The Treatment by Coleman Bomar

The Treatment Coleman Bomar Dear Margaret, I know written letters are beyond impractical, but what I have to say deserves some physicality. After months of treatment, my brain no longer produces dopamine at the sight of your red smile. The operations were effective experiences….

Morgan And The Wildfire Meme by David Barber

Morgan And The Wildfire Meme David Barber Morgan was flying. He flew as a bird, some ill-defined species of raptor with enormous wingspan, cruel beak and black gleaming eye. Lesser passerines and seabirds also flew the Airs, but it was Morgan, and none of…

Failure to Communicate by Ben Coppin

Failure to Communicate Ben Coppin They vivisected the first envoy. The second human to visit the alien ship was a professor of Linguistics. She spent a year alone with the aliens, and when she returned, she bore a message. The message described a vast…

Apotheosis by Christopher Ramos

Apotheosis Christopher Ramos The jewel of Sol hung in the blackness of space over the dusty lunar landscape. Transcontinental fires speckled the seething ecosystem of the Americas. Yet, it was not this distant agony that captivated him, but incandescent, familial visages exposed to him…

The Bellatrix by David Barber

The Bellatrix David Barber All Martians know the works of Jammes Bek. They read them at school. Everyone else finds them too gloomy, too full of regret. This is a story about Bek before he was famous, and the woman of the Bellatrix who…

Daredevil: Know Fear by Eric S Brown

Daredevil: Know Fear Eric S Brown Know Fear is the latest Daredevil trade paperback. It collects the first five issues of the current series being written by Chip Zdarsky and picks up right after the events of the last Daredevil series. Wilson Fisk is…

Anglish, Late Flowering, Fictional Mode by David Barber

Anglish, Late Flowering, Fictional Mode David Barber Haydn Jan was famed for having read all the books; Bruss, the outworlder from Hellhole who saved him, was not even well-known on Hellhole. This is how they met. Prised out of retirement to represent the Museum…

Pysbie and Thiramus by Raymond Lane

Pysbie and Thiramus Raymond Lane Aloneness and alcohol would provide comfort. Pysbie sat in the corner, as detached as he could be sharing a small room with a woman. A plain brown shroud encircled his body and tail; an orange cap covered his head,…

Sabotage by Dan Rice

Sabotage Dan Rice Liberty Station isn’t the largest outpost in the vast expanse of vacuum we call space, but for a boy from Old Earth like me, it’s the best duty assignment imaginable. I mean, my God, there are aliens! Blue-skinned Starlight Missionaries and…

Fire & Ice by David Barber

Fire & Ice David Barber To wreck a planet, first choose a suitable asteroid. After mounting fusion drivers, pinch the plasma and tune the mix until the jets burn invisibly. Such vast tonnage is not easily swayed, but sensitive instruments will register a change….

A Tale Worth Telling by Charles Gramlich

A Tale Worth Telling Charles Gramlich Morning fog streams through the great forest like the smoke of a thousand fires. The clan forages through the mist-blurred world, gorging on succulent red and yellow fruits that dangle from the trees. They move leisurely, selecting only…

The Truth about Pyecraft by H. G. Wells

The Truth about Pyecraft H. G. Wells He sits not a dozen yards away. If I glance over my shoulder I can see him. And if I catch his eye—and usually I catch his eye—it meets me with an expression. It is mainly an…

Filmer by H. G. Wells

Filmer H. G. Wells In truth the mastery of flying was the work of thousands of men—this man a suggestion and that an experiment, until at last only one vigorous intellectual effort was needed to finish the work. But the inexorable injustice of the…

Incursion: Chapter 1 by Gustavo Bondoni

Incursion: Chapter 1 Gustavo Bondoni Tristan woke with a start. He’d slept for centuries and now it was time to die. His training kicked in. The pod release button was exactly where it was supposed to be, and he pressed it without hesitation. Nothing…

Tuesdays In Heaven by David Barber

Tuesdays In Heaven David Barber Chet hovered in the foyer of Total Immersion Software, radiating unease until a salesman detached himself from the front desk. Professionals paid for people, not virtuals. “Help you?” The salesman sported fashionable periodwear, tight dark suit and tie, with…

Siege by Gustavo Bondoni

Siege Gustavo Bondoni Chapter 1 Maybe, just maybe, we’d have been better off not knowing. Kan looked through the scout craft’s visor. The heavily tinted and shielded crystal revealed a sky out of the worst nightmares of a hyperactive stak addict. Purple dust clouds…

Wipires by Dee Caples

Wipires Dee Caples “Don’t open the door!” Astrid hissed. I glanced over my shoulder at my girlfriend. Her mouth was still frozen in the hiss, her teeth bared. Raising one eyebrow, I turned back to the door and peeked out of the peephole, studying…

Hail to the Vestal by David Powell

Hail to the Vestal David Powell Hail to the Vestal New slang couldn’t be ignored. Slang had a way of sticking in the public mind. A joke could become a medical diagnosis, or a spiritual doctrine, or a revolutionary slogan. Birun flipped to record…

The Final Twilight by William Joseph Roberts

The Final Twilight William Joseph Roberts “Ti tu…le lu! Ti tu…du ti da!” From high atop a craggy mountain peak, a lone voice resonated in the yellow-brown glow of twilight. “Ti tu…le lu! Ti tu…du ti da!” The high pitched chant echoed throughout the…

Troo Raccoon by Maura Yzmore

Troo Raccoon by Maura Yzmore “Do you ever think about what a fluke we are?” said Zia. Sujay shrugged. “No. Not really.” It was Zia’s and Sujay’s third week of babysitting the gateway during the graveyard shift. The lack of sleep had left Zia…

Genesis by Thomas Zman

Genesis Thomas Zman “Good morning, mother,” chorused a score of siblings, rubbing the sleep from their awakening eyes. All were sitting up in their sleep-pods; their surroundings an immense cavernous dome. “Good morning. And how are my progenies, this their day of emergence?” “Oh,…

Earth Tours: Submerged by J.H. Malone

Earth Tours: Submerged J.H. Malone I work for EarthTours, but not as a travel agent. I’m a host, guide, and fixer for our clandestine guests from the stars. Potential tourists contact EarthTours via our deep-web .onion site. We prepare these alien visitors highest-quality counterfeit…

Crash Dummy by Roger Ley

  Crash Dummy Roger Ley It wouldn’t be a long flight and I hoped that the aisle seat next to me would stay empty, but no such luck, a young woman took it. I checked her over as she lifted her bag up to…

The Martians by Demetrios Matsakis

The Martians Demetrios Matsakis It was Family Day at the Cape, which was overflowing with picnicking rocket-scientists, technicians, secretaries, and administrators. But such simple pleasures were of no concern to Kronos as he quietly gathered his work-group into the top-secret briefing room. With a…

Ragnarock by David Barber

Ragnarock David Barber Rona Lal was not the oldest woman alive, but certainly the oldest with the brain she was born with. Rona no longer remembered her exact age, but the entelechy did, and arranged a surprise for her birthday. There would be a…

The Singularity By Kendall Evans

The Singularity Kendall Evans David Ackenhaur scripted the program, a quantum-based program unlike any other, that could interface with standard existing computers, and later, of course, they said that he was a genius. In a sense, he was. But by the time he became…

Speeding Toward Oblivion by Steve Carr

Speeding Toward Oblivion Steve Carr Colm burst into Director Tymo’s office and threw a disc across the director’s desk. “There it is. The recording and images from the radio signals we’ve been receiving since we entered this galaxy.” The director slid the disc into…

With Brazen Tongue by Lyn McConchie

With Brazen Tongue Lyn McConchie “Oh, God!” The cry was not blasphemous, but a prayer. It had come at last, and I knew it. “What does it say, It can’t be, not for us, not for Wildhey.” I opened the letter slowly as the…

For This; Therefore, I Die by Jonathan Bowerman

For This; Therefore, I Die Jonathan Bowerman How ironic she thought, struggling to take another gulp of cool water. Relief did not follow, for each constriction of her throat felt as though she were swallowing shards of glass. The pain almost as excruciating as…

Honor’s Choice by Lyn McConchie

Honor’s Choice Lyn McConchie There were two main characters that day. It was a bright, warmly sunny day towards the end of a long delightful summer. A day which was neither too cold nor too hot and even in the heart of the city…

Better Off by Lyn McConchie

Better Off Lyn McConchie Joe was a nice man. Everyone said so. After all, he paid for his wife’s grandfather to live in a nursing home, didn’t he? They conveniently overlooked the fact that the old man hadn’t wanted to be there. They politely…

Beyond by Demetrios Matsakis

The author is an astrophysicist who holds the position of Chief Scientist for Time Services at the U.S. Naval Observatory. This story was inspired by a talk Dr. Jocelyn Bell made in Beijing, at a General Assembly of the International Astronomical Union.

Dj Vie by Tyree Campbell

Dj Vie Tyree Campbell Through the Videx Effa could see that her little craft, no longer space-worthy, had come to rest at the shore of a lake, on the far side of which rose a great white wall. The window of thick plastic that…

Self-Correcting by Mark Joseph Kevlock

Self-Correcting Mark Joseph Kevlock “I’m afraid you haven’t been a very exciting sister-in-law, Miranda Koslock. Or daughter-in-law, or wife. So you’ve been voted out.” Men without features escorted her down the temporal corridor to the complaints division. “Arrow” Henderson, a twenty-year vet, handled the…

The Time Capsule By Lisa Pais

The Time Capsule By Lisa Pais Earth. 2315. Moving with appropriate swiftness, which is neither graceful nor clumsy, I make my way along the shoreline. Precise. Efficient. Perhaps there is beauty to be found in economy. There is no need to hurry. Time has…

Angry Man by Jodi Rizzotto

Angry Man Jodi Rizzotto “Will you come and visit me in prison?” my coworker whispered over the cubicle wall. At first I didn’t know what to say. Perhaps this was a test, an initiation into deeper levels of friendship. Dreading what I would see,…

Outside the Situation: Achromatic Afterlife by Ada Fetters

Outside the Situation: Achromatic Afterlife Ada Fetters “Welcome to Outside the Situation with F(x) and the Dimensional Remnant.” Each word of the greeting was precisely enunciated. “Every week we sample a defunct universe. We visit tumultuous multiverses, glitchy simulated infinities, and pocket dimensions with…

Escape Pod by Christopher Kell

Escape Pod Christopher Kell Drogue has a twisted body. So twisted she skitters sideways through the cargo hold like a crab in the oceans of Earth. But in reduced gravity she can move as fast as any woman or man. Her head is large…

Doppelganger in the Loop by Gary Inbinder

Doppelganger in the Loop Gary Inbinder I Paul sat on a weather-beaten wooden bench in the middle of the platform. He glanced at his wristwatch; it was a quarter to six in the morning. Dull, yellowish electric bulbs glowed eerily in lamps lining the…

Aristotles of Flesh and Bone by J.S. Helgerson

Aristotles of Flesh and Bone J.S. Helgerson The teacher started life in the tank behind the chalkboard at 8:22 am. Children had been filing into the classroom for the last fifteen minutes, and their quiet chatter filled the air. First bell was at 8:30….

Larrs’ Ghost by Christopher Kell

Larrs’ Ghost Christopher Kell 1980… Larrs still haunts his make-believe world; he warms his feet on the glittering sands, dodging the bubbling surf like a child. By donning a bio-interface, Larrs’ intricate program will reveal his carefully constructed world to anyone who wishes to…

Outside the Situation by Ada Fetters

Outside the Situation Ada Fetters “Welcome to Outside the Situation with F(x)  and the Dimensional Remnant.” Each word was as precise and discrete as a series of numbers. “Every week we sample a defunct universe.  We visit tumultuous multiverses, glitchy simulated infinities, and pocket dimensions with…

Officer Rosie by Gary Clifton

Officer Rosie Gary Clifton “Well, well, Rebound, you’ve finally managed to end up sitting pretty.” Taylor soft-footed into the shabby room with boarded up windows where Rebound sat duct-taped to an old chair. Rebound sobbed, “Taylor, this ain’t funny. You gotta help me, dude….

Selfies by Rob Dinsmoor

Selfies Rob Dinsmoor Terra and I are almost like identical twins. When I first met her, she was, like nobody. Don’t get me wrong—like me, she had a killer bod and pretty face, but there was just no real personality shining through. I took…

Mister Sunshine by Col Aalberry

Mister Sunshine Col Aalberry The rain pours down, cascading off the gargoyle’s head, flowing past stone claws, dropping in streams. A hand reaches up, grabs the gargoyle confidently, holds tightly. The hand only has three long fingers. A thin body pulls itself upwards over…

Vortex Blues by Jason DeGray

Vortex Blues Jason DeGray A payphone rang in the middle of nowhere. A lone silent sentinel hearkening back to a time long forgotten. The paint on the aluminum side panels had chipped and flaked so badly the ads were no longer visible. A frayed…

Typographical Archvillain by Herb Kauderer

Typographical Archvillain Herb Kauderer   The punctuation thief began as an apprentice in a printing shop, but sneaking in illicit edits was not enough to satisfy his urges.   He escalated his attacks — leading a movement of minimalist poetry dedicated to the simplicity…

Criminal Evolutions by Herb Kauderer

Criminal Evolutions Herb Kauderer   Looking backward she cannot trace the path of her career from college to criminal justice, to forensics, to blood-stain splatter analysis, to autopsy technician, and finally to forensic entomology, (the study of insects growing in corpses), to this terrifying…

Campaign Platform by Herb Kauderer

Campaign Platform Herb Kauderer Drunk on moonlight, they played and danced across grassy hills to the river’s banks. The night was a living painting in ten thousand shades of white. They spoke then of promises. A pact of three. One day, Mars, would be…

a recollection of dust devils by Herb Kauderer

a recollection of dust devils Herb Kauderer below Mars’ surface first colony remains are left to dream

A Fold in Time by Bryan Aiello

A Fold in Time Bryan Aiello Wind whispers through the cave. It tastes of the sea and makes Samuel Toddy think of fresh fish. The Mediterranean is only ten miles North and Sam can’t help but look up from his work. He can smell…

The Fattest Cat’s Car Keys by Kendall Evans

The Fattest Cat’s Car Keys By Kendall Evans The sound a thunderous final exclamation of the world    mountainous boulders rolling down slopes in a place where mountains will be no longer     constant din of objects falling from the sky      impacting earth     …

Commission by Alan Katerinsky

Commission Alan Katerinsky Secretary General Hsu nervously picked up his phone on the third ring. “Speak,” he said, as though giving orders to an uncooperative dog. The line was silent for the usual few seconds that the electronically voiced translator needed to work its…

Chronicle of a Friendship Doomed by Mileva Anastasiadou

Chronicle of a Friendship Doomed Mileva Anastasiadou We had been expecting them for a long time. On the news, they mentioned the long awaited encounter almost every single day. Until one day, they stopped. When people began wondering, the government made a reassuring announcement,…

Unquestionably a moon or an Asteroid by Kendall Evans

Unquestionably a moon or an Asteroid Kendall Evans Within this circle or sphere that I look upon, an ash-colored formation, lozenge shaped, not quite oval, in the lower right quadrant – indicative of different terrain?  I imagine myself with my eye pressed to the…

The Sneeze Heard Round the Universe by Daniel R. Jones

The Sneeze Heard Round the Universe Daniel R. Jones It’s hard to call any position in the Intergalactic Starforce a “cushy job,” but if there was an easier role, Colonel Scyruh couldn’t imagine it. 16 years of grunt work had finally earned him his…

Last Girl by CB Droege

Last Girl CB Droege The town was surrounded by a thick wall of refuse. Most towns were. They had protected themselves against the wilderness by piling up anything they could find between the buildings at the outskirts. Often more walls divided the town inside…

The Trouble with Unsolicited Messages By Richard H. Fay

The Trouble with Unsolicited Messages Richard H. Fay “We have a genuine extraterrestrial signal,” a SETI technician announced excitedly as he adjusted the knob on the receiver. Every scientist in the crowded dark room gathered closer as a series of strange cosmic messages came…

True Believers by Fearadhach MecRaudri

True Believers Fearadhach MecRaudriFizzblit tried to ignore the stink of ozone from his ship’s fried controls. He found it hard to concentrate on the decrypted communications scrolling across the holo-screen his personal c&c (Comms and Computer) had projected above his wrist, thankful that he…

The Sedra Anomaly by Lyn McConchie

The Sedra Anomaly Lyn McConchie      Sstha stood on the bridge of The Farseeker. His captain was down on Sedra and would be gone for at least two more days and, for that time, the command of the ship was his. He walked over…

The Office of Special Claims by Lyn McConchie

The Office of Special ClaimsLyn McConchie     “Ms Appleton, I think this application may have something wrong with it.”            Susan sighed. Really, the quality of staff these days. Three months in the Accident and Special Claims office, and they thought they knew it all….

Geppetto’s Redemption by Neil Q. Green

Geppetto’s Redemption Neil Q. Green Geppetto slipped the final gear into place and tightened the last screw. Finished. He sat back and viewed his creation. Fifteen years and all his reputation, that’s what this little thing had cost him. But oh if it worked!…

The Books of Hoth by Lyn McConchie

The Books of Hoth Lyn McConchieAllied Combine Space Patrol Sector 3, Sub-sector 12, Planet Guard  Sq.P 5. Dear Mother,      Sorry I haven’t been able to get a letter to you recently, but now reporters have the story as H.Q. has lifted censorship. Remember I…

Letters Home by Lyn McConchie

Letters HomeLyn McConchieDay three of our Invasion.Dear Mother,     It won’t be long before our soldiers are home again. It’s lucky that I’m the General’s secretary. I have a fine (and safe) view of our war, but I am in a position to see everything….

Pride and Joy by Gustavo Bondoni

Pride and JoyGustavo BondoniMyrna signaled that she wanted to get off the bus.The driver eyed her in the mirror, his face registering surprise, “Whatcha want to get off here for?” he asked. “There ain’t nothing around.”It was true. This stretch of Highway 25, fifteen…

Darkness Ends by Gustavo Bondoni

Darkness Ends by Gustavo BondoniTita Livia Siriana basked in the silence. Her audience, composed of the best and brightest great leaders of the great families of both inner and outer Empires, hung on her every word. She’d barely begun to speak, but the little…

Tenth Orbit by Gustavo Bondoni

Tenth Orbit by Gustavo BondoniWinter.There is no motion.The feeble energy arriving from the distant star is not enough to support motion, yet move I must. Survival is dependant on movement, as winter does not allow sufficient energy accumulation to survive the night. To survive…