PC042: De La Tierra

By Emma Bull.
Read by Bill Ruhsam (of Talking Traffic)

She was out on the patio by the pool, stretched in a lounge chair. From there a person could see a corner of the Marmont bungalow where Belushi had overdosed. He was pretty sure she knew that; they liked things like celebrity death spots.

Some of them almost anyone could recognize–if almost anyone knew to look for them. They’re always perfect, of their kind. That’s why so many of them like L.A., where everybody gets extra credit for looking perfect. Try going unnoticed in Ames, Iowa, looking like that.

She had wavy golden hair to her shoulders, and each strand sparkled when the breeze shifted it. She wore a blue silk halter top, and little white shorts that showed how long and tan her legs were. She could’ve been one of those teen-star actresses pretending to be a Forties pin-up, except that she was too convincing. She sipped at a mojito without getting any lipstick on the glass.

For fun, he jabbed his molar with his tongue to see if Biblio could tell him anything about her–name, age, rank. Nada, y nada mas. None of them were ever in the database. Didn’t hurt to try, though.

“Your disposal record is remarkable,” she said, with no preface.

“I do my job.”

Rated R. An LA thriller. With elves.

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12 Responses so far

  1. 1

    The Evil Eyebrow » Podcastle! said,

    March 4, 2009 @ 12:37 pm

    […] De La Tierra, a story I narrated, by Emma Bull for Podcastle, is up at Podcastle! Go listen. Tell me what you […]

  2. 2

    scatterbrain said,

    March 4, 2009 @ 6:28 pm

    That didn’t grip me at all; I can barely even remember what it was about, in fact I can’t at all, and I had to stop listening halfway through because I feared my frontal lobes were turing to mush. It’s a shame because I was looking forward to a bit of “Elfpunk”.

    On the elf theme though, any one who wants a good novel about elves can read “The Wee-Free Men” by Terry Prachett. Set in his Discworld universe, it follows the exploits of a cynical, anti-heroic grandaughter of a witch and a tribe of drunk kobolds battling a traditionally evil and viley grotesque elf queen who tries to invade ther chalk plains. It’s simply a wonderful book and I’d recommend it to anyone serious about their fantasy.

  3. 3

    Kazima said,

    March 5, 2009 @ 5:56 am

    Where were the elves in this story? I can understand the dislike towards elves, though personally I often do like them in stories, but then trying to confront ones elf-hate with this story seems like the wrong way to start. The creatures in this story could have just as well have been aliens or gods or a whole new creation in the fantasy realm.

    As for the actually story, I felt there was some potential and I was very fascinated by the plot of these “immigrants” who, divided in two, are each in their own way taking over our western culture. I would have like to hear a continuation of this, but the writing style was too poor. Bill Ruhsam is a good narrator, though not the best, but there was still something about the whole composition that made me have to concentrate really hard in order to follow along while just out walking. If I had been driving or making dinner, as I often do while listening to PodCastle, I wouldn’t have been able to follow at all!

  4. 4

    Jennifer said,

    March 5, 2009 @ 7:48 pm

    I must concur with scatterbrain. Maybe it’s an ADD thing, but I totally zoned out. Sigh.

  5. 5

    Djinn said,

    March 8, 2009 @ 5:26 pm

    Very nice, Emma. Very subtle, apparently, although I was never lost when looking for the elves.

  6. 6

    Kit OConnell said,

    March 9, 2009 @ 3:27 am

    A beautiful story. The vision at the end was moving.

  7. 7

    George said,

    March 9, 2009 @ 2:20 pm

    Spot on! Elves done right!

    Great writing and excellent reading.

    The world building is exceptionally smooth, I never had to back it up to understand the plot threads. It’s so good when you can get a story in one smooth take.

    Podcastle yeah!!!!

  8. 8

    Esther said,

    March 13, 2009 @ 4:24 am

    Maybe it helps to have read Emma Bull before and to be a fan, but I thought the story was great.

  9. 9

    Jinx said,

    March 16, 2009 @ 4:34 pm

    I thought the story was interesting until it became preachy on why Illegal aliens should be allowed into the country. Just because some one is of European decent does not make them Evil, and just because some one is from Latin America does not make them good.

  10. 10

    The Fix | From the Podosphere: March 2009 said,

    April 23, 2009 @ 11:21 am

    […] creatures seem oddly absent in this example. Expertly read by Bill Ruhsam, Emma Bull’s “De La Tierra” concerns a futuristic assassin, carrying out his profession with the aid of biological […]

  11. 11

    Pseudopod » Blog Archive » Pseudopod 298: The Long Road To The Sea said,

    September 7, 2012 @ 12:03 am

    […] Your reader this week is the Bill Ruhsam, who you may know from Podcastle #42: De La Tierra. […]

  12. 12

    Narration up on Pseudopod | The Evil Eyebrow said,

    September 7, 2012 @ 10:35 pm

    […] story I narrated for Pseudopod, The Long Road to the Sea, went live today. This makes two stories on Podcastle and one on […]

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