In celebration of International Pixel-Stained Technopeasant Day, by special arrangement with the Technoreeve, I give you a story you would not otherwise see until November, in Paper Cities, an anthology edited by
and full of a whole bunch of authors who are far cooler than I am. I love this story with a scary big love, and it is growing into a big book as we speak.
The funny thing, by the way, about the Technopeasant comment, besides sheer bizarreness, which is, I guess, what you get from SF writers, is that it implies that we who use and understand the internet, we who are able through luck, knowledge, and skill to turn it to our literary advantage, are living in the Dark Ages of feudalism and, well, darkness. Which implies that the old guard are living in some kind of beautiful Renaissance that doesn’t include the net, doesn’t include computers as anything but (and maybe not even that) tools of composition. This isn’t a fucking typewriter, guys. It’s not “embrace the future,” which, frankly, we should need no lessons in that, not a one of us, but “embrace the freaking present.”
To which end: Palimpsest, full and uncut and yours for free, via this beautiful typewriter and its endless ribbon.
16th and Hieratica
A fortune-teller’s shop: palm-fronds cross before the door. Inside are four red chairs with four lustral basins before them, filled with ink, swirling and black. A woman lumbers in, wrapped in ragged fox-fur. Her head amid heaps of scarves is that of a frog, mottled green and bulbous-eyed, and a licking pink tongue keeps its place in her wide mouth. She does not see individual clients. Thus it is that four strangers sit in the red chairs, strip off their socks, plunge their feet into the ink-baths, and hold hands under an amphibian stare. This is the first act of anyone entering Palimpsest: Orlande will take your coats, sit you down, and make you family.