Tuesday, April 5, 2022

“From Soulless to Soulful” • by Jenna Hanchey

Today The Pete Wood Challenge continues with two more new flash fiction stories. First up…

“Well, I don’t have a new one, but I do have one that’s secondhand,” the old shopkeeper said.

I paused, desperately trying to seem nonchalant. “Oh?”

“But it might come with… complications.” He rustled under the counter, removing a stoppered bottle.

I forced myself to haggle and pay, eyes fixed on the precious glass. After hundreds of years, I’d wearied of my vampiric existence. Finally, a soul to set me free! What difference if it were secondhand?

I drank deeply, feeling my humanity return.

Suddenly, my fingers held an insatiable itch.

“One more thing.” I looked around. “Do you have any guitars?”



Jenna Hanchey is a communication professor by day and a speculative fiction writer by...um...earlier in the day. She lives in Reno and teaches courses at the University of Nevada on racism, colonialism, and communicating across difference. Her research examines neocolonialism in Western aid to Africa, and how Africans use Africanfuturism to imagine their own developmental futures. Somehow she manages to act, sing, and rock climb, too! Notable credits include Gwendolyn Fairfax in The Importance of Being Earnest and Elaine Wheeler in Night Watch. She's also a voice-actor, narrating the audiobooks in Emily S. Hurricane's Bloodlines series. Her fiction has also appeared in Daily Science Fiction and the Apex Microfiction Contest. Follow her adventures on Twitter (@jennahanchey) or at www.jennahanchey.com

Her most recent appearance in our virtual pages was “Old Friends, Across Galaxies and the Space Between.”