I’m excited to say that I won the December 2018 story contest on www.fantasy-writers.org. This is the first time I’ve written for the site, and didn’t imagine I’d grab the brass ring this soon.
Anyway, I’m really proud of this story. In keeping with the December holiday, story rules required that I include all of the following: 1. A feast 2. Songs sung once a year 3. Decorating a tree 4. A birth in unusual circumstances and 5. Breaking into houses for a benevolent purpose. Hope you enjoy Monkey Weather.
The day before Festa, Marya pu Nova, the widow of Tenth House, attracted the attention of a god. She woke in the hour before dawn before any of the staff or guests, after yet another night alone. Lighting a taper, she padded up the stone stairs and onto the open third-floor gallery.
The god watched her through the eyes of his children, the monkeys that roamed the rooftops, temples, and monuments of the ancient city of Lankoor. Tenth House had its own troop of them, under the rule of an old fellow humans called Greyface.
Writing this story took me on a reading journey high over the streets of Manhattan to learn who lives in these immensely high buildings and what that life is like. One really interesting fact is that at a certain point, you’re so high that you can’t see the city below without going to your window and looking straight down, and the sky in front of you is rather dull. Not a fact I used here, but interesting none the less.
This story won the F-F monthly contest in January 2017.
A black paw flicked from the shadows and swatted my candle, snuffing out the flame, and spilling wax on a ten-thousand-dollar rug. "Stop that, Py," I said. The wax hardened into another strata of trial-and-error. Teaching myself witchcraft had been a very slow business.