The Boarder

By Edele Winnie

Mean streets, wild dogs, crack house. Laughing on the front porch, guarding the stash, guarding the cash, guarding me, queen bee, Queen Sheila of Detroit.   I may be thin and short but I’m covered in spikes that no one else can see. They call me Whip Lady because I have a real whip and I once strapped a junkie ‘til he was almost dead. Now everyone walks softly and smiles at me, cause they like happy times. But there’s always clouds, you know, and broken pipes and dirty grit that gets in your eye. You gotta deal with it best you can or go down, fall into the mud, and there ain’t no future with dirt in your mouth.

Jeff Nooper came to us in the summer, saying he’s looking for a safe house to sleep. A whole neighbourhood of empty boarded up houses and he wants to sleep at the Queen’s palace! Who are you Jeff Nooper? I ask but he just shrugs and says he’s a guy in-between. Like we all are. Except the queen’s palace isn’t in between it’s a someplace, with electricity and water- both illegal but no one bothers us cause the queen’s guard sees to that.

Most of the guard are users who still have some life skills left, like walking and talking and shitting in the right places. The coke and the crack take that away from you so I ride them hard, making sure they’re my guards and not rainbow police grasshoppers that will jump away when trouble comes. That’s why I was suspicious when Jeff Nooper, who has been my boarder, sleeping upstairs in the race car room and paying me in bags of groceries, says he wants to join the guard. I know nothing about this schmoe. He smokes weed and sniffs a little, but mostly he keeps to himself and he’s always smiling. Never trust a smiler, ‘cause they know something you don’t.   Nooper’s not a real name probably slang for snooper and that’s what I think he is- some kind of a spy. He’s either blabbing to the cops or taking gum from another dealer who wants my neighbourhood. There’s no shortage of wannabees- Crimson Daddy, with his long red hair or that one armed guy everybody calls the Slot Machine. Continue reading

Spider-man vs. Dracula

Spider-man and Dracula stepped off the porch.

“What did she give us? I can’t see.” Dave pulled his Spider-man mask to adjust the eye holes.

“Take your stupid mask off, we’re not even at the door anymore.” Twin lines of spit dribbled down Rob’s chin from where his plastic fangs poked out past his lips.

Dave shook his head emphatically. “Sorry dude, with great power comes great responsibility.”

Rob raised his arms and looked around with exaggerated movements. “There aren’t even anymore house on this street.”

Behind them, two Batmans, a Transformer and Princess Bubblegum ran up to the steps.

The pair walked to the edge of the sidewalk and stopped.

“Where to now?” Rob glanced to where the street ended at a large woods, then back up the newly built road. Only one house was finished on their path back out, the owners opting to move in after Halloween. There were three muddy pits dug for future houses, but no other prospects for candy.

“This area’s tapped out. We can check out the action on the other side of the bush.” Dave slung his pillowcase over his shoulder.

“I don’t want to go all the way around. It’s already getting dark; by the time we get there all the candy’ll be gone.” Rob wiped his chin, taking off some of the white makeup. “We’ve got a lot already man.”

“Blasphemy!” Dave made his best Spidy pose, almost knocking over Princess Bubblegum, who was trying to get to the sidewalk. He adjusted his mask again. “Sorry kid.” He shifted the sack and moved out of the way of the other kids. “This is the last year we’re gonna get to go trick-or-treating. I’m not going home until we’ve knocked on every door in town.”Peering out of the one hole he managed to align with his eyes, he pointed at the mass of bare trees separating the neighbourhood from the older ones on the other side. “Let’s just cut through the woods.” Continue reading

Designated Drivers 

Ben V.

Calvin didn’t hear the bartender. Based on the expression she made, and the fact that he wasn’t holding another beer, he assumed it had something to do with her cutting him off. He hoped he looked angry, but he decided to choose his words carefully.

“Hey, my beer.” He slapped the bar, leaned back, and had to hang on to the slick wood to keep steady. His focus on the task caused him to miss her reply again. “Wha?”  Continue reading

Don’t Pick Things up from Other Dimensions – Conclusion

Davis followed protocol as he walked the streets.  The flashlight told him he didn’t have to be so uptight.  It claimed that it could sense any disturbance, dimensional or not, but Davis felt more relaxed when he was doing his job.

They made another turn down a street lined with long low buildings.  Some of them had bars and Asian restaurants and others housed book stores and pawnshops.  They had all been deserted since the shift.  With the first attack, people left behind everything they couldn’t carry.  The zone was closed off as quickly as the military and corporations could manage.  Dust, time, and the first creatures had their way with everything in the zones, but that didn’t stop people from trying to get in and scavenge.  Davis pointed the flashlight at the broken windows and occasional holes in the walls of the stores, happy it still served its purpose.  The crunch of Davis’ boots on the scattered debris was the only sound. Continue reading

Titan Run Part Three

Titan Run Part Three

Martin Sr. thought about how he hadn’t really taken a strong interest in the case surrounding his younger brothers incident. They got along well enough when they were younger.

When their mother passed away and their father was still heavily into his command. The two of them were sent off to the Academy on Mars, where their bond grew weaker. That didn’t change the fact that they were brothers, and he loved him. Continue reading

Don’t Pick Things up from Other Dimensions – Part One

By Ben V

A red light mounted on the wall flashed as an announcement warned the guards that the door would be opening in fifteen minutes.  It reminded them to double check their gear before the nightly orientation.

The room was simple.  A large door took up an entire wall and separated the bureau, and the outside world, from zone five.  Two rows of benches lined up facing the door where the guards sat and waited for their shift to start.  A single door led off to the locker rooms.  It was the only way into the staging area and the huge blast door was the only way into the fifth zone.  The afternoon shift was ending and the night guards were preparing to take over, some of them for the first time.  Six guards sat quietly waiting for the trainer to give the final announcement.  Continue reading

Beyond Termination – Part 5

“Damn it!”  Alice hit the rig with her fists, frustration still coursing through her.

A few of the technicians in the Hangar ducked their heads and avoided looking directly at Alice.  They had been chewed out too many times to count.  She still couldn’t figure out why the satellites weren’t picking up all of the creatures.

The Hangar was quickly becoming a mess; piles of wires and open panels littered the floor.  Alice was waist deep in them, her head ducking into the terminal and popping back out to keep an eye on the displays.

Her com-link crackled to life.  “Any updates?” Map inquired. Continue reading

Soul Collector

I barely let him get into the cab before I push her into him, “It seems that fate has finally caught up with you Mr. Collins,” I peer at him through the rear view mirror.

“Who are you?” he demands.

“Yes, I can imagine that my face has faded from your memory,” I say, “Much like that of the innocents that have suffered at your hands, much like those of my people.”

“Your people?” Silence fills the car as I put her in drive and start to pull away, “Where are you taking me?” he asks.

“Look down?” I call to him, watching as his eyes finally register what has happened, “Do you recall where you were twenty years ago?”

“How can this be?” he asks.

I twist the blade which causes him to react violently, “I know a great many things about you – actually I know everything about you,” I continue to look forward as we drive, “By the end of the night you will be dead,” I speak with certainty, “First we are going on a trip down memory lane.”

“Fuck you,” he spits, as I simply add pressure to the blade that is wedged through the front seat directly into his stomach, causing him to flinch in pain.

“What do you want? Who are you?”

“What I want should be obvious,” I continue, “As for who I am well that is the question isn’t it?”

“You know who I am?”

I slowly pull to a stop turning on the inside lights, “I know exactly who you are, you are the man responsible for taking me away from my mission, you are the man who is responsible for turning me into what I am today,” I sigh, “Where were you twenty years ago?”

“Twenty years ago,” he starts, “What are you?” his question trails off.

“I see you are remembering.”

“It can’t bed,” he stutters, “no one survived, I killed everyone.”

“You thought you killed everyone,” I turned around letting him see my face for the first time, “you really should have gotten all your facts straight before you came into my home.”

“Impossible,” he says as he sees the scars across my face.

“Nothing is impossible,” I reply, “Did you even bother to learn anything about my people before you set out to slaughter them,” I ask.

“It wasn’t you I was after,” he says, “It was the sword, you were just collateral damage.”

“Collateral damage,” I scream, “You killed my people and all you can say is we were collateral damage.”

“Wait you can’t kill me,” he pleads.

“Why not?”

It goes against your –”

I cut him off before he can finish, “Against my what,” I yell violently, “My code, What code? After you slaughter my people and leave me for dead, after you turned me into this?”

“Then why not just get on with it and kill me,” he challenges as I see a spot of blood at the corner of his lip.

“Do you know the legend of this sword?” I ask him, “Did you even know what you had when you first took it?”

“It’s just a sword.”

I shake my head as I proceed to twist it once more causing him to scream, “No Mr. Collins,” I start, “It is much more than just a sword, she is called ‘Soul Collector'(.) (D)do you know why?”

“Some kind of superstitious bullshit,” he spits out as blood foams from his mouth.

I start to laugh, “You know nothing, nothing at all,” I turn away from him, “You know I can never die, on that day I was the first person to feel your wrath, as you entered the sacred room and took the blade,” I pause, “you didn’t see me as I slept on the floor behind the altar, but I felt your wrath as I was consumed by the fire you set.”

There is a long silence before I look upon him again, I can see the blood pooling even more upon his lips and realize my time is short, “I want you to know that even though I blame you for slaughtering my people,” I pause, “I know you did so at the behest of others, I want you to know that when you are gone, when your soul is resting with my Brothers and Sisters, I will seek those others and they will join you.”

“You have no idea who you are dealing with.” he whispers.

“Oh I do,” I state matter-of-factly.


“You know it took me more than three months to get out of that valley, after I pulled myself out of the charred remains of my home, I mean” I push forward. “My body was weak, well as weak as that of a twelve year old, but I pushed forward, my mind was blank then, I had nothing, only knowing that I could not die – so I just walked.”

“When I thought I could walk no more I became delusional, seeing the ghosts of my people, hearing their pain within my soul,” I continue to look into his eyes. “Hearing all their screams, experiencing all of their pain was enough to drive me insane.”

“When my walk was done, I found myself on the streets of Shanghai, this is just before the second world war,” I stop again to reflect. “I saw a lot of change happen over that time. To survive I became a common street thief, stealing from the unsuspecting, – that was until I met her,” I pause again. “She found you for me.”

“Who is she?” his breathing short desperate.

“She’s the reason I am here today,” I continue to reflect. “The war had come and gone, China was becoming a much different place and I happened upon a mark that could read me better than I could read her,” I smile. “The way she flipped me using all the tricks of the east I am a warrior, I could not die and a western woman, lets just say she showed me a few things.”

“Who is this woman?”

“Karla Windcroft,” I finally answer, “she took me in, she brought me back here and raised me, she taught me how to live my life again,” I pause, “but she also knew that one day it would come to this, that I would have to finish this chapter of my life,” I pause. “When she wasn’t traveling the world on one adventure or another she was here helping me to find you. I think she realized it was better to help me rather than let me go off unprepared into the world.”

“Why would she even care?”

I smile as I twist the blade again cause more pain and even more blood to pool, “Why because we had something in common, I not you in particular, you were mine, but something,” I speak briskly as I know the time is almost at hand. “I was afraid that I wasn’t going to be prepared for you tonight. We found out that you were going to be here but something was missing.”


“Her,” I say as I look down upon the sword that stood between us, “I could not find her after you took her away from me, I would have killed you one way or the other but Karla had a gift for me. She never told me, but while she was out in the world without me, she was seeking ‘Her’.”

“Mr. Collins are you ready?” I say, “Do not worry,” I tell him as I slowly pull the sword up ripping through his chest, “They will be joining you soon.”


“Those set you on this path,” I say calmly, “Those people who feel they can destroy innocence, that they can take as they please without recourse.” I look into his eyes, “Do you know why they call her ‘Soul Collector’?” he shakes his head. “Well you will soon,” I say as I rip her out of his chest stealing his last breath along the way.