Short Stories


Bad People Were Babies Too

My eyes set upon an ashtray growing its own mountain of cigarette butts, from my horizontal position on the couch I could stick out my tongue and lick one of the butts if I was so inclined. Why I would be inclined to lick said butts is a thought to mull over for another day

Bad People Were Babies Too, by Joti Heir


The Human Creation of Timmy

He wasn’t quite sure what to do next. His little sister was crying, his mother was lying on the floor with her eyes rolling in and out of her sockets. And there was a man at the door yelling,

The Human Creation of Timmy by Joti Heir


The Sweet Home Louse

The best homes on Catherine’s roster belonged to Aleksander, Shin Tzu and Zoobie. They were especially great because Catherine knew exactly when the men were going to be home and where they were not. It was the first of August so Catherine was staying at Aleksander’s place in downtown Toronto. She could count on his schedule because he worked out of his company’s Beijing office for the first two weeks of every month. 

Catherine decided to get Chinese take-out for dinner. It would be cheaper to cook, but she didn’t want to risk breaking anything. She got chicken balls with red sauce, even though there was never enough chicken in the balls and a veggie stir-fry which made her feel healthy. Catherine watched the new episode of The Bachelor, ate her Chinese, drowned in wine and went to sleep in the spare bedroom. 

The next day she met her old college friend Charlene for dinner. Charlene liked to discuss private things, it was annoying. Catherine put up with it because she stayed at Charlene’s place when one of the guys ended up being at home when they weren’t supposed to be.

“How’s everything going? Why is your hair blonde now? Did you have to change it again? Did you see the devils? Is that why you changed it?” Charlene asked.

It’d been five years since Catherine had left her parent’s home and two years since they’d last tried to drag her back. She wasn’t sure if Charlene always asked about them because she cared or because she was a gossiping idiot. 

“No I haven’t seen them, I was tired of the black hair, just wanted to go back to something a little more natural,” Catherine replied.

“Do you know where they are?”


“Maybe they’ve lost interest.”

“I hope so,” said Catherine.

On the 16th of August, Catherine hung out at Zoobie’s house. Zoobie’s current schedule meant he left his house at 6 a.m. and returned at 7 p.m. from Monday to Friday.