Graceless Rain

Author: Marcus Nielson The rain thrummed a little tune on her helmet before turning into a cacophony of sound. Each time the rain changed the tempo, she wondered if this was the time that it would finally stop raining. Then, without fail, the pitter-patter would become a ...

Just Passing

Author: Julian Miles, Staff Writer She’s down by the landing gear, waiting for the moment when the dockhands retreat before launch. There’s about forty seconds when a determined stowaway can get into the ventral landing leg housing and climb inside the survival shelter ...

First on Mars

Author: Kye Shamblin The first human being to set foot on Mars. That was all I’d ever wanted to be. Even at a young age, when the other children shared equally impossible dreams, this was mine. Other children eventually were sobered by reality and would settle for far more ...

A Something New

Author: Majoki Not long after a distant star suddenly brightened a thousand-fold and gamma rays gobsmacked life on earth, a prairie dog emerged from its burrow in a deep narrow canyon in what was once southern Utah. Ever wary of predators, it fed quickly and returned to ...

Operation Tinker Bell

Author: Rick Tobin “I’m thrilled to share our Mars challenge solution.” A bespectacled 30-year-old twittered before the tech wizard's Spartan Texas office. “Sure…thrilled…sit. Skip the small talk. Make your elevator pitch—five minutes.” The ruffled-haired billionaire ...

The Nightmare Dunes

Author: Samuel Edney He’d wandered too far. He'd wasn’t paying attention and had wandered too far and now it was darkening as the storm had descended upon them. Mother was going to shout at him. She was going to be so angry. ‘Darling, where are you?’ If he turned back ...

The Limits of Magic

Author: D. I. Dean Room 2248 was quiet, save for the distant hum of the starship engines. She held Sarai’s good fingers in her hand, unsure if he even knew that she was there, but this was the least she could do; take up space next to him, watching the stuttering rise and ...

The Porcelain Pilot

Author: Hari Navarro, Staff Writer The porcelain pilot hovers just beneath the artificial swell of the valley lip. Once long ago a dam though now, after the water has long since fled, it is but a hill covered in lush deep grass and bluish grey flowers with petals that purr ...

The Rings of Naduskar

Author: Julian Miles, Staff Writer The planet Naduskar is a technological wonderland without visible natural surface, be it land or water. At some time in the distant past, an advanced race converted or covered every last piece of open ground. There’s the mystery: is it ...

Deathmatch

Author: Chana Kohl When my ship touched down on the small moon of E’lyrvst III, nothing struck me particularly outside the ordinary. Host to the largest salvage yard in the sector, V’hara, the proprietor, was known across the explored galaxy for her business acumen and ...

The Program

Author: Fatemah Albader The only certainty in life is that it will eventually come to an end. But what if there was a way to know exactly, with 100-percent certainty, when your life will end? Would you want to know? If you said yes, I’d rethink that if I were ...

A Woman of Many Facets

Author: Rosie Oliver An idealised woman never existed. She is an imagined blend of traits in a single glorious perfection, a beautiful Frankenstein of personalities. Not one considered as part of the crowd or an asset to be used or abused by another, but a woman who stands ...

Sorry For Your Loss, But You Can’t Sue Us: Excerpts from the Official Consent Form of Experimentation

Author: Maryfaith Ocampo I authorize the usage, study, and replication of my gametic cells. I grant the genetic clinics permission to edit my Genetically Modified Human (GMH) as they deem fit. I understand that there are unknown risks of experimentation with newer ...

Commensurate Service

Author: Rick Tobin Meds failed Jeremy Paloo, leaving him restless, sweating under the ship’s ventilation over his bunk. Newbie deep space fever—no crime struggling with it during maiden voyages outside the solar system, but embarrassing for executive officers. He felt ...

Memoir of a Helicopter Mom

Author: Fatemah Albader “When you install a family of your own, you’ll understand,” I said, though I wasn’t convinced she ever would truly understand. She’s 30, successful, wonderful life, but still acts out like a child, even though we took her back to the adoption agency ...

War No More

Author: Julian Miles, Staff Writer In a room darkening as night falls, lengthening shadows are rearranged by the flickering of a grimy display screen. White, blue, green, yellow, black. The night briefly reforms. An image of an emblem flashes up to fill the view. It ...

On Time and Intent

Author: Brian C. Mahon Posit this: If post-singularity, the lucky ascendants have their consciousness uploaded to a massive mainframe, they would have two rewards. One: As long as the servers are powered, time is untethered from sensory perception. A second could be a ...

Automated Living

Author: Carmen Condon 'It was one of them …' 'One of the robots?' 'Yes! They think a robot smothered him …' Variations on this theme drifted between the deceased's relatives; their eyes averted from the aged care automatons whirring gently down the aisle. Verity ...

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