Shards that Float Upsteam
by Patricia Russo
I don’t carry magic with me. I use what I find when I arrive.
Traveling is tedious.
Don’t believe ninety percent of what you think.
I hate it when people say, “You were right.” It just means they didn’t take me seriously the first time.
Rest is for the reckless.
Never travel with your pockets slack.
I need to sew my buttons.
Indifference is incremental.
Don’t be brave.
I think of myself as a walking cautionary tale.
Competence is, curiously enough, contagious.
Never touch anything, especially not levers, biometric controls, or slime.
I have some people to visit today.
Kaleidoscopes used to be decent trade items, but the market was killed by those blasted hue-kneaders.
Don’t ask if the question scares you.
I grew myself up.
Starburn stings like hell. That’s no fairy story.
Never tell anyone your real crimes.
I put the knife in your hand for a reason.
Tact is an overrated survival technique.
Don’t look away. Do you really want to miss what’s coming?
I am not lost.
Engage in events edgeways.
Never learn how to do that. Seriously.
I know it is possible. I did it yesterday.
Remorse is not the same as redemption.
Don’t shut yourself in the cellar with it, for fuck’s sake.
I swear I thought she was helping him put on a necklace.
Worlds are always withering.
Never give up your capacity for devastation.
I have no friends. No one will catch me. All I can hope for is that I will someday find a soft place to fall.
Only the unhappy ever understand that opera.
Don’t imagine the future will glow.
I was tremendous in those days.
Many hands make a magnificent mess.
Never get into a pissing contest with a Caterpillar Person. They’ve got four bladders.
I can’t believe you don’t remember how we met.
Acorns make me anxious.
Don’t step on that. That’s my father.
I stand alone, laughing, quite often. I know it’s ridiculous, but I can’t help it.
Nothing hurts as badly as numbness.
Never dream you’re getting away with it.
I rarely expect to feel well.
So many desires, so little sincerity.
Don’t leave her alone.
I saw who was going to win. But the ones on the other side were sexier.
Wonder whatever you want.
Never kill your host.
I did it so you wouldn’t have to.
On the one hand, obscure. On the other, obvious.
Don’t tie up your sister anymore. By the way, she hates you just as much as you hate her.
I didn’t need it, so I left it for somebody else. I couldn’t care less who found it.
Resist the impulse to remodel.
Never lick that again.
I am perfectly pleasant.
Danger does not come in all that many disguises.
Don’t look at me. This bit of bedlam is your problem.
I have had a great deal of experience apologizing for other people.
Six are sufficient.
I won’t answer that question.
Other QRD stories from Patricia Russo:
Bound and Loose
See and Say
The Baby's All Right