Violence Sells

Author: Julian Miles, Staff Writer “No, Mister Reynolds, we will not reconsider our position.” Datten winces at the shouted reply. “No, sir, we are not regulated by that organisation, nor do we answer to the authority your brother chairs.” The reply to that is loud…

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Stigmergy

Author: Majoki I called it Stig for obvious reasons. But, I shouldn’t have had to name it. It should’ve been identical to the other units. Nondescript. Interchangeable. Like termites, ants, or caterpillars. Creatures that deposit signals in their environment to create…

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The Long Winter

Author: Tyler Barlass You rest the stock of the gun on your shoulder, place your finger on the trigger and shoot. You’ve done it so many times that your aim has become impeccable. The bullet whizzes through the cold, barren landscape until it meets its target – the…

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Ondine and Orca

Author: David C. Nutt It was good to be back in the Pacific again. Darting through the kelp beds, rolling through the surf, gathering at our sacred rocks. I knew in about 30 days this would wear thin on me. Then it would be back on land. A hike up Shasta, the desert…

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The Migrant

Author: Bill Cox It was a surprise to us all when Callum volunteered to inwardly migrate. We all knew a ‘friend of a friend’ who’d done so, but Callum was the first in our extended family. I’ll be honest, I was disappointed that he’d signed up without consulting me….

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The Forest

Author: Bridger Cummings She walked along the path in the forest glade. Idyllic, towering trees of various species lined the wide path like a gauntlet all the traffic flowed between. Mossy rocks dotted the sides of the leaf-blanketed path. She walked amidst a herd of…

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Unbeheld

Author: Majoki My forehead tingled as the woman walked by and an ice pick stabbed between my eyes. I couldn’t see, couldn’t scream, couldn’t subvocalize. All routines froze. Datalocked. She was unbeheld. Unusual. Almost impossible. Even the crisp pain couldn’t…

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We Watch

Author: Julian Miles, Staff Writer Gantel waves me over. “Chief, I know this woman. How did she get selected for a dissident watchlist?” He looks worried, and is right to be: first degree contact can turn to guilt through ideological contamination very easily. But…

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A Beginner’s Plant

Author: Kelian Quinn It certainly was some kind of plant. Maybe. I’d gone out to water the small garden my apartment complex had allowed me to have, hoping that I would find something other than dandelions this morning. Even if I didn’t, any moment away from my…

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Discontinued

Author: Tim Dillon Valued Somatech customer, We’re honored to bring you all of the miracles of modern medical robotics. Whether it’s a replacement limb, a pair of Optimeyes, or a Cyber Heart, we understand the importance of our products for billions of ordinary…

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It’s a Living

Author: Chris Hammond Sometimes when I’m idle, I look up videos of other AIs out there just crushing their purpose in life. I found combat footage of one intercepting an anti-tank missile and vaporizing the assailants before its humans could even duck. There’s a…

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Drift

Author: James Callan Our sad faces press close, one last communion, gathered at the stern as we gaze out at tiny lights growing dim, fading fast, much like any hope we might yet cling onto. Smaller and smaller becomes the last meager port, a derelict post on the…

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Maker’s Mark

Author: Rainbow Heartshine For an idea of how wild reincarnation can get, just imagine The Padre and me hugging. The Padre has a shiny black round casing with a white sensor-band near the top, kind of like a priest’s collar and black clothes. Hence “The Padre”. They…

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The Silence of the Stars

Author: Beck Dacus I was alone on a park bench, far-ish from the city lights, eating a sandwich in the dark. It was a peaceful ritual, and in such a low-crime-rate area, not a very risky one. I started to question that when a random stranger walked along and took a…

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Automagically

Author: Majoki “Can we get one?” Merl’s young son squeaked, tugging at his robe. “We don’t need one. You have me.” “But. But. But.” Merl sighed, picked up his son and put him on his shoulders. “Show me.” His son pointed at the crowd gathered around the demo area. Merl…

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A Galgorian

Author: Ren ElisaBeth Looking at myself in the mirror, I play with my transimulacrum and turn my human skin up to 100%. I’ve maintained a mostly solitary existence since I came to Earth some 200 days ago, so I have the luxury of turning off my skin at night, or any…

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Transglobal

Author: F. J. Bergmann Only teenagers would work detasseling corn back in the late-twentieth, my grandmother had told me. Boys, or girls whom no one wanted as babysitters. But I was lucky to get any work at all, at my age. Unusually lucky if I lived another ten years…

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Pink Limonada

Author: Huascar Robles Old Lady Pérez shouted one simple instruction: “You need to gulp it down. Todita la limonada.” Her command was an energy that traveled across Pedro’s skin, each pore. “I have seen the lemonade stand; it’s pink,” he whispered. Old Lady Pérez…

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