July and August Fiction at GigaNotoSaurus
I’ve been remiss in announcing stories as they go up at GigaNotoSaurus. Sorry about that!
July was “A Man Not of Canaan” by Alex Jeffers.
“The men are afraid,” I said.
“Of course,” said my friend the foreign magician. “Aren’t you?”
Behind us in the belly of the boat, my crew huddled over their oars, muttering, praying. I felt that was not wise. The Mother, it seemed to me, must have fled our island, far beyond the reach of any man’s voice, long before the little people who honored her. Else why had the great bull of fire under the sea grown so restless, so angry? Even as I thought this, he bellowed. I flinched. Murmuring my own vain prayer, I glanced over my shoulder, north across the choppy waters of the gulf. White steam and black smoke billowed from the peak of the new mountain the bull had shouldered out of the sea. It appeared to be taller than when last I saw it, only two months before. Red as bull’s blood, subterranean flame stained the smoke and steam. Lightning flickered within the column of cloud as the bull thundered again. A warm, caustic ash of burnt stone began to fall. One of the rowers coughed violently.
For August, “The Litigatrix” by Ken Liu:
The fifteenth day of the first month in the seventh year of the Huayin Era:
The old man, Hae-wook Lee, had been bedridden for months. He lay on the sleeping mat, wrapped in a blanket. The drugs helped him sleep, and forget about the harsh words of his son.
It was an unseasonably warm winter day, here in this corner of Northeast Asia. Though the fire in the kitchen hearth next door had been extinguished, the gudeul smoke passages below the floor would continue to radiate residual heat for several hours. The room was so warm that the maid, Kyoon, had left the windows open to give the old man some fresh air, dry and invigorating after the new snow of the day before.
He dreamt that he was having a dinner of gogi gui. That pretty girl from years ago served him. He felt a pang of regret.