Strung Out in Alientown by Desmond Warzel

Another day hustling for work in the Squid capital; another fistful of gaudy local currency; another day closer to Earth, and revenge on her ex-partner; another night in her Alientown shanty, among miserable fellow-humans and a menagerie of extraplanetary riffraff.

The knock came, as always.

She answered the door without hesitation.

Thrusting most of the bills at the leering Squid, she snatched the tiny gold-wrapped parcel.  She popped the contents into her mouth.

The wrapping drifted to the floor.  It bore one word: Ghirardelli.

She collapsed onto her mattress, her troubles forgotten.

Tomorrow, though, she’d keep all the money.


[Originally Published in The Drabbler #15, November 2009]

Desmond Warzel is the author of a few dozen short stories in the fantasy, science fiction, and horror genres.  These have appeared in nifty magazines such as Fantasy & Science Fiction, at well-regarded websites such as, and on newfangled podcasts such as Escape Pod.  He lives in northwestern Pennsylvania.