When The Dust Settles

“There’s an element of theatre to all this, ain’t there?” the sheriff said. Malachai Singh was a gruff man, but a fair sheriff, and Sister Britney took this into account when she spoke to him. “Jeddeloh is our home. We’re here to assess the damage, get some closure.”…

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For The Music

“Oops!” a golden egg dropped from Yizzies mouth onto the glowing floor. “There goes another baby!” she laughed and a skittering spider came with a dustpan to clean the mess. Raich pulled his eyes out and threw them halfheartedly at Yizzie before plugging his…

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Match-Made Messiah

“This planet needs a Messiah so you and I have to fuck.” Sydec said. He didn’t mean for it to come out that way but the tests were absolutely fail-proof, and he needed to express the urgency of the matter to Vsha. That’s aside from the fact that he wasn’t…

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Devotion

The cloister, in the grand tradition of all ancient edifices like it, is cold. It is by necessity metallic, unlike its predecessors, but as if to make up for this failing, its cold is that of the utter desolation of space. To walk inside, I must wear a full survival…

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Static And Silence

Subject 643-M, age eight, sits cross-legged on the floor. Before him, a wide array of screens flicker rapidly, some with pictures, some words, some numbers. Thick tubes connect from the ceiling to a horizontal row of ports on his back. He doesn’t remember. He doesn’t…

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The Lovers

I’m sore and smiling from last nights’ athletics. My lover is still sleeping, his blue-green head resting on my pale pink chest. There are tiny raised welts on my hip and thigh where he bit me, and light red scratch lines on my back when, just a few hours ago, he…

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Word Made Flesh

The first day we met, I described myself as a reader, but she never called herself a writer. Instead, she would always say she “had written” and would pull down her collar or roll up her sleeves and show people. They would catch a paragraph or two as it ticked…

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Everything

“I’m sorry, but the answer is no,” Captain Diana Cai watched Ambassador Karr on her viewscreen as his face darkened. The Ambassador bit his tongue inside his mouth until he tasted blood. Captain Cai allowed him his moment. It was harsh news she had to deliver….

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Made To Be Broken

Sergeant Ariel Odipo held back a grimace as her squadron approached the Sepch encampment. She doubted they could see her face through the mirrored visor of her helmet, but she wasn’t taking any chances. She loosened her grip on her rifle as well. The tension was…

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Contribution

“Goodman Ernest, your application for life expectancy has been denied.” Ernest, as his own legal representation, was standing at the podium before the masked council. When he heard their pronouncement, he nearly fell off the stand. “Council! I beg appeal!” The…

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Father Knows Best

I don’t remember being a citizen, but when I was growing up, it was all my father ever talked about. ‘Back in the valley,’ he would say, and point to the acrylic mural that took up most of the wall by the front door. It looked nothing like a valley. It was a jumble of…

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The New Formula

This is it, lads. We’ve done it. The future of dating is now. Forget all those phony hookup services, the holodates, the matchmakers. We’ve discovered what your problem was all along. You don’t need to find the right girl, mate. Not anymore. That’s a thing of…

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The Bitter Kiss Of The Ronin's Cup

Autumn was ending the day the man who carried no name wandered into the village of Plum Rose. Nearly bent double by the pack upon his back, the stranger nevertheless moved with a fluidity and grace that immediately drew attention in the dusty township. Children…

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Regret

“We’ve got a jumper.” Pratt was one of those orderly, wiry men who pleased supervisors without ever accomplishing much of value. Detective Harr lit his cigarette and enjoyed the growing scowl on Pratts face. Cigarettes were quite illegal in hospitals, but no one…

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Waiting For Ironwine

They wait for him. They deny it, but they do. They sit with their alcohol and they wait for the man called Ironwine to walk in and regale them with tales of his latest adventures. Ironwine, who they say hears the buzz and modulation of the galaxy. Ironwine, who they…

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The Economic Laws of Robotics

The robot was white, angular, and roughly waist-high. At least, it was waist-high for Jack, but Jack had always been a tall man thanks to the synthetic hormones he’d been given at a young age. It was a diminutive thing, like most personal assistants, and if one were…

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Day Without Tears

Listen now, my children, to the sparks of our ancestors. This soil was not always touched by flame. When our ancestors first began to weave tales of hydrogen and controlled fusion there was a terrible storm, my children. The storm plagued our wireless networks; it…

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Surface

Isaac lived on the inner ring of the tower, so he didn’t have a window. He had a screen though, and despite the status of having a window, he preferred the flexibility of having a screen. A screen could show a view from anywhere in the world, a window just had the…

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