As an autistic, loveless aromantic writer who prefers that my feelings of attraction, connection and affection not be contextualised with a word that doesn’t always feel applicable, I thought Aro Week the perfect time to collate those stories written for aromantics like me. This post lists my works with loveless aromantic protagonists and those that don’t presume an aromantic protagonist’s ability to love and/or label their experiences as love.
My other aro works can be found on my fiction page.
Moll of Sirenne needs prompts in their girdle book to navigate casual conversations, struggles to master facial expressions and feels safest weeding the monastery’s vegetable gardens. Following their call to service, however, means offering wanderers in need a priest’s support and guidance. A life free of social expectation to court, wed and befriend does outweigh their fear of causing harm—until forgetting the date of a holiday provokes a guest’s ire and three cutting words: lifeless and loveless.
A priest must expand a guest’s sense of human worth, but what do they do when their own comes under question? Can an autistic, aromantic priest ever expect to serve outside the garden? And what day is it…?
Contains: A middle-aged, agender priest set on defying social norms around love; an alloromantic guest with a journey to undergo in conquering her amatonormativity and ableism; an elderly aromantic priest providing irascible reassurance; and the story of how Moll became Esher’s guiding priest.
More info: Loveless aromantic narrating protagonist.
Continue reading “Fiction Collection: Loveless Aro Friendly” →
Hallo, Aro is a series of flash fiction stories about allosexual aromantic characters navigating friendship, sexual attraction, aromanticism and the weight of amatonormative expectation.
Contains: Reflections on the aromantic desire to avoid family members’ amatonormative questions about dating–and the ways attaining this freedom can speak less about aromantic inclusion and more about heterosexist erasure and queer antagonism.
How can this be the aromantic dream when your queerness quiets the room?
Continue reading “Hallo, Aro: Question – K. A. Cook” →
Esher Hill left his home and kin a crying wreck of a man, too depressed and dysphoric to care what his people make of him. If he’d had his way, that would have been the end of it.
His sister Mara, the village witch, made sure he didn’t.
Two and a half years later, Esher owns two dogs, a blade, a career and a new body—the shape of masculinity he always felt he should be. A miracle Mara refuses to explain. A miracle the Sojourner’s priests reject and fear. A miracle, say the Grey Mages, that cannot exist without something precious sacrificed in exchange: a soul.
Returning home in search of his sister and the truth isn’t just a matter of enduring stares, whispers, explanations and the condescending pity from those he left behind.
Love holds edges sharper than Esher’s sword, for nobody wins but demons in the sale of souls.
Yes, and that’s what scares him: his erasure writ in the words of love.
Continue reading “Fiction: Love is the Reckoning” →
An unexpected letter sees Suki of Sirenne, a red-robed priest of the Sojourner, doing the unimaginable: returning home to farewell a dying Mama Polly. After ten years of studying the ways of Spoken Service, she’s built a life that serves her nature … even if she’s still inclined to a sharp turn of phrase. Can’t she now explain her feelings and choices in ways easier for Mama Lewis to accept? Shouldn’t her mothers now be easier to manage?
Yet one conversation leaves Suki feeling that she’ll never stop being the brittle, abrasive young woman who left Freehome … and presents her a problem only solvable by remembering priesthood’s first lesson.
Patience comes more easily when free of disregard and diminishment.
Continue reading “Fiction: If Absurd Works” →
When Mama Lewis continues to browbeat Suki into becoming the kind of girl who doesn’t tick off unwanted romantic suitors, she knows the best thing to do is leave. The port city of Malvade offers work enough to pay for her own room, but Suki’s freedom comes with long hours, a leaking roof, outhouse mould and a yearning for a world that offers her more than bare subsistence and continued disregard.
A red-robed priest of the Sojourner may hold answer and opportunity … if only she can endure a conversation with someone preaching a truth anathema to everything a proud woman of Freehome should believe.
Does freedom in one direction count if she still finds limitations in others?
Continue reading “Fiction: The Complexity of Human Decency” →