When Bree read the nutrition label, she cussed out loud. Eight in the morning. Middle of the vitamin aisle. Couldn’t help it. She cussed and startled a lady browsing insoles. Twenty grams of fiber, twenty grams of protein, two hundred calories? Maybe that wouldn’t raise most eyebrows, but Bree, girth balanced on cane and booted …

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I was hanging around the street corner, trying to think of a reason not to go back to my crack-addict-infested address, when another one of those weird storms cropped up. One second the sky was bright blue like out of a freaking picture book, and the next, violent streaks of lightning flashed across it. The …

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The sound of a thousand beating wings surged through the air like an oncoming storm. The sky darkened.  I looked up from the fire I was building in the great hearth. The bird-people were coming toward our village. “Look, Gar.” Roon came running. He and I were the same age, but we two boys had …

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Once upon a time there lived a King who had a beautiful and headstrong daughter. Although many men came to court her, she steadfastly refused each one and, somehow, they always left in relative understanding and happiness. Her father would question them, but they would always give some cryptic answer about not being the right …

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They called us lucky when they dug us out of the sand. Lucky they’d found us before we’d died there, too thirsty to scream. I knew better. We weren’t lucky. Fate just wasn’t done with us yet. We gave them false names, but why we bothered I’ll never know. Menne didn’t even react to hers. …

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When they let me out of hospital, I decided to rent somewhere with space to write. Jo, the social worker, helped me find a terraced house in the old part of town, the only one in the row not converted into flats. Gentrification had leapfrogged the area. There were no skips outside the tumbledown houses; …

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“Tell us about our father,” the chicklets said, bouncing up and down in their car seats. “What about?” I asked, although I knew the story they were looking for. I was hoping they’d want to listen instead to their Swansongs for Kids & More CD. We were driving to Maine to stay with my aunt, …

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Stay

Elliot’s Beach. Parris Island. A very cold September dawn, wisps of fog trailing across the sand, a clear hard sky, the sea a burnished red. Her favorite time of day, and the best weather for running a platoon of fresh recruits passed the point of exhaustion. Tear them down and build them back up. The …

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It was spring, of course. Lisette, six and golden, Lisette with eyes the color of forget-me-nots, twirled under the white-flowering tree. She threw fistfuls of dogwood blossoms into the air crying, “Fairy snow! Fairy snow!” She bent little, she bent low, she crept about the yard, looking here, looking there, examining and exploring. She found …

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