Issue 220 of Interzone, which contains my fantasy story “Ys”, is now available. This is part of a series on French myths (which also includes “Melanie”, forthcoming in Realms of Fantasy): it features an unwanted pregnancy, a creepy goddess, and the drowned city of Ys in Brittany, which perished when its princess yielded to the Devil’s advances.
September, and the wind blows Françoise back to Quimper , to roam the cramped streets of the Old City amidst squalls of rain.
She shops for clothes, planning the colours of the baby’s room; ambles along the deserted bridges over the canals, breathing in the smell of brine and wet ivy. But all the while she’s aware that she’s only playing a game with herself–she knows she’s only pretending that she hasn’t seen the goddess.
It’s hard to forget the goddess–that cold radiance that blew salt into Françoise’s hair, the dress that shimmered with all the colours of sunlight on water–the sharp glimmer of steel in her hand.
You carry my child, the goddess had said, and it was so. It had always been so.