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Drabblecast 255 – The Wreck of the Charles Dexter Ward pt. 2

September 6, 2012

Cover for Drabblecast episode 255, The Wreck of the Dexter Ward pt. 2, by Bo KaierLooking away from the light that showed the Charles Dexter Ward was no longer entirely dead was as hard as opening a rusted zipper. But Cynthia did it, and didn’t let herself look back She pulled Hester a little further down the corridor and said, “Now we really need to know how she killed him. And whether it’ll work a second time…”

Drabblecast 254 – The Wreck of the Charles Dexter Ward pt. 1

August 31, 2012

Cover for Drabblecast 254, The Wreck of the Charles Dexter Ward, by Bo KaierSix weeks into her involuntary tenure on Faraday Station, Cynthia Feuerwerker needed a job. She could no longer afford to be choosy about it, either; her oxygen tax was due, and you didn’t have to be a medical doctor to understand the difficulties inherent in trying to breathe vacuum.

You didn’t have to be, but Cynthia was one. Or had been, until the allegations of malpractice and unlicensed experimentation began to catch up with her. As they had done, here at Faraday, six weeks ago…

Drabblecast 253 – Maybe the Stars

August 23, 2012

Cover for Drabblecast 253, Maybe the Sea, by Steve SantiagoPresently it rose, and with a shuffling walk it supported itself along the bars until it reached the bucket.  With a sigh it plunged its hands inside.

Little Useless inched closer and watched while the creature cupped the salt water and brought it to its face: not to drink, but to moisten its skin…

This episode of the Drabblecast continues H.P. Lovecraft Tribute Month with an eye towards Lovecraft’s fascination with and misgivings about the sea. It starts with a quote from Dagon, which kicked off the very first H.P. Lovecraft Tribute Month. In the drabble, there is more to a fisherman’s remarkable sea wife than meets the eye. In the feature, a nod to Lovecraft’s The Shadow Over Innsmouth, a young girl living among humans who act savagely encounters a sympathetic, otherworldly Deep One. She faces hard questions: where does she truly belong, and where should her loyalties lie?

Drabblecast 252 – The Elder Thing and the Puddle People

August 9, 2012

Cover for Drabblecast episode 252, The Elder Thing and the Puddle People, by Matt WasielaUpon the coming of the rain and the and the reawakening of the Krr’at race, the Elder Thing returned to us and squealed Its sky-splitting squeal and waded in among us. It came with the green feet that had eyes and mouths, and with the yellow, rubbery outerskin, and with the lace and the glitter — oh, the horrible, horrible glitter…

This episode of the Drabblecast continues H.P. Lovecraft Tribute Month, specifically focusing on the frequent appearance of cults in Lovecraft’s work. In the drabble, cult meetings aren’t always all about sacrifices and secret rites. In the feature, what starts out as an innocent encounter between a little girl and her imaginary friends takes an ominous turn when the “puddle people” turn out to be real creatures who worship her as their capricious god. When a rebel revolts against the the cult to save her daughter from being sacrificed, how will their deity react?

Drabblecast 251 – The Music of Erich Zann

July 31, 2012

Cover for Drabblecast episode 251, The Music of Erich Zann, by Bill HalliarMy room was on the fifth story; the only inhabited room there, since the house was almost empty. On the night I arrived I heard strange music from the peaked garret overhead, and the next day asked old Blandot about it. He told me it was an old German viol-player, a strange dumb man who signed his name as Erich Zann, and who played evenings in a cheap theater orchestra; adding that Zann’s desire to play in the night after his return from the theater was the reason he had chosen this lofty and isolated garret room, whose single gable window was the only point on the street from which one could look over the terminating wall at the declivity and panorama beyond…

This episode of the Drabblecast kicks of H.P. Lovecraft Tribute Month. It begins with a reading from Lovecraft’s Fungi from Yuggoth. In the feature, an impoverished student is forced to take an apartment in an almost empty building on the mysterious Rue d’Auseil. One of the other tenants, a viol player named Erich Zann, lives alone on the top floor and plays strange, otherworldly music at night. The student, drawn to his music, eventually gains Zann’s trust and learns catastrophic secrets.

Drabblecast 250 – Trifecta XXII

July 25, 2012

Cover for Drabblecast episode 250, Trifecta 22, by Liz PenniesMy name is… John.

I am…

I have a wife and a daughter. They are visiting me today. Their names– Alice. And Anna.

I can see, sort of. Everything is blurry. I am submerged in a coffin, a clear coffin with green water. There’s a tube in my mouth so that I can breathe, machine-like.

My legs are transparent. I see veins and arteries, thin muscles that look like spiderwebs bundled together. The doctors say my memory will be fuzzy. It’s supposed to come back quickly.

I am…

The theme of this Drabblecast Trifecta is “if you want something done right, you’ve got to do it yourself.” In Faithful Servant, a long-suffering butler’s poorly timed fit of temper is nearly the end of him. In Selfless, a man with an incurable illness goes to great lengths to ensure his wife and daughter enjoy a normal, happy life. In Prophecy Negotiations, a fateful farm boy learns that if you want to rise to a new station, it pays not to accept the first offer.

Drabblecast 249 – Jimmy’s Roadside Cafe

July 12, 2012

Cover for Drabblecast episode 249, Jimmy's Roadside Cafe, by Roo VandegriftAfter the world ended, Jimmy set up a roadside cafe in the median of I-95, just north of the Fallston exit, in the grassy depression between the guardrails. His first cafe, nothing more than a plywood shanty, fell to the first thunderstorm that blew through. The second was better: he dug a sort of foundation and built the walls out of heavy plywood he’d harvested from an overturned Home Depot truck, reinforced the corners with steel joints, laid down a sheet of tin for the roof. He used a Hummer’s windshield for the front window, a thick yellow shower curtain for the door. And then he nailed an Open/Closed sign beside the doorway, flipped it to Open, settled down in his lawn chair, and waited…

This episode of the Drabblecast is post-apocalyptic. In the drabble, Santa’s list is put to unusually ominous use one Christmas. In the feature, after the world ends, Jimmy cobbles together a makeshift roadside café where he assists passersbys. Whether they need scavenged supplies, hard truths, or a place to rest and say goodbye, his simple kindness is an oddly uplifting oasis in a ravaged world.

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