“The entire shell is Chronium. That shields the op…”
“You mean chrome. Chromium?”
“Ahem. Crow NEE Uhm. Chronium. As in Chronos. Yes… so, it shields the operator from time partic…”
“Ye… Look are you going to kee…”
“…p interrupting? No. Sorry. Just. Just excited. Distracted. Do carry on…”
“Right. I know you created the concept, and were very keen to be the first test subject, but the engineering team has had to adapt a great deal of the original design. Are you su…”
“Yes. Totally re… Damn. I did it again, didn’t I?”
“Let’s just get you inside,...
The implant's biggest drawbacks were the headaches. The gear-man had assured her that would abate in time, but meanwhile she was dying for an injection, or even a good, old-fashioned aspirin. Too bad the chemicals would interfere with the implant's bonding process.
Text passed before her eyes, the latest news, the day's top story, ads for sexual aids and fast food joints. She blinked, but the visuals refused to recede into the background of her consciousness. Could she really take another day of non-stop sensory stimulation before she could control her access?
Resigned to stay plugged in, she laid back...
Jane made a desperate grab for the coin, spinning in the air. With a flip, Safura had set her fate in motion. Heads, eternal life; tails, never-ending darkness.
She had to catch the silver disk before it landed on the platform.
Panic filled her like water in a vase, her fear overflowing and spilling onto the pavement, evaporating almost instantly in the heat of the noonday sun. "Gods DAMMIT!" she cried, tripping and falling toward the still turning disk. Her fingers grazed the silver, and it landed, still spinning lazily, on its edge.
"You lose," stated Safura. His mouth turned...
"I don't care if I get wet!"
Eric snatched at her hand, but Angel quickly pulled away. She let her hand extend beyond the umbrella's translucent canopy, its special shielding against radiation and chemical contaminants having been turned off despite Eric's warnings.
"You can't do that!" he cried.
"Why not?" she said. "It's been years since the fallout. Why use this stupid shield anyway? What difference does it make if things APPEAR normal?"
Tears streaked her lover's face, but he said nothing.
Disgusted with the futility of it all, she hit another button on the handle and turned off his...
The anti-grav boots were worth every penny.
Shelly had saved for weeks, mowing lawns, delivering papers, collecting coins from every cushion in the house, to earn enough hard cash to buy them. Her mother had told her not to waste her money, that they were probably just galoshes with springs on the bottom, but the girl refused to be deterred. The magazine ad had proclaimed them anti-grav, and there was a Truth in Advertising law on the books, so they must be the real deal.
And she was right.
But not in the way she thought she would be.
Wine. Specifically, white. She hated white wine. She wanted red. The buzzing warm feeling was building. Building the way it had when she'd been inside the LHC doing maintenance. No one knew she'd been there. No one could explain how she'd survived. Then in a blink, she hadn't been. That was when she realised something Quantum had happened.
She perceived a reality where the waiter had gotten the wrong bottle from the shelf, picking red instead of the sought for white. He'd lose his job later that day for continued disobedience. His wife would commit suicide in four months, when...
Justin was just a regular guy before I discovered him. Sure, he'd played Chronoball before. I'd even seen him do quite well for an amateur, when I checked my notes later. But that fight in the bar was what got him noticed. He's on more Creds than several small planets' GDPs now; I get 20% of course.
When Jack, who'd always had it in for him since High School, threw the first punch in the Snug, Justin hadn't flinched. He'd thrown the Chronoball, which had been resting on the bartop, over Jack's head. Contact with the far wall activated the...
Golden skin glowed in the afternoon sun, revealing a fine tracery of pale blue at the inside of the wrist. Lips, lush lips, parted to accept the ripe perfection of the strawberry I offered. A low sound of appreciation trickled out. I watched Circ eat with a simple joy and relish of the experience that I had never witnessed before.
Had humanity strayed so far away from its own innate abilities?
The robot blinked and met my eyes, smiling. I watched the fine structure of her irises flex.
"Like that?" She nodded at my question and I offered the next...
The disco ball was turning. The lights were spinning, flashing, pulsing. The speakers were pumping noise into the atmosphere, waves of vibration that shook the air, slammed into the walls, broke back in upon each other, collided and crashed.
Outside in the street, I stood and gazed at the stars, what few of them I could see through the neon glare, the fluorescent pollution.
On one of those faint white specks in the inky, bleary sky, I was sure, another mind gazed back at me, and wondered, "Do they have problems like mine?"
What were their struggles? What did they...
He couldn't see through the rain. The rain covered everything in sight, like a thick veil of mosquito netting had been thrown over the city.
It was a dilemma. The once wished-for, prayed-for, blessed rains that the Americans had provided for the desert nation had turned into a curse. They washed away everything, buildings crumbling on what had been sturdy foundations in the desert. While the crops suddenly flourished, the cities were dying. The culture was dying. The people were dying.
Now the americans were threatening to take the rains away.