The Magician and the Maid and Other Stories — Christie Yant

Christie Yant is a software tester by day, a science fiction/fantasy writer by night. She is also an assistant editor with Lightspeed Magazine and the podtern for The Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy podcast. This story is her first fiction publication. In addition to writing fiction, she has also narrated several stories for the Starship Sofa podcast, and reviews audiobooks for She lives on the central coast of California with her two amazing daughters and assorted four-legged nuisances. Her website is

Fiction often seems more real to us than reality, and many of us wish that we could climb right into a book and inhabit the world it describes, or that the characters could step right off the page and join us for a drink.

Our next tale is about two characters named Miles and Audra. “They were inspired by and loosely based on two real artists for whom I have a great deal of respect,” says Yant, “They each have a very unique and public persona and weave a twisted kind of artistic magic of their own.”

The book of fairy tales described in this story is also based on a real book. “It was given to me by my paternal grandmother and dates from the 1930s. It’s a book of fairy tales called Through Fairy Halls. I read it over and over as a child, and from it I learned that fairy tales exist all over the world, and are unique little realities unto themselves. That book is where I learned to love them, and it makes perfect sense to me that the stories between its covers are true, and that maybe one is missing.”


by Christie Yant

She called herself Audra, though that wasn’t her real name; he called himself Miles, but she suspected it wasn’t his, either.

She was young (how young she would not say), beautiful (or so her Emil had told her), and she had a keen interest in stories. Miles was old, tattooed, perverted, and often mean, but he knew stories that no one else knew, and she was certain that he was the only one who could help her get back home.

She found him among the artists, makers, and deviants. They called him Uncle, and spoke of him sometimes with loathing, sometimes respect, but almost always with a tinge of awe—a magician in a world of technicians, they did not know what to make of him.

But Audra saw him for what he truly was.

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