Another of my RFL stories from this year's Fantasy Faire SL. My paternal grandfather was sick most of my early childhood and passed away when I was four. The combination of smoking and working in mills and industrial environments as a "saw-file" in the days before OSHA safety standards added up to rapidly advancing lung cancer in his 60s.
But he was an incredibly talented and clever man, who was an insatiable reader. and perpetual tinkerer. Many is the time I wished I could speak with him, talk about the beauty of natural materials and the wonderful functionality of engineering forms. But that's the great thing about fiction, isn't it? And Kayle Mazerath's "Tiny Town" would have been a great place to have that conversation.
The Steward of Tiny Town
by Judith Cullen
In memory of Al Bell, my Grandfather
Impossibly bright. There's no other way to describe it. I thought I had seen this sort of exuberant rainbow before, but I was wrong. This town had a vivacity about it, a constant happy industry. It's brightness was irresistible. Wootberries squishing under tiny gleeful feet. The jubilant hum and clank of the great waffle press, and the buoyant splashes of color everywhere.
I pressed my hands to my cheeks. What was this new sensation? I was smiling - smiling so wide and so fully that my face hurt. The essential energy of
was infectious, and I knew at that
very moment that it was something from which I never wanted to recover. Tiny Town