From Modern Mythcraft to Magical Surrealism

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Fiction

The Pragmatical Princess

Princess Ousmani had fallen asleep in her chains, from boredom. She woke to the weight of a dragon’s head resting uncomfortably on her stomach. One rough, scaly paw kneaded her left shoulder, pricking at her skin.

The World Is Cruel, My Daughter

One day it was, “Why haven’t you any hair, Mother?” She stroked her own golden locks, which now swept her ankles, as she waited for an answer.

The World Is Cruel, My Daughter by Cory Skerry

Swans

My name is Emma Bear, and I am eleven years old. I live on Black Ankle Road beside the Licking River. I live in a palace. My father is a king. I have a fairy godfather.

The Wolves of Brooklyn

It was snowing when the wolves first came, loping down Flatbush Ave., lithe and fast, panting clouds, their paws landing with a soft, heavy sound like bombs falling somewhere far away.

The Wolves of Brooklyn by Catherynne M. Valente

The Machine

Graveyards creak with too many bones, and the weight of headstones, and when the wind blows the air is dusty with the dead. Ah life, its hoary inevitability. What’s the point?

The Machine by M. Rickert

Union Falls

But the girl was kicking off her other shoe and at the Casio before Deel had worked out but what. And what she pounded out with her feet was Meatloaf’s “Bat Out of Hell.”

You Have Been Turned into a Zombie by a Friend

You know all about bending and breaking their terms of service; it would take some serious hacking, magical or mundane, to pull this off. But you suspect magic.

You Have Been Turned Into a Zombie by a Friend by Jeremiah Tolbert

Virgin of the Sands

Graham came out of the desert leaving most of his men dead behind him. He debriefed, he bathed, he dressed in a borrowed uniform, and without food, without rest, though he needed both, he went to see the girl.

The Immortality Game

Decades later the music was what really tipped Glen off. He heard a song on the radio, a brand new release, and remembered the day he’d first heard it, twenty years earlier.

The Immortality Game by Cat Rambo

A Prince of Thirteen Days

I clear my throat. “Mister Statue Man,” I say, because I haven’t grown up on the Border without learning to be polite around magic. “Do you think you might have sex with me?”