PodCastle 261: Oracle Gretel

by Julia Rios.
Read by Marguerite Kenner, of Cast of Wonders.
Originally appeared in May of 2012 as a handbound chapbook with illustrations by Erik Amundsen.


Gretel was in love with her boss. Ms. L. Thorne spoke in short, clipped sentences, and when she smiled, which was rare, it looked like the curved edge of a wicked blade.

At night, at home, while she attempted yet again to bind her flyaway curls into something more elegant, Gretel told Hansel all about what Ms. L. Thorne had done that day, and what she had worn. Hansel twitched his ginger tail, insouciant as only siblings and housecats could be. “Oh not Missilethorn again,” he said. “I hope you didn’t let that creature distract you so much that you forgot my food.”

“As if you need fattening,” Gretel said. “A witch will eat you if you don’t watch out.”

“You’re the only witch I know,” was Hansel’s rumbling reply.

“I am no witch,” Gretel said, but she was too much in the dreamy stage to be properly annoyed.

Rated PG.