Other Stories in this issue

The International (Marketing) Incident

by Ricky Sprague

About the Author: Ricky Sprague's work has appeared in publications ranging from Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine to Mad. With his friend Ed Gorman he conceived the upcoming Kolchak: Dawn of the Demons (Moonstone) and Cage of Night and Gut-Shot (Short, Scary Tales) graphic novels. His short animated films have played in festivals around the world.


When my food stopped disappearing from the refrigerator, I began to suspect that Dan had found another place to live. But I couldn’t get too excited, since it had happened before. At least four times that I knew of, and possibly more I hadn’t noticed, because they’d only lasted a night or two. Plus, there was still a lot of junk in his room.

Not wanting to jinx the situation, I hadn’t yet tried to contact him. Maybe he’d forgotten where he was staying rent free, and calling would only remind him; I wasn’t sure. What mattered now was I was experiencing the giddy sensation of being a youngish bachelor in West Los Angeles with an apartment all to himself.

Then, I got that call, and the sensation became less giddy. I answered the same way I always answered, at work: “International Marketing, this is Chris.”

“Chris, my friend! How you doing?”

“Dan?” I asked, trying to get my bearings. It was dirty pool, calling me at work. “What—um, what can I do for you?”

“We need some things,” he said, as if I’d already been fully informed of the backstory. “Can I get a couple of Zombie Knight press kits, and, oh, let’s say eight CarBots 4 posters, and—”

“Hold on. Why would I send you our studio promotional materials? That’s for members of HIP—”

Story Comments

Jan 11 - Lynne Buschhorn

I really enjoyed this issue. The reason I bought it is that it included an article by Ricky Sprague. Now and then I stick his name in Amazon to see if there is anything new. I love his stories because they are usually so outrageous I would never think of them myself. This story has a great ending. Thanks Ricky.

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