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Jumpers, Holt Clark
“With a running start a strong jumper can leap from the roof of the Wexler building onto a thin cornice attached to St. Anne’s Cathedral next door. Zorf Rierden discovered this possibility while scoping out new territory for his crew. Zorf covered the distance in a surging instant, but it took him twenty minutes of careful climbing, freezing against the cold bricks, to get back down. He stood shivering on the wet pavement after, his breath rising up like steam.”

The Lights Are the Eyes of Animals, GJ Hart
“A cruel wind swirling outside and inside the office trilled with draughts as Diane shook before the console wearing so many jumpers she resembled a large brown egg. As she sat rubbing eyes raw from the perpetual study (still neither bulb had flashed) she heard a rustling and scratching, a scramble of tiny feet from the corner of the room.”

Travis in Hollywood, Timothy Day
“Julia asked what I was doing today and I told her about my audition for a Carl’s pizza commercial. I was playing a delivery boy who delivers a pizza late. The customers tie me up inside their house and make a game out of throwing knives at the wall behind me while they eat the pizza. One of the knives hits my shoulder and I start to bleed but it turns out my blood is tomato sauce and the customers spread it on the pizza and eat it. The customers smile in satisfaction and my screaming fades out as a voiceover says: At Carl’s, we bleed good pizza. Order tonight.

Venetian Ink, Amanda E.K.
“My body, marked by fire, confronts me every day. I value friendships like religion, when friends like Paul — a man who’s never eyed me with disgust — are few and far between. He says he’s revising my skin to match the beauty underneath.

Cover art: Einstein Owl, Erin Wetzel