by Charlie Allison
read by Setsu Uzume
First published on the Aspiring Writer’s Society website in June 2016
Sunny abandoned her house the day after she buried Anna and struck out for the western metropolis of Palotl. She gathered up all her practical effects in no time at all: a sharp knife, matches, a map, and a pair of good blankets—one from her childhood, one from Anna’s.
Anna’s blanket was a mess of Evenki winter scenes: the Old Witch’s Comb, a strutting rooster and the gaping grey jaws of wolves.
Sunny sniffed. It still smelled like her.
Her own blanket was decorated with Quetzal mosaics in bright reds and greens: the Flower Goddess bringing life to the desert, Mixcoatl the Hunter casting his net through the stars, headless Night Axe terrorizing travelers.
Sunny rolled up the blankets along with a bedroll and stuffed them into her backpack.
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Charlie Allison surrounds himself with dying languages, fading pantheons and idle speculation. He has worn many hats: working as a chess coach, a groundskeeper, an English tutor, creative writing instructor for adults with learning disabilities, and an amateur circus acrobat. His current headwear is that of a graduate student at Arcadia University, where he works as a graduate assistant. He helps run a writing board called “Fits of Print” with some other genre writers–free proofreading, critiques, support and line edits, alongside copious nerd references.
He lives with his girlfriend and three furry murder machines in West Philadelphia. He is currently working on the draft of his second novel–after launching the first into space.
You can find him online at ‘Fits of Print’ and on Twitter @cballison421.
Setsu Uzume spent her formative years in and out of dojos. She also trained in a monastery in rural China, studying Daoism and swordplay. She is a member of Codex and SFWA. While she has dabbled in many arts, only writing and martial arts seem to have stuck. Find her on Twitter @KatanaPen, or her website katanapen.wordpress.com.