21st Century Sirens

Jericho felt like dogshit. His spring allergies had been especially rough, and that was before he got the call from the top. Before he'd biked home, his mind racing faster than his legs could pedal. Before he packed his shit, kissed his partner, and said, "I'll call you when I can. Hopefully soon." That was… Continue reading 21st Century Sirens

Church of the Falling Sky

The shuttle had no windows, but the sudden lurch told Lady Verity they'd uncoupled from Saint Donovan's Interment. The temperature in the shuttle quickly rose like it was a tin can in the summer sun, heated by the tremendous friction of the descent through Lachesis' thick sulfurous atmosphere. Four centuries of landings like this had pulverized… Continue reading Church of the Falling Sky

The Last Wonder

Above, thick bundles of diamond nanotubes cut thousands of parallel vertical lines in the air, disappearing in low cloud cover. Below, the ruins. The buildings that were still standing were either skeletons or bloating, sagging corpses. Shipping containers were strewn about among the hulls of gondolas like a knocked-over bucket of Legos. Capsized ships and… Continue reading The Last Wonder

Big Wins

There was an Attack Macaque in the courtyard—AM-120 from the looks of it: forward infantry mecha, fast, and trigger happy for an AI. But that's not what worried Daiju. He was worried about the mushroom cap standing guard, so called for their umbrella-like helmets. It wasn't a nice term. Wasn't meant to be. They fancied themselves… Continue reading Big Wins

When the Stars Align

It was early—very early—but the air was warm and still. And Benoît, for his part, hadn't complained in the least. He'd even offered to carry the backpack she'd filled with breakfast pastries, a thermos of dark coffee, and an outdoor blanket. Kirsty thought she might love him, which was what made him worthy of what… Continue reading When the Stars Align

Body Builder

Arsen was building a new body. The process was tedious and incremental, but an improvement over the natural way, he supposed. And this was no new life he was bringing into the world; just a vessel. A vessel through which he might live on. It helped that he'd finally settled on a new name: Luciana.… Continue reading Body Builder

Yuna’s Demon

There was a chill in the night air. Yuna stretched her long sleeves down over her palms and held them in place while she bounced lightly through damp underbrush on her way to the river. She had to go speak to her demon. There was a cherry tree down by the bank, and Yuna stopped… Continue reading Yuna’s Demon

Godsend

Spiro sat at his Steinway classic grand piano. It was black and polished like volcanic glass, and darkly reflected his scowl. One hand softly tapped out a sullen melody while he smoked what would be his final cigarette with the other. Beside the empty music rack sat a handheld coilgun. It only held a single… Continue reading Godsend

Mind Throne

The Junior Cleric shuffled over the dusty runner covering the bridge-way spanning the blackness to the Mind Throne. Head Rector Mautorum was in Holy Commune. He would not want to be disturbed. The thick cables leading away from the Throne crackled with the incredible flow of power, and occasionally jumped like dreaming eels. One jumped… Continue reading Mind Throne

Lure

At long last, Jimenez saw the blazing white lance of the beacon in the slate green haze, and after a few more steps forward Leroux's slim profile appeared near the beacon's base. He wasn't moving. She tried hailing him. No response. No surprise; she'd been hailing him for hours. Jimenez approached carefully over the crevices… Continue reading Lure