Escape Artists


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Congratulations to the winners of the Podcastle flash fiction contest!

Author Topic: Looking for Three Stories  (Read 1678 times)


  • Matross
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on: July 17, 2021, 05:52:02 PM
None of these are Escape Artists stories I'm afraid. All of these stories are at least 25 years old.

Story #1:

A twist on Cinderella. I think that she was called "Asherella" or something similar. I'm not positive but I think I read this in an anthology that also contained Lazarus by Leonid Andreyev.

Story #2:  It's about a small group of Earth refugees who manage to escape Earth's devastation and colonize Mars. They discover that Mars is a wasteland and that the original settlers of Earth, their ancestors, were Martian refugees. This may be a radio program of some sort instead of a short story.

Story #3: All I can remember about is that the protagonist has his arms and legs amputated by the bad guy. The bad guy may be a king or something. At the end the protagonist manages to learn how to move his body like an inchworm and climbs a flight of stairs and throws himself from a great height onto the story's villain. I believe the term "implacable foe" was used. I actually thought this was the story's title but I've never been able to find it if it is.

Any help?
« Last Edit: July 17, 2021, 06:23:46 PM by Marlboro »


  • Editor
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  • "Let There Be Fright!"
Reply #1 on: July 17, 2021, 06:11:43 PM
The third is "His Unconquerable Enemy" by W.C. Morrow  from 1889. It can be read here:

The second is not immediately familiar - it seems like a common 50s pulp era sci-fi story. Maybe try checking tags in ISFDB.

The first: One of the variant names of the Cinderella fable is Ashputtle (as she cleans the fireplace "Cinder"/"Ash"). Was this just a straight retelling of Cinderella, or was it a modern variant?


  • Matross
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Reply #2 on: July 17, 2021, 06:22:31 PM
Awesome work! Thank you!

I only have the vaguest of memories of the Cinderella retelling. I'm pretty sure it took place during a Brothers Grimm type setting but was told with more modern sensibilities. Probably written between 55 and 90. There may have been some slight horror elements. I don't think it was political in any way. I read this in my early teens and my memory is more than a bit fuzzy.

The Mars story is a tough one. I went through a stretch where I  listened to a lot of OTR programs and they all sort of run together. I'm almost certain that it's a radio show. That doesn't mean that it wasn't based on a short story however.


  • Matross
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Reply #3 on: July 28, 2021, 05:34:25 PM
The Cinderella story is called "When the Clock Strikes" by Tanith Lee. I read it in Masterpieces of Terror and the Supernatural (ed. Marvin Kaye). It also contains "Lazarus" and "His Unconquerable Enemy."