Don't Look

Author : Duncan Shields, Staff Writer The controls were familiar to any race that had developed mechanical means to get around on their planet’s surface. There was an altitude stick, turning/braking pedals, a throttle plus a variety of buttons and dials to let the pilot know ...

The Field Test

Author : Patricia Stewart, Staff Writer “A one-way ticket to Ganymede, please.” “You can’t buy a one-way ticket to Ganymede.” “Why not?” “Ganymede orbits within Jupiter’s radiation belt. The law says no one can stay on Ganymede longer than six months. Therefore, you need a ...

Mountain Men

Author : Aaron Koelker They came like mountains in the night. Great behemoths of lumbering shadow that walked with thunderous grace. With beards of moss and fur of grass, they looked down upon the intruders without a hint of malice. Their great round eyes of polished stone ...

The Darkness

Author : Jack Holt No one knows why the Darkness came back to life that day, but Stron the Peerless was sent to deal with it. There were others who knew the ancient ways of commanding the power of the Darkness, but none had studied them so single-mindedly as Stron. It was forbidden to ...

Life Star

Author : Julian Miles, Staff Writer The room was smoky with the singed emissions of substances that made tobacco seem like a health supplement. Everyone knew the risks, but when you were fighting the greatest tyranny to ever rule humanity, longevity just didn’t enter the ...

Lonely Lights

Author : Phro Metal A chill autumn breeze blows through the trees lining the old, cracked cement path. Their leaves whisper like the fragmented cries of an artificial intelligence trapped on a dying CPU. Save for the weary pale glow of a single, distant skyscraper light, the ...

Security

Author : Christina Richard It happened every Tuesday; we were lined up, yawning and drinking coffee as the wireless network light blinked from beneath our hairlines as we waited for our updates. What HR said when they installed the chip was that human networking technology ...

Reflection

Author : Clint Wilson, Staff Writer This is what I’ve been waiting for my entire adult life. All my work has come to this. From the moment I signed up for theoretical physics as a youth, I was destined to arrive at this day. Countless alternate universes with a finite number ...

Brave Old World

Author : Bob Newbell Hugo swallowed his last protein pill, paid his bill, and left the cafe. As he walked out the door, the rocket thrust from a young lady leaving the parking lot by jetpack blasted him with fire. It was only his quick reflexes that prevented him from being ...

Beaming

Author : Duncan Shields, Staff Writer The sentence was passed. The switch was flipped on the transporter and Caleb’s protests were cut off in mid-scream. The concrete block fused with his head. The first transporter accident taught us a valuable lesson about the covalency ...

Who's Better, Who's Best

Author : Steve Smith, Staff Writer Jack withdrew the blade slowly, knowing with the sudden swell of blood from the wound that the blow was fatal. "Nothing personal mate, it's a survival of the fittest thing and I'm simply better than you." He felt the body beneath him go ...

Defragging

Author : Bob Newbell Jimmy Shindorf reclined on the hospital bed. A hollow filament as thin as a thread penetrated his neck over the right carotid artery. An IV dripped normal saline at a slow rate into his left antecubital vein. They had suggested placing a Foley catheter, ...

Awoken

Author : Methias He slumbered. He remembered. His recollections were filled with vague, half-things. Muted feelings, dulled senses, broken memories. He remembered the last time he slumbered. He remembered the fall. He remembered the fire and the death. He remembered a heat ...

Stranded

Author : Suzann Dodd They were supposed to come for me in a hundred hours. That was the deal. I was passing for a local, having done the course. I knew how to get over. I'd been given enough currency to survive for two hundred hours; that was also part of the Contract. What ...

Building World

Author : Clint Wilson, Staff Writer I lowered my huv from the sky and dropped into the garbage-strewn parking lot of Building World. Parking next to a contractor’s huv-truck I made my way inside and stood there in front of the directory. Behind the digital sign was a sixteen ...

Keep Watching the Skies

Author : Bob Newbell I set the display to pan to the constellation of Canis Minor. The holographic celestial sphere rotates all around me until the Smaller Dog comes into view. I wave my hand over the controls. The display zooms in on Procyon A. The white main sequence star ...

Come Tomorrow

Author : Julian Miles, Staff Writer The echoes are thunderous, something that keeps most of the predators down here away. This far along, everyone is fatigued. Even the children no longer have bursts of energy. Existence is eat, sleep and march to the beat. The chant cadences ...

And Yet, It Moves

Author : Susan Nance Carhart "There's no way to program my time machine remotely. Not really," Solberg told his friends. "I can't perform a unmanned test. I can't even use an animal for the passenger. But the modeling works. It all comes down to me." The friends caught each ...

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