SF Drabble #277 “No Earthly Church Has Ever Blessed Our Union”

We knew it was coming from radar, so the town was halfway buttoned up before we could see the dust front naked-eye. When we finally did see the cloud, we knew it was a big one. Karlee caught my eye and held it, and I understood: we would contrive to be in the same building when it arrived, regardless of other concerns.

Dust storms can last days, weeks. One when I was five lasted two months. Two of the smaller houses were completely buried when it was over. I’m not going to ride out something like that separated from Karlee.

SF Drabble #276 “Privateer”

“So make me an offer.” The salesman put his hands on his waist, and tilted his head to keep his face at least partially shaded by his hat brim: the sun was a hammer that afternoon.

“Looks to be in fair shape. Engines are type three, though, I’d have to drop in type fours on Allafrete, and that’ll cost.”

“Got a guy there, give you a good deal on reconditioned fours. Thirty percent off list.”

“All right. Twenty-five thousand credits.”

The salesman adjusted his hat for the millionth time, then nodded. “Shake. Worth it just to clear the lot space.”

SF Drabble #275 “Better Than The Original”

It’s 1 A.M. Greenwich Mean Time here on Mayweather Station, which is completely irrelevant but whatever, they want me to give the Earth Standard Time at the top of the show, so I do it. It’s not like most of my audience is listening on a light-speed delay of at least a half-hour or anything. That was sarcasm just then, in case you were wondering. Morons.

Anyhow, before I get to the news of the day which is all bad, let’s hear the new single from Martian Death Metal heroes “Iron Oxide.” This one’s a cover, it’s called “Pressure Drop.”

SF Drabble #274 “No on Prop 12”

No way I’m voting to let them own property. They got the whole rest of the universe, what to they need with land here? Listen: they could get all the gold they want, bring it here, use it to buy as much land as they want, and then what’s left over for humans? Nothing. And the gold won’t be worth anything, because now there’ll be so much of it. So then they get platinum or whatever. It doesn’t matter. Let ‘em buy land on Vega. Oh, wait: they already own all of Vega. Sound fair to you? Fuck that shit.

SF Drabble #273 “Hyde”

I was real, real thirsty. I know that’s a stupid reason to just drink unidentified blue liquid, especially when it’s in, like, a science beaker or whatever, but it’s not like I knew it was all important. And, really, if you’re gonna leave some really important experimental potion around, you probably ought to label it.

Anyhow, I know you said the antidote would take some time to figure out, but I’d appreciate it if, until it’s ready, you’d go to CVS and get me some razors so that I can shave off some of this fur. Like, preferably a 20-pack.

SF Drabble #272 “Good Kitty”

Gordo spent most of his time at the lab. Not inside, of course, because they tried to keep it as sterile as possible; but he would lay himself in the sun at the bottom of the steps and everyone coming or going would pause to pet him.

We didn’t start thinking of him as a lab assistant until he showed up one morning with a local animal we’d never seen before dangling from his teeth. He dropped his offering at the foot of the steps. We gave him catnip as a reward; he brings us new fauna a lot now.

SF Drabble #271 “Grandpa’s War”

There were moments I was so afraid my hands shook; but I kept it up regardless. There were windows back then, thick, reinforced, hard as hullmetal but transparent. They don’t build them like that now, because of lasers. But we’d see a flash outside, a fireball that would snuff out in the vacuum of space before you really got your eye on it. Over the loudspeaker we’d hear, “Hornet destroyed.” Then there’d be another, further off, and we’d hear, “B-type enemy battleship destroyed,” and we’d all cheer.

We never got hit once, in eight engagements. I guess I was lucky.