Narrated by M.K. Hobson.

Essarala learned of the traders from her cousins' gossip, and she lingered near the interpreters, watching and wishing. She longed to explore their ship and ask them to take her with them to the stars. But the more she listened, the more she learned, and one thing became obvious: their ship might carry water for its crew to drink, but it didn't contain water for a mer to live in.

Podcast: Download (Duration: 42:03 — 28.88MB)
Subscribe: Google Podcasts | RSS | More

Read “The Mermaid Astronaut” by Yoon Ha Lee, in Issue #298 – Science-Fantasy Month 5

Read Comments on this Story (3 Comments)

Yoon Ha Lee's short fiction has appeared on, in Clarkesworld, and nine times previously in Beneath Ceaseless Skies, including “The Starship and the Temple Cat” in BCS Science-Fantasy Month 4, which was a finalist for the Locus Award and the Sturgeon Award. He is the author of the Machineries of Empire trilogy, and his standalone fantasy Phoenix Extravagant is forthcoming from Solaris Books in June 2020.  Yoon lives in Louisiana with his family and an extremely lazy cat and has not yet been eaten by gators.  Visit him online at

Return to Audio Fiction