October 2008

Issue 9 ~ Table of Contents for October, 2008

#08.24 ~ Learning the Ropes by Dan Devine (1475 words)

+ A new alien race runs out of gas in known space but noone in charge knows how to refuel. Modern day management runs amok in this humorous flash fiction.

It wasn't their language that was causing the hold up. No, the real obstacle was much simpler to diagnose. The whole lot of them were complete morons. At least, all of the officers were. I'd spoken to all of them multiple times and either they were really good at playing dumb or they just weren't playing.

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#08.23 ~ Dark and Stormy by Crystalwizard (630 words)

+ A pitch-black storm is unnerving enough, especially with a menacing tornado approaching. Now, suddenly, with lights flashing and sirens blaring, would your reaction be any different than the narrator of this story?

The night was dark, but the thick column of pitch black that rocketed toward my house stood out like a spotlight.

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#08.22 ~ Blood and Brothers by Alice M. Roelke (2950 words)

+ Young Trell yearned for his brother Axon's love - or at least acknowledgment. Would the dragon hunt bring them together...or tear them apart?

Trell eyed the weapons the men shared out. Some were tranquilizer guns, the rest, old-fashioned, one-shot harpoons. Axon saw him looking, and nodded to the men. They gave him a harpoon gun half his height. "Don't use that unless you have to. We want to leave it alive," instructed Axon.

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#08.21 ~ One's Duty by James C. Clar (1200 words)

+ As the Hierarch’s chief executioner, Radegar has one last obligation - to sever the neck of his father. What is one's duty then?

The blade sang as it flashed through the air. Suddenly, just as he was to deliver the severing stroke, his sword mere inches from the base of his father’s neck...

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#08.20 ~ A Taste of Honey by Fred Warren (3750 words)

+ A queen doesn't necessarily sit on a throne. She could be selling honey at a carnival. And poor Bob just can't resist.

"So, you want to buy a jar? I guarantee it will change your life." I hesitated. The woman suddenly seemed odd, and threatening. She leaned closer to me, and something unidentifiable, a scent just outside perception, insistent and intoxicating, swirled into my mind. I bought ten jars.

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#08.19 ~ Servant of Fate by Megan Arkenberg (1750 words)

+ Mordred. A medieval Judas. But was he really? Was he simply the fulfiller of Merlin's prophecy, just a servant of fate? Or does he have a story to tell...

When our turn came, we knelt side-by-side on the soft purple tapestry someone had spread across the sand. Agravaine kept his eyes lowered, fixed on the clawed feet of Arthur’s throne. I met the King’s gaze unflinchingly. I smiled, my slow, sharp-toothed smile...

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#08.18 ~ Venus Theotókos by John Farrell (5000 words)

+ "Twenty-two weeks out of Earth orbit, The Prophet was haunted by a ghost." So begins this space tale of love, loyalty and devotion - in the most unlikely of places - just over the horizon of Venus.
Nicholas knew it was no figment of his imagination...he saw the child standing four meters away, shimmering in a light of her own. Her hair was black with a silver circlet over her brow. Her violet eyes never met his—just missed, as though there was something over his shoulder that was far more interesting to look at than his face.

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#08.17 ~ Faded Embers by Mel Bosworth (850 words)

+ Already living in her own twilight zone, Beverly was only slightly taken aback when her long dead husband returned for a final visit.
It had been thirty-three years since Richie’s disappearance. Beverly never remarried and each October she faithfully drove out to the old lake house and cooked a big meal to celebrate their anniversary. It was the same meal each year and it was Richie’s favorite: Jambalaya.
(Note: Photograph by Connetta VanMatre, used by permission.)
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#08.16 ~ Dust Country by Daniel W. Powell (2900 words)

+ On a dusty road to a new life, James Diamond is taken with a particular notion so palpable he could almost see it - possibility! Circumstances are starting to break his way, that is, until he picks up a strange hitchhiker with stranger notions about what's possible.
"Things have been dying out here the last couple of years," the hitchhiker said. "Things are getting...used up. Whatever landed up there on Saddle Butte is now using up the resources of the area. And it's making the animals go," he screwed up his face, searching for the word, "off."

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#08.15 ~ The Battle by R. L. Copple (300 words)

+ In this battlefield soliloquy our hero has but a few moments to contemplate his life, his enemy, his purpose.
They say when you're about to die, your entire life flies past your mind's eye. That's not what I'm experiencing...

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#08.14 ~ ReBirth by T.J. McIntyre (400 words)

+ If there is a time to be born and a time to die, then why do we seek to avoid the final journey?
Naked and cold I emerged from the fluid. I shook and shivered while purging my lungs of embryonic gel.

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Issue 8 ~ Table of Contents for April to September, 2008

All Stories Copyrighted by Their Authors

Discuss these stories now at ResAliens Forum at SFReader.com.

#08.13 ~ The Bukler of Big Swaash by Joe Hoskins (3000 words)

+ An evil enchantress is wreaking havoc in the land, and King Haracson must hire a hero before it's too late! But is the 'back up' champion up to the challenge? You'll find out in this humorous swashbuckling fantasy.
“This is the latest copy of the ‘Courageous Quarterly.’ The pages are filled with every sort of hero the land has to offer. ‘Heroes for every occasion’ is their claim.”

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#08.12a ~ Crystal Clear (Beginning) by David Rawls
#08.12b ~ Crystal Clear (Conclusion) by David Rawls

+ This 5 chapter novella grapples with the idea that God's existence can be tested and verified. It's up to magician and psychic debunker, Howard Marlin to prove the wacky caller wrong. But will he be able to?
“I’m Lonnie Decree,” the caller replied. “I have been given special powers by God, the purpose of which is to allow testing to convince skeptics such as yourself of His reality.”

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#08.11 ~ Featured Artist: E.J. Mickels II (aka Hisart)

+ E.J. Mickels II is a "born-again-biker-artist" with past stints as a tatooist and welder, as well as four years in the USAF. Known as Hisart online, EJ now teaches art ... in any form.
"What's my favorite medium? That's a hard one, the short answer would be ... whatever I'm holding in my hand at the moment!"

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#08.10 ~ Morning Coffee by Resha Caner (540 words)

+ What if our past is more like science fiction than our present or future?
"Whenever someone thinks of the future, it's always in some exotic far-off place. Why don't people who write these stories ever think of the future taking place right here in Illinois?"

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#08.09 ~ Space Talk by R. L. Copple (900 words)

+ Years in space didn't prepare Steve for his 'first contact' - nor did it prepare him for his last!
“Steve to Bob. Come in! I need assistance, Buddy. Please?” Is this radio broke? Is he not responding on purpose? I know I talk too much, but surely he would never have turned off our two-way.

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Comments & Editorials

From the Desk of Lyn Perry...
+ March 23, 2008 ~ Happy Easter!
+ March 17, 2008 ~ Happy St. Patrick's Day!
+ February 29, 2008 ~ Happy Intercalary Year!

Anthology Announcements...
+ Strange Worlds of Lunacy is now available from Lyn's Storefront.
+ Residential Aliens Anthology, Volume 1, 200+ pages...now only $12!
++ +++ ++

Strange Worlds of Lunacy is a compilation of the funniest fantasy and sci-fi humor in the galaxy, the known universe, and all nine-million planes of existence! (Okay, well, maybe just the surrounding 5 blocks.) More than 50 short stories, limericks, poems, and illos by break out authors, artists, and seasoned veterans alike. This antho will have you laughing so hard you'll wet your...

"...a squeaky-clean bathroom buddy."
~ Colin P. Davies, author of Tales from the Iron Horse
Own Your Copy Today! Available at Lyn's Storefront.

Announcing an Open Call for Submissions:

Howdy Pardners! Mosey on up ta the bar and let me tell ya about the darnedest, silliest, most outrageous Western anthology this side of the Mississip'.

Y'all heard right! CyberAliens Press'll be spittin' out another one o' them themed anthos on OCTOBER 1, 2009.

We'll be featuring hilarious stories of the Wild West, some sappy Prairie Romance, and even a little bit o' SteamPunk - as long as it's knock-us-on-our-butt funny! We're also lookin' fer cowboy poetry and limericks, art and comics, and anything else that's sure-as-shootin' silly.

Read all about it rint here! Submission window is now through AUGUST 1, 2009.