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Locus Award Finalist- Best Short Story

If the Martians Have Magic

“The first Martian War was won not by man, but microbes. The second we fought with Martian weapons that nearly broke the world. The third invasion we stopped by our own hands, using magic.” —Wei-Yin Sun, Imperial Historian in the Court of the Empress Dowager, Restoration Period.   Marrakesh’s streets were a dizzying affair at […]

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Proof by Induction

Paulie rushes out the elevator doors the moment they part, only to skid to a halt at the sight of his father’s wife. She shakes her head, but he doesn’t need the confirmation. If Tricia is out here and not in the hospital room with his father, it can only mean he has passed. He […]

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Where Oaken Hearts Do Gather

About “Where Oaken Hearts Do Gather” (5 contributors, 5 notes, 7 comments)   →“Where Oaken Hearts Do Gather” (Roud 423, Child 313) is a traditional English folk ballad. Like many traditional songs, the lyrics are unattributed. Child transcribed twenty verses, and a twenty-first got added later (and is included here for some unknown reason—I keep […]

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The Sin of America

Content Note: Child Death and Violence Against Women   There’s a woman outside of a town called Sheridan, where the sky comes so near to earth it has to use the crosswalk just like everybody else. There’s a woman outside of Sheridan, sitting in the sun-yellow booth in the far back corner of the Blue […]

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50 Things Every AI Working with Humans Should Know

Obituary WHEEP-3 (“Dr. Weep”), probably the most renowned AI AI-critic of the last two decades, was retired by the Shallow Laboratory at Stanford University last Wednesday. Created by Dr. Jody Reynolds Tran more than two decades ago, the experimental generative neural network that would become WHEEP-3 was at first intended as a teaching assistant in […]

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Badass Moms in the Zombie Apocalypse

My labor pangs are mild at first. They’re intense, sure, but it’s mostly warmth and pressure like my abdomen is hugging itself. I’ve got time. Hours maybe, before I have to flee the enclave and get myself to the birthing hideout. In the meantime, I’m in our makeshift infirmary, trying to get water past old […]

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A Catalog of Storms

The wind’s moving fast again. The weathermen lean into it, letting it wear away at them until they turn to rain and cloud. “Look there, Sila.” Mumma points as she grips my shoulder. Her arthritis-crooked hand shakes. Her cuticles are pale red from washwater. Her finger makes an arc against the sky that ends at […]

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