I was occasionally, informally reading slush for Giganotosaurus at the time this story came into the inbox. I read Moreno-Garcia’s version of a maiden and Death, and recommended the delicate prose and imagery to Ann Leckie who eventually made the purchase.
Georgina met Death when she was ten. The first time she saw him she was reading by her grandmother’s bedside. As Georgina tried to pronounce a difficult word, she heard her grandmother groan and looked up. There was a bearded man in a top hat standing by the bed. He wore an orange flower in his buttonhole, the kind Georgina put on the altars on the Day of the Dead.
The man smiled at Georgina with eyes made of coal.