Archive for Rated PG-13

PodCastle 568: The Pull of the Herd

Show Notes

Rated: PG-13, for predators and prey.


The Pull of the Herd

By: Suzan Palumbo

My doeskin calls to me from under the woollen blankets in the cedar chest at the foot of our bed. Diya murmurs beside me, eases back to sleep. I cling to her, try to calm the panic welling in my chest by inhaling her cardamom scent. The metallic taste of a skin thief lingers in the air this morning and, though I’ve sworn never to return, every nerve and sinew inside me is screaming: get back to the herd.

I swing my feet onto the wooden floor. Human soles are weaker than keratin-covered hooves — less sure, though they suit their purpose. I undress, then pad over to the trunk. My fur stirs as I lift the lid and pull it from beneath the blankets. It twines up my forearm, grip like hardened horn sheathed in fraying velvet. (Continue Reading…)

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PodCastle 567, ARTEMIS RISING: The Weaver Retires

Show Notes

PG-13, for needles and blackest thread.


The Weaver Retires

by Kai Hudson

They come from all over: exotic, far-off places with names Weisa can barely pronounce. Australia. Japan. Venezuela. Last week, some alien-sounding place called Pen-sil-vay-ni-yah.

Her grandson Ashti says they come because she’s famous. She’s on the Internet, he tells her, this great big place like a temple in the air, full of books and magazines anyone can read at any time. Apparently someone wrote about her a few months ago, and that’s why people come.

She doesn’t mind it so much. They break up the monotony of the day, when she comes back from feeding the pigs or killing cockroaches with her sandals to find yet another foreigner sitting awkwardly with Ashti inside the hut. Today it is one of the ones with skin like someone dusted him with bread flour, with a balding head and damp patches decorating his brightly-colored shirt. A fat woman presumably his wife slumps in Ashti’s usual chair, fanning herself with her hat. Ashti has politely moved to the floor.

“Ah, Ima,” her grandson says, rising upon her entrance. The foreigners don’t move. “We have visitors.” (Continue Reading…)

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PodCastle 566, ARTEMIS RISING DOUBLE FEATURE: Starr Striker Should Remain Capitol City’s Resident Superhero, by Keisha Cole, 10th Grade Student; All the Fishes Singing

Show Notes

“Starr Striker…” is rated PG-13, for giving zero fricks (3 F-bombs).

“All the Fishes, Singing” is rated PG-13, for cuts to skin and scales.


Starr Striker Should Remain Capitol City’s Resident Superhero, by Keisha Cole, 10th Grade Student

By Amanda Helms

Argument

Despite the call to ban Starr Striker from Capitol City for “attacking” Captain Thunder, she should remain our resident superhero. (Continue Reading…)

PodCastle 563: El Cantar de la Reina Bruja

Show Notes

Rated PG-13.


El Cantar de la Reina Bruja

By Victoria Sandbrook

Mothers, hear me! I am alone but for your graces. My mistakes have bound me. My weaknesses have hobbled me. My pride has torn me from you.


Alejandra pricked her finger on her rough iron chains and whispered lilting iambs until all appearance of fatigue fell from her. When they came for her, she would look herself again.

Well. Not her true self. Not even the self she’d donned a decade ago to snare herself her king. What chaos there would be if her husband’s guards — nay, the entire kingdom! — discovered that the bruja chained in the metal palanquin had been their queen these ten years. “I must hide you from the priests,” Ciro had said, pallid with self-pity over his own deceit. “They would burn you for heresy.” Thus, Alejandra discovered what husband-kings did with unwilling, powerful wives. Now he risked much by dragging her on this yet unblooded campaign. But he had a rival to conquer: a widowed queen he thought to wed. With his wife’s help, of course. (Continue Reading…)