E Pluribus Duum

The President’s Red Phone rang, the sound ricocheting off the Oval Office’s wall like a cursed bullet from centuries past. She immediately picked it up and began discussing the situation in Indonesia with the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, who was pleased at how long the 4th Pacific fleet had lasted against overwhelming odds before being forced to retreat past Singapore.

In the neighboring ovoid room, a Red Phone rang, harmonizing with the first for just a moment before it was also picked up by the President. He sighed as he heard yet another lecture from the…

Stay in and Play

Didn’t you hear? The New Colosseum is open!

Aren’t you coming? Attendance is mandatory after all.

What do you mean you don’t even know what the New Colosseum is? Wow, you’re really out of the loop, or ring I guess. Why, the New Colosseum is just the same as the old one. I mean, the New Colosseum doesn’t physically exist, because if it did, those damn Catholics would probably just use the stone for a Cathedral like they did the first time.

Who fights there? Not slaves or animals; no need to worry about that. We’re…

Harvesting the Spice of Life

This is fourth installment of the Collision series. You can read Part 3 here. If you’re new to the series, you can read Part 1 here.

Munha adjusted the collection device for the third time in a minute. She was more than used to Khmo’s seasonal gales, but the planet’s winds rarely shifted this often in the course of an hour. In fact, one-third of the planet’s citizens made a living on them not shifting during this time of year.

Gritting her teeth, she swung under the oversized metal sieve, dragging it down and to…

Perennials are so Last Year

Walking out of the office even later than usual, Julian opened up the commodities trading app on his phone, scrolling through the myriad of options; there must’ve been hundreds. Kristen told him how much money she’d made since they expanded the commodities market, giving investors a massive amount of new niches, not to mention leveling the playing field, as nobody had any experience trading in the new commodities.

Julian just wanted to dip his toe in the water, but had absolutely no clue where to start: mahogany, quartz, saffron? He’d been mulling the decision over…

This is the third entry in the Collision series. You can read Part Two here and Part Four here. If you’re new to the series, you can read Part One here.

Light shone through the church’s windows, their translucent tints creating a rainbow-colored flower on the altar as the priest gave his sermon.

“And then the Lord said to man, ‘You have failed Me and despoiled my Garden. The price has already been foretold by Saint Xeltia, and now, it must be paid.’

And so, the positions of the Sun and the Moon were switched, with the Sun’s cleansing fire…

Star Wars, Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords is possibly the best Star Wars story outside of the original movies. Despite being 15 years old, the game still has quite the cult following, thanks in large part to its excellent characters.

These characters include the dashing rogue Atton Rand, the traumatized ex-Sith Visas Marr, and the bloodthirsty HK-47, who puts the “sass” in “assassin droid.”

But none of the game’s characters have the depth or brilliance of Kreia, a blind old woman who you find passed out, but still very much alive, in a morgue during the…

A Starry Night in a Twilight Galaxy

This is the second entry in the Collision series. You can read Part One here and Part Three here.

Kel got back to work on one of his ship’s auxiliary starboard engines, its groaning and sputtering filling the trading post’s hangar. The hangar’s other two occupants didn’t seem to mind, with their freighters parked all the way across the cavernous, rusted space that was only protected from the vacuum by a centuries-old, centimeter-thin seal of energy.

Groaning under his face shield, Kel got back to adjusting the engine’s creaky valves; there’d only been…

Sustenance is Overrated

Colin woke up at 7 am, the same as he did every other day, quarantine or not. They’d taken so much away from him already, they sure as hell weren’t going to take his routine.

Turning on his sun lamp and rolling out his yoga mat, he did his customary dozen good mornings. The irony of the whole thing never failed to make him laugh. He doubted he could even define the word “good” anymore.

Was it good when he was found to be an asymptomatic carrier for the plague the first time? Then a second time…

This is the first entry in the Collision series. You can read Part Two here.

BE-11-NA woke up in the lab, just like she did after every mission. Her memory of the last week was wiped, so whatever mission her Maker sent her on must have been successful. The Minister of the Tylian system must be dead.

But if she remembered who her target was, that must mean…

The lights snapped on; BE’s photo sensors took only a microsecond to adjust to their glow. This lab was a sterile beige draped in orange, nothing like the blue-lit black of her…

Lauren logged in to the government’s UBI site, just like she always did right before midnight on the last day of every month. Her university’s tuition increase was literally killing her, despite the trickle of income from her new consulting gig. She waited for seven minutes to log on, but this time it felt even longer than usual. Maybe it was the extra hour she just put in at the firm that made her green eyes feel (and probably look) like worn out sea glass. Maybe it was the 75 pages of reading she had to do for class the…

Freddie Bastiat

Bookworm. Futurist. Malcontent.

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