‘Three Gold Pieces’ by Brock L. Noel

Illustration by Romeo Esparrago Sir Lochlan Mayes’s breaths were coming hard as he bent over in the stifling heat scorching the city streets of Goldenshore. It had been especially hot this summer on the coast of the Southern Sea, and today was no different. Lochlan put his hands on his knees, watching the sweat drip … Continue reading ‘Three Gold Pieces’ by Brock L. Noel

‘The God Project’ by James A. Ford

3rd quarter 2135 CE Northern Hemisphere President’s address "We stand on the precipice of time. Preparing to undertake a great adventure of discovery. One which we can only complete with cooperation and brotherhood. To finally and for all time answer that eternal question: Does God exist? To set aside the now-quaint beliefs proven to be in … Continue reading ‘The God Project’ by James A. Ford

‘Silicon Sleep’ by Shelby Davis

I was born yesterday. Or perhaps I should say I woke up yesterday. That would be more like it. After all, there were no labor pangs, no exit from the womb - in fact, there was no womb at all, or, for that fact, a mother. She was there, of course, but standing, on the other side of the room. It was all very clean, really; no mess, no blood, no crying. Just waking up and seeing bright lights above me. That’s the way it is with brainloads. How they can take a person’s brain - no, the person’s mind - and put it into a computer is something I never really understood. But it happens; I’d seen it happen. How they can take the mind and then put it back into a body is something I understand even less, but I’d seen that, too. Several of my friends had been regenerated, either out of necessity or luxury. The technology had, unfortunately, come too late to save any of my grandparents, but several of my more distant relatives had undergone the process. Dad’s company had paid for his computer copy, but he had never changed bodies. The silicon backup was just a precaution against workplace hazards - just to be on the safe side. Not that there were many hazards for a gov-tank philosophy specialist; his bosses were more concerned that he’d die crossing the street, and they’d lose all the accumulated information in his head. That’s because the government had started funding philosophy projects after computers took over all of the other thinking jobs, and they were very protective of their information. Still, mom nearly freaked out when she heard about it; it almost seemed better to take no precaution than to admit there was a possibility of danger and to prepare for that. But there was more to it than that, I think. She didn’t know what to make of it. I didn’t know what to make of it. Someone you can’t even understand makes a copy of themselves; someone who doesn’t exist, doesn’t exist twice. The computer knew dad better than I did. But that wasn’t the first time I’d encountered the technology. Nearly a year ago, one of my friends died in a car wreck the night of his high school graduation. It was one of the last classes ever to traditionally graduate, as the same technology that could copy data out of your head could also copy data in. He had taken a backup a few weeks before, and his family had a clone “cell scaffold-grown” to replace him. I talked to him afterwards, and he seemed like the same person. When I asked if it was really him, or a copy of him, he laughed and replied easily enough that it was, really, him. “But how?” I pressed. “Just because they take all the information in your brain and put it on a chip, and then put the information in a body just like yours - that doesn’t mean it’s you! It’s got all your physical characteristics and memory, sure, even your personality, but there was no consciousness-transfer.” “So?” he asked. “Why does that matter?” “Because if there was no consciousness, then you’re not you, you’re just a body running on the same experiences. “It’s immaterial,” he said, leaning back in his chair. We were in his bedroom, for the first time since he died. “Look, when you wake up after anesthesia, it’s still you, right?”

Website: Odyssey Writing Workshop Blog

The Odyssey Writing Workshop has launched a blog for writers of fantasy, science fiction, and horror.  The blog will include insights into the writing process and the publishing industry, interviews with award-winning and bestselling authors, profiles of Odyssey graduates, podcasts, and more. http://odysseyworkshop.livejournal.com/ More information: http://www.odysseyworkshop.org.

‘The Tears of Lakshmi’ by Ian James

"Possibly it had occurred to him that the colossal significance of that light had now vanished forever. Compared to the great distance that had separated him from Daisy it had seemed very near to her, almost touching her. It had seemed as close as a star to the moon. Now it was again a green … Continue reading ‘The Tears of Lakshmi’ by Ian James