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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Seventh Hope

An updated version of this story will appear in I Find You Mildly Irritating, and Other Stories, due out in 2019!

This was an Honourable Mention at Micro Bookends.

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Seventh Hope

Six planets out of seven were useless. The fourth was closest, but upon landing, the natives had sent them packing. Jessie wasn’t about to argue with man-sized cockroaches (at least not now that the government insisted on peaceful contact).

The seventh planet had promise. The long line of scientists at the control panel buzzed with excitement while they processed the data. The planet had water, breathable atmosphere, etc. etc.

Jessie took a seat beside Betty and scanned the monitor everyone ignored.

“This is the one,” Betty said. “Our last hope is a success.”

“I don’t think so, Betty.”

“Why not?”

“Because the temperature of the water is a million degrees.”

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Plague

An updated version of this will appear in I Find You Mildly Irritating, and Other Stories, due out in 2019!

A more serious Flash! Friday effort.

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Plague

It started with Margaret dying.

I’ll always remember her with her arms around Edmond’s neck, and that look of love on her face. Edmond was the Prime Minister elected when we touched down on New Earth. She was young, only thirty when it happened.

I was staying late at the lab, dissecting another dead patient, trying desperately to cure this plague. It’s a wonder I never caught it myself. Edmond radioed in, screaming Margaret’s name. I hurried to his place but didn’t get there before the police. They’d taped everything off. Margaret had been murdered. Someone had got it into their head that Edmond was to blame for the new world’s troubles and they’d punished him for it.

Panic spreads. Edmond’s wife was the first but not the last. They caught the woman who killed Margaret and they punished her, but she became a martyr. Some fought for Edmond, some fought for his opposition, and thousands of others died from the plague.

That was how the world got divided.

We eventually found a cure for the plague, but nothing can fix the human condition. It’s been a hundred years and I might live a hundred more and never see the end of the war.