• warning: Creating default object from empty value in /www/htdocs/w00cf48a/ankewehner/modules/taxonomy/taxonomy.pages.inc on line 33.
  • strict warning: Only variables should be passed by reference in /www/htdocs/w00cf48a/ankewehner/sites/all/modules/captcha/captcha.inc on line 61.
  • strict warning: Non-static method view::load() should not be called statically in /www/htdocs/w00cf48a/ankewehner/sites/all/modules/views/views.module on line 906.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_argument::init() should be compatible with views_handler::init(&$view, $options) in /www/htdocs/w00cf48a/ankewehner/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_argument.inc on line 744.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_filter::options_validate() should be compatible with views_handler::options_validate($form, &$form_state) in /www/htdocs/w00cf48a/ankewehner/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_filter.inc on line 607.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_filter::options_submit() should be compatible with views_handler::options_submit($form, &$form_state) in /www/htdocs/w00cf48a/ankewehner/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_filter.inc on line 607.
  • strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_filter_boolean_operator::value_validate() should be compatible with views_handler_filter::value_validate($form, &$form_state) in /www/htdocs/w00cf48a/ankewehner/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/views_handler_filter_boolean_operator.inc on line 159.

Science fiction

Xenologists' Party

Setting: ?
Genre: SciFi
Summary: There's a lot of interesting booze.
Notes: prompted by Herm
Words: 100

Fiction tags: Drabbles Science fiction
tagged Science fiction

Noah

Setting: Noah
Genre: scifi/fantasy
Summary: Someone has been preserving Earth species in danger of extiction for quite a while...
Notes: prompted by Becky Alllen and Herm Baskerville
Words: 100

tagged Science fiction Identity

Betrayed from Within

Setting: Identity
Genre: Science Fiction
Summary: The city's in uproar over a case of police brutality.
Warnings: Police brutality
Note: The title was a prompt by zenicurean. I've written other ficlets in the same setting, which you can find on the Identity Landing Page
Words: 415

tagged Fantasy Science fiction

Pretty Lights

Setting: ?
Genre: Scifi of the "fantasy in space" kind.
Summary: Some things just do not belong in a space ship...
Notes/warnings: Based on the prompt "Glitter Snow" by Becca Stareyes. Follows Glitter, but should stand on its own, as these things go. No warnings.
Words: 251

tagged Science fiction

Visiting The Good Old Times

Marie had taken the tour through the historic town centre several times a year ever since the muncipality had declared it tech-light - only technology that had not been available in the 20th century or before allowed. Watching the other tourists was part of the charm. Some, like her, welcomed the break enforced by leaving behind all their gadgets for a few hours, others became twitchy. She suspected the ones from the latter group who looked excited with it might see the visit as sort of a dare - “can you go that long without checking your mail and not go nuts?”

Sometimes the same young folks would gasp at and compliment the tour guide’s ability to remember all these details about the town’s history.

Marie, however, had a different suspicion, so when one young guide stumbled over his script, led them to the marketplace and called for a shopping break, she watched him rather than scattering with the others.

He looked around, raised his hand but dropped it before it cleared shoulder-height when he noticed her.

She approached him, and asked in an undertone, “Something wrong with your augmented reality glasses?”

“Ma’am, modern tech is banned here.” He looked pained.

“Sure it is. And companies follow rules.” The young man might have taken her sarcasm as less good-humoured than it was. “And how long does it take you folks to memorise exactly the same script?”

He coughed and looked away. “Longer than I’ve been reading out the tour. They’ll fire me.”

“I could take over. Heard it often enough. Maybe you’re lucky and no-one complains.”

“You can? You would?” He checked his hopefulness and asked, “Why?”

Marie grinned. “Oh, I just love being right.”

tagged Science fiction Identity

Identity Theft

When I woke up in what laid claim to the lofty label of “clinic”, I took it slow. The nerves of the used-new body needed a little time and practise to work together well with my old brain. When the pins-and-needles feeling crested, I started wiggling my fingers and toes. Working up from there, I met no problems. At some point my doctor-technician arrived, but she didn’t rush me. I paid her enough.

The new body was a pretty standard model, outwardly human, black hair and almond eyes. Shorter than my old one, I was reminded when sitting up on the edge of the bed left my feet dangling high in the air, but I’d get used to it. I liked the point symmetry of the ID that came with it, the main components swashes over the left temple and right jaw. I rubbed over those lines, even though the skin there did not feel different, which prompted the doc to ask a question.

“Want to test yourself if the re-keying worked?” the doc said.

I shook my head. “I trust you.” Close enough, anyway. And if she wanted to fool me, she could have rigged the test equipment.

“Thanks. We had no problems with the other brain, either. Everything as you requested.” Keyed to my old ID, transplanted to my old body, motor functions disabled.

“Very good.” I would arrange an accident. With just a little more record-cooking, I would be dead.

A completely different man with no family and friends, whose social anxiety had got so bad he had even stopped seeing his shrink, would start over. Background like that is why you pick a mark. The nice ID was just a bonus.

The title was a prompt by Becca Stareyes

tagged Animals

Designer Virus

Ignoring her aching muscles, Janissa dragged the cowed suit across the yard of the experimental farm by his revers. It had taken a lot of self-control to not shoot him in the face. For what needed to be done, her shotgun wasn’t enough. She wasn’t even aware she was muttering strings of curses punctuated with repetitions of “deliberately”.

“None of the tests suggested any danger,” the guy whined. “There must have been a mutation.”

“Or maybe rats are not humans! Don’t give me your stupid excuses. Where can we get gasoline here?”
His eyes went even wider. “Look, I’m all for terminating the experiment and destroying the enhancement—”

“Virus!” Janissa snapped. “Stop the propaganda-speech.”

“Virus, but an uncontrolled fire might do more harm than good.”

“And risk monsters running wild?”

“Ah, well…”

Janissa stopped and faced him, narrowing her eyes at his tone. “What?”

“You may have a point about humans being different. They seem to be the only species that goes all, you know… bloodthirsty. The cattle just gets slow and apathetic.”

“That I want to see. And you go in first.” She emphasised her point by tipping her shotgun in his general direction.

He nodded to that happily enough, and led Janissa into the barn.

She followed wearily, fearing a trap even though her gut feeling said he wasn’t up to setting one. All she saw were cows standing where they belonged, placidly. As the guy stood aside, she had a look at the nearest animal. Janissa had no direct experience with cows, but she didn’t think its nose should be grey and cracking. Was it even breathing?

Her drafted guide had calmed down and actually answered her muttered “What the hell were they thinking?”

“The… virus slows down the metabolism, particularly in the extremities, but affects the digestion and milk production hardly at all. The result is more milk per pound of fodder, and besides, they are sluggish and less… prone… to…” He would down and swallowed in the face of Janissa’s glare.

“So everyone in my neighbourhood who wasn’t lactose intolerant turned into a zombie to maximise your profits.” After a beat she added, “Go away before I shoot you.”

Based on the prompt "Undead cattle" by Mayfly

tagged Plants Science fiction

Growing Derelict

The first losses of life on my survey ship were... absurd. Absurd is the only word for it.

We had found a more or less derelict generation ship - the Leif Erikson, last contact about 300 years prior - in orbit around a star not on its route. No working communications or clear signs of surviving crew, but life support systems were running. There had been unusual changes to the hull: additional windows.

We, that is, I sent in a small team to investigate. According to their running reports they found gravity and life support intact, kept in working order by likewise still functioning maintenance bots.

Our team, hah, followed their noses to the gardens, which had completely overgrown, vines spilling over into the access corridor so that the safety door was blocked open. A bundle of cables stood out because it had not been overgrown. When the team followed it, they found its end embedded into a tree. Grown in.

Weird, but not helpful, so the team wanted to look elsewhere.

When they tried to leave the garden, a flock of maintenance bots cut them off. If you think the small ones could not do damage, remember they have welding tools. None of us took it as a dire threat even so, but it turned out that the little critters had been buying time for heavy guns to arrive, the models involved in wall restructuring and the like.

I listened to my crew dying.

We’re no kind of army, so I'll leave further investigations to people more used to being attacked, and better equipped for dealing with it.

If you want to know what I think happened... in the files about the Leif Erikson I found the profile of one of the original crew, someone into trying to communicate with plants. Hooking them up to computers via electrodes. Fits with the cables ending in the tree.

So, maybe the maintenance bot network teamed up with the plants.

And three of my crew ended up as compost.

Absurd, I said.


Based on a prompt by rhodielady-47 ("What happens if the garden on board a spaceship becomes intelligent and decides to take over?")
tagged Science fiction

Courier Style

Freelance in-system couriers were not as much in demand as even just three years ago now that Mercury Inc. had the lion share of the market. Gina could see it both in the number of available jobs outbound from Ganymed Station and in her own finances.

“More penny-pinching is what we need,” she said to herself.

The ship computer answered. “More care in plotting a course would reduce the need for later corrections. Fuel consumption may be cut by up to five per cent.”

“Smartass. Got any more suggestions like that?”

“More maneuvering during docking--”

“Hold on, that’d need more fuel.”

“The rough docking maneuvers in the last eight years increase wear on the docking clamps. The lifetime of those parts in this timespan,” since Gina owned and piloted this ship, in other words,” was only eighty percent of the average.”

“Oh, come on.”

“Taking the increased fuel for microboosts into account, estimated savings over eight years would have been roughly 20,000 credits.”

Gina flinched. Enough to live on for half a year.

“Look, it’s an image question. People see me hurry, they are more likely to pick me over the big transports. Their sorting and all adds to delivery time. Speed is about the only thing where we have an edge.”

“Average delivery times of Mercury inc are up to 10% less than our own.”

“I’m not talking about facts, I’m talking about advertising.” Unfortunately, she was on her own there. The computer could help her juggle numbers, but not come up with creative ideas.


Based on a prompt by barbardin ("A space ship complains about its captain's style of 'driving'. ^^")
tagged Fantasy Science fiction

Glitter

Orel cursed with relief when they finally got a connection with the lost ship. The Glitter had not reported back after what should not have been more than a jaunt for gathering asteroids, which here were known to be rich in rare earth minerals.

“Orel, that you?”

“Yes. Why’s there only audio?” And bad at that, strange noise in the background.

“Camera’s smashed. The steering boosters firing at random and then cutting off entirely are a bigger problem. SHUT THE HELL UP, YOU!”

The noise was really too odd not to comment, and if the cursing was about that, it wasn't just interference... “Is that giggling?”

“God, Orel, you hear it, too?”

“What’s going on?” The relief in the voice on the other end of the connection was so great it turned gut-clenchingly disturbing.

“Glowy things, like huge fireflies. And they laugh. I thought I was going mad. Those last rocks, they were full of fairies. And gremlins.”


Based on a prompt by aldersprig ("Faeries in Space. :-)")
Syndicate content