Tag: Dianna Sinovic

Home > ArchivesTag: Dianna Sinovic

It Had to be You

October 30, 2020 by in category Quill and Moss by Dianna Sinovic tagged as , ,

Photo by Luke Stackpoole on Unsplash

Tatum checked the time: twenty minutes after Luna Hour 17, and Avery still hadn’t shown up. It was Tuesday Happy Hour, their ritual weekly date since Tatum was hired by the Zoning & Mining Commission last year. Not that she ever called it a date; she and Avery weren’t an item. She was sure of that.

But Tatum enjoyed Avery’s company, and Rick’s Café in Luna Center made the best Frozen Tychos in the entire city compound.

Avery was the one who had suggested that they hit Rick’s—Tuesdays were Ladies Night, a retro gimmick that appealed to the younger crowd in Luna City, which was pretty much the entire population. Luna Council had an upper age limit for immigrants, with the result: almost no one was over fifty-five.

“Another Tycho?” the wait staffer in Luna blue murmured at Tatum’s side. 

Tatum nodded. What the hell. If Avery was standing her up—but he wasn’t, because they weren’t an item—then why not make the most of the evening before she headed back down to her pod on Level 9?

The cabaret was full, standing room only at this point, and Tatum watched the crowd churning through the room, laughing, talking, bouncing in the low gravity—one table was even singing a rousing happy birthday. 

She sighed and drained her glass. Elbow to elbow with more people than she could count yet very, very alone: the life of an introvert engineer. 

“May I?” A goateed man about her age nodded to the empty chair opposite her. He wore the dark green shirt and pants of the Air Quality division. “Our table needs an extra chair and this one is . . . ” He shrugged and smiled. It was a warm smile, a friendly one.

Tatum shrugged back. “Go ahead. I got ghosted. I won’t be needing it.”

The man raised his eyebrows, and Tatum knew she was being scrutinized; the gray Mining division uniform, her dark mass of curls, her face that tended too often toward seriousness. “His loss,” he said kindly. “I’m Sam. Please join us—we’re celebrating Kammy’s birthday. We’d love another partygoer.”

Avery emerged from the swirl of people to stand next to Sam, his face a scowl. “That’s my seat. Tatum was saving it for me.” 

Tatum’s eyes flashed. “You’re forty minutes late, and it’s a zoo here tonight. He can have our chairs.” She took Avery’s arm and faced him toward the bar, then turned back to Sam. “We’ll stand—enjoy your party.”

Avery ordered a Bailly’s Special, and the two of them shouted to hear each other over the throbbing beat of an electronic “As Time Goes By.” He was late because of a priority request from the Mare Frigoris Region. He hadn’t messaged her because he was swamped; he didn’t think she would mind.

“No,” she shouted back. “I don’t mind.” But I do, she was surprised to realize.

Sam from the birthday table brushed against her as he passed, heading toward the bathrooms. He leaned in to speak in her ear. “Are you okay? You can still join our gang if you want to leave this basin bloke.”

Avery pushed Sam away from Tatum, and fueled by a second Bailly’s he’d just finished, punched the other man in the face.

“Ave!” Tatum said, grabbing to pull him back. “Stop!”

The music ended abruptly, as though someone had flipped a switch, and the crush of bargoers shrank back slightly, leaving the three in their own small, cleared, quiet space. Tatum could feel the crackle of emotion from Avery, from Sam, from the surrounding crowd. All eyes were on them. Luna City was fairly tame compared with the reports Tatum had read of Earthside towns, but arguments still erupted and anger still bubbled up.

Blood dripped from Sam’s nose, and he dabbed at it with a bar wipe. He faced Avery squarely, although he was half a head shorter and slender to Avery’s bulk. But Avery held up his hands, palms out, a supplicant.

“Sorry,” he said, “I went too far. But she’s with me.”

Sam gave a brief nod and looked at Tatum. “And what do you say?” 

She reran the last few moments in her head—the explosion of anger, the fist connecting with face. Avery was jealous? It was a side of him she’d never seen. 

“Thanks,” she said to Sam. “I’m fine. I’ll be fine. He’s with me.”


More Fiction by Dianna Sinovic


0 0 Read more

After

August 30, 2020 by in category Quill and Moss by Dianna Sinovic tagged as , , , ,

I found the rooftop garden because of Captain America. We’ve become close friends, he and I. He depends on me for fresh greens, and I depend on him to keep me from taking the last step off the ledge. 

Photo by Bonnie Kittle on Unsplash

The electricity blinked off citywide five weeks ago, but the evenings aren’t as dark as you’d think. There’s the residual glow in the sky long after sunset, and the ants that crawl along the windowsill in the kitchen give off a greenish hue, like those plastic glow sticks kids wear around their wrists at birthday parties—or used to, before. The Captain is crepuscular, so he rustles around just at dusk, but then falls fast asleep as I watch the clouds on the horizon with wide eyes, such an unnatural pink against the faint sprinkle of stars.

Except for me and the Captain on the sixth floor, no one else is left in this building. Before, I sometimes had to turn on my white noise app to mask the street traffic and my neighbor Javier’s blasting salsa music. Now the only sounds are the distant whine of a massive piece of machinery spinning into oblivion, fed by its emergency generator, and the thumps and rattles of my building, trying to decide how much longer it will remain upright. 

The evening is my favorite time of day now. Before, I lived for the morning, up before the alarm, out the door, at work in my cubicle in the financial district a few minutes before eight. Daytime reminds me of everything I no longer have–that the city no longer has. Maybe even beyond? It’s hard to say. With no juice to charge my phone, it’s been dead since four days after. That hardly matters because I lost coverage after a day. My parents live in Florida; maybe all is well there.

For some freakish reason, the plumbing still works. When life was normal, leaky faucets and cold showers were the stuff I commiserated about with my friends. Now, I wake each morning worried that the toilet will at last stop cycling or my kitchen tap will run dry. But they keep on filling and pouring. 

Once they do quit, I’ll need to leave this place. I’ve been living on canned food, heating it on my tiny balcony with the mini Weber grill I hardly ever used, before. Without electricity, my fridge isn’t much help to store perishables. In the beginning, I helped myself to the romaine and tomatoes and strawberries at the corner market; with no one around, there was no use letting it go to waste. But that has long rotted, so my visits now are to fill my cloth grocery bag with whatever cans I can carry in one trip. It’s decidedly creepy to crawl through the rubble of a dead city—no cars passing, no people yelling into their phones, no trucks trudging to collect the garbage left decomposing at curbside. 

The Captain isn’t mine. Captain America isn’t his real name either. He lived on the fourth floor, and I found him in the first few days after. Guinea pigs whistle when they’re hungry or need something, and he was setting up a racket I could hear from my sixth-floor window. I went searching, taking the stairs, of course, since the elevators ran on the energy grid. He was sitting in a 2-foot wire cage, looking at me with big, soulful eyes (and big teeth), and I picked him up, his tawny fur as soft as a kitten’s. 

“Hello, there, Captain,” I whispered. 

It was another living thing, not counting the immortal ants and roaches. But what did I know about guinea pigs? A city branch library is about three blocks from my building, so I went looking for a book to tell me, a tough hunt given that the online catalog was offline and the lights were out. If you need to know, guinea pig books are in section 636.9—with books on other small mammals like rabbits and hamsters. 

Before, I liked looking out onto the courtyard between my building and the next one, where an older fellow named Pete raised tomatoes and squash and tried to keep the squirrels from taking bites out of them. Now the courtyard floor is buried in debris, and Pete and the squirrels have vanished along with the pigeons.  

Just after I brought the Captain home, and desperate for some kind of greens for him, I located the entrance to the building roof. As I popped open the steel door, the earthy scent of soil washed over me and there it was: Three long aisles containing flat after flat of lettuces, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, and more lettuce. I stood for several minutes, not believing my find. The wind picked up and a pelting rain fell, the first since before. I felt both drenched to the bone and refreshed, watching as the droplets ran down the lettuce leaves and dripped off the ends, exuding a faint bluish glow even by the light of day. My arms and legs—and likely my head—also glowed faintly in the dampness.

Later, with the Captain asleep and night descending, I pondered this new world where the sky was pink and the rain was blue. A line had been drawn for humanity. What I would find when the Captain and I finally struck out from the city? Would we meet masses of people who had fled … or no one? Or maybe, I thought, I’m crazy, and the world is still normal, but I just can’t see it.  

It is now day forty after, forty empty days and forty empty nights. I am harvesting more romaine leaves and anxiously watching the new shoots I have planted poke out from the soil. Then I hear someone. They are walking on the street below, whistling. I slip to the roof edge to listen—it’s an old folk song, “For the Times They Are A-Changin’.”

Despite our catastrophic reality, a sense of humor. 

“Hey,” I shout, but he doesn’t look up, doesn’t seem to hear me.

I run for the stairs—eight flights to street level—will I make it before he’s gone? I take the steps two at a time, then three. The Captain and I are not alone after all.

0 0 Read more

Featuring Dianna Sinovic, August 2020 Author of the Month

August 28, 2020 by in category Featured Author of the Month tagged as , , ,

Author of the Month: Dianna Sinovic

picture of dianna sinovic

Dianna is a contributing author in the recent Bethlehem Writers Group anthology, Untethered, Sweet, Funny & Strange Tales of the Paranormal. A man buys a painting of a jungle scene that is so realistic it seems to change in “Point of View.” She has also contributed stories for the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable ezine, including “In the Delivery.”

Born and raised in the Midwest, Dianna has also lived in three other quadrants of the U.S. She writes short stories and poetry, and is working on a full-length novel about a young woman in search of her long-lost brother.

Dianna also has a regular column, Quill and Moss, here on A Slice of Orange.


Other books by Dianna Sinovic


0 0 Read more

Dianna Sinovic, Featured Author August 2020

August 21, 2020 by in category Featured Author of the Month tagged as , , ,

Author of the Month: Dianna Sinovic

picture of dianna sinovic

Dianna is a contributing author in the recent Bethlehem Writers Group anthology, Untethered, Sweet, Funny & Strange Tales of the Paranormal. A man buys a painting of a jungle scene that is so realistic it seems to change in “Point of View.” She has also contributed stories for the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable ezine, including “In the Delivery.”

Born and raised in the Midwest, Dianna has also lived in three other quadrants of the U.S. She writes short stories and poetry, and is working on a full-length novel about a young woman in search of her long-lost brother.

Dianna also has a regular column, Quill and Moss, here on A Slice of Orange.


Other books by Dianna Sinovic


0 0 Read more

Featuring Dianna Sinovic, August Author of the Month

August 14, 2020 by in category Featured Author of the Month tagged as , , ,

Author of the Month: Dianna Sinovic

picture of dianna sinovic

Dianna is a contributing author in the recent Bethlehem Writers Group anthology, Untethered, Sweet, Funny & Strange Tales of the Paranormal. A man buys a painting of a jungle scene that is so realistic it seems to change in “Point of View.” She has also contributed stories for the Bethlehem Writers Roundtable ezine, including “In the Delivery.”

Born and raised in the Midwest, Dianna has also lived in three other quadrants of the U.S. She writes short stories and poetry, and is working on a full-length novel about a young woman in search of her long-lost brother.

Dianna also has a regular column, Quill and Moss, here on A Slice of Orange.


Other books by Dianna Sinovic


0 0 Read more
12

Copyright ©2017 A Slice of Orange. All Rights Reserved. ~PROUDLY POWERED BY WORDPRESS ~ CREATED BY ISHYOBOY.COM

>