Calvin is alone for the first time in over 60 years after his wife, Emily, died. He isn't taking it well. A longtime family friend, Edward White, comes to check on him and talk him out of doing the unthinkable. He just hopes he isn't too late to help.
Sarah Sutton, the Midwife of Donbridge, faces a great evil from her past. The plagues foretold by the Witch of Tamarack Hill have begun. Drought, illness, and unwelcome creatures have overwhelmed the town. Many bleak moments have placed families in peril, but the courageous Midwife, armed with her knowledge and steadfast will, intends to rid this evil from Donbridge for good. During her quest, she is faced with two foes of wicked power which many have believed to be mere fables.
Captain Reinvo is ordered to take a prototype iron-sided steamship on its first voyage. The simple cargo run turns deadly when a storm drives the ship so far off-course the crew is sure they're going to fall off the edge of the world. Reinvo fights to save his crew, only to discover a place that shouldn't exist and which may yet get them killed as heretics.
In a world ruled by the church, Janali finds herself at the mercy of the inquisition. She has little chance of saving her crew from the church while under arrest for heresy. She must engineer her own escape and then convince the head of the church to pardon both her and her crew. If she fails, her crew, her family, and her own lives will be destroyed, wiped clean by the cleansing fires of the inquisition.
Ray Stryker, former military man turned private dick turned street vigilante. He was tough as nails and had a heart of stone until he met Jayne. Former exotic dancer turned painter who wore her heart on her sleeve and was always ready to run.
Dana Elson never should have drunk that soda. Now she's sharing her body with the clone of a dead man - and she and the clone's gun-happy boyfriend are on the run from the sinister Mahler Corporation. Can Dana to get her own body back before Mahler catches up to them?
"Quirky, fast-paced, and humorous"
Within the short stories of this powerful anthology, author Jeffrey Dean Doty explores the beautiful and tragic moments that flow through lives of ordinary people. The result is anything but ordinary.