Horse Power #SFFSat

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A bit of a change today, as I’m not posting from Jarn’s Journal. (I’ll return to it next week, and it is on my main blog.) This is from a short story I’ve just uploaded to Amazon Select. Roi is checking out a rumor that the colonizing company on Horizon is maneuvering the colonists into debt slavery, and his old friends Timi and Amber, now among the colonists, have put him up for the night in their young son’s room. This is the next morning.

“Horse Power” is $.99, but it’s available free January 19 and 20 Pacific time.

Horse Power cover“Could I ask a question about the children?” Roi asked carefully, well aware that he was stepping onto thin ice.

Timi looked puzzled. “What about them?” he asked.

“Well—between the birds, the worms and the spiders they obviously like animals. Is there a reason they don’t have more conventional pets?”

“Spiders?” Amber moaned. “I didn’t know about those. I’m sorry, Roi.”

Probably just as well he hadn’t mentioned the snake that had been in bed with him this morning, Roi thought. It had been a perfectly friendly little grass snake, but he doubted that Amber would see it that way.

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About sueannbowlingauthor

Sue Ann Bowling earned a bachelor’s degree in physics at Radcliffe/Harvard and a Ph.D. in geophysics from the University of Alaska. After thirty years of teaching, she retired to focus on writing. Bowling has lived in Alaska for fifty years. Visit her Web site on canine color genetics at
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22 Responses to Horse Power #SFFSat

  1. carycaffrey says:

    I picked this up last week, so no spoilers in the snippets until I read it!

  2. T. M. Hunter says:

    Fun little snippet, and I’m sure that Amber wouldn’t have seen a little garden snake that way either. 🙂

  3. S.A. Check says:

    I like that the kids have to keep the animals they find as pets – gives a great sense of environment. Fido with fangs. Love it and displays the financial servitude spot on. Reminds me of the days of the coal miners and company stores.

  4. I always think it’s amazing how kids can adopt anything. They have no fear, no stipulations on what is acceptable as a pet, etc. And I love that Roi knows to be careful when asking about the children to tread carefully, but Amber and Timi seem to not be sensitive.

  5. tktoppin says:

    Oh…pretty cover!! ;P I remember this scene, I chuckled then…as I did now.

  6. Peter Vialls says:

    Kids see creatures with different eyes to us adults. Spiders and snakes are cool, not creepy. Nice snippet – made me think of my daughter when she was little…

  7. Tara Quan says:

    Nope, I don’t think Amber would like the little grass snake in bed information…

  8. jccassels says:

    The thought of finding a snake in bed with me makes my skin crawl.

  9. amergina says:

    I’m not exactly fond of snakes… but they are good for the environment! And I could see a child keeping one as a pet… they are kinda cool… when they’re over there. 😉

    Neat snippet!

  10. Well it makes a change from the usual pets – dogs, cats, gerbils, etc. Nice snippet!

  11. pippajay says:

    Heh, at least he didn’t seem too bothered about sharing his bed with a snake.

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