The Belly of the Beast

Author : Todd Hammrich My name is Jeffrey Donahume and I’m making this report in case anyone out there is listening. I am the pilot of Single Shot 5 of the one-way exploratory expeditions. I was on my way out of the system when, unfortunately, my ship was damaged…

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Trade-In

Author : Benjamin Dunn Little Tyler looked around nervously. Tim dragged him into the reception area by the hand, a scowl engraved on his face. He marched up to the reception desk, hoisted Tyler by the armpits, and sat him down in front of the receptionist. “I want a…

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Collision Course

Author : Patricia Stewart, Staff Writer The caravan of return vehicles lifted off the comet in rapid succession. Allen Culbert looked out the porthole and watched silently as the comet shrank into the distance. For the last nine months, the 1288 men and women of the…

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Hauntingly Beautiful

Author : Jann Everard “Isn’t that Giselle?” Laura nudged her husband. “She looks amazing.” Jake flipped his sandy-colored bangs into place and unconsciously flexed the muscles at his shoulders. Jake’s rapt attention to her teen-age nemesis across the auditorium made…

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Runner

Author : Duncan Shields, Staff Writer “Hit him again,” said Milly, “Let it go for six seconds this time.” That smile played into her lips again, making me glad that it was this blubbering, fat loser in front of us that owed money and not me. “Please!” he begged…

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Trains

Author : Jacob Lothyan “It’s an old family story. A mystery, really. Or was. I just know it meant a lot to my dad, his dad, and so on. That’s the only reason I held on to it. “So it goes, my great great-grandfather worked at the Santa Fe Depot in Leavenworth—first…

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Skeletons

Author : Jacob Lothyan The strobe effect of the cherries in my rear window made me instantly nauseous. All uniforms made me nervous these days. Now I had one walking up the side of my car, and I couldn’t help feeling suspect. I rolled down the window before he…

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Life in Orbit

Author : Garrick Sherman Jack peered through his neighbor’s window at the poisonous brown planet below. Behind him the party rolled on in a soft murmur. He looked out the wide domed roof at a blanket of stars, then back to the globe below. A hand brushed against his…

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Visionary

Author : Jennifer C. Brown aka Laieanna “I can’t believe we’re referencing pop culture to actually get a look at the universe,” said Megan. She flipped another page of her palm size book. “I mean anything we anticipate coming down is probably in this thing.” Her…

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Connection

Author : Rosa King It’s the fifth day and she still hasn’t given up. She sits just outside the range of the station defenses and she watches. I look out of the window and shiver despite the warm fug of the laboratory. “She knows.” “Don’t be ridiculous,” Tom says. “It…

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Solar Storm

Author : Patricia Stewart, Staff Writer “Good Day space travelers. This is James O’Brien bringing you the latest system weather update. Solar activity is very low in the ecliptic plane facing Earth. No solar flares occurred during the past 24 hours. The solar disk…

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Freakshow

Author : Rob Burton I watch Kamille comb her beautiful dark hair, and I can’t help but wonder what horror now grows inside her. She’s from a fine family, well respected travelling merchants, with enough money to have selected the best from amongst many possible…

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The Light Between

Author : J.R. Blackwell, Staff Writer Rae woke up strapped to a table, which was hardly out of the ordinary, but always came as a surprise. She had a headache, but that was to be expected, since she had a metal bar through her forehead. Her fingers were smoking….

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Julia 13

Author : Ken McGrath Her name was Julia 13. There had been twelve others before her, all exactly the same. The only thing that was meant to be unique about her, about them, was the number after the name. But she started to act differently. Unlike the others Julia 13…

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Presque Vu

Author : Debbie Mac Rory One doesn’t earn the title of the system’s greatest escape artist without effort. I’ve broken out of all of them, and in record time. Well, except for that one time they placed me in an archaic brick and mortar cell. I think the first hour I…

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Nursery

Author : Duncan Shields, Staff Writer I work in a nursery. I’m about to kill six hundred babies. Where does life begin? That’s the age-old question. It plagued the pro-lifers and now, here, at the birth of a new species, it’s plaguing the Artificial Intelligence…

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Synapse

Author : Richard Watt Here it came again. A microsecond burst, inaudible to human ears, and – until relatively recently – to human-designed technology, the sudden squirt of dense information still alarmed those who were exposed to it; even slowed down so that it…

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Cartesian Creation

Author : Ryan Somma Director Almod peered at the computer screen frowning in contemplation, “I don’t get it.” “It’s a star,” Jaed offered helpfully. “I know it’s a star,” Almod gaze never broke from the image. “So what?” “Sooo…” the smile gracing Jaed’s face only…

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