Melting Ice – Xin Rong Chua

The snow blankets the entire mountain, but the pulse of magic from the sacred cavern is unmistakable. Élivágar glows a bright blue, calling to the gatekeeper with his aura. A line of stone appears amidst the ice, and the gate opens.

“It is a sign of mastery when a man comes to be known by the name of his sword,” says the gatekeeper, stroking his white beard. “Long have I awaited your arrival, Élivágar.”

“And long have I awaited this chance to seek audience with the gods,” Élivágar says, repeating the words of challenge.

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The Silent Express – Zaza Asatiani 21′

As super-thin electric doors moved apart, a wave of homogenous mass flooded a huge auditorium, which was filled up with stained sunlight coming through translucent walls of the room. In pairs of two, expressionless persons wearing a black formal attire positioned themselves across mirror-surfaced floor replicating every movement accompanied by the sense-debilitating muteness inside the room. Fittingly, the barely alive eyes could only convey artificial excitement—even if natural, they still had to behave decently no matter that there was no one observing but their reflections. In minutes, a very tall and unsettlingly lean woman shrugged in an oversized purple costume seemingly mimicking a particularly patchy shape of her shaved head appeared out of nowhere to occupy a red podium in the front part of the auditorium.

‘Hail the New Order!’ She cried out as if her whole existence depended on it.

‘Hail! Hail! Hail!’ Declared the spiritless crowd back to her.

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Interview with Robert Charles Wilson

Figments (F): Most of your stories are neither dystopian or utopian, but more like something in the middle. Is there a reason you refrain from settling on one or the other extreme?


Robert Charles Wilson (RCW): When has the world ever seen a human culture that was entirely utopian or dystopian?  And why would we expect a future human culture, even one vastly more equitable and liberated than our own, to be flawless?  The boundary between “better” and “best” (or “bad” and “worst”) is where human drama resides, and that’s what interests me as a novelist.

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Interview with Mike Resnick

Figments (F): Much of your fiction could be described as utopian or dystopian; although your dystopian stories leave place to hope while messages and warnings hide in your utopias. How do you choose to go with one or the other when you start a new story?


Mike Resnick (MR): The first thing to do is take a hard, realistic look at the situation. Is it of Man’s making? Is it inevitable? If it’s a Utopia, what effort will be required to keep it going? If it is a Dystopia, can it be halted or reversed. If you want a story to be believable, you’ve got to stick with the facts as we understand them.

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Offerings – Anonymous

He existed only for a moment. It was the time when he would be out in the morning, looking for a way to go about picking mushrooms. It would come strong, the opposite-of reduction that happens to you when you close your eyes and you stop existing for a moment. Yeah, it was the opposite-of-reduction, his eyes were open, his hands were open. Hovering just above another plump mushroom. Continue reading Offerings – Anonymous