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Empty Sleeve

Reading Time: 4 minutes The vet said that my grief would modulate over time and eventually become a part of who I was, something I would cease to question, like the existence of my own arms.

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Gods and Monsters Installment 1: Wherein we meet the three Fates

Reading Time: 7 minutes My love affairs ever end thus. I always long for them to turn out differently. It’s so disheartening. If only I didn’t fall in love so often with these warm-blooded vessels of nutrition. I constantly swear I’ll convert, become a celibate bloodsucker, a monastic mosquito, a vamp nun. But then I see some sun-glazed man smelling of day, and it begins again.

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Um

Reading Time: 4 minutes She wondered if she should even say it. She didn’t even want to think it. But Wyx definitely had to know, had a right to know probably. “There’s someone else on board.”

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Mudpot

Reading Time: 4 minutes No magic in it. She didn’t need any. She just turned around looking some kind of way, and bung he went. Sometimes, a person sees their future in stark clarity and chooses to roll off the coil while the going’s good, and that’s the best thing that could be said about Amajane’s father.

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Dream Planet

Reading Time: 5 minutes Idyllic was the only word Brody could think to describe it. How had he missed this bit of paradise so close to camp?
“—ody?!” The static hiss of Control cut sharply through his helmet, killing the serenity settling upon him. Brody sighed. His last check-in couldn’t have been, what? Fifteen minutes ago? 

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Young Buck

Reading Time: 5 minutes The real crook is the Company and always has been. It’s them that got reaction drives outlawed when water’s free, dammit. They only done it so we’d have to buy fusion fuel at a thousand percent markup. Most of us so-called pirates were just freelance miners that couldn’t afford the new engines.

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Nothing About Owls

Reading Time: 2 minutes This has to be the year the bodies crest the top of the structure, because her parents are selling the cabin. They keep saying, It’s changed, it’s changed, it’s not the same. Even when she says she doesn’t care how it used to be, that she likes it now.

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A Gift in Ink

Reading Time: 4 minutes When a mysterious letter written in strange disappearing ink arrives from the daughter he banished long ago for dabbling in sorcery, a father must decipher her cryptic confession before the words and his memories fade into oblivion.

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DC

Reading Time: 11 minutes A higher power watches a small group of primitive humans in the far future try to understand the alarms triggered by their presence in a long-abandoned city.

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Rainbow Sprout

Reading Time: 4 minutes Stupid car accident. Stupid sister. Stupid globetrotting, summer-consuming, plant-feeding adventure.

That’s what Mother said. “Oh, it’ll be an adventure! Just think how happy your sister will be with her sprout! She needs this now.” I get it, I’m grateful to have a working spine, but that doesn’t mean I should have to waste months trudging around… where the hell am I now? Greece?

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Dragon Dancer

Reading Time: 4 minutes Every year as migrating dragons pass by from across the endless sea, tradition mandates one woman jump into the thunder and dance with the wild beasts as they pass overhead. This year’s Dancer is Lanitia’s sister. The Dancer must die or arrive at The Decent; this time, something new happens.

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A Sampling of Seven Dragons

Reading Time: 4 minutes Before any of the more artisanal offerings you’ll be tasting today, let us begin with a fairly traditional preparation. Yes, the one just before you, and then we’ll go round the plates widdershins from there. Anticlockwise, that is. As you take a bite, note the full-bodied ferocity, the natural balance between dread and might, that

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Send in the Clones

Reading Time: 4 minutes The victim’s head had been blown clean off, that much was obvious. The body lay on a table in the morgue, the harsh scent of antiseptic trying and failing to cover the rusty smell. I looked over at my partner, Wolf-776f6c66 and sighed. “Why am I here?”
There wasn’t much crime on Callisto Colony, and what there was tended to be pretty minor. Vandalism, drunk and disorderly, sometimes a domestic disturbance. All in a day’s work for me, the only full detective on the colony. A corpse was unusual, true, but this case? Open and shut.

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Night Eyes

Reading Time: 4 minutes Turner finds himself stranded in the middle of the highway late at night. As he waits for help to arrive, a strange girl appears at his car. Is she real or a ghost of his dark past?

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Decision Tree

Reading Time: 4 minutes Trapped in a life pod attached to a dying spacecraft, an aging, battle-weary engineer has less than three minutes to live and an impossible choice to make. However, thanks to two computer programmers—over 100 years in the past—he’s not alone.

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