Archive for May, 2012

PodCastle 210: Sittin’ Round the Stewpot

Show Notes

Check out Patricia Russo’s new short story collection Shiny Thing!

Sittin’ Round the Stewpot

by Patricia Russo

This is a true real story, granda said, stirring the mush that we were gonna have to eat that night, and the next night, and the next too, probably.  He coughed for a full minute, then finally spit out a plug of gunk.  He scuffed his mess into the dirt.  This is a true real story, not like the shit you hear from them liars down by Blue Street.  He looked at me when he said shit.  I just looked back at him.  Stupid old man still thought I was a boy.  This is a story about the old days, he went on.  The ancestor time.  Do you know what ancestor means?  I sighed and took the spoon away from him and started stirring the mush myself, because the old man was like to let it burn.  Granda, I said, I’m the one that reads you them old storybooks, when you say you can’t find your good glasses.  He said, this is about the old days, when we had dogs.

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PodCastle 209: Lila the Werewolf

Show Notes

Rated R: Contains some violence, some sex, and some adult language. Basically, everything synonymous with werewolves.

Lila the Werewolf

by Peter S. Beagle

Farrell went to a movie with a friend, and to the West End afterward for beer. Then he walked home alone under the full moon, which was red and yellow. He reheated the morning coffee, played a record, read through a week-old “News of the Week in Review” section of the Sunday Times, and finally took Grunewald up to the roof for the night, as he always did. The dog had been accustomed to sleep in the same bed with his mistress, and the point was not negotiable. Grunewald mooed and scrabbled and butted all the way, but Farrell pushed him out among the looming chimneys and ventilators and slammed the door. Then he came back downstairs and went to bed.

He slept very badly. Grunewald’s baying woke him twice; and there was something else that brought him half out of bed, thirsty and lonely, with his sinuses full and the night swaying like a curtain as the figures of his dream scurried offstage. Grunewald seemed to have gone off the air — perhaps it was the silence that had awakened him. Whatever the reason, he never really got back to sleep.

He was lying on his back, watching a chair with his clothes on it becoming a chair again, when the wolf came in through the open window. It landed lightly in the middle of the room and stood there for a moment, breathing quickly, with its ears back. There was blood on the wolf’s teeth and tongue, and blood on its chest.

Farrell, whose true gift was for acceptance, especially in the morning, accepted the idea that there was a wolf in his bedroom and lay quite still, closing his eyes as the grim, black-lipped head swung towards him. Having once worked at a zoo, he was able to recognize the beast as a Central European subspecies: smaller and lighter-boned than the northern timber wolf variety, lacking the thick, ruffy mane at the shoulders and having a more pointed nose and ears. His own pedantry always delighted him, even at the worst moments.

PodCastle Miniature 69: Wolves

Show Notes

Translated by Bernardo Fernandez.

Rated R: Contains some Violence and Adult Themes


by José Luis Zárate

The wolves came at twilight, melted into the shadows. At first we thought they were mist coming down from the mountains—it was impossible to think that there were millions of white bodies, thousands of creatures sliding down the snow. Their voices convinced us it was them, their long, sad howls, the occasional growling and fights among them. We’ve never seen such a herd. It’s impossible to gather one on these lands. The wolves we know around here are solitary ferocious animals, always stealthy. We’ve never seen them trot into a village. They don’t run away from men out of fear, their temperament demands that they always hide—all carnivores are furtive. Once in a while they steal a sheep, a deer, some child left in the woods that surrounds us.

PodCastle 208, Fable From a Cage

Show Notes

Rated R: Contains Violence, some of it gristly.

Fable From a Cage

by Tim Pratt

Let me tell you a little fable, a story I crafted while sitting inside this dangling cage, where the rooks shit on me and steal my bread all day, and the smoke from your town fires stings my eyes all night.

Did you know the owls feed me? They bring me rats, mice, squirrels, and I eat them. That’s why I haven’t died yet. I’ll never die, not here, wait all you like.

My fable? Yes. Oh, yes. It will, most assuredly, have a moral. Hunker down and listen for it, boys.