The Space Pirate

The Space Pirate By Amber Lee         “Being a space pirate simply isn’t a practical career,” his mother told him after he showed her his drawing of a spaceship. Henry’s toothy smile faded as he lowered the picture slowly, so she couldn’t see it anymore. He looked down, away from his mother’s steely gaze. “Maybe a doctor, or a lawyer would be better,” she suggested, stirring the pot of noodles at the stove. She wiped a spot of sauce that boiled over onto the counter and turned her back to him.  Henry ran down the hall toward … Read More

The Tower

The Tower By JD MillerPhotography by Catherine Turk Tedrick hadn’t felt this good since the time he hid all those snakes in the outhouse and just about killed his aunt. His aunt had been constantly complaining about her ‘indigestion,’ and in his own words, ‘he’d only been trying to help.’  He hadn’t been trying to kill his aunt. When Father Clary, who nobody could look in the eye and lie to, asked him why he did it, he told him the truth: It seemed like it would be fun. And was it? Asked the priest.  Yes, said Tedrick.  So you’re … Read More

The Witching Moon

By JD Miller With Photography by Jairus Hills It was the picture-perfect autumn. The colors were all extraordinary, the wind cold but the sunlight warm, and every early sunset seemed to throw a spell over the world. But tonight was the night of the Witching Moon.  It seemed to Camber like this year the warnings were even more extreme than in years prior, leading up to the day of. Last year, eight people had vanished, all in the course of that one night, all from his tiny town. Who knew how many disappeared in the lands beyond his small world. … Read More

Madame’s First Lesson of Dream Analytics

Madame’s First Lesson of Dream Analytics  By JD MillerPhoto by Catherine Turk Siggy kept having the same dream, where she is squinting up at the sun. She raises a hand to shield her eyes, and when she does, tiny black shapes emerge from the light. She stares harder. And then a flock of arrows hit her. She watches them slice right through her palm, two broad, steel heads. She sees them, plain as day, but she doesn’t feel them. This wasn’t necessarily unusual. Since she’d started her Mindfulness Studies, and drinking Madame Sigorax’s prescriptions especially, the dreams had all been … Read More


Cigarettes By Aaron Tolopilo The cigarette sat crumpled and smoldering in the large glass ashtray among the numerous corpses of its brothers and sisters while a metallic flick followed by the warm popping sound of sparks signaled the lighting of a new victim. Sitting at the control panel, a man wearing a white lab coat drew a long drag and blew out the smoke as he reclined in his elderly office chair. It let out a creaking groan as the springs compensated for the change of weight. The room was angular, a tetris game of creamy grey and taupe. Large … Read More

The Story of Hanzo & His Unlikely New Friend

The Story of Hanzo & His Unlikely New Friend By Jordan Hills “They thought I was asleep, but I wasn’t. I was wide-eye awake with my ear to the door, eavesdropping on their loud whispers.” Autumn in Yokohama, Japan, 2040 A.D. Hanzo Atari woke the next morning, moving more sluggishly than usual. He overheard his parents talking to the doctor the night before. Something about his temporal lobe, possibly benign, and other big words he didn’t try to pronounce. After finishing his morning Miso, to his surprise, he was greeted by mother with a present. She told him it was … Read More

The Island

The Island  By JD Miller At first they shared a twin-sized mattress, in a room hardly bigger than a closet. Some legs or arms always hung off, and they would always lay intertwined like two lengths of rope. There was no helping it. Even on the sweaty days. But especially when it was cold. There was no heater, or at least not much of one, just each other, and two pillows so close together, they often woke up on the same one. And then, there was a full-size mattress. Suddenly, they realized that they had what they’d been missing before—space … Read More

The Craziest Part

The Craziest Part JD Miller I’d say the craziest part was that it felt like I was drowning. And that confused me like nothing else. Because, I was like, I was just driving, right? So it didn’t make any sense for me to be drowning.  The morning started crazy normal, tbh. So normal it was boring. But when I did leave the house, I remember walking around the block to where I’d parked yesterday, and there were all these little flowers on the sidewalk, like, everywhere. And they smelled so good. Expensive perfume good. Like, there was this perfume I … Read More

500 GPM

500 GPM By JD Miller Wendell Cho, champion of KNN’s KidGenius Season 4, knew a lot about whales. He knew a lot about a lot of things, but whales were a specific interest to him because, well, why not?  He knew, for instance, that whales don’t blow water out of their blow-holes, and that blow-holes are actually more like nostrils than anything else. He also knew that baleen whales (humpback, blue, grey) have two blow-holes, instead of just one, like toothed whales (beluga, sperm), and that a you could identify a whale, even from a distance, just on the shape … Read More

The Octopus

The Octopus  By JD Miller, with Illustration by Catherine Turk On Thursday, Lorelei painted the cutest octopus. It was pink and blue. Its eight tentacles looked like soft jelly. Its eyes were closed, just two curved lines, like two little smiles. She held it up to look at it, smiling, and said out loud, YOU are precious.  She hadn’t been painting for long. And she didn’t consider herself a natural, or even particularly good. But even when it was infuriating to her, when she failed twelve times in a row to paint what she wanted to paint, she still tried … Read More