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The Picture Horse

The Picture Horse - story

Pu Sung-ling

A certain Mr. Ts’ui, of Lin-ch’ing, was too poor to keep his garden walls in repair, and used often to find a strange horse lying down on the grass inside. It was a black horse…

The Universe of Things

The Universe of Things - story

Gwyneth Jones

The alien parked its car across the street and came and sat down in the waiting room. He must have seen this happen, peripherally. But he was busy settling the bill with a middle-aged woman…

Interview With an Assassin

Interview With an Assassin - story

Daan Heerma van Voss

The low sun, the brass bands, the President’s face blazing with self-confidence. Everyone over thirty can still bring the images to mind. The President, who was on an official visit to Afrasia, a turbulent and…

The Day By Day Mosque

The Day By Day Mosque - story

Mortada Gzar

This vinegar is exactly ninety-nine years old, if the calculations I jotted down on my calendar of motivational quotes are correct, because the perfume was produced exactly a week before the enormous concrete head of…

Mortimer Gray’s History of Death

Mortimer Gray’s History of Death - story

Brian Stableford

1   I was an utterly unexceptional child of the twenty-ninth century, comprehensively engineered for emortality while I was still a more-or-less inchoate blastula and decanted from an artificial womb in Naburn Hatchery in the…

Inside Outdoors

Inside Outdoors - story

Martín Felipe Castagnet

The giant is starting to rot and Minerval still has no news from the man that’s dreaming it. The programmer must be sick, she thinks: if he were dead the forest would dissolve and then…

Jabir Sabeel

Jabir Sabeel - story

Mansour Mohammad El Souwaim

1.   Citizen Jabir Sabeel awoke to the alarm of his Nokia mobile phone at exactly 6:05. He tried, like every morning, to cover his face with a pillow, but he felt an awful weakness….

The Pink Tuber

The Pink Tuber - story

Vladimir Sorokin

On Thursday Anna found out that she was pregnant. When she came home from work, she didn’t start dinner but instead sat at the tiny kitchen table, put her gaunt hands on the new oilcloth,…

By His Things Shall You Know Him

By His Things Shall You Know Him - story

Cory Doctorow

I thought that Mr. Purnell was a little young to be a funeral director, but he had the look down cold. In the instant between his warm, dry handshake and my taking my hand back…

Tales From the Venia Woods

Tales From the Venia Woods - story

Robert Silverberg

This all happened a long time ago, in the early decades of the Second Republic, when I was a boy growing up in Upper Pannonia. Life was very simple then, at least for us.  We…