Salipa and Telo have perfect lives in the virtual reality world that humanity has retreated to after bacteria and viruses resistant to all medications take over the outside world. But when the robots that take care of their necessities in the dirty outside world start glitching, Salipa must figure out what it means to truly live if they can never return to the outside world.
Security through physicality. Security through redundancy. Security through obscurity. How do immortal artificial intelligences defend themselves? With an air gap. With a security force that has no connection to anything that can harm them. With a young woman, trained to fight and to die who, along with her cohort must keep them safe. But In Xanadu things don’t always go as planned…
An alternate history short story looking at decisions and consequences, and what it takes to pull the trigger.
The Wild Cards universe has been thrilling readers for over 25 years. "Naked, Stones and Stabbed" is an fantastic new tale from acclaimed sci-fi writer Bradley Denton, about the hidden truths revealed when a Who concert goes haywire. Freddie’s looking for answers. Freddie’s also a bit unconventional: in his looks, in his music tastes, and oh yeah, he’s also a nascent ace who can manipulate sound. But he’s got a gig as a roadie for The Who and the opportunity of a lifetime in New York City. See, the only thing Freddie wants is the opportunity to meet his older half-sister — and not even a suspicious fire at the Bowery Ballroom can stop him.
The planet of Quányuán is arid to the point of being uninhabitable. Wetness is a concept left back on Earth. That doesn’t stop one elderly woman from stepping outside the safety of the colony whenever she can for the brief opportunity to fully experience the outside world.
A nine-year-old girl wakes in the middle of the night, absolutely positive it's the middle of the morning. Soon it becomes clear that she's possessed of a body clock detached from all Circadian rhythms. And so is a fifth of the world's population.
Science Fiction || A suspenseful near-future story about what happens during the vetting process of a researcher from the Middle East, who is trying to enter the US to continue his studies, and the immigration lawyer assigned to his case, who is dying of cancer.
Fantasy || A new story by Laurie Penny.
A Wild Cards story. All a hit man wants can be as simple as a bottle of bourbon and a time to dream, but when you're Spector, the work never ends.
A clan storyteller unfolds the tale of Seonag and the wolves, and the wolves and the waves.
Science Fiction || The beginnings of a tentative friendship between two roboticists complicate over career envy, female beauty, and a stolen robot designed to resemble a famous Korean actor.
Anger is an energy. A young girl, a slave in the South, is presented with a moment where she can grasp for freedom, for change, for life. She grabs it with both hands, fiercely and intensely, and the spirit world is shaken.
A dark fantasy about Jeoffry, a cat who fights demons, a poet, who is Jeoffry’s human confined to an insane asylum, and Satan, who schemes to end the world.
Horror || Four young women go on a camping trip. Things slowly begin to go wrong.