If We Shadows Have Offended

by stills 1954, Vermont    Each classroom of Hathaway Ladies College had a heavy clock over the door, the long minute hand of which acted as a conductor’s baton upon the scores of girls perched upon the benches of the lecture hall. As the hand drew nearer the top of the hour, a concerted susurrus […]


All’s Fair in Love and Taxes

by stills “I don’t get it. Your dad isn’t really the miserly type. I mean he’s not going around clipping coupons and under-tipping at restaurants.” Max made a barely audible noise of assent. He was looking out the window at the vineyards and orchards sweeping past, over-long blond bangs whipping in his eyes.  “He’s not […]


The Shape of a Place Out West

by stills The air was still cool, dew clinging to the blades of wild rye and reed grass and the yellow arrowleaf flowers in the ditches, but when JJ slid into the driver’s seat of her ’85 pickup, the weak morning sun had already warmed the creaking vinyl under her backside, creating a cozy little […]


Cable Entertainment

by stills August, 1937 It was 7:55 in the morning, and Manhattan was already beginning to simmer and stink in the summer heat. Ida was sweating under her light jacket as she stepped through the service entrance at the back of the Royal Carlton Hotel. Inside it was not precisely cool, but it was dim […]


All I Want

by stills   “Take your mask down for me,” the bored customs agent said, holding up Alex’s passport to compare as he tugged his mask down beneath his chin. “Thank you, that’s fine. What brings you to the States?” “Visiting a friend,” Alex said as he readjusted the surgical mask. “For how long?” “Two weeks.” […]


Saint Michael the Righteous

by stills April 1954 Two bodies were a headache. Three were a pattern. What that pattern was, Albany Police Detective Robert Thompson couldn’t yet say, but he’d damn well keep looking until he found it. He crunched up the gravel drive of Mount Hawthorne School for Boys, snow flurries whipping down from the north, dusting […]


Men of Business

by stills July, 1844 Henry barely got his hands up in time to stop his nose slamming into the grimy, soot-streaked stones of the alley wall. The man behind him had a firm grip on the back of his jacket, threatening the seams if Henry struggled. His bulk was warm in the cool night air, […]


The Petit Allegro

by stills The shipboard computer booted up with a whirring whine. Cascading functions executed themselves, slowly at first and then gaining speed as the processors warmed up. Diagnostics, inventory, memory. The captain’s keycode and biometrics were familiar. Captain Lucas Graham leaned against the console and grinned in the general direction of the main interface screen. […]