Archive for Rated R

PC 074: The Firemen’s Fairy


by Sandra McDonald.
Read by David O. Engelstad.

“I present to you the academy’s 150th class of brave, skilled, hard-working probationary firefighters!” Chief Kelly finally said.

Steven barely heard the applause and cheers when his turn came to cross the stage. His hand was clammy as he shook hands with his teachers, the school administrators, and Chief Kelly. He knew he was blushing and grinning like a fool. Some days, back in the desert, he’d figured to be dead by dusk. Now he was a fireman like his dad, and both his grandfathers, and all the other Goodwin men whose pictures hung in the fire museum gallery.

At the far end of the stage, the phoenix peered down at him with wide black eyes. He could see himself in those eyes, twin reflections of his black and gold uniform. She lifted her whitish-gray beak and passed a scroll off to Chief Kelly, who pressed it into Steven’s hand.

“Good luck, son,” Kelly said.

Steven waited until he was off the stage before he unrolled his assignment.

Oh, shit.

Rated R. for fiery language.

PodCastle 072: The Exit Sign


by Ursula Pflug.
Read by Christiana Ellis.

You and I were different. Making love on sprawling landings we learned that one way of life wasn’t better than another, and that we all shared the same ultimate misery, doomed to be born and die in this building. Who’d made this place? Had we built it ourselves generations ago when we still had legs to run from something fierce and predatory that circled our tower, waiting for travellers: the jumpers, the fliers, those with the twisted bed sheet ropes?

Rated R. for sex and dismemberment in enclosed places.

PodCastle 069: The Olverung


by Stephen Woodworth.
Read by Paul S. Jenkins (of the Rev Up Review.

The Olverung is an ugly bird.  Its bulbous head juts from the spout of a scrawny neck, and warts dot the bridge of its fat beak.  When it struts upon the ground, its pot-bellied body waddles with the ludicrous gait of a town drunkard.  Its plumage has the black iridescence of a fly’s abdomen and is too coarse even for pillow stuffing.  Yet the fowl possesses one singular attribute that princes and popes have coveted for centuries, and it was for this sole virtue that Lord Atherton entreated me to steal the creature from the King.

Rated R for tugged heartstrings.

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PC065: Foam on the Water


By Cat Rambo.
Read by C. G. Furst.

“What’s that?” Ivory said.

We stared down through the darkness. There was no one else around; it was off-season and our waiter had deserted us before the sun had set.

Trevor stood, glancing at me. “I’m going to check it out.”

“Could be a crocodile. You never know what you’ll find in Thailand.” Ivory didn’t move but her voice was unalarmed. “Feel free, boys. I’ll be right here.”

“Where’s your sense of adventure?” He grinned at her, flashing perfect white teeth.

“Left behind in an LA hotel room,” she said.

So Trevor and I went together with cautious steps. There was a steep grade to the side of the river, and thorny vines tore at us as we half-fell down it before encountering the sticky grasp of red clay mud threatening to pull our Tevas off.

She lay naked on the riverbank like a fallen swan. Her bare flesh white as snow, her hair midnight black. Her feet were thin and fragile as newly pedicured mourning doves, not a smudge or callus except for the mud that covered her.

Rated R. Contains non-vanilla adult sex.