Harper sat sullenly at the top of the habitat's spire, looking out above the canopy as the first—and brightest—of Hinterland's two suns tucked itself below the horizon. At least it would cool off a little. She took the stairs down to the surface level, passing Brielle in the mudroom leading to the garage. "I'm going… Continue reading Wandering on Hinterland
Shetesh stood just behind the Diviness Hava, the two of them inversions of the many stalactites hanging threateningly above them. The holy river that ran through the cavern below was aflame. The particulates in the smoke cast staticky shadows on the rough golden walls. "What does it mean?" Hava asked her attendant. Shetesh grinned and… Continue reading Mysterious Ways
Malachi was sick of this damn ship. The other families didn't have anyone his own age, just a bunch of crusty old adults and little snot-nosed kids. The whole trip was pointless; he'd legally be an adult in a couple of years and would just move back home anyway. In the meantime, he decided to… Continue reading Eureka!
The first and most obvious sign of trouble was the trees. The trunks were charred black from the ground up to three meters, above which the bark appeared normal in every way, forming a strict border. Valentine spun in a circle. The whole forest was like that, burnt below three meters, straight and flat as… Continue reading Not My Circus
Hayden Alico stood in the grand foyer of Alico Station's spinning torus. The grand foyer was next to the docking berths—it was meant to impress. But it had never impressed her. She climbed the imposing regal staircase, with its hand carved banisters and silver inlays emphasizing the theme of dynastic power, until she reached the… Continue reading Portraits of the Patriarchy
She had a black hole for a heart, or at least that was the rumor. When you go around calling yourself The Reckoning, rumors like that are bound to follow like famine follows a locus swarm. In truth, she had no heart at all, just a pump. And a backup. There was no black hole,… Continue reading The Reckoning
Luther kicked in the cathedral door. It was the only part of Concordance Station that was permitted to forego the triple-redundant locking hatchways required of all other passageways—granted by popular vote, the fools. His left arm was dead below the shoulder, and his right was preoccupied keeping pressure over the fresh hole in the side… Continue reading In Need of Forgiveness
The cargo hold door hissed as the locking cylinders depressurized, and then it swung silently open. A rush of stale air blew back Faulkner's coal-black mane. There was an electric light inside. "Please, let me go now," said the technician. Faulkner had already forgotten about him; pity. He faced the tech, placed his hands atop… Continue reading Hell Could Be Many Things
Augustus stood at the edge of the scaffolding stretching out from the landing pad atop the headquarters of Cormorant Communications. High above the pointillism of the city lights in the late evening, the wind tugged at his scarf and jacket and made his knees weak. His stomach felt like it was on tumble dry. "Augustus!"… Continue reading Fall Guy
"Stop stalling. A bet's a bet." Xyler's opened his mouth as wide as he could, stuck his tongue all the way out, and held the pepper in front of his mouth. He sat that way, still as a statue, making an unsure moaning noise, before again pulling the pepper away. "C'mon, Eb, you know I… Continue reading Wanna Make a Couple Bucks?