Unwelcome Sunrise

Author: J.D. Rice As the sun rises, the ruins of the city begin to glimmer in orange and gold. Mangled hunks of metal and shards of glass reflect the rising sunlight, making the landscape come alive in various hues, welcoming me to a new day – another day of…

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Horace on the Bridge

Author: Michael F. Da Silva I will tell you about the last time we tried a counter-invasion. The plan was this: to decapitate their command structure and destroy their ability to create bridges across the multiverse, thus locking them in their own worldline and…

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Star Fire

Author: Rick Tobin “There is simply nothing we can do for you medically Mr. Tambor. Digeenia is fatal in mammals, like you. Perhaps someday there will be a vaccine or treatment, but considering its outcome, you might want to choose our pathway alternative. It promises…

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Scammed

Author: Paul Williams Siblane started work when his phone told him it was 9 am in the United Kingdom. He connected to the network, listening to the clicking of the automated dialer. He never saw the numbers called, just the location. The United Kingdom, full of old…

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Distress

Author: Ádám Gerencsér In all probability, this is our final broadcast. It will be repeated on all available automatic relays in binary code for as long as power supply persists. The time left is enough for but one final act of resistance: a high-frequency message of…

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Wherever My Gnome

Author: Jae Miles, Staff Writer We’ve had kids stealing our garden gnomes for years. Some came back, some didn’t, and some sent me postcards, usually from Skegness or Blackpool. As years went by, those kids did well. Our wandering gnomes sent postcards from Ibiza and…

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You call this love, I call it service

Author: DJ Lunan I love my bathroom. Its the best thing about my divorce. Alaskan white suite, powerful extractor fan, splash-blade shower, heated towel rail, and no queuing behind the kids. But divorce is expensive. I moved out of the family house to a ground floor…

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To Infinity and Beyond

Author: Aethelric Jones Am I human? I feel like a human being. I’m Jack Hawkins, married with two children. But that was a very long time ago. I don’t look like a human being. I have no flesh or bones, I never get hungry. Actually, I’m a starship, or more like a star…

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Arrival Day

Author: Leanne A. Styles The gatekeeper snatches the bag out of my hand, the lenses of his telescopic goggles making minute adjustments as he peers inside. “My watches and coin collection,” I say. “No money?” “Not anymore.” “Searched a lot of yards, have we?” he says…

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Parting Ways

Author: Bruce van-Schalkwyk Noah’s eyes tracked the blip on his screen. Displaying 19% battery, but being the furthest away from the garage, he didn’t want to take any chances with the auto-cab. He typed the return command on the open prompt, pressed Enter on the…

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Verbatim Thirst

Author: Gabriel Land In every direction, there was nothing but baked dirt, tumbleweeds, and flat death. The blazing sun weighed down on me. I didn’t know which way to walk, and I didn’t know why. How I’d gotten there was long since forgotten. Being lost wasn’t the…

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Fires of Moscow

Author: Beck Dacus Captain Whilford sat in the command chair, glowering. As he drank coffee with a blanket around his shoulders, he wondered what could’ve possibly warranted unfreezing him a year before arriving in the enemy system. Everyone on his ship ranking higher…

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Close Call

Author: Jae Miles, Staff Writer Our fleeing shadows flicker in the strobing light from far-off eppy guns – still enough to hurt our eyes, not enough to drop us. A while later, Oli gasps: “Where?” Good question. Sheer luck we’d headed out in search of cold drinks. The…

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Conservation

Author: Lewis Richards The Creature moved its great head forwards, releasing a long mellow call into the night. It waited for a moment, listening for a response, but when one didn’t drift back on the wind, it ambled slowly back through the tough, knee-high grasses…

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Alien Child

Author: Elena Horne Darkness is all she sees, at least at first. She blinks, her eyes closing from left to right. The darkness lets through yellow stripes; little strips of light. The sky here is like a pinstriped suit of black and gold. It’s hard too, and so close it…

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Mostly Human

Author: Thomas Tilton I am not the creator, just the keeper. People say that bots don’t have human feelings, that to assume they do is even more dangerous than assuming, say, the crocodile swimming next to you isn’t hungry. Sure, there are dolly bots for kids,…

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Holiday

Author: Mark Thomas It was Monday, June 18th and three sets of new customers carrying identical “cosmic pet shuttles” were lined up waiting for the “Hubble Bubble” pet boarding facility to open. Each carrier happened to contain an over-sized Maine Coon cat. Edwin…

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The Buoy

Author: Janice Rothganger Subject 9581 swam against the waves, edging nearer to her objective with each stroke. Salt water crusted her lips. The storm surge pulled her away, then forced her tantalizingly close to the buoy. The marker bobbed in the ocean. It was topped…

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