Thursday, August 21, 2014



by Steven Novak

The sheriff is sprawled out on the ground, one hand cupping the wound on his shoulder, mustache slightly curled, a shit-eating grin spread across his stupid face.

He staggers to his feet with a grunt. “Heh. I told ya, Doc. Whatever you were before ya landed here is good n’ gone. Yer a part of this town, ya hear? There’s sand in yer blood, Earth dirt beneath your fingers, and whiskey in yer veins.”

His hand falls to your shoulder, fingers sliding across the slimy surface of the tentacle draped lazily over your shoulder. “Yer a saddle tramp, Doc. Raised on salt lick and browned by the sun of the south. There’s a giddy-up in yer step the likes of which I ain’t seen in damn near a hoolywang.”

Suddenly he’s smiling so bright he’s flashing the few teeth has left. His free hand lands on your other shoulder and gives it a pat. “And ya ain’t no yellow-belly varmint. I know ya ain’t about to vamoose n’ let the people of this town go up the spout. Yer better than that. Yer a healer, a dealer, and a hell of a card player. We’re yer friends.”

His hands slide up your neck and to your face, cupping your cheeks. He nods like he’s known you for years, like he’s your best friend, and your mother, and childhood pal GleebGlorp all rolled into one. “We’re yer family.”

He’s an idiot.

While he was busy nodding and waxing nostalgic about the one time you played poker, one of your tentacles was making its way up his back, heading for his neck. Before he can continue his babbling, you shut him up. Your tentacle wraps around his neck. Your muscles tighten.

His stupid head pops off.

Free from his body and airborne his head spins, spurting blood in every direction, shattered spine wiggling like a horses tail. It bounces off a table across the room and crashes into a monitor. When it finally comes to a stop, you notice the expression on the sheriff’s face.

He’s not smiling anymore.

When Sally screams you crack her in the chops, knock her into the wall, and put her to sleep.  There’s no reason to kill her. She might still be good for something. Weird half-human sex, maybe? She seemed pretty handy with those whips. So what if she double-crossed you? So what if she used her womanly wares to get the better of you? Made you look silly? Hurt your pride? Dented your ego? So what if she took advantage of you when you were at your lowest? When you falsely believed this backnebula planet and it’s backnebula lifeforms actually had something to offer? So what if GleepGlorp would’ve been ashamed of what you’ve become? So what if you do…

On second thought, fluuonk her.

Your tentacles dig into her chest, peel back her ribs and tear out her half-breed heart. It’s gross, not quite human and not quite you. It’s pink and purple, and speckled green. It’s an abomination.

Her father should be ashamed.

Fluuonk them all.

With a few tweaks of the levers and dials in front of you the saloon unfolds from your ship once again, crushing three or four slack-jawed locals in the process. 

Fluuonk them too.

You don’t need this place, or these creatures. You never did. You only became a “doctor” because you found it hilariously ironic. You don’t save stuff. You kill stuff. You’ve always killed stuff.

The blood from Sally and Sheriff begins to pool at your feet, green and red, human and alien, and all sort of nastiness. It’s going to be a pain in one of your three rectums to clean up. Still, it was worth it.

GleepGlorp would be proud.

By the time you exit the saloon the locals are have already gathered. Some of them are pointing guns in your direction. Others are cowering behind barrels or peeking through windows. A lot of them are screaming.

You’d roll your eyes, but its more effort than they’re worth.

You’re going to do what you should have done long ago. You’re going to corral these creatures like they corral the lifeforms lower than them. You’re going to strip them bare, shackle them, and teach them a rather harsh lesson about hubris, and their place in the universe, and the grand scheme of things. It’s long overdue.

A rock hits your head. Another bounces off your chest. One of them unloads a shotgun in your direction and it ricochets off the Rumanetic Forcefield you’ve erected around your body. Another fires his revolver. Three of his friends follow his lead. It takes nearly a minute and a half of pointless shooting before they realize it’s accomplishing nothing. When the shooting stops, old Mildred McGraw chucks her cat.

Oh yes, this is so incredibly overdue.

As you move from the saloon and into the street, your tentacles spread in every direction, tips twitching, suction cups drooling. “Now that you’ve gotten that out of your system.”

Hansen McGillicutty lunges at you from behind, knife raised, gritting through yellow-stained teeth and a beard in desperate need of a trim. “Ya son of a bitch! Gonna gut yer hear…”

He slams into your forcefield face-first, smashes his nose and chokes on his own blood. You rip his arm from his torso and use it to knock Mildred McGraw on her ass.

That’s for the cat.

Most of the crowd screams. Some of them start to cry. A few of them run. You extend a second forcefield further down the block and chuckle when they slam into it.

GleepGlorp would have loved that.

When they realize there’s nowhere to go and nothing to do, most of the crowd gives up, staring in your direction with unbelieving eyes. The time has come. The end is near. Those that believe in God, have come to the grim realization that you are it.  

It’s almost enough to make you grin.

“Most of you probably know me as Doc, but that is a foolish title, given by foolish lifeforms, on a shphithole planet at the ass-end of the universe. I am tired of tending to you. I’m sick of doing my best to heal your injures! I’m sick of pretending that I care what happens to your fragile bodies!”

You point to a skinny man near the back of the crowd. “You, Charles Smith! I inserted my finger into your rectum to check your prostate! I did that! That’s something I did to keep you from learning what I was! Do you have any idea how humiliating that was for me? Do you?”

Before Charles can respond you knock him through the window of a dress shop.

“I am through! My days of seeing to your sniffles, and coughs, and pains are history! The time has come for you to learn your place! To be treated like the ghastly, poorly constructed, weak-bodies monstrosities you are! The time has come for you to clean my bedpan! To bring me food! To stick your fingers in my rectum! The time has come to lear…”

The saloon behind you explodes, transforming into a fireball of splintered wood, and scaled steel, shooting in every direction. The inferno engulfs everything, scatters the crowd, tossing bodies, and removing limbs, bathing the street in blood and cooking flesh. The forcefield falls from your body. When you hit the dirt you hit hard. When you hit it again, you hit harder. For a moment you’re spinning, caught in the blaze, surrounded by fire and smoke, unable to determine up from down, tips of your tendrils on fire. You don’t stop spinning until you hit a horse, knock it over and wind up waist deep in its trough.

Before you open your eyes you hear the familiar hum of a ship, hovering somewhere above, obscured by the smoke and debris. Trexlarion Panels shift. Energy weapons recharge. The bounty hunter.

You forgot about the damn bounty hunter.

You don’t see the shot that blasts you to atoms.

GleepGlorp would be ashamed.

Monday, August 18, 2014


by Ryan Hunter

You feel Sally’s chains dig into your shoulders as your true self begins to emerge. You’re shocked to discover how much you don’t want that to happen. It’s been too long since you were Rachorin, you want to continue thinking he no longer exists. You want to be Doc.

                “Sally,” you whisper, one last chance. “I know you think you know what you’re doing here, but…”

                “Oh, I know exactly what I’m doing,” Sally whispers into your ear, licking your earlobe as she does.

                You don’t have to hear the popping of the chains to know that you are well and more beyond the point of return.

                Sally jumps as a broken link careens off of her cheek, leaving a small cut just below her eye. “What… what are…?”

                You stare down at her through Rachorin’s eyes, as you grow she seems to shrink. Your brow grows, expanding out and around, large green tentacles slither over your shoulders as your feet grow to a point. When the transformation is complete you look every inch a green cowboy with ten-gallon hat and green flowing duster made of tentacles.
                “I don’t… I didn’t…” Sally stammers.

                “Daddy never showed you his true form,” you say, already wondering why you’d been so concerned for this ridiculous, mousy thing only a moment ago. Of course you’re still going to be having your way with her shortly, but worrying about her seems quite a waste of time.

                “You can’t… he’s, he’s coming for you.”

                “So you said. Reckon we’d best be leaving then, huh?” A tentacle flashes and wraps around Sally’s waist. You pull her to you and tuck her under your massive arm before walking out of your office.

                “Hells bells,” a voice grumbles to your left.

                “Howdy Sheriff,” you mutter.

                “Doc,” the sheriff says.

                You turn slowly to face him. “Ain’t Doc no more.”
                “So I see.”

                “You planning on giving me trouble?”

                The Sheriff opens his mouth but before he can speak an explosion erupts to his right. Acting on its own, your tentacle flies out and bats at the bullet fired back Slack Harry sending it back the way it came. Slack Harry screams and drops to the ground.

                “That didn’t need to happen,” you say to the sheriff.  

                Without comment the sherrif turns toward his fallen friend and you take the opportunity to make your escape.

                Still carrying Sally under your arm you enter the saloon. Instantly the dancing and card playing stop and all eyes fall on you. “Out,” you say softly but you do not have to repeat yourself. The place empties.

                You drop Sally to the floor and walk behind the bar and smile at the setup. No one had ever heard of taps until good Ole’ Doc came to town and built them up a fine new saloon why, dang near over night. In fact, it had only taken him the press of a single button to extend the bridge of your space craft up out of the ground where you’d buried it and then convert it into the rootinest, tootinest saloon in five counties.

                Now you spin the taps 180 degrees, once again turning them into levers needed to run your ship. You reach behind yourself, knocking the bottles of whiskey to the floor until your hand falls on the dustiest gin bottle on the shelf, forgotten by all, just like it was supposed to be. You pull that and the entire saloon descends into the ground and your awaiting ship.

                “Will you please tell me what is happening?” Sally begs.

                “You say ‘HE’ is coming for me. Do you know who he is?”

                “What? I don’t know… he’s… he’s a lawman… from space.”

                “Close, he’s Garlock, he’s a bounty hunter. He’s been looking for me for a long while.”

                “Why would he be chasing an innocent man?”

                “I’m not a man, Darlin’. And I’m a country mile from innocent. Something you should keep in mind, Sheriff.”

                Sally gasps and turns her head. Unlike you, she hadn’t heard the sheriff enter just before you pulled the bridge into the ship although how she missed his clomping you have no idea. Already you’re forgetting the limitations of human ears.

                “Well, I do reckon that’s something worth tucking away in the old hat, Doc.”

                “Doc’s not here, there never was no Doc.”

                “You see, that’s just the thing, I believe there was.”

                “You are mistaken.”

                “I might just be. Seein’ as I’m in this situation with you though, mayhap you’ll clue me in on yer plan. I’m guessin’ you’d like to be puttin’ our fair town behind ya but seeing as your crew’s upp up to the ole’ mine I’m not sure how you’re planning on doing that.”

                “Ship doesn’t need a crew. All they were good for was cleaning up and the occasional cannon fodder. I’ve half a mind to just level the ole’ mine before I go so none of them will tell any tales.”

                “You’d do that to your own people?”

                “Do they look like my people? They’re a slave race from one of the moons of my planet. You’ve seen them, they’re not much good for anything other than target practice. Kind of like humans. Maybe I’ll take a few of your good town’s folk with me in exchange for my former slaves.”

                “Or maybe you stay and fight.”

                “Excuse me?”

                The sheriff takes a step toward you. “You say you ain’t Doc, that no part of him is still in you. I don’t believe that. What I do believe is that this bounty hunter you say’s coming for you ain’t gonna believe you took off right before he got here. I believe he’s going to level my town looking for you.”

                “You’ll be lucky if he’s satisfied with just the town.”

                “That’s what I figured. We’re gonna need some help on this.”

                You sigh and stare down at the sheriff. He’s sharp this one he connects dots all on his own. You hate to admit it but you have some respect for the insect.

                “Look, the only other Malarian on this dustball is laying dead in my office. If Miss Sally could have kept her shoes on her feet instead of jamming one into her old man’s eye, together we might, MIGHT, have stood a fighting chance. As it is, you’re welcome to join us, but that’s all the help I can offer you.”

                “I really hate to have to do this. I can’t tell you how much I do,” the sheriff says, pulling his piece.

                “Put that away, Sheriff,” you say.

                The sheriff fires and again your tentacle flashed, bating the slug back at him. He drops the revolver and backs away two steps, clutching at his shoulder. “That was what I thought,” he said through clenched teeth. “Right in the shoulder just like Slack Harry. You coulda just killed me there but yeh didn’t. You may say Doc ain’t in there no place, but I think he’s more a part o’ ya then you know.”

                You stare at the wounded man for a long time, wondering about your next move.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014


by Mandy Ward

After squirming and slithering around for a bit, the chains, blindfold and gag are no longer an issue.

Sally stares at you. “But… I thought… you were a…”

“A what?” you ask, rising up on four of your eight tentacles to tower over her. “A hybrid like you?” you laugh. “I am so much more than that.”

Using the other four tentacles, you simultaneously chain Sally up, undress and flay the body of her father, then wrap the remains in the sheet, stowing it untidily under a bench near the back of the office, a blood trail leading from the table to the bench.

Sally looks at the neatly flayed skin you hold in one tentacle. “What are you going to do with that?”

I’m going to walk out of here.” You change back to human form and then extend your tongue tentacle to the skin. With a bit of concentration you reshape your human form to the genetic pattern held in the skin and change the skin’s form to match your original one.

Throwing the skin at her feet, you smile. “Try explaining that one.”

“But they’ll hang me for murder!” She looks at you, horrified as you gently put the gag into place.

“Yes, yes they will.” You dress yourself in her father’s clothes, leaving your normal clothes piled on the floor suggestively. “And you deserve it.”

Stopping beside the door, you listen to what is going on in the street. There appears to have been a cessation of the fight the sheriff was orchestrating so you decide to make your break for it.

Stepping boldly out of the door, you tip your hat to Sally “Thank you for the relief, Ma’am.” And shut the door behind you.

You unwrap the reins of your horse from the rail and mount, moving confidently and ignoring anyone else in the street.


Oh shit. You think as you turn your head to see a seven foot tall figure in a long black coat and dusty black Stetson. “You. Hello Hunter.”

“It’s been a long time, Rachorin.” The figure waves a gun. “Get down off that horse and move over to the middle of the street, nice and slowly.”

“I’m not going back.” You say, staying where you are.

“Your Father insists.” The figure says, aiming the laser at you. “Get off the horse. I really don’t like killing dumb animals.”

Tentacles whip out from under the coat, taking you by surprise and yanking you off the horse, holding you with one leg. The figure grins, sharp teeth gleaming in the sunlight as it shakes you around.

“So much for just walking out of here.” You sigh and change form, your tentacles wrestling with his like a pair of octopi sharing a peanut butter jar. “Let go.

“No. I don’t have to take all of you back to your father remember.” The figure’s grin splits his head in half. “A single tentacle will be enough to clone you.”

You feel the sharp burst of pain as he shoots and severs one of your tentacles. He scoops the tentacle up, deposits it into a stasis jar and puts the jar into his coat pocket. “That should do it.”

You blink. “what now?”

His grin disappears. “How about we see how fast you can run?” He aims the laser at the dirt in front of you and fires, the heat of the blast cooking the dirt into solid clay.

In this form, not particularly fast. You gulp and change back to human form. Only to realise half way through the change, that the tentacle Hunter shot off was the one that formed your human head.

The last thing you see is the street fading into black and Hunter taking aim at you. The last thing you hear is the hum of the laser and the last thing you feel is intense agony as the human form you have taken on is turned into charcoal.

Friday, August 8, 2014


by Tomara Armstrong

The fact that you’ve never been able to hold your liquor or hide your admiration for curls and curves has compromised your human form, and you’re quickly turning into a writhing ball of amorous tentacles, allowing your chains to fall to the floor with ease.

Sally drops her stiletto in shock as a volcano of firewater erupts from the depths of your stomach, projecting the ball gag into her face, knocking her to the ground—unconscious, and covering her with sickness. You crawl across the floor, reaching for her, sliding your many arms over her sticky body, trying to remember the traditional dance of your species. It’s been a while, so you improvise.

What am I doing?

Sobriety smacks you in the face, and instantly you return to human form. You would be embarrassed if Sally wasn’t passed out. You’re about to pat her cheek to rouse her, when you remember that a few short moments ago, she had you tied, gagged, and was tormenting you. She even called you, Rachorin—a name few know or dare to whisper on your home planet.

You reach into your cupboard and pull out a glowing syringe. Hoping to immobilize Sally for questioning before the sheriff arrives, you stick her in the neck and plunge the contents into her bloodstream.

Her eyes pop open as you prop her up beside you on the floor. “What have you done?” she says, searching you with her eyes—the rest of her body frozen.

“I’m simply restraining you…the easy way.” You pull her toward you, wrapping your arms around her and kick at the chains that once held you captive.

“I wasn’t going to hurt you,” She coughs. Her face starts to turn an odd shade of purple and her eyes bulge. “It’s starting.”

“What?” you ask, as Sally begins to cough and gag, spitting foam and blood. The serum you administered was meant for your kind, you haven’t tested it on this type of hybrid, and it appears she is having some sort of adverse reaction. Her arms begin to flail, smacking you in the face. She falls on top of you, pinning you against the wall as she continues to spasm. She’s much heavier than you anticipated.

“Be still.” You try to wiggle toward the counter and feel for your medicine bag, but Sally makes it difficult as she continues to flop around on top of you. Grabbing the handle of your leather bag, you give it a good tug and pull it to the floor, spilling its contents in the puddle of sick.

“Come on, come on!” You attempt to fish for something to use, but everything slips and slides in the mess.

She’s bucking now, gurgling and hissing, and a strange smoke begins to rise from her head and chest. This is new—not something your species experiences, and while you’re fascinated with this discovery, Sally begins to make an even stranger noise.

Tickingard that beforenglder'nd. and organs, and releasing your stinking ash in the wind.pasm.g--anything e clicking a?

“Great,” you belch as Sally begins to pulse and glow, ticking.

Your ears pop.


Time moves in slow-motion as you close your eyes and cover your head.

Millions of particles ignite and scream, evaporating the breath from your lungs and melting your eyeballs in their sockets. White light swallows you up, devouring your pseudo flesh and crumbling your alien organs, leaving the wind to disperse of your ashy remains as it pleases. 

Monday, August 4, 2014


by James McShane

Before you come to the realisation that you’re making this up as you go, you grab Sally’s arm roughly and drag her with you out of the attic. You have a semblance of a plan in your head, but it requires an element of luck. You hope that this is the one moment in this forsaken day that luck with fall your way.

And as it happens, it does – here comes the sheriff, and he’s brought a small posse with him. You love a good posse. You and Sally meet him at the back of the church.

“I’m going to need you to create a distraction, Sheriff,” you say hastily. “I have reason to believe that Sally here knows a good deal about what’s going down with our guest back at the town.”

“That’s why I came a-runnin’,” the sheriff says. “Our mutual friend is muttering this here lady’s name under his breath. I’m a-thinkin’ they know each other.”

This guy paid attention at sheriff school, you think. Nothing much is going to pass him by. Best make speed.

“I’ll bring her with me,” you say as you catch a couple of spare horses. “Any chance you can gain us some wriggle room?” You cock your head in the direction of Biff’s lynch mob. “They may impede our progress.” The sheriff nods his head eagerly.

“Me and the boys love us a good punch-up,” he says way too enthusiastically. “The letter of the law shall be applied this day.” He turns to his men. “Let’s go, boys. The doc and his ladyfriend need to solve themselves a mystery.”

“That’s not all they need to do,” a voice from the back says. “I think they mean to get down and dirty. I hear that Sally one has a liking for ropes and blindfolds.”

Your female companion gets a touch indignant. “Is that you, Slack Harry?” she cries out. “The last time I saw you, you were paying me very well for my services. You said I was the best Dom you ever had.”

“Yeah,” Harry says, stepping out from behind the sheriff. “And I have the bruises to show for it.”

You turn to Sally. “Now is not the time or place to discuss your peccadilloes. We have to go see that al…fellow back in my room.” You jump on the horse. Ride, Sally. Ride.”

You leave the sheriff, Slack Harry, and the rest of the posse to create a disturbance, enabling you and Sally to make it back to the wounded alien quickly and in one piece.  When you arrive on the scene, the patient is in full human form and appears to be sleeping rather than passed out. He appears healed. But you kind of knew that was going to happen.

“Do you recognise him?” you ask Sally.

She shrugs. “He looks a lot younger than he did when they took him away to hang him, but that’s my daddy.” You nod, because you knew this.  “Let him sleep a bit more,” she continues. “When he wakes, he will tell you everything you need to know.”

You go to a cupboard and take out a bottle of hooch. It’s all you can afford on your doctor’s salary. You’re not a big drinker but you keep it around – for medicinal purposes. You pour a couple of healthy measures for the two of you.

“Tell me about the ropes and blindfolds,” you say hesitantly. You swig back the full contents of your drink and then refill your glass.  Sally gets a twinkle in her eyes. You stare straight back at her. “I’m asking a serious question,” you say.

The man on the table moans in his sleep. You can see that already his form is beginning to change once more. You don’t have much time before the same thing starts to happen to you. Maybe to Sally, too, seeing that she’s progeny. You know what happens to your kind once you get, well, excited.

“A lot of my customers ask to be dominated,” Sally says. “I’m not just a songstress. I possess more than just a beautiful voice. I provide that which modern science and Christian faith does not and cannot provide.”

You knock back your second shot and pour yourself a third. Sally has yet to start her first. You are coming close to the point of no return, but you can’t contain your urges that much longer. Now you know why Sally contacted you. She knows your weakness. She inherited that knowledge from her father. But even so, you’re powerless to prevent what happens next.

“What do you provide then?” you ask in a hushed tone.

“Relief,” she whispers as she moves closer. “Solace. A place in which a person can become truly him- or herself. I provide to both male and female. Sometimes at once,” she adds winking at you. “I brought something with me.” She rummages through her bag and takes out a long black silk eye mask, a three foot length of chain, some rope, and a ball gag. It was a big bag, but you didn’t think it could carry all that. But then you realise, the material it’s made from isn’t from this planet. After your fourth shot (yes, you poured another drink as Sally emptied the contents of her bag), you’ve become slightly inebriated. Your excitement is reaching fever point; the point where your species begins to differ from humankind (aside from the odd flash of tentacle, that is). Sally knows this and you wonder why she’s acting against her nature. Surely she should be on the side of her family.

Her father opens his eyes and peers at his daughter. “Sally?” he mutters. “What is happening to you? Why are you here?”

Sally reaches into bag once more and takes out a two foot stiletto. Without engaging her father in any conversation, she plunges the dagger into his right eye. He stiffens, spasms, then falls still. He is as dead as he should have been when Sally obviously shot him earlier. By this stage you’re hoping for some more luck. You hope that the sheriff has finished off Biff and the gang, and is on his way back here now.

Sally moves swiftly. With a skill set that can only come from a true professional, she has you chained up, blindfolded, and gagged. She teases the point of her stiletto up and down your cheek. You are in danger, you know this, but you cannot help but be aroused.

“He is on his way for you now, Rachorin,” she says, using your given name. “I have you all wrapped up nice and neat. The only thing missing is a bow.”

It is then that your form begins to change.