Scavengers

Deadeye saw it first, no surprise. We rode toward the smoke. Loud Mouth couldn't stop giggling, interrupted every so often by that disgusting clicking noise the stump of his tongue made against his uvula. I ran my palm over the smooth end of my left arm, which terminated at the mid-forearm. It was an interstellar… Continue reading Scavengers

Blessings of the Arc

Zin Zidel awoke hot and sweaty, tangled in her swaddling robes. She pinned her feathery black hair atop her head and went digging through the cart's many trunks and baskets for something to busy her moaning stomach. She settled for tough jerky, though there weren't many choices left. "Smithlin Caust, do you never sleep?" she… Continue reading Blessings of the Arc

Deathmind

"You are the Deathmind." Tul shivers, though the humid blackness that envelopes him is warm. A salivating steel maw. The solitary red point of light shifts in an implacable way. "A weak statement, more so for its implications than its approximations." It hurt just to hear the Deathmind speak, like its voice turned Tul's bones… Continue reading Deathmind

Zyz’s Syzygy

Zyz awoke staring straight into the sun through a shattered skylight. Full charge. Elapsed down-cycle: 14:11:55.25. She remembered now wandering the tunnels for days in the dark and then scrambling to find a place to recharge before a forced shut down. In the end she'd had to tap into the aux capacitors to stay conscious;… Continue reading Zyz’s Syzygy

If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Seek Vengeance

General Welkar took the podium. "Congratulations, cadets. You are still here. When I addressed this group a year ago, you numbered more than a thousand. And now? Thirty. Those others did not share your grit, your intellect, your skill, or your boldness. They quit. They were cut. Some believed they had no limits, and they… Continue reading If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Seek Vengeance

The Legacy We Deserve

They skipped from star to star like a stone on the surface of a placid lake. At each bright point they gorged themselves, ripping through the magnetic flux lines like a cellophane wrapper and exposing the sticky, savory flesh within, fattening up for the next jaunt. The next long winter of the vacuum. In some… Continue reading The Legacy We Deserve

Running in Place

Carter hit the treadmill with gusto. It was old and worn--mechanical, not electric--just a rubber strip wrapped around a couple of rollers, no motor. Electricity was a scarce commodity these days, and he wasn't the wasteful type. He wasn't a brainiac either, though, and couldn't figure out how to use the treadmill to generate and… Continue reading Running in Place

Most Unthinkable

Morrison grew up on a rye farm outside of Cenesthesia, a typical arcology in the midlands. And, as do most children who grow up on farms, he was going to become a farmer himself one day. He didn't find it especially fulfilling, certainly not exciting, but it was as lucrative a career as you could… Continue reading Most Unthinkable