Bad Cyber

Author : Julian Miles, Staff Writer The Amour Club is light on love and heavy on by-the-minute. It’s popular with non-johns as the full-time privacy mode prevents surveillance and squashes infobuzz down to a whisper of priority feeds. I usually enjoy being anywhere that ...

Eighty-Six

Author : Kate Haas Alice sat on the railing of Aunt Nat’s fishing pier. It was crowded today. She watched a seagull glide overhead as she picked at her sunburned knees. Alice closed her eyes. The air smelled like saltwater and cheese steaks. Aunt Nat must have started ...

Metallic

Author : Philip Berry Every child remembers their first visit to the field. They follow the teacher over the low rise that was a burial mound for the first settlers, and down a glass ramp into the excavated field where ranks of men and women stand staring forward. Each is ...

Turn It Up

Author : Steve Smith, Staff Writer Walter was led through the facility flanked by four men in combat armor carrying guns. He'd walked these corridors for nearly a decade, but this was all very new to him. At his lab, the soldiers stopped, ushered him inside and turned ...

Which Came First?

Author : Suzanne Borchers “Ivan, what the hell is that!” Roger pointed at the creature roosting on the rafter. “It’s a chicken, of course.” Ivan reached up and smoothed one of its orange feathers. “We’ve been doing this dig for how many months on this barren forsaken ...

Cold Night in Edinburgh

Author : Iain Macleod "Spare change please, pal?" The couple walked on, oblivious to him. This used to happen in the old days too but for different reasons. Harry had been on the street for almost forty years, ever since the oil price crashed in the mid 2010s. He lost his ...

Privacy, Please

Author : Jonathan DeCoteau “Stupid quotes are only tweets in disguise.” --unknown (but most likely someone who’s been unfriended) Riley saw the invasive little bug flapping its electronic wings all about him as he stood at the urinal. Riley grabbed the tiny ...

War Games

Author : Julian Miles, Staff Writer I’m impressed: the manufacturer’s claim was true. C-NhD - Compressed Nhildentium - really does make a ship unbreakable. “Sir, the worst casualty is Engineer Ruson: both legs broken. Apart from that: cuts and bruises.” I treat Dral ...

Unconditional Love

Author : J.D. Rice I sit across the table from him, listening as he talks about work, about how frustrated he’s become with his newest project. His voice is even and firm, almost business-like, despite this being the first date night we've had in months. I nod my head and ...

The Wait Calculation

Author : Beck Dacus I was told that, when I awoke, I should expect the thunder of battle to have already started. But when the doctor woke me, his face calm, if not bored, I heard only the low rumble of my fellow crewman babbling about something. I would soon learn what ...

A Winter Ramble to the Site of the Shapwell Ghyll Spacecraft

Author : Peter Haynes It’s a long winding tramp from the Ship Inn (formerly the Coachman) to Shapwell Ghyll where the spacecraft rests. At what is widely accepted to be the route’s start, I watch walkers of the Nordic bent de-telescoping and chatting as the first rimy sleet ...

The Long Smoke

Author : David Henson The chaplain sits beside the young man and lays a small box on her lap. "Mr. Parker, would you like to pray with me?" "That's not for me, Chaplain. But I'm glad you're here." Parker's hands are trembling, eyes red. The chaplain reaches out and ...

Vacuum

Author : Steve Smith, Staff Writer Sometimes, when we got bored, we'd turn off the artificial gravity and do mundane things in zero gee. Sitting on either side of what passed for a mess room table over breakfast was a particular favourite pastime of mine. The slow motion ...

Startup

Author : Julian Miles, Staff Writer My guardian wakes me with a mental alert: “Intrusion!” I lie there, unmoving, keeping my bodyware idle. The first rule of surviving killsoft: do nothing to allow it further access. “Where, Teriya?” I silently reply. – It’s a difficult ...

Eta Carinae

Author : Lisa Jade I still recall the sorrow of the Project Head when he said I was leaving Earth. I’d questioned it; there were plenty of people more qualified than me. I wasn’t sure why they’d chosen me, or why they treated the Stasis Project like a death sentence. It ...

Love Binds Us

Author : Beck Dacus While the feds brushed their feet on my welcome mat and walked into my kitchen, I was scanning my mind for things I had done wrong. I hadn’t reported any alien sightings. Never smuggled drugs, or touched drugs in my entire life. None of my friends had ...

Heavens Burst

Author : Austen Rodgers They spawned from the Heavens Burst and raced beyond the measure of speed and distance, and for a time longer than the total existence of any other species. Like streaks of cosmic fireworks, they spread outward and settled on planets scattered ...

Temporal Clock

Author : Roderick Holl Elijah checked the readout on the pen-sized tool, cursing to himself as he placed a hand on his helmet and spoke into the communications channel, “Hamlet do you read me? I don’t think the problem is this balance spring.” “It must be something, it’s ...

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