It looks like something out of the fairytales my mother told me when I was little, before the laws took our stories […]

The Charred Companion

JD twists in his chair and searches for something to toss in the fire. This shouldn’t be difficult. Woods border the site, and sticks litter the ground in the trees’ shade. A good-sized limb rests between my family’s tent and the trail that leads to the playground. But JD needs something in arm’s reach. He […]

The Dead Girl

I’ve never been afraid of ghosts. Never thought a shadowy figure appearing at the end of my bed would be all that frightening. So when the dead girl appears in my grandmother’s kitchen on a humid August morning, my eyebrows nearly hike off my forehead with excitement. My first thought is that I’m not alone […]


Dad was with me when I saw a whale go by on the back of a truck. It was black, and three people stood around it, scooping seawater from somewhere in the truck bed and throwing it onto the whale by the bucketful. “A whale just drove by,” I said to Dad. We were sitting […]