Grandmother’s Country

The Bull was taking his time, speaking a few words and then staring across the fire in long silence. The smoke was terrible, but the old man did not seem to mind it. His granite countenance gave nothing away. Some of soldiers said it was Sitting Bull himself who killed Custer, but Maclester chalked that […]

The Other Cheek

Lannie told me a story that happened some weeks after the tragedy. That’s what Lannie called it. The tragedy, as though it was some kind of sad movie instead of a mob of white people killing Negroes in the streets, burning down our homes and businesses. Anyway, Lannie and his momma were shopping for groceries […]

Ghosts

He is at his hotel room door before he realizes he’s forgotten the coffee. Too late now, he thinks, and unlocks the door. She smiles up at him from the bed, then notices his pallor. “My god. What happened?” He feels his knees begin to buckle, collapses into a chair, the sweat running down the […]

Finalmente Azarado

Nicote sat with his back against the dank stone, arms and legs weighed down by the immense chains bolted to his ankles and wrists. Ribeiro sat across fom him, similarly bound, his head drooping. Nicote cleared his throat grinned, feeling the gap where the guard’s spear-butt had knocked out his front tooth. “Another tight spot, […]

Father Cares

It was just after eleven when the bell began tolling. The loudspeakers played a recording from the San Francisco Temple days, the whole church singing Go down, Moses, way down in Egypt’s land Tell ole Pharoah to let my people go while Father’s voice, urgent yet  calm, said the words I’d come to dread these […]

Let’s Get Out Of Here

Crouching, she tried to look out the grime-encrusted window. “You think he saw us?” “Doubtful. Besides, people come here all the time.” “So you keep saying.” “Let’s walk around.” Their feet crunched the rubble that littered the floor, motes of dust hanging in the still air as they moved through the vast room. Long tables […]

Pomp

In essence, it was a royal journey through the Carniolan estates so His Majesty might receive the hereditary homage in person. Simple enough, but Emperor Leopold placed great value in pomp. Nothing less than three brigades of horse guards in full turn-out, fifteen gilt carriages to carry what amounted to his entire court, dozens of […]

Five to Four

George stood at his mother’s door and composed his expression. For years now the mere mention of Arlington was apt to send her into fits, and her health had not been good. She could read his face like a headline. Still, this was good news––of a sort. He tapped and entered. She sat upright in […]

Sükhbaatar Well Met

“Have you ever seen such a horseman?” Yanjmaa had not. Certainly she had seen great riders, even a Mongol cavalryman famous for throwing a dagger and skewering a running rabbit as he galloped past,  reigning in and bending in the saddle to retrieve both weapon and quarry in one quick motion. But she had never […]

Bump In A Long Road

She ran her hands over her leather-clad thighs, flexed her fingers. Her trusty Bell helmet had been knocked askew in the tumble but seemed sound enough. She pulled it around so she could see her situation. Her motorbike was on its side, about six feet from the cliff edge. She breathed a sigh of relief, […]