Category / Fiction

Star Bar

Jan Stinchcomb I started going to this bar because it makes me twenty-five, but not twenty-five in the nineties, twenty-five in the seventies. The regulars are characters from the movies I grew up with: Travis Bickle pre-crazy mohawk, Theresa from Looking for Mr. Goodbar, Bobby from The Panic in Needle Park. Everyone is on edge, […]

From: The Rankin’s Trailer Court Handbook for Love Making

Steven W. McCarty This above all else: Don’t have sex with a woman whose husband is in town. This is not to discount adultery entirely, as monogamy is the refuge of the insecure, but at least let him be a truck driver or a timber worker who is trimming the fringes of the Monongalia National […]

Erica Peplin We were sitting in a booth at our favorite diner when I suggested we do the questionnaire that was supposed to make people fall in love. My girlfriend said it was a bad idea because the questionnaire, featured in a popular article, was for couples that were not already in love. I told […]

Bridget Callahan I like you. I like your jawline. I think you are cute. I think about you kissing me. Pushing yourself against me in an alleyway somewhere, your fingers running under my skirt, coaxing. Hungry for that undefined want. Americans spend 110 billion on fast food every year. America sells enough pizza every day […]

Jaikbreak

Rebecca Fishow The husband and wife are in prison. The prison is warm and dark, like the inside of an animal. The prison guard is a little sick girl who will probably die in a matter of weeks. Already the girl is bedridden. She hardly speaks, but she has complained of terrible headaches. She does […]

Matt Tompkins By the time my aunt arrived at the hospital, my uncle was dead. They’d rushed him from his office where he’d been working late. They said it was a massive heart attack, which you couldn’t say was totally unexpected: He smoked box upon box of a particular brand of fat, black cigars and […]

Shane Cashman We argued over the obituary every day for the better part of a year. The State hired us to write the announcement, holed up in a conference room—dry-erase boards, legal pads, maps, pencils, encyclopedias, that sort of thing. “How’d we get here?” someone asked at the start of most meetings. Here had multiple […]

Kim Magowan and Michelle Ross Charley is the only kid my age living at the base, and I can’t decide if he’s interesting or creepy. The day he knocks on our door to introduce himself, he teaches me War—not the boring card game my little sister Gillian likes, but Charley’s design. Creatures are our soldiers. […]

All Hazarads Model

Margaret Adams The risk analysis expert focused on the crack in the ceiling of their one-bedroom apartment as she talked. This was how she always started these conversations: arms folded behind her head, looking straight up. “It’s like the FEMA guidelines,” she said. “You don’t want to have to communicate all of your emergency response […]

Maureen Langloss I left my sunglasses in the dorm again. My memory was for shit this semester. The guys were huddled around a MacBook Air before practice. I made a visor of my hand and squinted hard. Zoe’s picture was up. Full-screen. Full-stop. The pixels of her eyes flickered in the sunlight like she was […]

Olivia Clare I drove to the cemetery with the woman who was exactly my mother’s age and who said, “Charlie and Ella. That’s who we’re looking for.” Her boots sat in the backseat of her station wagon as we drove up the short road among long-stemmed wildflowers, headstones, and pillars. Old graves. From the turn […]

Shelli Cornelison My cousin, Layla, said you had to write a letter asking your boyfriend to have sex with you. So he would have written proof he didn’t rape you or anything. Proof you wanted it. Because a lot of girls lied about getting raped, she said. If you cared about a guy, you’d never […]

Blake Kimzey First of all, they’re Polaroids Frank had to scan at his muffler shop so we could upload them to the realtor’s website. That’s why they look like ghost-hunter photos. But the realtor, Cammy, said if we wanna sell the place we gotta have photos to show. So here they are with short descriptions. […]

Emily Capettini It’s always a Prius that pulls up, license plate matching the one on her screen, a grinning selfie of a young man about her age when she first went hitchhiking. Mary tucks the phone away and slides into the back seat. “Hi,” the driver says. Tom, the phone said. “How are you tonight?” […]

Harry Leeds “I can’t stop listening to this heartbreaking voice mail message!” “10+ pics of the transformation chemotherapy does to a human body.” “Drop everything and drive to the hospital to look into your mother’s eyes for the last time RIGHT NOW.” “Here are 8 things Mom wanted to do before she died that aren’t […]

Doesn't Feel Like Work

Elizabeth Bevilacqua We taught our baby to be a maître d’. She’s trained in hospitality. She was born on a golf course. Emerged from the womb in a vest and bow tie, stood right up, and began to toddle around taking people’s gin and tonic orders. Our friends and family say, but how can you […]

James Brubaker   1. An Afternoon at the Sauna January 13, 2017 A nice, long sit in the sauna gets the toxins out. This is important, especially after a day at the office. I’ve seen people do any number of things to stay clean inside—heavy exercise, fad diets, fasts, drinking gallons of water a day, […]

Matt McDonald Wednesdays the boys are released for Free Fighting. Five minutes, in the courtyard, guards in towers. No weapons, maiming, deforming, or finishing. The rules do not explicitly mention broken bones, and maybe a dozen of the three hundred know the word maim, and there is always at least one cracked nose, arm, leg, […]

Jennifer Kircher Carr It was the time of night when the drinks blurred together, and out on the makeshift dance floor of the backyard wedding, David’s daughter, the bride, danced past with the groom, and David’s ex-wife Annie twirled past him with her new husband. The way she smiled at the husband made David walk […]

Amorak Huey Inspired by Patrick Ryan Frank Weary traveler in hotel bar at the fade of a sweltering day. Call him Don. Tad. James. Robert, Rob for short. Doesn’t matter. Salesman or consultant or some shit. Doesn’t matter. He does what we all do: enough to stay alive. The woman in the green dress at […]