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Word was spreading, the heartless empress’ firstborn had perished. The colony knew a child would soon go missing, but didn’t dare speak out.

The emperor penguin is often perceived as stately and dignified, mating for life, and being sweet parental figures. In reality, studies have shown that kidnapping the offspring of other penguins is a common behaviour for penguins who have recently lost their own chicks. Liz Duck-Chong takes this concept, and combines it with the familiar construct of a tyrannical empress, to create a fantastical view of Antarctica that you may have never considered. This story was awarded 3rd Place in our ANTARCTIC FLASH FICTION CONTEST.

//Liz Duck-Chong is a writer, guitarist and photographer. She can be found @lizduckchong, or occasionally behind unsuspecting large rocks.//

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