GlitterShip

An LGBTQ Science Fiction & Fantasy podcast

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Episode #18 — “Eureka!” by Nick Mamatas


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Eureka!

By Nick Mamatas

Adam hadn’t worn the crushed velvet blouse in his hands for a long time. It was from his goth phase, twenty pounds and twenty years prior. He shuddered at the thought of it distending around his spare tire these days, but he couldn’t bring himself to put it in the box he’d set aside for Out of the Closet either. And not only because it would be embarrassing if anyone saw it.

There were memories in the wrinkles of the velvet—well, not memories exactly. Half-memories, images and glimpses and smells. Two decades of gimlets and bad decisions and a few teeth and a trio of cross-country moves. What was the place? It was Huggy Bear’s on Thursdays, when they played disco for a majority black clientele, but on most nights it was just The Bank. A real bank, in the sepia-toned days when great-grandma worked in an Orchard Street sweatshop, a goth/darkwave club now.

 

Full transcript appears under the cut.

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Episode #17 — “Minghun: Unlikely Patron Saints No. 5” by Amy Sisson

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Minghun: Unlikely Patron Saints, No. 5

by

Amy Sisson

 

A whisper of excitement echoes through the cave, or what I think of as a cave. She is coming, the minghun broker is coming, I hear or perhaps feel, like soft butterfly wings brushing my face. I strain to catch a glimpse of one of the others I know to be around me, but it is difficult to see faces. A flash of sleeve, whether plain or fancy, or a pale hand laid briefly on my arm is more likely.

When she arrives, the minghun broker is far more tangible than the companions I sense around me, and her face seems familiar. She has been coming as long as I’ve been here, which may be months or years. It is whispered that she comes to us in her dreams, that she belongs to the world before. The others are always happy to see her because she offers something they cannot find for themselves.

 

 

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Episode #16 — “They Jump Through Fires” by Gabriela Santiago


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They Jump Through Fires

By Gabriela Santiago

 

 

“They jump through fires, you know.”

We were behind a glass window and at least ten feet off the ground, but Sam’s voice startled the rabbit that had been standing frozen on the asphalt, one large brown eye twitching as it stared up at me. Its ears jerked up and it twisted away, hopping into the underbrush.

I kept looking out the window. “They what?”

“Jump through fires. Instead of running away.”

“Did you read that on Wikipedia?”

She changed the subject. “You going to be all right here by yourself?”

“Of course.”

“I left my number on the kitchen table, if, you know, you need anything—”

“Thanks for helping carry her. You can go now.”

 

Full transcript appears after the cut.

 
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Episode #15 — “Seventh Day of the Seventh Moon” by Ken Liu


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Seventh Day of the Seventh Moon

By Ken Liu

“Tell me a story,” said Se. She had changed into her pajamas all by herself and snuggled under the blankets.

Se’s big sister, Yuan, was just about to flip the switch next to the bedroom door. “How about you read a story by yourself? I have to … go see a friend.”

“No, it’s not the same.” Se shook her head vigorously. “You have to tell me a story or I can’t sleep.”

Yuan glanced at her phone. Every minute tonight was precious. Dad was out of town on business, and Mom was working late and wouldn’t be home till midnight. Yuan needed to be home before then, but if she could get her little sister to sleep quickly, she’d still have a couple of hours to see Jing on this, her last night in China.

 

Full transcript appears after the cut.

 

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Episode #14 — “All That Fairy Tale Crap” by Rachel Swirsky


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All That Fairy Tale Crap

by Rachel Swirsky

 

I was supposed to go to the ball, but I spent the night licking out my stepsister instead.

Bethesda moaned and rustled mulberry silk high up her thighs. “There, there, no, faster, come on, faster, please…”

The friendly mice put out their eyes and ran out in trios to join a different fairy tale.

 

Never marry a prince when you can eat a pussy.

Never ride a pumpkin when you can steal cab fare.

Never wear a ball gown when you can slink in snakeskin pants.

Never listen to a fairy godmother.

 

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Episode #13 — “Sugar” by Cat Rambo


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***

Sugar

by Cat Rambo

They line up before Laurana, forty baked-clay heads atop forty bodies built of metal cylinders.  Every year she casts and fires new heads to replace those lost to weather, the wild, or simple erosion.  She rarely replaces the metal bodies.  They are scuffed and battered, over a century old.

Every morning, the island sun beating down on her pale scalp, she stands on the maison’s porch with the golems before her.  Motionless.  Expressionless.

She chants.  The music and the words fly into the clay heads and keep them thinking.  The golems are faster just after they have been charged.  They move more lightly, with more precision.  With more joy.  Without the daily chant they could go perhaps three days at most, depending on the heaviness of their labors.

 

Full transcript appears under the cut.

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Episode #12 — “Swan-Brother” by Gabriel Murray


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Swan-Brother

by Gabriel Murray

The—woman—took snuff.  “Good morning, Captain,” she said, Capitaine in her accent.  “This is a colder day than I imagined.”  She looked out over the swells, her mannish periwig bobbing as she tilted her head up to regard the horizon.  “Do you know, I hardly expected to see it.”

Gregory Everett clasped his hands behind his back.  “Your Captain did the correct thing,” he said.

He had.  Galatea‘s American captain had struck colours almost as soon as the Indefatigable beat to quarters.  If he hadn’t Gregory would have sent him to the bottom of the sea.  Gregory had no way of knowing that the privateer Galatea carried but one petty sorceress, not one of Bonaparte’s magi that could kill him and his men with an incantation and a splinter of Indefatigable‘s hull.  He’d have sunk her.

 

Full transcript appears under the cut.

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Episode #11— “Bonsaiships of Venus” by Kate Heartfield


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Bonsaiships of Venus

by Kate Heartfield

 The work of aesthetics is the aesthetics of work.

     —Principles of Graphene Cultivation, by Johanne St-Pierre, Vol. II

Makoto adjusted the angle of his scalpel’s electron beam, exhaled and made the cut. A fingernail-sized section of the airship’s graphene skin peeled away to join the miniature airship attached to its exterior like a soap bubble.

This was neither Makoto’s only bonsaiship nor his first. But it was and would always be the most precious to him. He had made the first cut nearly a year before, on the day of his husband’s death. It was a tribute to Reuven, nearly perfect, nearly complete.

 

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Episode #10 — “King Tide” by Alison Wilgus

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King Tide

by Alison Wilgus

Some particular trick of the moon, the weather, and the Earth’s closeness to the sun had pulled the tide all the way to 5th Avenue, a good half-block further uphill than usual. The city had put out an alert, so Jordyn knew to clear out the basement ahead of time. Their landlord was smart enough to have the foundation sealed years ago—that would be fine—but there wasn’t much to be done for cardboard boxes and old futons. Those had to be kept above the tide line, or they were garbage.

 

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Episode #9 — “Sooner than Gold” by Cory Skerry

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Sooner Than Gold
By Cory Skerry

I tug on clean underwear in case I get arrested, paint my makeup perfectly because there’s nothing sadder than a grown man in badly applied eyeliner, and climb out my apartment window, onto the fire escape.

I can’t be late to this assignment, and if I go through the lobby, there’s a strong chance the night doorman will have a thing or two to say about the video footage of our card game last night. I forgot there was a camera pointed at the lobby desk.

The asphalt below reeks of garbage and piss; about half of the latter is probably mine. Don’t judge. If I’m drunk enough, there’s not even any point in aiming for the toilet.

My boots land softly as I hit the ground, but the ladder clangs as my weight slides off. I look back up at the enchantment, where it strings out from my leg to the trunk in my apartment.

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