30 January 2012


"Mix some string into a bowl of sick, and pour that on a plate."

"That's enough, Riri," said her father, reaching for another Milkmaid from the box. "Your amma goes to so much trouble to fix you a healthy meal."

Let's trade troubles! thought Roariferex Glak, for the punishment in the Glak lair was: "If you don't eat your cardoons now, you'll get twice as much tomorrow." And she knew from experience that cardoons were double trouble multiplied by infinity. Roariferex, by the way, is the name she was given when she hatched. She had to put up with what her parents called her, but she was Roar to her friends.

Roar's chin trembled with indignation. Why! she thundered silently, do I get into trouble for what my body does? Her throat would jam shut and her stomach jump. Then her teeth—all one hundred and fifty of them—would close so tight that they met in a jagged clamp, her top front fangs pressed down so hard over her chin scales that each scale's root was rimmed with blood.
She could close her eyes and it still happened, just at the thought of putting any part of that dead flop and slither on her tongue. It happened even if she dipped her smallest talon into that humungous mountain just for her, of: gloop-grey, smelliverous, and slimily yeggigh as the last frog in a carton forgotten in the fridge—a heaped peak of it—forbidding and compulsory, and unfair as parents who don't eat it themselvescardoons!


That's how Cardoons! begins. It was camping here for a few days, but this is a horrid place to post it, where it looks as if it has a never-ending tail.

So I've booted it out and now settled it
for your pleasure (and free reading, of course) at my Virtuous Medlar Circle, here:

'Cardoons!' first appeared in Phantasmagorium Issue #1, October 2011, the horror quarterly edited by Laird Barron.
This story is copyright Anna Tambour, and I'm being presenting it online as a promotion for Laird and the other authors, and with hopes by AT and Marc McBride, that 'Cardoons!' will become a book full of pictures for adults to read with children's supervision.


kiy1955 said...

Will be;enjoying this decor~dance of delight SOON! !! [tries to clear spArks from desk so he can FUN and halt the exercises of c;urr;ently; piercing non-fiction;]

anna tambour said...

Looking forward! Can anyone ever catch SOON?

Adam Browne said...

you're our James Tiptree Junior, but better...