Everything gets its turn: as we thaw from the cruelty of January, the planet warms up with the gentleness of spring (oh Goddess, we hope), and we melt with the caress of heat.

And the sun shines on us all. If you love Gentle stories, this is your time; if you prefer Cruelty, I hope you enjoyed January's selection and join us, as we did you, for this competition. Is it harder for a cruel writer to dig deep and find their sweetness and light, or for a gentle writer to put their sensitivities aside and describe suffering for purposes of entertainment? Depends on who you talk to, but it seems to be a real challenge.

New to the Size Riot contests? Please read up on our many-storied legacy here, and read the Rules for details.

Theme: Submitted stories must follow the following conditions.

  • One or more of the main characters must be middle-aged (45 or older, no immortality cheats)
  • Open to SFW or NSFW. Please provide explicit tags/triggers; stories will be assessed for accuracy