Electric Velocipede are revamping their website to prepare for their launch as a e-zine. In the runup to that, they’re republishing fiction from their previous issues online. Among which is “The Dragon’s Tears”. Probably the best description of this is that I wrote as a homage to the Chinese fairytales I read when I was a child–I wasn’t very up to date on historical research then, but I think I nailed the feeling I got when I was six or seven, and immersed in a big fat book of wonderful stories with dragons, immortal carpenters, and crabby Iron-Crutch Li, where everything and everyone could turn out to be magical (and possibly deadly. That’s part of the deal with magical people).
Also, as Anne S. Zanoni points out, she sent me one of the sweetest mails ever after she proofread this–I’m a big Patricia McKillip fan, so being compared to her while I still felt like a raw newbie was, well, pretty magical…
Huan Ho sealed the last window, leaving only a crack in the shutter. Tonight, he thought, his eye on the empty streets, the neighbours’ barred shutters. Tonight he had to pass the door on the hill, or let the sickness take his mother.
Read more here, and do check out the rest of the cool stuff while you’re there.