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Episode 40 is part of the Spring 2017 issue!

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She Shines Like a Moon

by Pear Nuallak

 

It’s cold in London but you glow with warmth. You travel limbless and limned from your core, throat crossed with black silk just as it was in your first days. Yes, you were naked then, washed clean in monsoons, dried by storm winds. When was the last time your sly hunt was wreathed in rice flowers? Do you recall how dtaan-tree fronds stroked your secret self as you rose, star-bound?

 

[Full transcript after the cut.]


 

Hello! Welcome to GlitterShip episode 40 for May 23, 2017. This is your host, Keffy, and I’m super excited to be sharing these stories with you.

 

Today we have two reprints, “She Shines Like A Moon” by Pear Nuallak and “The Simplest Equation” by Nicky Drayden.

 

Pear Nuallak is a writer and illustrator whose work has appeared in Interfictions, Unlikely Academia, and The Future Fire. Born in London and raised by Bangkokian artists, they studied History of Art jointly at SOAS and UCL, specializing in Thai art. Thai and British recipes appear semi-regularly on their food blog, The Furious Pear Pie, and they have an upcoming illustration this summer in Lackington’s magazine.

Nicky Drayden is a Systems Analyst who dabbles in prose when she’s not buried in code. She resides in Austin, Texas where being weird is highly encouraged, if not required. Her debut novel The Prey of Gods is forthcoming from Harper Voyager this summer, set in a futuristic South Africa brimming with demigods, robots, and hallucinogenic hijinks.

 


 

She Shines Like a Moon

by Pear Nuallak

 

It’s cold in London but you glow with warmth. You travel limbless and limned from your core, throat crossed with black silk just as it was in your first days. Yes, you were naked then, washed clean in monsoons, dried by storm winds. When was the last time your sly hunt was wreathed in rice flowers? Do you recall how dtaan-tree fronds stroked your secret self as you rose, star-bound?

Now your London home shivers you into clothes. A length of black at your neck doesn’t suffice; you add to old habits—night journeys sensibly hatted, the frank, coiled shapes below your neck wrapped in silk layered with batting and wool, each piece hand-made by the wearer herself. No other clothier would believe your particular sensitivities; only krasue know krasue.

(You make a fine new flying outfit each season. You like having things, you’re the lord and lady of things.)

London’s cross-hatched with forgotten waterways, the Krungthep of the Occident, murky and decadent. The Heath hides the Fleet in its hills, earth over arteries water-fat; it surfaces as a rivulet, gleams and whispers and winks knuckle high in leaf-lined silt before it talks away, louder and deeper into the festering heart of the city, but you drink it here, the source.

The tumulus field brings food best savoured like an egg with bael-sap yolk—slowly, thoughtfully, the red of it so rich on your tongue after eating bland pale without. In the viaduct pond you dump his fixie and clean your face.

After the meal you play with foxes. Your city friends have great thumping tails, on hind legs they yelp delightedly.

(When you first heard sharp cries in the hills you thought it was another krasue. Foxes came instead, sniffed you wonderingly, ears flicking. You didn’t find each other appetising in the least.

Their company is brief, precious: city foxes live a year each.)

You peer into the Hollow Oak. When you were new here you asked your first fox friend, lovely old Chalk Scrag, if this was their den.

No, friend, no—my burrow smells like forest all dark and close, she says. This smells like witch. One day I will show you the best smells of my home, yes, yes, but not that witch tree, no; that is hers to show.

You wonder if she’s shy. You think about whether she’s a person who also knows what it’s like to be apart from others. Under the bark and earth there’s always the smell of black tea and sugared fruit, sometimes cake, sometimes curry.

That one’s never come out, says Liquorice Grin, who counts Chalk Scrag as eightieth great-grandparent. She is busy. Leaves us gifts, but never comes out to play with us like you do, friend.

Four score years you’ve hunted here and no corner of Heath is unexplored but this. (You’re shy, too.)

Before setting off home, you linger by the Oak as you always do.

She is shy, she is busy, but you can ask.

So for a change, tonight you say, “Your home smells wonderful,” into the hollow. Your eerie heart beats strong as you fly home.

Strong teeth and supple tongue open the night-hatch to your flat. You shed your flying clothes and look at yourself on the bed; in your own light you consider the soft limbs, the clean red hollow between your shoulders. What are you truly hungry for?

You enfold your secret self with a body that accepts you neatly and completely.

The black silk remains at your throat.

It is good to lay your head on the pillow.

In the morning your longer self stretches her limbs, washes, thinks about being ‘she’ as she pulls on a turquoise jumper, so good on skin the colour of tamarind flesh, a long skirt in pig’s blood, Malvolio tights, black boots laced up.

Before a mirror she wanders her hands over the pleasing stubble on the back and sides of her head, dressing the length on top into a sleek pompadour.

(Your grandmothers’ hairstyle is now subculture fashionable but you wear it anyway, you’re the age of two grandmothers together and want to remember what you had.)

The morning walk to the cafe brings smells from the flats: running water and clean skin, burnt toast, bacon fat sizzling, hot dusty radiators. There’s strange comfort in witnessing others’ routines.

Coffee is taken quickly before the man with a rough-haired jack comes for his—tame dogs never like you, the cafe’s too small for a scene.

For two decades you’ve been teaching. You like interaction structured around things you know and love, boundaries defined. Every 5 years you make yourself move; you enjoy this while you can.

Knitting today. To make the cowl you’ve planned, students discard needles and knit like this: thick yarn knotted onto wrists, loops drawn over fists, wool on skin, weaving on flesh. Your students’ concentration is your delight; it staves the hunger somewhat.

Once you tended silkworms and cotton bolls, had a great loom under the belly of your stilt house; your family once wore the fabric you grew, span, wove.

Now it’s only you, the narrowness of your single self.

(But the cowls will warm your students, so this will do.)

That evening returns you to your alma mater. Female Abjection and the Monstrous Feminine in Thai Cinema, the email said. Open to all. It’s sure to be diverting.

You’ve not yet been to the Bloomsbury buildings—when you studied languages, it was the School of Oriental Studies at 2 Finsbury Circus and you were a man hatted and trousered, as it sometimes suits your fancy. The institution’s re-invented itself: cosmopolitan, international, politically active, inclusive.  (Coy about its hand in training Empire: to control a people you know their tongues, their hearts.)

You sit and are lectured on a self Othered through others’ eyes.  Except for one Thai man, the lecturer cites theorists and academics like her, white and Western.

She says, “There are no feminists in Thailand—Thai women don’t really identify as feminists; it’s just not done. People talk about South-East Asian women having power and ownership, but…” she shrugs.

(It’s never occurred to the lecturer to ask what a Thai woman thinks of herself, let alone a krasue’s view of her own condition.)

You think of spitting in her tea. Wouldn’t make much difference to the taste; your lips are primed. But her words will survive a thousand years: she’s adding to the sum of human knowledge. She doesn’t need your curse—no, it wouldn’t make much difference at all.

There is loyalty, still, though you’ve been here so long and it’s your countrywomen who fear you most, who have always kept their distance from you, who would reject and destroy and silence you instantly if they knew your tastes.

But you were made by them. You are their monster. It’s hard to believe others would believe you. The hunger you’ve mastered, mostly, but grieving anger and loneliness thunders through your whole interior.

You suck your teeth and go home, fill yourself with sweet warm rice. A collection on your kitchen shelves: rice scraped white, rice left red or brown or black, rice so delicious wives forget husbands.

(Is it good or bad you’ve only found husband-forgetting rice? Perhaps men are more easily forgotten by wives. You’ve no inclination for husbands: the sum of your knowledge on this subject is that they’re common.)

Once your fork and spoon are closed, an invitation appears, curling hand tracing bright in the air:

You are invited to

A Midnight Cake Tasting

for the delight of the Witch Ambrosia

at the Hollow Oak, Hampstead Heath

You hesitate, chewing your lip. Perhaps she’s only inviting you out of kindness, politeness, obligation. Perhaps she won’t be there. Perhaps this is a trick. But she’s asked, and you accept.

You go as yourself, your honest, smallest self. When the clock strikes the hour you hover, unsure.

“Come in, love, I’ve been waiting so long,” says Ambrosia.

The witch leads you in, steps winding like shell chambers into the earth. Her home smells like a home should, is full of things neatly kept, herbs bunched, cables sorted. In the lamp light you see her fine umber self dressed in a gown of fresh plum, face framed with raincloud hair in a thousand braids. You know at once she is splendid.

“Oh, is that for me?” she says as you give her a rich saffron scarf. Thanks is a gentle touch to your cheek.

The table is spread. Together you enjoy black rum cake and rose-bright sorrel, dark fruits wondrously spiced.

You begin with, “I thought I’d say hello.”

“So did I,” says Ambrosia, “it was about time.”

“Will you come with me tonight?” (why are you so awkward, what could she possibly—)

“I was thinking you’d never ask,” she smiles.

Up above, Liquorice Grin says, Ah, you’ve brought a new lovely friend.

You dance together, fox fur coppered in ghost light. Ambrosia shines like a moon. Your heart shouts. You are full up of her.

 

END

 


 

The Simplest Equation

by Nicky Drayden

 

I’m doodling in the margins of my Math 220 syllabus when she walks into the classroom like a shadow, like a nothing, like an oil slick with pigtails. She scans the empty seats in the most calculating manner and I shudder when she spots the one next to me. Her knees bend all the wrong ways in her jeans as she walks up my aisle, and her head is a near perfect ellipsoid that could’ve fallen out of any geometry primer. She sets her backpack on the floor between us, then maneuvers into the chair with the grace of a lame giraffe.

“I hope I’m in the right place,” she says as she finally settles—her English impeccable, though she exhales the words more than speaks them, typical of her kind. “Partial Differential Equations?”

I nod, trying not to notice all those rows of tiny pointed white teeth crammed into her mouth, but then she smiles and it becomes impossible not to. I swallow hard, somehow managing to extend my hand.

“I’m Mariah,” I say, my eyes tracing along the brown of my skin until it intersects the blue-black of hers.

“Kwalla,” she says. “Two syllables. Not like the bear.”

I force a laugh. It comes out easier than expected.

“Nice doodle,” she says, looking at the squares and swirls and meandering lines. “Very symmetrical.”

“Mmm…” I purse my lips and cock my head, then with a single tap on the screen, I reset my syllabus to its virginal form.

She’s not the first Ahkellan I’ve met. There are a couple hundred here on campus. They come to Stanford when they can’t get into Vrinchor Academy or Byshe, or any of the other prestigious schools in their system. Bring us your next best brightest, has become our new school motto. Yale, Harvard, and the other Ivy League schools split a couple dozen Ahkellans between them, but California’s consistent temperatures are much more appealing to a race that goes into involuntary stasis when the weather dips below forty-three degrees.

After brief introductions, Professor Gopal drones on about semilinear equations. I listen and take notes attentively, afraid to let anything slip past me. I used to love math. Now it’s the bane of my existence, always more of the same lifeless problems. But I’ve got too many credits and too little money to think about changing majors now. So I buckle down and frequently pull all-nighters just to squeak by with Bs.

I glance over at Kwalla who’s busy solving problem sets on her notebook, two chapters ahead of the professor already. This class is probably a joke to her, just a way to rack up a few credits before applying for an interstellar transfer. But she seems pleasant enough, and none of the other Ahkellans I’ve met have ever shown anything that resembled a sense of humor, or an appreciation for art for that matter.

“Hey,” I whisper, keeping the resentment out of my voice. “You looking for a study partner?”

Kwalla nods, then smiles at me again. I desperately resist the urge to protect my soft spots.

 

 

Every Tuesday and Thursday evening, we meet at Meyer Library, hustling through the stacks for table space among towers of old, dusty books. When my grades slip, we add another study session Saturday afternoons in her dorm room. It smells vaguely of sandalwood, and the paneled doors of her closet are neatly lined with posters of angst-ridden Ahkellans. Their slick, black faces are dour and their postures nonchalant—reminiscent of late twenty-first century brood bands, stuff my parents used to listen to.

We sit cross-legged on her bed… well, I sit cross-legged, and she sits in some variation of the lotus position that teeters on an optical illusion with all those joints of hers. Our notebooks are spread out between us. Kwalla’s explaining Fourier transforms to me for the third time, and we’re both beyond frustrated. I try to listen, but my mind drifts, and before I know it I’ve created a doodle that spans half the page, covering the miniscule amount of calculations I’d started.

Kwalla sees and makes a purring sound I’ve come to recognize as mild irritation.

“Sorry,” I grumble. I lean back against the wall and stare out the window at her prized lake view of Lagunita. Students horseplay on its shore, blue-gray water lapping at their ankles. They laugh, living life and enjoying the “college experience,” while I’m cooped up in here, breathing stale circulated air and staring at integral curves until my eyes bleed.

I heave a sigh. “Maybe I should drop the class. Drop out of college. Drop off the face of the Earth while I’m at it.”

Kwalla smirks. “You’re depressed. Good.”

“Good?” I slam my notebook shut, turn away from her, and fume like a shuttle on its launch pad. Just when I was beginning to think she was a pretty decent person, or Ahkellan. Or whatever.

“Yes, it means you’re close to understanding the story of this equation. It’s a classic tale of love and loss. It’s meant to be depressing, yet beautiful at the same time.”

I roll my eyes as she resets to a clean page and starts the equation again. She works downward, shuffling constants and variables, swaying like a concert pianist. When she’s done, a single tear trickles down her cheek.

She glances up at me and notices that I’m crying, too. “You saw the story this time?” she asks with hopefulness in her voice.

I slowly shake my head, more confused now than ever. “Not even close. I was just trying to figure out how to tell my parents that I’ve wasted their hard-earned money and the last two and a half years of my life. I hate math.”

Kwalla recoils as if my mathematical slur negates her very existence. “You shouldn’t say things like that.”

“Give me a break,” I say, rubbing my eyes. “I might not get your ‘stories’ but you don’t get how incredibly hard this is for me. I wasn’t born a genius like you, solving proofs while still in the womb.”

From the grit in my words, I expect Kwalla to ask me to leave, but instead she lays a spindly hand on my knee.

“I’ve worked hard to get here, Mariah, but what you say is partially true. Math is our first language, and we crave it when we’re born like you crave your mother’s milk. It is our first friend. Our first love. Our first everything.” Kwalla pauses, face riddled with uncertainty, then draws a black pouch from her backpack. She unties the drawstring and slips a large, tear-shaped crystal into the palm of her hand. Hundreds of facets speckle the ceiling with light, so beautiful. “I’ve never shared this with anyone,” she says timidly.

“It’s amazing…”

“I haven’t even started yet,” she says with a laugh, then leans close so I can get a better look. Foreign symbols are etched into each cut side of the crystal. “It’s a yussalun, a calling piece. It’s similar to your auditory instruments, except… well, it’s probably easier just to show you.”

Kwalla holds the piece up in front of her like a trumpet, but several inches away from her mouth. Her thin fingers tap across the facets and the air above the piece crystallizes into an intricate fractal pattern, a living snowflake that blooms sideways and then stretches for the ceiling with all its might. Buds gracefully unfurl to the rhythm of an inaudible beat, stirring up a sense of wonder within me. Then the ice crystals slow, becoming thinner and more delicate until they peter out with a hopelessness that fills me with inexplicable grief.

“That was the equation we’ve been working on,” she says after we’ve both had a chance to catch our breath. “Now do you see?”

I nod, feeling wounded and vulnerable. There’s a terrible rawness inside my chest that I wouldn’t wish on anyone, and yet I crave more. I need more. “Do another,” I whisper.

So she shares her favorite stories with me, and together we sit pensive for mysteries, hold our breath for thrillers, and giggle at the titillation of cheap romance—each fractal evoking an emotion, pure and intense and untamed. After the sun no longer shines through her window, each fractal leaves a slight chill in the air, so we slip halfway under the covers and Kwalla shares with me a fractal with a perfect heart at its base that dazes me with childlike joy—an equation simple enough to solve itself. Then we throw the covers over our heads and I can’t tell where I end and she begins, so I giggle and Kwalla giggles, then she laughs, and I laugh.

 

 

Our professor posts the scores to our midterm exam outside the classroom door. With great trepidation, I type in the last four digits of my student ID and the page slowly scrolls down, pointlessly melodramatic. My finger shakes as I trace my way across the screen over failure and mediocrity and more failure until I reach the grade for last week’s exam. My chest explodes with delight when I see the 98.5.

I’m so giddy I can barely stay seated as I wait for Kwalla to arrive. Thanks to her, I’ve rediscovered my passion for math. I busy myself solving practice problems that tell tales of triumph in the face of adversity. I’ll pick the best one and share it with Kwalla tonight. In these last couple weeks, she’s taught me how to play her yussalun, turning water molecules in the air into icy fractals the size of a toy poodle, though mine pale in comparison to hers. The bluntness of my fingertips makes it difficult to tap the right facets, but what I lack in accuracy I make up for in perseverance. I’ve caused more than my fair share of fractals to wilt, however, when I get it right, math and story collide, forming something exponentially more magnificent than the sum of its parts.

Her seat is still empty. I wait as long as I can stand it, then ditch class a few minutes into Professor Gopal’s lecture. The phone rings and rings as I race to Kwalla’s dorm. Through her door, I can hear her speaking in an Ahkellan dialect sounding something like a rooster trying to fog up a mirror. A deeper voice follows with the tin ring of an IVT, an instantaneous voice transmission, cheapest way to call intragalaxy. Against my better judgment, I knock softly. Kwalla answers with an uncontainable smile, and nods for me to have a seat at her desk.

Her conversation stretches on for another ten minutes, and as she paces barefoot across the blue carpet, I admire all the ways her legs bend from beneath her skirt, and how the fluorescent light overhead glints on her skin—like iridescent rainbows set adrift across the night’s sky.

“I can’t believe it!” she shrills after she finally disconnects. “It couldn’t be more perfect! I’ve been accepted, Mariah. I’m going to Byshe!”

“That’s wonderful!” I say, and despite the rip in my heart, I really mean it.

Getting into Byshe is worse odds than matching all the balls in the Bippho Trans-Galactic pick-twelve. Optimism has never been my strong suit, but maybe if I study hard and get my grades up, I could apply to Byshe next year. Kwalla could tutor me the rest of this semester and maybe even a few weeks into the summer. I nod to myself, impervious to the laws of probability and blissfully ignoring the fact that I can barely afford out-of-state tuition, much less out of solar system.

“I’ve got some news, too,” I say.

Kwalla sits down next to me, and her eyes get wide and glassy. “You passed!”

“Nu-uh. I nearly aced it!”

“This calls for a celebration!” She pulls her yussalun out from its pouch and hands it to me. “Here, you play something nice while I pack.” Her voice trails off at the end, a whirlwind of excitement deflated by a sudden prick from reality.

“Pack?”

“If I don’t catch the next shuttle up …” Kwalla says, voice pitched high and words running together as she tries to stitch together some sort of excuse for wanting to get the hell out of here. I don’t blame her, not with the life she has waiting for her across the stars. Kwalla tilts her head forward, and after a weighty silence, she leans against my shoulder. “I’m leaving for Byshe in the morning.”

 

 

I can’t let her go without showing her how I feel, so after she’s fallen asleep, I slip out of bed and onto a spot on the floor where moonlight from her window falls across my dimly backlit notebook. I work through the whole night, scribbling down the story of us, the fun we’ve had in our short time together, and all the could-have-beens for our future. It becomes unwieldy, our equation, and even with the tiniest font, it still won’t fit on one screen. By the time I finish, my fingers are cramped, my brain is tight, and I can barely see straight. But the story is magnificent, engrossing, tragic.

Careful not to wake her too soon, I cradle the yussalun in my hands and prepare to share. Our story takes nearly thirty minutes to play, and when I’m done, I sit back and let it expand into the room. Two concentric buds sleepily emerge and form a base, then sprout three arms each, spiny like a starfish. They curl and coil, each arm to the beat of its own drummer. I marvel at the beginnings of their different stories, and my heart flutters as I try to keep up with them simultaneously.

At a meter high, I start to rouse Kwalla so she can see it as the first bits of sunlight shimmer across the fractal’s crystalline surface, but just as I lay a soft hand on Kwalla’s shoulder, the fractal begins to wilt. It steals my breath as I watch, my mind churning over the equation, wondering if I’d made a bad calculation or misplayed a note. But I couldn’t have made a mistake, not on something this important.

All at once, the arms spiral up with the grace and might of a dancer, recursive shapes predictable yet mesmerizing. My creation reaches for the ceiling, and I grin in anticipation of the final blossom, but the fractal is thickening like an insatiable sapling and not tapering into delicate buds. I exhale and my breath lingers in the air, coldness striking through my nightshirt as I realize this thing is far from stopping.

“Kwalla!” I scream, lips cracked from the moisture being sucked from the air.

She doesn’t respond and I shake her. Kwalla stirs for a moment, as if trying to fight through impending stasis, but then she goes still.

I take a swing at the fractal with her desk chair, smashing off one of the frosty tendrils, but it grows back with a vengeance until all is symmetrical again. Logic gives way to adrenaline and I scoop Kwalla’s body up into my arms.

“Fire!” I say, over and over through the hallways at the top of my lungs, figuring it will draw more attention than yelling “fractal!”

Someone pulls the alarm, and we all scatter outside and across the street. I rub warmth back into Kwalla’s limbs as onlookers wait for signs of smoke and flames. Of course they never come, and when rumors start circulating about a prank, I think that maybe I’d overreacted. An explosion of terra cotta tiles silences those thoughts as the fractal pierces the roof of Kwalla’s dormitory. Exposed to the night air and the moisture from the nearby lake, the fractal accelerates, busting brick and shattering glass. It’s odd, but no one panics or frets over lost possessions. We just watch, completely captivated.

The fractal doesn’t slow until it’s demolished both wings of Lagunita Court and the adjacent parking lot, and even then, it’s not quite finished. A single thin stalk stretches up for the stars, and it reaches, reaches, reaches—wispy recursions sprouting like a vine on its way to the stratosphere. With some effort, I pull my gaze away and watch the crowd. There’s not a dry eye to be found, including Kwalla’s, her body cradled comfortably against mine.

“I had no idea,” she exhales weakly, “…that you felt so deeply. It’s the most incredible story I’ve ever seen.”

“I’ll miss you,” I say before she has a chance to make well-meaning promises we both know it’d be impossible to keep. I savor this moment, because in a few hours, she’ll be on a plane to Houston, just one small step on her long journey home.

 

 

There’s a flurry of media coverage and threats of my expulsion, but the Board of Trustees changes its tune when news of the fractal reaches Ahkel and impresses even their most renowned intellectuals. Suddenly I’m no longer a disgraceful delinquent, but one of Stanford’s brightest scholars, and any blemishes on my academic record are written off as me being a genius misunderstood in my own time. I laugh at their antics. At least it distracts me long enough for the numbness inside me to fade.

A week later, my phone hums in my pocket while I’m doodling in Professor Gopal’s class. I fish it out so I can check the caller ID. My heart slips to my toes when I see it’s an IVT number, and I scramble out of the classroom on rubbery legs.

“Hello?” I say into my phone. “Hello?” I say again, harder this time, as if it’ll get my words across subspace faster. There’s only a slight time dilation, but the seconds drag on like days. I hang onto the sounds of rustling static, waiting for Kwalla’s voice.

Only it’s not Kwalla. My disappointment is short lived, however, when the caller identifies herself as the dean of the Mathematics department at Vrinchor Academy. She says she’s eager for the opportunity to take a closer look at how I derived my equations, and that if I’m interested, there’s a spot for me in the upcoming school year, full scholarship. I don’t bother holding back my elation, and even though a billion miles separate us, I’m sure the dean’s ear will be ringing for days.

I return to class and respectfully gather my belongings, though my classmates couldn’t have missed my screams. I nod at Professor Gopal, and he smiles knowingly. I can’t believe I’ll be living a dream, studying under the best minds in the galaxy, devouring math in all its forms. And of course it doesn’t hurt that I’ll be a quick shuttle’s ride from Kwalla, just two planets away.

I race across campus, cutting through manicured lawns, dodging traffic, and pushing myself through the knot of tourists gathered in front of our fractal. I fall to my knees, chest heaving and smiling wider than any sane person ought to. My warmed skin braces me against the deep chill the fractal emits. Despite my best efforts not to look like a complete fool, I still draw stares and the attention of a camera lens or two.

From the corner of my eye, I swear I see our fractal moving. Changing. Of course that’s impossible after all this time—probably just an odd reflection of sunlight or the shadow of a passing cloud. Doesn’t matter. I’ve got a date with destiny tonight: a passport to find, flights to book, a whole planet to say goodbye to and above all, I’ve got a new story that’s itching to be told.

 

END

 


 

“She Shines Like a Moon” was originally published in Lackington’s and is copyright Pear Nuallak, 2015.

“The Simplest Equation” was originally published in Space and Time Magazine and is copyright Nicky Drayden 2014.

This recording is a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives license which means you can share it with anyone you’d like, but please don’t change or sell it. Our theme is “Aurora Borealis” by Bird Creek, available through the Google Audio Library.

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Thanks for listening, and I’ll be back soon with a poem by Joanne Rixon, and an original story by A.C. Buchanan.