Erotic Fantastic: The Best of Circlet Press 1992-2002
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by Cecilia Tan
Category: Erotica/Paranormal Erotica/Science Fiction
Description: In the first ten years of its existence, Circlet Press published over thirty anthologies and several single-author works, all the time pushing at the boundaries of sf/f and Erotica and fusing the two together. This is a collection of the very best and brightest of this unique publisher and unique genre, with twenty-five stories picked from the hundreds Circlet has put into print. Includes Francesca Lia Block, Catherine Asaro, M. Christian, Thomas S. Roche, Laura Antoniou, and many many more.
eBook Publisher: Circlet Press, 2003 2003
eBookwise Release Date: March 2008
6 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [558 KB]
Reading time: 360-504 min.
"The writing is superb and the use of SF tropes is skilled. Many of our SF writers would do well to emulate these authors for they have renewed the future. And it is brave, bold, and sexy indeed."--SFRA Review
"If you happen to be turned on by fabulous, fluent, and imaginative writing, mixed with inventive and significant sexual encounters and a lively sense of humor, I highly recommend the short story anthologies from Boston-based Circlet Press."--Paramour Magazine
"These gentle books hold your attention, are highly spiritual, intelligently written and oh so smooth to read!"--EIDOS
"The tropes of fantasy and science fiction can inspire erotica that stretches the imagination of both writer and reader. No one need argue that point anymore: [Circlet Press] proves it."--Lambda Book Report
Wilderland Reina Delacroix
I'm free again. I run across the plain into the wind that whips my ruff against my neck. I brush against the thorny bushes as I lope, to let the sharp branches work loose some matted fur on my shoulder.
The world is full of scent and sound. The pumping musk of a nearby herd of caribou overpowers the tartness of onion grass, and the wind does not quite mask the characteristic clump of their hooves as they move to the riverbank. Summer has come to its full height on the tundra, and my prey are dusty, thirsty, tired and hopefully careless.
The near bend of the river lies over a crest some strides away. I halt, ears pricked to catch the faintest sound of alarm, but they are unaware of my presence. I lower my profile as I stalk to a familiar ledge that overlooks an eddy pool, where it will be easiest for the caribou to drink and cool themselves in the water. I can wait and watch until I sight the weakest among them, which will be my target.
The sun has passed from overhead to halfway towards the mountains that form one border to my territory, opposite to the river boundary I crouch near. I know my prey now. It is a caribou calf which stands on its legs steadily enough but nearly falls as it attempts to trot with other calves. Its mother keeps a close, nervous eye on it. Her instinct tells her I am near, prowling, and her offspring is the most vulnerable of the herd. But her instinct is not enough to give an alarm.
I wait, patient as a glacier that moves all before it, for the time to strike.
The sun is nearly to the mountains now; the shadows have gotten long and the light plays tricks. While the caribou are more wary as the light dims, the dusklight offers false security. I am ready to strike from the sunside, the wind in my face. I tense my legs, and spring.
The leggy creatures run in all directions, and the calf gets cut off from its mother in the melee. They bleat to find each other, but my nose finds the calf first. As young as it is, it knows my sharp teeth and claws mean death, and it runs from sheer panic. The treacherous legs give out on the muddy ground, and I close quickly, almost too quickly to clamp my jaws on the throat and begin to tear the flesh--
The scenery flashed white twice and a small red mailbox incongruously posted itself to my immediate right. My computer system at home had just received urgent mail. I sighed and, with my juicy prey still struggling in my teeth, swiped the mailbox twice with a clumsy paw.
Everything went black.
A monitor and keyboard warped out of space and surfed to a stop in front of me. Once stabilized, the monitor linked to my visor and the keyboard to my gloves.
Ordinarily I wouldn't interrupt one of my rare sessions in Wilderland, one of the new virtual reality areas in the vast Network, for anything short of actual world emergency. But I needed a job to afford to enter Wilderland, as well as to provide unimportant things like food and shelter, so I had to pay attention to mundane reality.
to email@example.com from firstname.lastname@example.org
Just saw your old partner Word Smith in the halls, who mentioned that he has taken a freelance offer from Amaterasu to work on documentation for some of our VR offerings and is looking for help. Apparently we're coming out with upgrades to Tourland, Parkland and Wilderland, and when I mentioned the amount of time you spend logged on to alternate reality his ears pricked up. So go for it!! (And don't forget who recommended you--if this works, I expect a victory dinner.)
Oh, Kate, I thought, if you were here I would kiss you, and I'm not even a lesbian. And Word Smith, too, though I'd have to ask Damask's permission first.
I hesitated to log off Wilderland. The excitement of the chase, the taste of salt and blood on my tongue as I ripped the throat of the young caribou, tugged at me. It was the land of my dreams, my true self, and I hated to leave my kill unfinished.
But the storage charges to save a VR program for future return at the precise moment of exit accumulated in megabytes per millisecond and mounted all too quickly to ruinous expense. I didn't have that kind of money to spare, so I pushed aside my regret, consoling myself with the knowledge that if I got the job, I wouldn't have to exist on tuna fish for a week to afford an hour a day on Wilderland.