The rain was driving down when the police came for Melanie Atkinson. She lived in a trailer on the verge of town and had, ever since the fire that obliterated the childhood home she had shared with her dad, Mitchell. It had been a story of thwarted aspirations and dead ends, that sometimes occurs in depressed rural areas. About ten years before, Mitchell had moved to the town to start up a mechanics business, but the promised Taranaki oil boom had never eventuated, and the strains on his marriage with Alannah had led his soldier wife to take up with another man. Or had it been Mitchell and Irene, the school teacher, at the same time? For whatever reason, Melanie became cold and distant. And then, one evening, she came running into town, with the night torn by the sound and fury of her home going up behind her. Blackriver was a small, insular New Zealand town, and in such places, prejudice and rigidity are the main course. Anyone with ambition and drive left when they hit eighteen and went off elsewhere to learn a trade, or headed off to polytech or university. They never came back. (more…)
WARNING: Stories on this site may contain mature language and situations, and may be inappropriate for readers under the age of 18.
Lieutenant Penny Warren, former SAS now Republican New Zealand Army, slouched in her chair, wearily glowering at her Deep Reconnaisance Activities Patrol Echelon attaché in the confines of the debriefing and interrogation room. (more…)
Up in Northland, the Nga Puhi iwi hold sway. It was, and still is, an area of breathtaking natural beauty and nearly continuous indigenous Maori settlement. (more…)
Juliet Williamson awoke, and smiled to see the usual threads and circles of incandescent multicoloured light crowding above her:
“Hello, my friends. Tell me who you want me to contact for you and why.” (more…)
As she lay waiting for the end to happen, holding Bryony in her arms, Rosa thought back to how they came to be lying together on this bed. The sounds of the distant zees cut through the night, but there was no chance that they’d make it in here. She couldn’t do it to the woman she loved. (more…)
ICEWOMAN AND THE SISTERS OF LAZARUS By Craig Young
May 14, 2013 Short stories Tags: Craig Young
On the third day, Sister Evangelina was shot through the head. She was the third Sister of Lazarus to be struck down, following Sister Zoe and Sister Susannah. On a distant hill, watching her quarry through her binoculars, Mary Travis regarded her handiwork and smiled grimly. (more…)
Kevin stepped back, pulled his facemask over his chin and moved forward across the ruined highway into the desolate wilderness of post-apocalyptic Auckland. (more…)
On the dark,deserted grey-green Tasman Sea, midway between the shattered and haunted remnants of Australia and the precipice sanctuary of New Zealand, an apparent large piece of driftwood stirred, ebbed and flowed in the stillness. (more…)
It was the first time that Dr. An Tsui-Chan had been back to Europe since the outbreak of the Zombie War. Most of her caseload for the International Criminal Court consisted of war crimes committed against civilians by human malefactors, and had taken her to Australasia, the United States and Latin and South America. (more…)
Helen Grier, former missionary at the Grace Abounding Church of Rodney, awoke on a brilliantly clear Samoan morning. She’d decided to fly up here to celebrate her retirement. She had fallen in love with Western Samoa when stationed here as an army nurse doing vaccinations of Samoan children as part of a joint venture between the New Zealand and Western Samoan governments. (more…)
Judy Whittaker poured herself a serious brandy. All right, she knew she probably shouldn’t, but this case had aroused some old demons. Outside, the night shone with the images of the reclaimed Hague, its spires and skyscrapers, a familiar sight for sore eyes and an acheing heart.