The Scientist and the Shrub

Michael Donoghue is the world’s leading expert on a plant that no one’s ever heard of.

Photo by Vivek Suri. “This is yesterday’s flower,” Michael Donoghue said, pointing to a half-wilted bloom. He was standing in the middle of a greenhouse, surrounded by students. The room was filled with insectivorous plants and deciduous trees, the air heavy with pollen and moisture. The plant before Donoghue had heart-shaped leaves, a spindly stem wrapped around a wire brace like ivy, and two huge burgundy flowers that drooped despondently. It was labeled Aristolochia gigantea. “And this is today’s,” Donoghue added, pointing to the larger. . . Read more
Henry Reichard
A Mage in the Making

Raising a demonic army on Chapel Street is a great way to put off homework.

Illustration by Felicia Chang. The swarthy Hero of Iroas scowled, swept back his crimson cape, and put up his fists. Kytheon’s Irregulars drew their swords. The demonic Master of the Feast rose on his bat’s wings. Cameron surveyed his army, considered his odds, and called for a frontal assault. In that moment, I knew that I had him. It was a small mistake: a slight overextension of his forces, a bit of cockiness from an experienced mage who was certain his amateur adversary wouldn’t notice. . . Read more
Henry Reichard
Memento Mori

We found the skull in a field by the creek. We were young then, my sister and I, young enough that an old sheep’s skeleton, still mostly preserved, still unravaged by dogs, was no more than a curiosity, and the heavy skull, still greasy, still smelling strongly of brains, was a trophy waiting to be … Continue reading Memento Mori

We found the skull in a field by the creek. We were young then, my sister and I, young enough that an old sheep’s skeleton, still mostly preserved, still unravaged by dogs, was no more than a curiosity, and the heavy skull, still greasy, still smelling strongly of brains, was a trophy waiting to be brought back and presented to our mother. She accepted it, washed it, and finally decided to display it on a shelf in the basement. She cherished most of our macabre. . . Read more
Henry Reichard