Foxfire, Foxfire • 2016 • SF&F novelette by Yoon Ha Lee

★★★★★

Baekdo is a shapeshifting fox dealing with smaller gods. He set out to turn permanently into a human which requires to eat the livers of 100 humans. As his last victim, he chooses to consume a battlemech elite pilot. Of course, not everything goes as planned, and he has to swear upon the blood of the tiger-sages to help the pilot fulfill his mission.

Great Korean setting with mixed Fantasy and SF elements, with loads of clever little details, fast paced action elements, and wonderful dynamics between characters. I loved the fox’s thiefery, ever-lying, witty style, evolving as a character not by shapeshifting but by winning the heart of the pilot. Enter tiger-sage. It stays strong and ever-changing until the satisfying ending.

Meta: isfdb. Appeared March 2016 in Beneath Ceaseless Skies. Read in Best SFF 11. Read it online.

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