(First posted on a Google+ SF Nanofic community for a competition.)
The green army stretched into the distance, three feet tall.
“You see the problem?”
“You wanta greenjack-fab, you gotta. By them, works, innit?”
“And you don’t see any flaws here?”
“Works. More ‘an, not part of the deal. You come to Bozzet for cheap, you get…” The azayf shrugged. “Works.”
The linobir gripped his gun. “Deal’s off, ratcha. I paid for prime meat, not for selffucking midgets.”
“You skip? This estrev’s turf, and you be breathing deep.” A grin. “Free word?”
“So short. They only using half the feed t’make, innit? You make twice as many, stack ‘em up.”
Not at all inspired by current events, either…
“Last year we took down one network overnight. Now we’ve got smart replicators. This time, we’re downing every major gaming network in the constellation, and they won’t be back up for weeks. It’ll be huge!”
* * *
Three seconds later, the speaker became the tip of a flaming spear descending from the heavens, as the thunderous KEW impact racketed through the neighborhood.
Six hundred miles above, CS Impositor drifted silently through the black.
“I still think this isn’t the intent of Admiral’s Privilege.”
“And yet your Admiral does. Set course to the next… naughty target. And goodnight,” murmured the Worldburner, “children everywhere.”
An interrogation room on Gálish (Sullen Wildlands):
The local agents looked at each other, then back at my aquastor.
“So, your perp has stolen this, this -”
“Sixteen-petabit colonial tangle-channel ansible.”
“Whatever, this trillion-exval widget, and according to your numbers he’s now running a negative-frequency trading scam with it here?”
“On your quaint pre-stellar Second Tier Market? Yes, that’s exactly what I’m saying, gentlesophs. If our UNSUB is after money, he’s cunning, devious, technically brilliant, and incredibly stupid. It’s probably safe to conclude, therefore, that he’s after something other than money.”
– from the lifelog of Nyr Alman, Market Liberty Oversight Directorate
“It wasn’t so bad for colony kids; we’d never known anything else. But while we were growing up, we could watch our ship-born parents wince every evening at the thought of eating dead animal and dirt-grown plants. As for what they put on those plants to make them grow on half-ecoformed Órish – that was never referred to.”
“And we learned very quickly – even if we took off our precious, hand-made, washed by hand clothes first – not to play in the mud.”
– 100 Years of Poop: Growing Up on a Regressed Colony
Jenah ni Vinas an Riym
(Here, have a vaguely Christmas drabble.)
On ancient Eliera, they roast meat in the snow and light fires for the return of the second sun.
At the peak of Kythera’s deep winter, they dine in the Deep Vaults while robots above set the atmosphere on fire.
In drift-habitats across the Worlds, the Periday’s wild revels attend the long, slow fall back towards the sun.
And for the infomorphs dwelling in the computronium moons of Corícal, each v-year they reshuffle process priorities, giving first claim on new cycle-capacity to those who freed up resources when needed.
Have you been naughty, or nice(1)?