Category Archives: Erin M. Hartshorn

Drabble: Time Dynamics, Inc. by Erin M. Hartshorn

by specklit

Thank you for choosing Time Dynamics Incorporated. Please direct your attention to the instructional video. Your suit will enable you to survive any environment on Earth at least long enough to signal for retrieval through the device on your belt. In case of miscalculated coordinates that land you outside Earth’s atmosphere, the suit is capable of functioning as an oxygen-carbon dioxide exchanger. You may choose any time period for your excursion, although it is recommended you engage the camouflage circuits before you jump. Please remember, gray is the only color these suits come in, and avoid Roswell and Area 51.

Author’s Note: There’s got to be a reason everyone sees Grays, right?


Drabble: Ghost Detective by Erin M. Hartshorn

by specklit

It took less time than I thought for ghosts to be declared citizens after the planes overlapped; it took even less time for me to get a sign up on my door proclaiming me a “Detective with Ghostly Interests in Mind.” They come see me to straighten out bigamy issues or get their names cleared (somewhat belatedly). I listen to their stories, take their funds (all digital now anyway), and resolve every case–never had a single complaint. Of course none of them notice that my expertise comes from being trained in exorcisms by the Vatican. Requiescant in pace, indeed.

Author’s Note: In urban fantasy, not everyone appreciates rights being extended to non-humans.


Drabble: Ghostwriter by Erin M. Hartshorn

by specklit

Sunny tried to ignore the words on the paper. They had been there when she sat down, but no one would believe that, would they? This never happened when her mother or sister or even the therapist (whom they’d insisted upon) was near — only when she was alone. The therapist had even tried hypnosis “to induce the automatic writing.” It didn’t work because Sunny didn’t do the writing.

The ghost did it. Her mother (etc.) didn’t believe that, either. This time, he’d stuck with something he was known for. “It was a dark and stormy night . . . ”

Author’s Note: My introduction to Bulwer-Lytton’s famous opening line actually came via Snoopy, then Madeleine L’Engle. I always wanted to put my own twist on it.


Drabble: Teleporter Blues by Erin M. Hartshorn

by specklit

“Johnny, I’ve called you three times. Breakfast, now.”

“Okay, okay. I was just tweaking the teleporter.”

“Tweaking it. Right. Better put your father’s tools back before he finds out you were messing with them.”

“No worries. I wasn’t using them.” He closed the access panel. “Corn flakes, right?”

“Bacon and eggs today. Protein for the big test.”

“Are you sure I can’t stay home sick today?”

“Breakfast. Now.”

He was on his second egg when the call came from the school. “A virus has infected the teleporter system. School is canceled until further notice.”

Johnny smiled innocently at his mom.

Author’s Note: This winter has had a lot of snow days for my kids. I wondered how that would work in a world where they could just teleport to school.


Drabble: A Heartbeat Away by Erin M. Hartshorn

by specklit

The witch’s spirit hovered overhead, watching the operation. The artificial heart sat ready to replace her own. It hadn’t been easy to arrange for the transplant, but the lore was clear — her heart had to be destroyed to kill her. If it couldn’t be, she would live forever.

Hours passed before the surgery was complete.

Joy threatened to overwhelm her until she noticed the nurse carried her heart, not toward the cold box the witch had provided, but to the biohazard incinerator chute. She had time for fearful realization to kick in before her body went up in flames.

Author’s Note: I loved reading fairy tales where the heroine had to find the witch’s heart to destroy her. Wouldn’t it be so much simpler if it never got hidden away in the first place, though?


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