SF Drabble #89 “Discretion”

I was originally built for high-risk environments: mining on Venus, Mercury, Io. Water reclamation on Europa, Ganymede. When my model became obsolescent I was repurposed for waste management duties on one of the L5 colonies. Now I’ve been given a personal service refit, and sold to a family.

It’s all the same to me. In my spare time I like to think about the shape of the universe. I figured out a way to go faster than light, but apparently humans don’t know it.

I’m certainly not telling them. I don’t want to end up shoveling antimatter on some ship…

SF Drabble #88 “Transition”

It was the strangest feeling: like being drunk, but only for a few minutes.

The Polixaci Captain made the routine warning announcement. By then we were out beyond Neptune’s orbit. We were up in the observation area, a small group of humans amidst countless other species. We were as much a curiosity to them as they to us.

The ship made an odd noise, a hum I felt through my shoes and into my stomach. Then the universe around us… got smaller somehow. I guess my inner ear didn’t like that. Nature’s way of saying: ‘this isn’t supposed to happen’.

Fantasy Drabble #55 “Master and Student”

The duel has gone on for nearly seventeen years now. Sometimes the action is furiously quick… spells flying, explosions of fire and light, teleportations. Sometimes it goes maddeningly slow, searching for each other or for advantage of position by cloud, by ship, by balloon.

She’s powerful, I underestimated her. Not because she’s a woman, and beautiful, but rather because she had been such a poor apprentice. I suppose it wasn’t due to a lack of aptitude, but rather a lack of respect.

It will be a shame to kill her. It’d be a bigger shame to die at her hands.

Fantasy Drabble #54 “In The Hall Of The Mountain King”

The thief stepped lightly, carefully. He took long slow breaths and willed his heart to beat quietly. He was certain the Worm knew he was there somewhere amidst the crags and tunnels and piles of treasure: it remained curled, but both eyes were open now. Hopefully its nose wouldn’t be sensitive enough to track him down.

If he was fast enough, clever enough, maybe he could make it into the daylight with the egg. It would fetch a high price at market: ostentatious nobles eager to show their wealth would throw a dinner party just to serve a Dragon’s egg.

SF Drabble #87 “Casualty”

We found the wreckage first: a field of debris centered around a crater half a kilometer across. No piece of wreckage was bigger than a 20-credit coin. We didn’t see how anything could have lived through that crash.

Only later did we find the escape pod. The occupant was dead, a broken rag doll of a creature. The g forces must have been wicked.

We’d never seen his species before. The Captain vetoed recovering the body, risk of contamination. We buried it in the crater’s center.

I feel bad, just leaving him there. I hope someday his people find him.

SF Drabble #86 “Sexual Dimorphism”

Our new friends led us into the tall orange grasses. It was up to our noses, and the diminutive Ollwheh males were totally obscured. Standing on the tips of our toes, we saw dark shapes, very large and moving slowly in the hazy distance: the females. The males couldn’t see them at all, but due to their sensitive noses were sure of their direction.

“What happens when we get to the… herd?” I asked.

One of the males laughed, said: “We celebrate! And we climb!”

“Climb? Climb what?”

Now all the males were laughing. He answered, “The females, of course!”