Daniel has wanted to be a writer ever since he was in elementary school.He has published stories and articles in such magazines as Slipstream, Black Petals, Spindrift, Zygote in my Coffee, and Leading Edge Science Fiction. He has written four books: The Sage and the Scarecrow (a novel), the Lexical Funk (a short story collection), Reejecttion (short story/ essay collection), and The Ghosts of Nagasaki (a novel).
She stands there, beautiful and captivating, the uncertain center of our universe. Her black eyes, deep wells of mystery and terror, enchant and endanger our lives. With orange hair, long legs, and an amazingly slender body, she sports a miniskirt so mini its existence is questionable.
We who stand in proximity to her are three. Me, your protagonist for the evening, aloof, yet also slowly becoming a scientist with grand ideas on how to solve the puzzle of the girl’s existence at our particular point in space and time. Bill, the enigmatic used CD store owner who is slowly becoming more uneducated, and, errrrr, horny. And Travis, the nonchalant hippie, who somehow found himself a reserve National Guardsman; he’s 28, working in a coffee shop and loving life -- I find that slowly, his face is turning stern, and his standard issue coffee shop uniform is starting to fill with general’s stars. I could give you theories.
I could give you science, strings, atoms, or a more plausible explanation about how the convergence of genres has brought about her existence. I could give you that, but it’s too early for insights of any kind of depth, and the short of it goes something like this -- I brought her from the future into my coffee shop with a cappuccino machine.
I haven’t made any special modifications to it, either in a mad scientist way or in any kind of Han Solo way. It’s not my cappuccino machine; it belongs to the coffee shop where I work. You know the kind, one of those corporate jobs, not the big one whose name everyone knows, and whose copyright I’m sure I’d be infringing on if I said their name, but one of those others that attempts to copy them: Call Me Ishmael Coffee.
Slowly though, her deep black eyes take me, my other coworker, and the patrons of our fine establishment back to a simpler time. Our mass-produced paper cups turn porcelain, our hairstyles more greasy, our “Thank You for Not Smoking” sign slowly turns into “Enjoy Joe’s Tobacco” complete with a smoking cowboy. My place of employment starts to fill with cigarette smoke. Our coffee shop is slowly becoming a '50s diner.
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