Wandering on Hinterland

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

Ineffectual

Captain Forsch was bathed in the mint green glow of the Kelp Nebula as he sailed by the scattered formation of the protesters. The small escort fleet from Freespace Private Security kept the protesters' ships outside the work zone, but nothing could be done about their relentless transmissions. The Kelp Nebula is a limited public… Continue reading Ineffectual

Tenacity

"Excuse me, are you Tenacity? I'm Isla." "Yes, it's lovely to meet you. Please do sit down." Tenacity was taken aback. Isla may have a Confederacy name and a Confederacy home, but certainly not the look. She was thin; not the taut lengthiness brought on by generations of sub-standard gravity, but the thinness of a… Continue reading Tenacity

Domestic Sales

"Just sell one at cost to get some short term cash and I'll find a new investor." "Daphne, you need to face reality. Ourcology will be insolvent in thirty days. The model is dead." Daphne Maladine stared down at the earth as it spiraled slowly against the black. Was the station spun up too fast?… Continue reading Domestic Sales

The Bloodletting

"What's the problem? Just take the money." Billy shoved the crumpled brown envelope back into Lawrence's hands. "Unless you're planning on doing it for free." Billy's crew shuffled back and forth across the dock, unloading containers and pallets and crates of interstellar freight. "I can't anymore..." said Lawrence. "What's your deal?" He threw his arms… Continue reading The Bloodletting

Eureka!

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!

Lexicon

Paa set up her shop on a dusty road an hour's ride from the spaceport at Ibreseem. It was a little difficult to get to, and that was the point. Tourists thought it was authentic. The 61 Virginis tourism board had cultivated and maintained a rich mythology for centuries—a fabricated mythology to be sure, but… Continue reading Lexicon

Easy Targets

The missionaries crossed the dull gray landscape slowly, their buggy straining with the weight of their supplies, even at this low gravity. Easy targets. Eunomia was well past its boomtown days. The ringwoodite deposits, rich in hydrates, had all been depleted and shipped across the Belt. It was a cruel irony, then, that generations later… Continue reading Easy Targets

Terraplant

“What’d you say your name was?” “Garbenzera. Rick Garbenzera.” The director turned his gaunt, thin-lipped face to his assistant, Miranda Spring, a woman with soft features and a hard voice whom Rick would have just as easily accepted to be 25 as 40. He got a mentor-protege vibe from the two of them. They both… Continue reading Terraplant

Winners Take All

It seemed the sky itself was on fire. Ruby and sapphire beams crisscrossed in midair, arcing toward dozens of growing white points of light—cruisers from the Accord descending like falling stars on this most noncompliant of colony worlds. With all the firepower it was easy to forget it was nighttime. "Randolph, get your ass over… Continue reading Winners Take All