Meat Pi

This story will appear in Holly’s anthology The Little Book of Inappropriate Morals, due out in 2017!

It’s March 14, and you know what that means!

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MEAT PI

Upon returning home, little Jimmy was greeted with a delectable aroma. He followed his nose to the kitchen, where his father was pulling something out of the oven.

“Did you have fun playing with your friends?” Dad asked.

“Yup! What’s for lunch?”

“Well Jimmy, March the fourteenth is Pi Day, so we’re having pie.”

“What’s Pi Day?” Jimmy asked.

“Pi is a significant number, and on Pi Day, we celebrate math,” Dad said.

“Aw, not math,” said Jimmy.

“Math is important in your everyday life, son. Take this pie, for instance. If I didn’t know my math, I wouldn’t have been able to measure the ingredients correctly and we wouldn’t be having this delicious lunch.” Dad served Jimmy a slice of the pie, and Jimmy had to admit that the meaty scent made math more appealing.

“Okay, aside from pie, how’s math going to help me?” Jimmy asked.

“Imagine you’re surrounded by ten humans. Five have crossbows and five have swords. What is the minimum number of each you need to stomp before they run away?”

“Gee, I dunno,” Jimmy said.

“You multiply the number of crossbows by the number of swords, and divide by the number of humans. In this case, you crush two of them to death and you crush another lower half, and they run away screaming.”

“Cool,” Jimmy said.

“Math is extremely important for a working ogre. You can determine the number of crossbow bolts you can safely take to the shoulder based on your weight and there’s even a way to calculate degrees of annihilation to a human village.”

“Wow, Dad! Math is cool!”

“That’s right, Jimmy, so pay attention in school.” Dad patted Jimmy’s bumpy head.

“Do humans use math?” Jimmy asked.

“If they do, they’re using it wrong, otherwise they wouldn’t be in the pie,” Dad said.

“How many humans did you use?”

Dad chuckled. “Three point one four, of course.”

While Dad explained the joke, Jimmy ate delicious Human Meat Pie, and they had the best Pi Day ever.

Evelina’s Choice

This story will appear in Holly’s anthology In Poor Taste, due out in 2018!

It’s Singles’ Awareness Day! How about some silliness?

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EVELINA’S CHOICE

“I’m not saying that no is my definitive answer, I’m just saying we should get to know each other first.”

Princess Evelina was being perfectly reasonable, but the prince’s jaw dropped.  He was obviously not used to rejection. She could sympathize; he’d chosen her out of a long list of princesses and he’d traveled from country far to ask for her hand in marriage. It wasn’t his fault that.

“I appreciate your offer, and it might prove beneficial to our countries, but I’m not comfortable marrying a complete stranger,” Evelina explained.

“I have never been so insulted in all my life!” The prince’s face, visible under the lifted visor of his helm, had turned splotchy and red. Evelina did not deny him his anger, but she couldn’t help but notice that it made him less attractive.

“There’s no need to be upset. No offense was intended. Let’s have dinner this evening and discuss politics and country over some meat and wine,” Evelina suggested.

“Dinner?” The prince’s visor slammed shut. “DINNER?” he shouted.

“Yes. The third meal of the day,” Evelina said.

“You are a disgrace to princesses everywhere! You blaspheme the most basic tradition! You have spurned my romantic gifts and ignored my shining armour atop my white stallion! I am a prince, and a knight, and you have rejected the most perfect suitor you will ever have! I curse you, princess! I curse you with loneliness!”

The prince stormed out.

“Goodbye! Thanks for the flowers and chocolates!” Evelina said, because she was nothing if not polite.

 

SEVEN YEARS LATER

 

Broken bodies were strewn about the battlefield. The tip of the enemy’s sword was pressed to Beligan’s throat. He did not cower or beg. He merely closed his eyes, and asked that his death be swift.

“Prince Beligan? Is that you?” The enemy removed his helm.

The beauty underneath contrasted with the gore splattered on the enemy’s armour. She was the fiercest warrior he had ever met in battle – and he recognized her.

“Princess Evelina?”

“It’s Queen, these days. What are you doing in the middle of this war, Prince Beligan?”

“I am prince no longer. My country was overtaken. I have been forced to serve a false leader,” Beligan said.

“That’s terrible! You should have come to me for help. Your country has always been friend to mine.”

“I could not go to you for help,” Beligan snarled.

“That’s too bad. It might have been nice to have a friend. It’s been quiet in my country the past few years, ever since you cursed me with loneliness.”

“I hope you have suffered,” said Beligan.

“Nope, not at all! My country has prospered and thrived. My social life isn’t exactly full, but I keep busy. I adopted a couple of dogs. We hunt together and they like to cuddle at bedtime. Country business is extremely fulfilling…which you’d know if you hadn’t been enslaved, but I don’t hold that against you.”

“I hate you,” Beligan said.

“I bet you wish you’d come to dinner that night, eh? Ah well, I wouldn’t have liked you anyway,” Evelina said cheerfully.

Beligan, infuriated beyond belief, shouted something incoherent.

“No need to lose your head over it,” Evelina said. “Wait – that was a poor choice of words, considering what’s about to happen here…You know what, I’m just going to put you out of your misery. There. Don’t worry, Beligan, there are no regrets in the afterlife…”

*

Smellton’s Nightmare

This story will appear in Holly’s anthology In Poor Taste, due out in 2018!

It’s Groundhog Day, time to celebrate with some fiction.

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SMELLTON’S NIGHTMARE

Smellton had never been able to emerge from hibernation without a hassle. He knew a few ‘hogs who could open their eyes and start chattering a happy tune, but not Smellton. He had to roll himself out of bed and breathe in some of the spring air up top before he could even think about being awake.

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Petunia Thorgrub’s Declaration of War

This story will appear in Holly’s anthology In Poor Taste, due out in 2018!

It’s national hat day!

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PETUNIA THORGRUB’S DECLARATION OF WAR

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The smoking hole in Petunia Thorgrub’s top hat was the final straw. She threw the ruined headgear in the dust and whirled on her assailant with all the fury of a long line of Thorgrubs.

She could not see the assassin, but based on the trajectory of the bullet, they were hiding atop the roof of the building.

“Come down from there and fight me face to face!” Petunia cried. There was no response. “Who sent you? Was it Mulberry?” She needed to know where to send the bill for the decimated topper.

A small piece of paper attached to a parachute drifted into the street. Petunia kept her eyes on the roof while she knelt to pick it up.

This is only the beginning. Everything you love will be destroyed.

Petunia recognized Mulberry’s distinctive handwriting. His words were infuriating. She could understand her arch-nemesis having her killed, but to murder an innocent top hat (and, if his threat meant anything, everything she loved – including her precious collection of dryer lint, oh and probably her family), well, to murder an innocent top hat was nothing short of evil.

“Damn you, Mulberry! This means war!” Petunia cried.

The streets remained silent as the top hat sank into the dust.

*

Happy Hollydays! Now Available

HAPPY HOLLYDAYS!
A Collection of Celebratory Poppycock

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Whether it’s the guardian dog of the underworld, or a massive beast waiting to eat you, you have to know that a big black dog is bad news on Halloween. What you might not have realized is that Hades is a reasonable guy, and rabbits don’t, in fact, wear scarves.

Valentine’s Day isn’t just for romance; it’s also for summoning your favourite demons. Christmas is a time for family, but it’s also a time for exploring alternate origins of Santa Claus and a time for reindeer to learn about morality. Oh, and cookies. It’s time for a buttload of cookies.

Traditional Halloween horrors and Christmas joy are mixed with April Fool’s jokes and Christmas murder (among other things) to produce this collection of short stories sure to make you thankful for your own less outrageous traditions.

Dream Doctor

From Microcosms.

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DREAM DOCTOR

Jim was lying in a ditch in a pool of blood. He insisted he’d been dreaming of war. The blood was from the soldiers, he said, because he had to bandage their wounds.

Ed had been in love with Jim for years, but he was a cop.

“Who’d you kill, Jim?”

“It was the dream! Please believe me.”

Ed wanted to, but he was banned from the case due to conflict of interest.

Jim was tied to the disappearance and implied murder of several war veterans. He wasn’t sentenced because they found him dead in his cell.

No one could explain the bloody bandages he used to strangle himself.

Details

From Micro Bookends.

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Details

“Blueberry, blueberry, blueberry.”

“What are you doing?” J.P. asked.

“Studying,” Jason said.

“With fruit?”

“It’s that thing where you use letters and words to remember details.”

“Is it working?”

“Nope. It just made me want pie.”

J.P. had never thought pie was a luxury. He had also assumed that he would be married with kids by now, and thankfully that hadn’t happened.

When J.P. finished school they would buy so much pie. Right after they fixed the house and bought some new clothes.

“You’ll do fine. You always do,” J.P. said. Jason’s smile lit up the room and reduced the mountain of the problems to a manageable hill.

*

Age Treatments

This one is from Micro Bookends.

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Age Treatments

Old men and old women lined the streets. Some of them slept on the stoops of the buildings, others sat in lawn chairs. They were too old and un-costumed to be lining up for a nerd-movie, and far too old to be lining up for a new gadget.

“Age treatments,” Jacob said.

“What?”

“The scientists at the clinic found the cure for old age.”

“What cure?”

“Hamster blood and a secret ingredient, consumed under a full moon.”

Miranda wondered if those in line remembered the “good old days” when science hadn’t mixed with magic.

She didn’t want to get old but she’d refuse to drink hamster blood at any age.

*

Once Upun a Time – Now Available!

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Once Upun a Time
A Book of Puns and Other Nonsense

Do you like gripping tales of action and adventure? Are you fond of spooky science fiction? Does high fantasy float your boat, while low fantasy tickles your yacht? Well, good news – none of that is what you’ll find here!

This book includes:
An exclusive story set in The Dragon’s Toenail universe!
Zeus’ birthday party!
Appliances doing their duties!
The 1980s of the future!
Exclamation points!!!
And more!

Sit back, relax, and ready your eyes for rolling; this book has a little pun for everyone.

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Raisin Brain

This one came from Finish That Thought.

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Raisin Brain

When we hit the dotted line we cheered.

Ma said I’d never amount to anything. When I was a kid she called me Melon Head (and it’s round but only slightly melon shaped) until that got old, then for the rest of her life she called me Raisin Brain and that was much worse. “Your brain’s as big as a raisin,” she’d say, and she’d pinch her fingers together to show me how tiny that was.

If only Ma could have seen us that day signing for the house. I know she’d have been furious, and that warms my heart.

We were so happy we celebrated too hard too fast. Last night Jenny and I drank way too much in the empty living room. I don’t remember too much of it, except I’m pretty sure I shouted “Suck it, Ma!” at some point because Jenny thought that was hilarious. Ma never liked Jenny, always said she was “pretentious” as if she wasn’t a snob herself. “Don’t call me Ma,” she always said, “It sounds so common.”

So I always called her Ma and she kept calling me Raisin Brain.

This morning when Jenny and I woke up we checked the house. We should have done it sooner because there’s mold in the basement and the plumbing might be done wrong. It’s going to cost a fortune to fix, but hey, we saved money on the building inspection…ugh. Why didn’t we get a building inspection?

I can hear Ma now; “I told you so, Raisin Brain.”

I hate it when Ma’s right, especially now that she’s gone and I can’t fight her about it. I miss her. She’d like it here once she got over herself.

“Don’t worry, Melon Head,” Jenny says, putting her arm around me. I should never have told her about my nicknames. I can’t hate her for using it, though. I love her too much.

“I always worry,” I say.

“We’ll fix this place up and we’ll be happy here,” she says. “I love you.”

And she really does, raisin-sized brain and all.

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