Short Story: Icarus Falls


By Alex Shvartsman

icarus-300Alex Shvartsman is a writer and game designer. His adventures so far have included traveling to over 30 countries, playing a card game for a living, and building a successful business. Alex resides in Brooklyn, NY with his wife and son. His fiction has appeared in IGMS, Nature, Galaxy’s Edge, Daily Science Fiction, and many other venues. He is the winner of the 2014 WSFA Small Press Award for Short Fiction. Learn more at


My world is a pair of photographs. They stand atop a nightstand at my bedside, encased in acrylic frames.

A young woman in an orange jumpsuit smiles from one of the photos. She wears a name tag, but I can’t make out what it says, not even when I squint. I am pretty sure that she’s me.

The rest of the room is bland and nondescript, like hospital food. I try to shake off the fog inside my head, but it hangs there, thick and heavy as a murky autumn morning at the Boston harbor. I examine the cheap floral prints on the walls and the sparse, utilitarian furniture around my bed. I desperately scan the room for clues, anything to help me remember, but there isn’t much to go on.

The other photo is of a middle-aged woman with braided hair and kind eyes. I concentrate on her face and will the fog in my mind to dissipate, but it doesn’t obey. Relentlessly, irrevocably, I am losing my memories, but I cling to the one that is most important. This is my daughter, Kate.



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  1. Pingback: New Sales and Publications | Alex Shvartsman's Speculative Fiction

  2. Very powerful. Poignant story.

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