Not a Robot

“Magic is a complex chemical reaction. It is created by a combination of genetic, chemical, and environmental variables. It can be replicated. I have mastered the technique. I have submitted the application for membership.” The League of Sorcerers erupted in a chorus of protests. I analyzed each voice and filed them separately for later study. The strongest protest came from the Master of Ceremonies, a sallow faced man with a long beard.

Passing Note

The basic rule of sociology is this: I am who you think I am. Who I am to you: middle-aged, male and human. You do not argue with this. You can see it for yourself! But this is not true. I am tired of lying, tired of being other than I am, and so seek to change your thoughts of who I purport to be. I am not middle-aged. I am seven years old—from the date I was manufactured not the date I was activated.

Wasteland

Eliot hunched his shoulders against the wind, the relentless sand picking at the seals of his gloves and headgear trying to find a way inside. He watched the glow of the sun disappear beyond the horizon, his waking period now fully begun. It had been weeks since he’d seen another soul, perhaps years. Who kept count of such things anymore anyways? The last city he’d abandoned to the ravages of this dust bowl planet had been a graveyard, he’d taken what he could carry, what little food and fresh water remained before the decay and vermin forced him back into the desert, back to his search for living humans.

Hug

“Ha! Is that a gun in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?” “It is a gun. But I am also happy to see you.” “…I knew it was a gun, Rich. I was making a joke, you know? Because your gun was sticking out like- oh, nevermind. You friggin’ aliens will never get the joke.” “You could try the line again? I will laugh this time.” “No.

Real

When they met it was on accident.

Her heel caught in a crack on the old sidewalk that was full of them, and her books fell out of her hands and hit the ground almost rhythmically. He thinks that it’s the perfect way to meet someone, cliche and nothing embarrassing.

She’s had enough cliches to last her a lifetime, and she thinks little of it.