Bury the Truth at the Lunhili Graveyard

The red-eyed double suns glared down on the scrap planet Lunhili. An acidic rain drizzled down from diffuse clouds, turning to steam upon the scorched bodies of dead starships and reenacting memories of their glory days when they'd navigated the likes of the Omega Nebula in the name of humanity. But those days were over.… Continue reading Bury the Truth at the Lunhili Graveyard

Moving the Milky Way

By the time she was recorporealized, Zoya's detractors were all dead for generations and forgotten in the sheer volume of the forward thrust of history. Still, the fact that she'd made it was a victory. Witnesses weren't necessary for her to savor its sweetness. People lived small lives. They thought more of today than of… Continue reading Moving the Milky Way

Adventure Awaits

The posters in the recruitment offices on Earth were brightly colored, depicting psychedelic landscapes and brandishing phrases like Adventure Awaits and See the Unseen! Abe couldn't wait to sign up. Then they sent him to oversee the auto-mines scraping niningerite from the regolith on DCKX1023. He was all alone, from one dark dead horizon to the other.… Continue reading Adventure Awaits

Neverwhere Nomorrow

When Wynter came to the world was painfully bright. She didn't believe in a heaven, and she knew she couldn't be in hell; she'd just left there. White walls, white floor, everything glassy smooth and radiating golden white light. She rubbed her nose and her hand came away blood streaked. Some of it dripped to… Continue reading Neverwhere Nomorrow

Something in the Machine

Xyrl dipped the little twin-engine skimmer below the landing pads of Tower LN-T6. The air was thick with smog. Fullerenes doped with xenon and argon made for a wild violet dawn. Xyrl was just pleased that the pollutants provided some lift and saved fuel. It kept the skimmer near the spiring arresters of the lightning… Continue reading Something in the Machine

Lawn

The garage had bays for three rovers. Tsumugi had a hard time imagining a private citizen needing one rover, let alone three. She gently tossed her bot into the pressurized, purified, triple-filtered triple-scrubbed and triple-treated air. It floated gently through the space, its thrusters puffing lightly as its spherical eyes mapped the garage from every… Continue reading Lawn

Helping Hand

Shivam awoke to strange constellations. Red stars that didn’t glimmer, looking not so far above the tops of the Western white pines. Then he felt a tremble in the earth like an orchestral brass section playing dissonant chords in infrasound somewhere just out of sight within the dark forest. There was a Behemoth ship overhead.… Continue reading Helping Hand

Voice of a Stranger

Burkhart squirmed as he watched the screens. He couldn't stop rubbing his nose, even though it didn't itch. "Get it over with," said a voice very near his ear. It came from the stranger looking over Burkhart's shoulder, also watching the screens with a grim seriousness. The screens were security monitors. They showed live feeds… Continue reading Voice of a Stranger

Critical Resolution

"War's over," said Commander Cotton. I'd never seen her so grim. I remained laying on my cot, having long ago learned how far I could push against the power dynamic between us, even as our relationship evolved into one of mutual understanding if not respect. "Well then, congratulations. What was the final nail?" "Your acting-chief… Continue reading Critical Resolution

Mapping the Tetra

"Seen one Tetra, seen 'em all. What'd I tell you?" "More than I asked for," said Pia. "I hired a pilot, not a color commentator. Stay the course." The impossible bulk of a Predecessor Tetra loomed before them, a lightyear to a side and as smooth and as black as any human tool could measure.… Continue reading Mapping the Tetra