Chalina had hair like the night wind, and skin like honey. Her eyes were like stars fallen from a sultry night. But the story begins with her mother. Everyone talked about her mother even before she was pregnant with Chalina. Because Chalina’s mother was a witch. Before Chalina was born, she used to visit her […]

“How do you pick your victims?” I asked. The old man grunted and poked at the fire with his cane. Despite the suffocating August heat of the city, his apartment seemed cold to me. Cold and damp. “Why do you call them victims?” he asked. “You’re taking something from them. Even if they don’t get […]

Diego woke up early Saturday morning. Many of the vaqueros had left the island for the weekend, and the few remaining were sleeping soundly in the darkness. He packed a saddlebag with his blanket, a beautiful embroidered shirt, fancy necktie, polished boots, and a horsehair bracelet he had woven during idle hours in the cookhouse. […]

In keeping with our mission, Scrutiny has produced a little black book that offers up a lot of magical realism. Below you’ll be able to read one of the stories included in both the print and eBook version. You can learn more about that book here. Print | $9.99 eBook | FREE The first time my […]

Nikos groaned from the exertion of climbing the steep incline. He had spied the thin, winding dirt track while walking his usual route through the foothills of the Ziria Mountain Range and now, curious, he followed the path as it snaked its way up a precipitous, rocky hill before descending into a darkened valley. Dog-tired, […]

I stumbled up the beach after drifting several days on the open sea. I didn’t know if anyone else had survived or what their fate might have been, but I could scarcely consider it because my mouth was so parched and dry from thirst. Ahead of me there was nothing but a grove of trees, […]

If you had to choose his very best characteristic (and there were so, so many), he would tell you that it had to be his ironic sense of humor. He was perhaps the most talked about, infamous representation of all of God’s handiwork, enjoying his role in the grand scheme of things immensely. Sometimes, every […]

Javier De La Cruz was an honest and somber man. He didn’t ask for anything unearned and he certainly never took. The old caballero, owner of a small business that made little ceramic dolls with faces painted like sugar skulls, received an invitation one spring to hand deliver the biggest order he’d ever seen. He […]

I can’t tell her age to any degree, her face is only a little lined and her hair is deep stringy tar black, but the mass, the sheer volume of things in the room suggests she’s ancient, impossibly old. Her voice is a little raspy, as though she’s unused to talking, though I can’t imagine […]

Don’t look up. Keep Calm and Carry On, said the Government. Some mastermind at the Home Office had decided it was time to use the posters that had become so popular during the Recession. What people saw in the sky was even worse than a financial recession. Don’t look up they said. So of course […]