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Dog Jerky

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“It is for stamina.”  She said to him with her cute mouth on her cute face.  She was Korean.  Just Korean - no hyphen.  Her English was as cute as her face.

“I am strong enough.  American macho me.”  He laughed.  They had met in Koreatown by accident.  By traffic accident.  She had run her Silver Lexus into the back of his red BMW.  The true American auto industry in action.  A coming together of  countries.

“Not strong.  Endurance.  It is very hot.  It will keep you hiking.”  She placed the strip of jerky to his lips.  He was sweating.

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Why Did You Leave Me?

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The train pulled into the station at 6:00 P.M., and  knowing he had only a few hours before he had to catch the 1:00 A.M.  train back to the post,  Jason hurried to Ellie.  After the usual warm greeting,  they sat on Ellie's porch swing and held hands.

"Ellie, if I didn't  have you, I'd have to spend my nights on the post and  I'd go mad."

Ellie leaned over and kissed him. "Well, you have me and you always will."

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Taken, One after Another

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Chad still hadn’t returned by morning.  We all knew he’d been taken, just like Sandy.

That was the way it was, ever since the dead started walking again – the Zombie Uprising that had seemed like just a stupid joke until it actually happened.  How?  Who knew.  Why?  An even more impossible question.  We just crouched in the darkness of the Payless Shoes storage room, keeping quiet.  Dark, so maybe they wouldn’t see us.  Quiet, so maybe they wouldn’t hear us.

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Escape to Here

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The Eastern Gate was deserted, save for the huddled family that awaited transfer to the Deep. He could see from their dirty and malnourished faces that they were no surface dwellers, their skin was too ashen and pale, pallid even in the sweet air of the cities' edge. No, these people were from the Deep, the shanty slum that rose from the core, eight levels down. Those that lived there often gave it a different name however; many simply called it Hell.

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Paco

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At 52 years old Hernandez Holanda could be considered a veteran.

In fact the current life expectancy for his colleagues was a little under two years. Hernandez, or Paco as he was generally known, had been working for the cartel since retiring from the Mexican air force at the age of 35. Paco was a survivor and fully intended to live long enough to see out his retirement. The current vibrations in the converted Cessna Titan gave him some cause for concern though.

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Patience

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My name is Abby. I live in Patience, a town with the population of three hundred.  I am 37, single and bitter about my ex who got married last month, even though I dumped him. All I ever was to get married and have a child of my own. Okay I will be honest, I want the baby. I am just not sure I am the marrying type. Can anyone ever really say they truly know someone? I cannot take that chance, I refuse to. So after three years of him waiting, I let him go.

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Postcard from Chinguashi

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Joey Mottolli began drinking seriously in Vietnam in 1967.  After he was discharged, he told people at O’Neal’s it quieted the static in his head.  O’Neal’s over by the East River had Guinness on tap and solace in its darkness.  Now, if he could only drown out the chants of the peaceniks screaming, “One two three four, we don’t want your fucking war.”

He wished he still had his grenades, but the army had removed them from his hold baggage before he boarded the flight home.

Two women entering O’Neal’s disturbed him with a flash of sunlight.

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Cannibalistic Freaks

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Running foot claps echoed off the frost covered asphalt; she was rapidly panting for breath--covered in blood spatter. Her thin arms rested on her upper thighs, preparing to regurgitate from the absolute horror she witnessed. Suddenly; he stepped out of the viscous ink like shadows, revealing an outrageous spectacle of cannibalistic grotesqueness.
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Bad Judgment

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“What price are we talking about here?” Snowy said to the man dressed in the Armani suit sitting across the table from him. The roadside café was packed full of people, it was lunch hour. The place was full of office types and factory grunts sat shoulder to shoulder eating the same shitty food served daily; it was a perfect place to get lost in the crowd and discuss business.

“Twenty K for the first batch and eighteen thereafter,” the man in the Armani suite said.

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World's Best Zombie Slayer

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My name is Shawn Clyde, and if anyone is reading this, I'm already dead. I'm corpsified. Six feet under.

You get the idea.

Technically, I'll be laying in the bed I plan to be in when I swallow a few year's worth of pain pills, but it all amounts to the same thing. I know this may seem strange in such a time of renewed hope and opportunity as we now live in, but you see, that's kind of the problem.

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